40 RCI 0714

RCI JULY 2014

CLADDING & SHEETING Durable colour makes a lasting impression Richard Besant is the sales director at Powdertech (Corby), and here he describes the role of professional powder coating in enhancing the appearance of two recently completed buildings, and the flexibility of this method of metal finishing Beautifully designed rainscreen cladding can define a building and enhance its architecture, most especially when colour is employed to great effect. At Powdertech (Corby) we were very pleased to be the powder coater selected for the Thomas Ferens Academy, Kingston-upon-Hull, and extremely proud that the building was the winner of the Roofing Awards 2013 vertical cladding / rainscreen category. It is not difficult to see why the building was chosen. Using cladding made up of panels of varying sizes, on a raked shore, coloured in three contrasting tones of orange, and dark grey, the designers created a particularly stunning visual effect. The finished building is uplifting and inspiring to encounter and appropriate for a centre of excellence in further education, part of the £24.5 million ‘Building Schools for the Future’ programme in the City of Hull. Approximately 1,000m² of 3mm aluminium panels were installed. These were concealed fix, baffle-jointed cassette aluminium rainscreen cladding, fixed to a lightweight steel frame. Where panels are being used for such a highly decorative effect, colour consistency in tone and depth is essential. Powder coating provides this consistency. The powders are manufactured, packed and sealed by specialist companies and applied in controlled conditions by the powder coater, minimising the possibility of error and inconsistency throughout the supply chain. You can also achieve a more uniform colour with lower film thickness in one application with powder coating than with conventional wet paint systems. All coatings are subject to ongoing comparison checks in our laboratory as the job progresses. A twenty five-year system warranty was required on the Thomas Ferens Academy and the high performance architectural powders used have a life expectancy in excess of twenty five years. In addition to the high quality of the architectural powders, metal preparation and pre-treatment are essential to achieving longevity of the finish. Powdertech carried out its proprietary nine stage chrome phosphate pre-treatment process which involves controlled immersion in tanks containing cleaners to remove oils and grease, surface etching agents to promote adhesion and a chrome phosphate conversion coating which adds the first layer of corrosion resistance. Between each stage 040 JULY 2014 RCIMAG.COM are towns water rinses with the final rinse being with demineralised water to ensure a clean surface. This rigorous process ensures that even unseen and uncoated areas are protected against corrosion. The coating used on the Thomas Ferens Academy was a marine-grade specification to ensure further protection in Hull’s local coastal environment. The coating provides a remarkably even and glossy polyester surface which is low maintenance. All that will be required is a rinse with water and a mild detergent every six months. Southwater town centre project Facades do not need be highly colourful to create stunning effects. Powdertech are delighted to have been selected to apply the finish to solar shading blades and panels system in the initial phase of Telford’s new Southwater town centre development. The visually striking powder coated aluminium blades and folded panels are part of highly innovative ventilation and sun control system (AshTech DucoSun Cubic 200solar shading blades). Colour consistency was important on this facade, the unusual and pleasing effect created by using RAL 1035 pearl beige finish on the panels and RAL 9007 metallic grey on the blades. The powders have a high UV resistance and will not fade for many years. The panels and blades were supplied in batches to meet tight deadlines which is not a problem for powder coating. This is a one-coat system carried out under controlled factory conditions, taking just twenty minutes to cure, whatever the weather. Powder coatings are available to suit almost any design requirement together with an excellent durability far in excess of most wet paint systems. Colour shades pose little problem, there were over two thousand standard colours at the last count and many more can be made to order in economic batches. The standard matt, satin and gloss smooth finishes are now augmented by a raft of different textures including hammered and even leatherette. There are powders that provide the appearance of wood, of an anodised surface and the natural shades of stone, terracotta and aged copper. Powder coating has transformed metal finishing and made the use of metal as a decorative feature very exciting in construction. www.powdertech.co.uk This pic: Southwater town centre project for which Powdertech was chosen to apply the finish to. (AshTech DucoSun Cubic 200solar shading blades) The Thomas Ferrens Academy, Hull


RCI JULY 2014
To see the actual publication please follow the link above