The world of offsite manufacture involves many disparate components that can be used during the assembly or as part of the onsite fitting work. Specifying the product for the right applications is vital.
The term is used loosely for fasteners and fixings, metal and meshwork, seals, adhesives, vapour barriers and breather membranes, cladding and curtain walling panels, IT software and CAD systems. Careful specification, the design of components and understanding their interfaces is crucial for the effective manufacture, assembly and delivery.
Building Boards – these can be orientated strand board (OSB) used in SIPS or closed and open panel timber frames. Open panels are timber frame wall panels comprising studs, rails and sheathing on one face and a breather membrane. Closed panels also include linings on the faces of the panel, a vapour barrier and breather membrane.
Cladding Solutions – cladding systems range in material and complexity: timber, steel and concrete offer different characteristics, decorative effects and finishes to complete the building envelope. Brick slip systems are also commonly used on offsite manufactured external walls to replicate the appearance of conventional brickwork and are securely fixed to the frame of the external wall panel.
Fixings & Fastenings – there is a massive range of specialist products used in the creation of structural panels and factory-manufactured building components. There is an array of insulation membranes, tapes, seals, adhesives that are increasingly driven by technological advancements, greater automation and improved efficiency.
Flooring – both cross-laminated timber (CLT) and precast concrete offer a huge range of options for flooring and are suitable for most building types. I-Joists made from timber and OSB are a commonly-used offsite building component with the timber frame approach.
Roofing – factory-manufactured panels similar to floor cassettes can be used for roofing and can also take the form of timber trussed rafters, spandrel panels or steel-based systems that can see roofs craned in and installed as complete units quickly and with minimum work at height.
A huge range of wider products contributes to maximising the efficiencies and benefits that offsite manufacture offers. These include windows and doors that can be factory-fitted to specialist building design software and digital cloud platforms that are driving the technological advancements of offsite design.