Lifestyle, Tech

Unveiling the Mechanics of Metal Cladding: Exploring Connections and Material Diversity

Most architects and construction designers agree that cladding the outside of a structure has to be aesthetically pleasing, but, ideally, should also be functional. Although there is a diversity of materials to choose from, metal is, nowadays, the most popular choice.

In this article, we’ll explore the reasons for the popularity of metal, with specific reference to Alucobond cladding.

Reasons for using metal

In short, installers use metal because

  • it looks good and modern,
  • can be cut and moulded easily,
  • protects facades against all weather conditions.

Different metals

Nowadays, copper, stainless steel, and aluminium are the most popular metals to use as cladding material. The pros and cons of each metal determine which one will be the best for a specific structure. Architects and designers must ensure that the metal they choose can be moulded in such a way that it fits the structure perfectly. They must also be convinced that it is the best choice to enhance the look of the building and is simultaneously functional.

Alucobond cladding build

Alucobond

If one looks at modern buildings worldwide, including in Australia, it becomes clear that aluminium is, nowadays, more often chosen for cladding than any other metal. According to cladding installers Sydney, there are, in principle, two reasons for this trend – the diversity of types of aluminium material, and the different ways it can be connected to the building.

1. Diversity

Over the years, one of the largest manufacturers of aluminium sheets, Alucobond, has developed a diversity of aluminium sheet types to be used as cladding material. Alucobond Australia, for instance, still provides sheets manufactured according to the original design of aluminium composite sheets (ACMs) – a polyethylene core between two thin aluminium sheets. It is easy to work with and the cheapest of all the types. Unfortunately, it is not watertight and cannot be used everywhere.

Variations on the basic concept include Alucobond PLUS which is ideal for buildings with high fire regulations, and Alucobond Axcent which is used where painted surfaces are needed. To add to the diversity created by the different manufacturing methods, Alucobond Australia also provides ACMs with a variety of finishes – from a prismatic look to metal looking like wood.

According to cladding installers in Sydney, this diversity within the aluminium industry makes the choice of material so much easier. Chances are good that architects and designers will find a suitable cladding within the aluminium group of material. This explains to a certain extent why so many buildings are cladded with an aluminium product.

2. Installation (Connections)

There are, in principle, three installation or connection methods to clad a facade with Alucobond. The company also provides an Alucobond installation guide for every method, which helps to make installation easy.

  • With one method, a silicon sealant is inserted between each panel and connected to the structure with clips.
  • Another method is without a silicon sealant and connected to the building with gaskets inserted into the joints between the sheets.
  • The third method is a method followed by most cladding installers in Sydney. It provides insulation and a rain screen.

Conclusion

In an era where metal cladding is being used more and more, Alucobond is the forerunner.

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