Latest innovations and products in the building fabric section of the construction industry.

Responding to market feedback, SFS has invested in a new assembly facility in Leeds to provide high quality, colour-matched AP rivets for rainscreen cladding. The full range of AP rivets are now available in 3 days’ lead time in more than 100 standard colours.

Andy Stolworthy, Director of Product and Market Development for SFS comments “The company’s new investment brings key manufacturing processes to Yorkshire that were previously handled in France. The move has been driven by UK customer feedback for shorter lead times on high quality coloured rivets, and illustrates how SFS is equipped to listen to the challenges that its customers face and respond in the most effective way.”

The result for customers is the convenience of being able to source AP rivets in a wide range of RAL colours in considerably reduced lead times. AP rivets are now available in 100+ standard colours that can be powder coated ready for despatch in just three days on orders placed before 12.00 noon, up to a maximum of 5,000 pieces. Additional volumes and bespoke colours can be easily accommodated too, with lead times depending on the specific requirements.

SFS’s AP rivet leads the market for securing rainscreen support systems in face-fixed rainscreen applications. The grade 5 aluminium body delivers ease of installation, durability and long term assurance. Three flange sizes – 11mm, 14mm and 16mm – and a range of rivet lengths provide a solution for securing the most widely specified rainscreen panels to a support frame. SFS’s powder coating processes ensure there is no paint on the mandrel.

Darren Gunga, Head of Operations at SFS says “We’re always listening to our customers and continuously looking at what we can do to make their lives easier and businesses more successful. Our new UK production facility for AP rivets is the tangible result of our approach, adding to our existing world-class painting technology for fastener systems.

“The new plant transforms the supply chain for specifiers and installers working on rainscreen projects. It is the first time that the market has been able to access the highest quality rainscreen fixings, complete with a premium colour finish, in such short lead times. Crucially, it means customers no longer need to compromise to suit tight build schedules.

“Our closeness to the market means we are in touch with the practical demands that customers face, which is why we’ve invested significant resources in Leeds to streamline the process from ordering to delivery on-site.”

Find out more about the range of SFS AP rivets for rainscreen at

Installing Cembrit fibre cement rainscreen panels as thin as 8mm using mechanical secret fixings just became quicker, easier and safer thanks to the innovative new range of TUF-S rivets by the world’s leading fastening systems manufacturer SFS.

Extensive testing by SFS demonstrated how TUF-S challenges the convention that installers need to use different fasteners for different panel materials and thicknesses. Until now, no other rivet of this kind has provided a reliable secret fix for panels manufactured in both HPL and fibre cement.

The TUF-S range is designed to eliminate the risk of overtightening which can ruin the aesthetics of a façade and result in very costly damage. It consists of nine variants of A4 stainless steel fixings, with a carbon steel mandrel, that can be used to secure a range of panel thicknesses to the rainscreen support clips using the GESIPA Powerbird Pro tool. The rivet’s design provides a wide range of installation benefits to save time and money, and deliver a safer, better quality overall result.

The performance of TUF-S for 8mm Cembrit panels was proven by SFS through a series of load tests conducted in its laboratory in Switzerland. This allowed for a set of technical values to be calculated to enable façade engineers to easily determine the number of fasteners and clips required to accommodate different locations, wind loadings, etc. This provided Cembrit with total assurance according to Ged Ferris, Cembrit UK Marketing Manager.

Ged says: “We are pleased that SFS have developed an innovative mechanical secret fix system for use with the standard 8mm thick rainscreen cladding boards. Designed and tested by SFS for use with fibre cement cladding, the combination of SFS rear rivets and Cembrit boards creates an attractive façade, uninterrupted by visible fixings, that will appeal to rainscreen cladding specifiers throughout the British Isles.

SFS have proven the rivet’s effectiveness in the clearest terms through their extensive testing and this gives us complete confidence in recommending the fastener’s use in any Cembrit rainscreen applications in the UK.”

Installation of TUF-S requires just a standard hole, with no need for complex undercutting – this provides the installer with the flexibility to drill new holes on site if required to accommodate unforeseen issues. The rivet also eliminates the risk of overtorquing, which can damage the rainscreen panels, and it has high pull-out values with no unwinding and uninstallation possible via a hex head.

Andy Stolworthy, Director of Product & Market Development at SFS says: “We’re delighted to have worked closely with Cembrit to provide them with a highly effective secret fix solution that will work across their different rainscreen panels. This development project is an excellent example of how SFS is able to create products with innovative unique features that provide OEMs with the assurances they need and address the most common issues faced by installers.”

Find out more about TUF-S at

Precision engineered stainless steel fasteners by SFS have enabled leading roofing and cladding contractor Curtis Moore to deliver new roofing in two refurbishment projects at Glasgow’s premier leisure and entertainment destination, Springfield Quay.

Bringing a fresh new look and delivering amongst the best quality entertainment facilities of their kind in Scotland, the renewal projects at the Hollywood Bowl and Odeon Cinema have helped the development maintain Springfield Quay’s position at the forefront of the market. In addition to these two key attractions, the Springfield Quay provides a wide range of restaurants, cafés, a gym, casino, hotel and more, located close to Glasgow City Centre.

Chosen to provide a reliable and secure fixing for Kalzip Standing Seam Roofing panels, SFS fasteners were used for both roof replacement projects at the leisure park’s Hollywood Bowl and Odeon cinema buildings.

Acting as the principal contractor on both projects, Curtis Moore was tasked with removing the existing profiled metal roof, insulation and VCL, before installing new insulation and the aluminium Kalzip panels. Both major refurbishment projects were completed whilst the facilities remained open for business, which required careful planning to keep access open and safe, without impacting on day-to-day operations or the overall customer experience.

Working closely with NBDA Architects on both projects, Curtis Moore was initially appointed on the Odeon Cinema scheme. The 5,500m2 roof of this building features curved roof sheets which are 53.5m in length. The sheets had to be site rolled within the active car park – this was undertaken in an area of the car park that would cause least disruption and was clearly cordoned off.

It was a roofing project that presented a number of challenges, not least the need to incorporate additional steelwork to suit the new Kalzip system, which was only apparent once the existing roof was removed. However, such was the success of the solution and service provided by Curtis Moore, that the company was awarded the adjacent project – Hollywood Bowl. This was a similar project, involving the removal of an existing skin, VCL, insulation and supporting grid, and installation of 2,808m2 of Kalzip panels.

Commenting on the project, Curtis Moore’s Ashleigh Thomson, Business Development Director, said: “Springfield Quay is a hugely popular leisure and entertainment destination and we are delighted to have been involved in these latest refurbishment projects which look set to keep it at the top of its game for years to come.

“Market-leading brands like Odeon and Hollywood Bowl set high standards for their customer experience, so our contribution to the building envelope must match these ambitions. That’s why the use of Kalzip systems secured by SFS fasteners was hugely important, providing the assurance of a long service life and giving the buildings excellent and lasting visual appeal.”

Find out more about SFS at

Custom metal ceiling systems from Armstrong World Industries have brought form and function to the award-winning transformation of that bastion of island security – New Scotland Yard.

Armstrong’s metal F-H 600 hook-on tiles and swing-down rectangular planks with concealed G-Profile grid and acoustic fleece, and metal T-Clip F tiles with Spring-T grid, were specified by Allford Hall Monaghan Morris architects for the £65 million remodelling, refurbishment and extension of the headquarters of the Metropolitan Police.

With a constrained floor to ceiling height the Armstrong systems met the demands for electrical servicing and lighting while mechanical services, data and small power outlets were installed in a raised access floor void.

As well as the circulation spaces, corridors and lift lobbies, Armstrong’s custom micro-perforated metal systems, which perform up to sound absorption Class A, were also used for the ground-floor multi-use and Press Rooms where acoustic absorption and integration of lighting were key design considerations.

Architect Steven McCloy said: “The existing building had compromised and varying ceiling heights with complex service requirements. Due to the constraints of the existing building, tile lengths were manufactured to suit.”

“The ceilings are generally acoustic plasterboard apart from the doughnut of service runs on each floor which are made from the Armstrong demountable metal ceiling planks. These have an aesthetic and practical application, allowing the integration of light fittings and so on, and can be demounted for access or change in the future.”

He added: “The Armstrong systems were detailed with minimal interfaces with other surfaces, thus avoiding trimming or cutting.”

The redevelopment of the former Curtis Green building (so named after its architect William Curtis Green) on Victoria Embankment involved demolition, a new structural steel frame, new cladding and interior remodelling to make a 21st Century smart workplace with an engaging public realm.

AHMM’s design is a radical remodelling and extension of the 1930s stone-fronted building. The core objectives of the brief were to create modern, flexible and efficient office environments, extend available floor space and facilitate agile working with more interaction between staff and visitors.

The design has transformed the building with the addition of an elegant curved glass entrance pavilion, a new rooftop pavilion, extension of the floor plates to the west and the reworking of the existing accommodation which has expanded the building’s floor area from 8,691m2 to around 12,000m2.

The contemporary design of the new extensions sensitively complement and enhance the architectural features of the original Neo Classical building and respond in materials, colours and proportions to neighbouring Whitehall buildings.

Inside, AHMM has created a flexible office environment to facilitate collaboration and interaction. The rooftop extension provides multi-use conference space and terraces and is illuminated to give presence at night, symbolising the 24/7 nature of policing the nation’s capital along with creating a civic presence.

New Scotland Yard has won numerous awards including an AJ Retrofit award for Best office over 10,000m2 2017, Building Magazine’s Project of the Year 2017, and the Prime Minister’s Better Public Building Award 2017, along with a RIBA London Region Award 2017 and RIBA National Award 2017.

More information is accessible via the Armstrong Ceilings website

Leading door hinge manufacturer SFS has reported a successful four days at the Fensterbau 2018 exhibition, with the show providing the ideal platform for door manufacturers to explore why its latest range offers unparalleled adjustability, aesthetics and performance across every type of doorset.

Star of the show was the W-Tec 3D hinge range which SFS offers in any RAL colour to deliver a visually stunning result in contrast or to colour match. This highly engineered concealed hinge, available in two versions for standard and slim doors, provides a perfect solution for aesthetically-led heavyweight timber doors used in high-end residential, commercial and hospitality applications. The quality of W-Tec 3D’s design and manufacture leads the market with its excellent stability and mechanical adjustability enabling precise installation and delivering long term reliability.

Another popular hinge technology option for timber doorsets that attracted strong interest from visitors was the Easy 3D hinge. This well-established, stainless steel hinge range is well-liked by manufacturers and installers across Europe because of that fact it can be mechanically adjusted in three dimensions whilst fitted in situ. This makes it much easier to achieve a textbook timber door installation, every time.

In the UK, SFS is renowned for its Dynamic hinge ranges for PVC-U, aluminium and composite doors, and Fensterbau provided the latest insights into how this range continues to evolve.

Alongside the market-leading Dynamic 2D, which is designed to create high performance rebated doorsets thanks to its profile-specific sash plates, was Dynamic 3D. This offers the same highly engineered quality and aesthetic appeal, but with an additional level of adjustability. SFS also took the opportunity to showcase a concept version of Dynamic 3D which could present a future solution for flush-fit doors, subject to market feedback.

Nigel Wood, Director of Sales – Hinge and Fastening Technology at SFS said “It was fantastic to see such a high level of interest in our hinge technology range across all four days of Fensterbau.

“Our European designed and manufactured products truly have raised the bar in terms of a hinge’s build quality, adjustability and visual appeal and we look forward to expanding our relationships with UK architects, joinery manufacturers and door fabricators to help the market benefit further.”

Architects can learn more about why the hinge choice is crucial to a secure, safe and durable doorset specification in SFS’s new RIBA-approved CPD seminar. This seminar is delivered at architects’ offices in a ‘lunch and learn’ format and can be booked online at in the Architects & Specifiers tab.

More information on the SFS hinge technology range, including brochures and technical data is available at

Kalwall® translucent cladding is the architectural focus of the new £55million development of Benenden Hospital in Cranbrook, Kent.

The scheme, designed by architects C A Vaughan Blundell with assistance from SR Architects Ltd, has created a wonderfully light and airy entrance atrium designed to welcome and create an enhanced patient and visitor experience with maximised natural daylight. The extensive breakout and catering facilities support theatres, en-suite rooms, outpatient department and ophthalmic suite along with diagnostic imaging, rest and recovery areas. The main contractor was Willmott Dixon Construction.

The Kalwall skylights provide additional light in the large atrium projecting it deep into the interior. They were specified complete with highly insulating Nanogel which achieves an impress U value of 0.28W/m2K, helping the project attain a Breeam status of ‘Good’. This is particularly impressive given the amount of curtain walling and clerestory glazing involved in the scheme.

The skylights have a unique ability to bathe interior spaces with diffused and glare-free daylight, which creates a stimulating and healthy environment. In addition, their heavily insulated composition eliminates glare and hotspots, thereby reducing the load on temperature control systems and the need for artificial lighting.

Geoff Holden, Senior Technician at C A Vaughan Blundell comments, “The use of Kalwall represented the best value balance of energy saving and cost and provided us with the ideal way to achieve spatial daylighting within the requirements of Part L”.

Kalwall is a popular choice for projects where performance, long life cycle and low maintenance are required, coupled with an aesthetic finish. The aluminium or thermally-broken grid core with interlocking I-beams gives Kalwall incredible strength. The lightweight system reduces the need for supporting structures while offering the highest protection in terms of wind-borne debris and resistance to impact, abrasion and point loads. The exterior face is colour stable and includes a UV resistant, self-cleaning surface. This means that normal rainfall helps to keep the surface free of dust and dirt while at the same time retaining its original colour during the weathering process. Furthermore, the inclusion of an erosion-prevention barrier protects the interior from weather exposure and the risk of fibre-bloom, cracking and crazing.

Case studies and technical information are available from Structura UK Ltd on tel: 01233 501 504 or by visiting

With aluminium windows and doors growing popularity, Titon is experiencing significant demand for hardware in this sector. The company has a huge range of products designed specifically for aluminium, many of which originate from Sobinco. Titon has been the exclusive UK distributor for Sobinco for nearly 40 years, supplying hardware such as tilt and turn window systems, pivots, catches and handles, as well as locks, lift-slide systems, roller assemblies and handles for doors.

Commenting on the relationship with Sobinco, Julian Wiseman, Sales Director (Aluminium) at Titon, said: “Our relationship with Sobinco has strengthened significantly over the years. From humble beginnings with just a small group of products, we now have an enormous portfolio available.

“As a result, there is aluminium hardware available for a variety of applications, from commercial premises to exclusive residential developments. The resurgence in the construction sector has certainly seen orders increase, while the growing popularity of top end products, such as bi-fold doors in domestic properties, has also led to an upsurge in demand.”

He continued: “The products from Sobinco are extremely flexibile and can be produced in more than 450 colours to make a project truly unique; alternatively, there is the ever-popular anthracite grey to complement the latest ‘designer’ bi-fold doors. We are also able to turn orders around quickly, as Sobinco is extremely self-sufficient, with everything from R&D and castings, to pressings and painting, all taking place in-house.

“Also, given the resurgence in aluminium windows and doors throughout the commercial and domestic markets alike, customers are looking for high quality, aesthetically pleasing, technically sound hardware products – and the Sobinco range certainly fits the bill.”

Titon has seen a year-on-year increase in sales of aluminium hardware which, in addition to the Sobinco range, also includes the company’s own handles, espags, hinges and trickle ventilators, as well as options from other manufacturers. Additionally, Titon also provides its customers with full technical advice and support, to ensure all products perform reliably and effectively.

For more information about Titon and its comprehensive range of window & door hardware, as well as whole house ventilation products, please visit: For more details about Sobinco, visit:

Golfers at Centurion Club in Hemel Hempstead have found their performance matched back at the clubhouse, following the installation of the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System.

Situated in the Hertfordshire countryside, Centurion Club offers members and their guests the finest facilities and customer service both on and off the course. The contemporary clubhouse provides a comfortable yet opulent place for meeting and entertaining, with a stylish restaurant and private rooms available for hire.

A recessed roof terrace was incorporated into the building design to take full advantage of the views across the lake and 18th green, extending the Member bar seating area. To ensure a level threshold for a smooth transition from inside to outside, whilst also keeping the area well insulated, the Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System was specified.

The next generation insulation solution features vacuum insulation panels (VIPs) with a microporous core which is evacuated, encased and sealed in a thin, gas-tight envelope. With a declared thermal conductivity 0.007 W/m.K, Kingspan OPTIM-R VIPs can deliver an insulating performance up to five times better than that of commonly available insulation materials.

The 20 mm Kingspan OPTIM-R Balcony & Terrace System was installed on the terrace below Kingspan Thermataper TT47 LPC/FM. The use of this product eliminated the need to incorporate a structural fall into the design, and provided a lightweight and dry alternative to screeding.

As with every installation of a Kingspan OPTIM-R System, Kingspan’s specialist technical team provided detailed layouts and instructions for the project, to ensure it achieved the best possible level of thermal performance from absolute minimal thickness.

20-40 mm thick Kingspan OPTIM-R panels are also certified under the demanding BDA Agrément® scheme. This independent certification is accepted by NHBC and the LABC and can help to fast-track projects through the procedures and approvals processes, further reducing project costs.

For more information, please call 01544 387 384, email or visit

Saint-Gobain Weber takes training in the specification and application of their innovative, market leading materials responsibly. A team of technical advisors is available to support and advise, either over the telephone or on site, on the correct use of a diverse product offering.

“In addition to the Saint-Gobain Technical Academy here in Bedfordshire, one of several across the country,” says Rob Speke, training academy manager, Saint-Gobain Weber, “we now have a wide inventory of How To videos posted on YouTube for specifiers and applicators who are unable to attend a related course at the Academy.”

How To Videos have been created to address the most frequently raised technical enquiries received by Weber’s technicians for tile preparation, flooring products, renders and external wall insulation systems.

A problem being experienced across the UK and Europe, caused by mild winter temperatures that rarely fall below freezing, is the growth of algae, bacteria, fungus and mould, on external surfaces including render and brickwork. Weber’s new YouTube video illustrates how to remove unsightly algae using high performance weber CL150. “This is an easy to use water-based masonry wash containing carefully selected biocides to clean and sterilise substrates,” says Rob Speke.

To help absorption weber CL150 must be applied undiluted to a dry substrate, saturating the affected area, using a brush or sprayer. If severe, aid the process by agitating the surface with a nylon bristle brush which will speed up and improve the results. Over 48 hours weber CL150 will kill the algae spores and the treated area now only requires jet washing at low pressure. In severe or stubborn cases the process can be safely repeated over another 48 hour cycle of treatment.

“Once treated the substrate will be protected for a considerable period although in areas of high algae growth, such as north facing walls with limited sunlight, it is advisable to repeat the process every few years to maintain best aesthetics,” says Rob.

The below How To video is one of 30 currently hosted on YouTube with plans for many more over the coming months. For more information, or for technical support, please contact Saint-Gobain Weber on 08703 330070, or visit

A free download of the Weber App for iPhone and iPad users is also available from iTunes and from Google Play for Android smartphones and tablet users. Follow Saint-Gobain Weber on Twitter @SGWeberUK for the latest company news and updates and look out for more introductions of new How To videos.

Roof and floor insulation products from industry leading manufacturer — Kingspan Insulation — have formed an integral part of the iconic building envelope for Scotland’s first museum of design.

KENGO KUMA & ASSOCIATES’ design for V&A Dundee sets an impressive figure against the city’s waterfront. Its angular form, wrapped with horizontal concrete panels, draws inspiration from the dramatic cliffs of the country’s east coast. BAM Construct UK and Dundee City Council are overseeing construction of the £80 million museum which is due to open this September, providing 1,650 m² of world class exhibition facilities.

The building, rated ‘Excellent’ at its design stage BREEAM assessment, combines renewable energy generating technologies with a highly insulated construction. To insulate the building’s expansive flat roof, whilst also providing effective drainage, over 6,500 m2 of Kingspan Thermataper TT46 LPC/FM was specified along with a further 1,000 m2 of Kingspan Thermaroof TR26 LPC/FM.

The high-performance roofing products were installed by Q9 Cladding Solutions. They can achieve thermal conductivities as low as 0.022 W/m.K and are compatible with most mechanically fixed single–ply waterproofing systems. Kingspan Insulation’s specialist tapered roofing design team provided a detailed layout scheme for the products. This ensured that the build-up met the target thermal performance requirements with a minimal construction depth, limiting structural support requirements, whilst also effectively channelling water off the roof space. In addition, both products have been approved to Factory Mutual Research Standard 4470: 2016 for Class 1 Steel Deck Roof Assemblies and LPS 1181:Part 1.

To insulate the ground floor throughout the building a further 5,300 m2 of Kingspan Kooltherm K3 Floorboard was installed. Kingspan Insulation has now released Kingspan Kooltherm K103 Floorboard as part of its Kooltherm K100 range of premium performance insulation boards, offering a thermal conductivity of just 0.018 W/m.K across all board thicknesses.

As part of the project’s BREEAM commitments, considerable care was taken to ensure the materials specified met the highest standards in responsible sourcing. All three Kingspan Insulation products installed at the museum have been assigned the highest possible BRE Green Guide Summary Rating of A+. The insulated boards, manufactured at Kingspan’s facilities in Herefordshire and North Yorkshire, are also certified as ‘Excellent’ under the demanding BES6001 Responsible Sourcing Standard. As a result, they contributed toward the award of credits within the Materials section of the building’s BREEAM assessment.

For further information please call 01544 387 384, email or visit