Feeling Comfortable With Metal Roofing

Metal Roof Consultants Inc

Photo: Metal Roof Consultants Inc.

Theodore Roosevelt once said, “The best thing you can do is the right thing; the next best thing you can do is the wrong thing; the worst thing you can do is nothing.” 

Throughout our lives, we must decide what to do and how to deal with the inevitable fear that surrounds doing anything for the first time. Remember that bicycle in the garage that looked so inviting—until you thought of how it would be impossible for you to balance yourself on those two tiny wheels and pedal it forward without falling and hurting yourself. Your mind focused on falling and not the excitement of being able to conquer riding that bicycle. Yet, as Theodore Roosevelt said many years ago, “the worst thing you can do is nothing.” 

We are faced with new things throughout our lives, and when we do we usually must weigh the possibilities of doing the right thing, the wrong thing, or nothing. However, if we expect to have a productive and peaceful life, we must force ourselves to always do “something.”  

Finally, we must also ask ourselves why we even consider new things we contemplate doing. When we take on a new task and we know why we are doing it, we are comfortable with taking whatever risk is anticipated. When we know that the only wrong thing to do is nothing, we have the possibility to achieve even greater things. Even if it turns out to be the wrong thing, we will learn valuable lessons about ourselves and the task we were trying to accomplish.  

Now, let’s look at the metal roofing industry and ask ourselves whether we are “doing nothing” either because we are afraid of “falling off the bicycle” or because we haven’t determined why we want to enter this market. Both reasons limit your personal and business potential to what you are doing now. Now, let’s explore some of the reasons you might not be comfortable entering the metal roof market, thereby limiting your growth potential. 

The Metal Market

Metal roofing has been around since 1932, when the first standing seam roof panel was introduced by Armco steel at the World’s Fair in Chicago. However, it is still a rather small percentage of the total roofing market. Why? In part, it’s because some contractors fear entering this market. Let’s look at some of the reasons that the unknown aspects of metal roofing, or the incorrect perception of a metal roofing system, can cause contractors to avoid this market: 

Metal Roof Consultants Inc.

Photo: Metal Roof Consultants Inc.

Specialized workforce. There is the perception that this market requires a field force that is very difficult to gather. The reality is that the metal roofing systems in today’s market include parts and components that are easily put together. Manufacturers provide training in how to install their specific pre-manufactured components that make up a metal roof system. In general, there are panels, clips, and termination components (ridge, rake, gutter/eave, curbs, etc.). These components have been developed over decades of trial and error and, when installed correctly, will create a leak-proof roof system which will last as long as any of the other building components. In addition to the metal roof manufacturers, the Metal Buildings and Erectors Association (MBCEA) is a group that provides independent training on the proper erection of metal buildings, including all components of a metal roof system. 

Engineering. The engineering associated with a metal roof system is the responsibility of the manufacturer per the International Building Code (IBC). Local engineering for a particular metal roof can be provided by a professional engineer licensed in the locale of the particular job site. Both sources are readily available to the contractor that wishes to enter the metal roof contracting business. The contractor should not have any concerns about this aspect of a metal roof if he does his due diligence and partners with a manufacturer that will provide the tested engineering characteristics of a particular roofing system and a local engineer who can take that information and perform a code-required analysis. 

Details. As opposed to sheet membrane or shingled roof systems, the metal roof system has its own details. These details require a different understanding of water protection. Metal components, including the actual roof sheet, will not allow water to penetrate and, if protected with a galvalume coating, will last well over 60 years (refer to Metalconstruction.org, Technical Resources, “Service Life Assessment of Low-Slope Unpainted 55% Al-Zn Alloy Coated Steel Standing Seam Metal Roof Systems”).  

These metal components, however, need to be joined and terminated with sealants and fasteners to create a total water-resisting barrier. Again, the panel manufacturers have time-tested details to assist contractors. A word of caution, however: Make sure that you properly select the panel type (standing seam, corrugated panel, snap seam panel, etc.) that best suits the project, and match those selections with a manufacturer and the detail that will perform best. Finally, the local engineer must be used to ensure the detailing will resist the local design loads. The contractor is only responsible to select that qualified manufacturer and engineer—not become one. 

Cost. “Since metal roofs cost a lot more than conventional roofs, they must be hard to sell.” While this statement is prevalent in the metal roofing market, it is blatantly untrue. While the initial cost may be higher than a conventional roof, a metal roof offers an exceptional value over its lifetime. In fewer than 20 years, the cost of a metal roof system can be as much as 50 percent less than that of many conventional roofs, and conservatively one-third the cost of these roofs over a 60-year time frame. End of argument!  

The Retrofit Segment

What about metal retrofit roofing? While that question might scare you more than merely considering entering the overall metal roofing market, it can definitely expand your horizon and offers more potential than just riding a bicycle. If you’ve ever ridden in a car, you know that the experience, comfort and potential for getting places is greatly enhanced. The same concept applies when expanding your metal roof market possibilities to include the lucrative metal retrofit roofing market. This market, with its extremely limited contractor participation and increasing customer demand, makes it very interesting to consider.  

Metal Roof Consultants Inc.

Photo: Metal Roof Consultants Inc.

A recent metal retrofit roofing package of six roofs totaling more than $20 million bid in North Carolina, and only three companies submitted bids. Each contractor ended up with two projects each, totaling between $6 and $9 million per contractor. During this same time, single-ply and shingle projects in the same geographical area attracted many more contractors. Again, you may feel that all-too-familiar twinge in your stomach caused by only looking at the negative consequences you might encounter. However, doing nothing is the worst thing you can do. It is true that finding manufacturers and engineers to assist you when entering the retrofit market can be difficult, as the pool is much more limited than that of the metal roofing industry in general, but these resources are available to you. Just be diligent and look harder!  

Finally, consider what a very wise man said many years ago to a young man just out of college. He said, “Can’t never did anything.” That wise man was my father, and he spoke those words on my college graduation day. My experience has seen the metal roof market develop with many new innovations. The metal retrofit roofing market was not even in existence in the 1970s, but it has since become a market that grows year after year. I have been lucky enough to see, and be part of, a revolution in the roofing industry with respect to metal roofing’s place. All the tools you need to enter the market are out there, but, like that bicycle many years ago, you must first determine why you want to ride it and be willing to risk falling off a few times. The rewards are worth it, even if you get your knees scraped a few times. 

Shear Cuts Metal while Conserving Materials and Costs

Kett Tool Co.’s KD-400 18-Gauge Double-Cut Shears help manufacturers and contractors conserve materials and cut costs. The shears deliver precision cuts in cold rolled (C.R.) mild steel, stainless steel, aluminum, plastic and Formica without warping or bending the original material or the finished piece.

Kett Tool Co.’s KD-400 18-Gauge Double-Cut Shears help manufacturers and contractors conserve materials and cut costs.

Kett Tool Co.’s KD-400 18-Gauge Double-Cut Shears help manufacturers and contractors conserve materials and cut costs.

The Double-Cut Shears’ dual blades transfer any distortion produced in cutting to a small 7/32-inch waste strip, leaving behind material edges that are not hardened or burred to allow maximum use of sheet material. The blades’ swiping action also seals edges of coated metals.

Kett’s KD-400 shears use a 5-amp, variable speed, 2,500 RPM electric motor to produce straight or contoured cuts in C.R. mild steel (up to 18-gauge), most grades of stainless steel to 20-gauge, aluminum to 0.080 inches, and plastic or Formica up to 3/32 inches thick—all at speeds of up to 300 inches per minute. The lightweight, maneuverable shears easily follow a scribed line, capable of cutting a radius as small as 6 inches.

The KD-400 Double-Cut Shears are also available with a contour cutting blade 60-21C to cut tighter curves and the HS blade 60-21HS for cutting foam filled doors. All shear heads are precision made in the U.S. featuring A2 tool steel blades for prolonged durability.

The KD-400 Double-Cut Shears are available through authorized dealers.

MCA Recognizes Eight Building Projects at Awards Show

Selected by a panel of professional architects, eight building projects from across the country have been recognized by the Metal Construction Association (MCA) at the 2017 Chairman’s Awards show.

Announced at the MCA’s winter meeting held in Weston, Fla., the Chairman’s Awards are given to the year’s most exceptional building projects involving MCA member companies. Awards are based on overall appearance, significance of metal in the project, innovative use of metal, and the role of metal in achieving project objectives.

The MCA Chairman’s Awards were given in eight categories: overall excellence; residential; metal roofing; education, primary and secondary schools; education, colleges and universities; institutional; municipal; and commercial/industrial.

The 2016 Chairman’s Award winners in each category were:

Recipients for these awards are selected each year from projects submitted by MCA members to “Metal Architecture Magazine’s” annual Design Awards Program. The honorees were chosen by a panel of professional architects, which included Mark Dewalt, AIA, principal, Valerio Dewalt Train Associates, Chicago; Mark Horton, FAIA, principal, Mark Horton/Architecture, San Francisco; Brent Schipper, AIA, LEED AP, principal, ASK Studio, Des Moines, Iowa.

Project Profiles: Retail

Sierra Nevada Brewery, Mills River, N.C.

About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

TEAM

Roofing Contractor: The Century Slate Roofing Co., Durham, N.C.
Architect: Matthew Galloway of Russell Gallaway Associates Inc., Chico, Calif.

ROOF MATERIALS

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project. This was close to 750,000 pounds of slate, or 375 tons.

About 3,000 feet of custom copper gutters and downspouts, conductor heads and 100 squares of painted standing-seam panels were fabricated, and pre-built copper clad dormers and decorative copper cornices were installed.

The project also included 35 squares of copper standing-seam roofing, 25 squares of soldered copper flat-seam roofing and 115 squares of copper wall cladding. About 58,000 pounds of copper were installed on the brewery.

Everything on the building is oversized and that meant everything had to be built to support the heavy structural loads and live loads from wind and mountain snow. The large roof faces called for 10-inch custom copper gutters. When you have gutters that large in the mountains of North Carolina you have to consider the extraordinary weight of the annual snow.

In addition to snow guards being installed on the slate roof, custom 1/4-inch-thick copper gutter brackets fastened the gutter to the fascia. It is typical on steel-framed construction, particularly on this scale, that the framing is out of square and there is widely varying fascia and rake dimensions.

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project.

Approximately 423 squares of 1/2-inch-thick, 18-inch-tall by random width Unfading Green Slates were installed by hand on the project.

However, these items should not appear out of square or have varying dimensions. Great care had to be taken to measure and custom bend onsite all the detail flashings so everything appeared perfect. This took many skilled craftsmen, a great deal of time and the absolute drive to provide the highest quality work.

Slate Manufacturer: Evergreen Slate Co. Inc.
Copper Fabricator: K&M Sheet Metal LLC
Supplier of Underlayment, Copper Sheets and Coil, Insulation and Nailbase Sheathing: ABC Supply Co. Inc.

ROOF REPORT

The new-construction project began in November 2013 and was completed in September 2015.
The team completed the slate installation so well that The Century Slate Co. was awarded the 2015 Excellence in Craftsmanship Award by Evergreen Slate for the project.

PHOTOS: The Century Slate Roofing Co.

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METALCON Returns to Baltimore

METALCON 2016, the metal construction industry’s international event for metal construction products, technologies and solutions, returns to Baltimore for its 26th annual tradeshow and conference.

Designers, builders, developers, contractors, fabricators and suppliers from more than 50 countries attend this event each year. Industry experts from 275 companies exhibit the latest products and technology while sharing their knowledge with attendees. Industry specialists present key topics in the show’s highly-rated, education program.

METALCON 2016 is scheduled for Oct. 26-28, 2016 and takes place at the Baltimore Convention Center, 1 W. Pratt St., Baltimore, MD 21201.

Garland Releases Metal Solutions Brochure

To help customers find the perfect metal solutions for their job, Garland developed a Garland Metal Solutions brochure. This new tool gives architects, building owners, facility managers and other design professionals full access to Garland’s comprehensive offering of long-lasting, durable and eco-responsible metal building solutions.

Not only does this brochure cover Garland’s full line of metal options like R-Mer Shield, R-Mer Span, R-Mer Wall Pan, R-Mer Loc, and high-performance edge metal systems, it also highlights the vast metal color selection.

“This brochure is a great showpiece to highlight the wide array of high-performance metal options that we offer. The best part is that we have a solution to suit everyone, and our engineering team can provide the service behind each metal system to make sure every individual customer is satisfied,” says Tom Diamond, senior product manager with Garland.

CIDAN Machinery Joins the Metal Construction Association

The Metal Construction Association (MCA) welcomes CIDAN Machinery to its membership roster. The company has joined the association’s ranks of about 75 member companies with specialties in the metal construction industry.

CIDAN Machinery has manufactured machines since 1907 and is a well-established company within the sheet metal industry. The company manufactures and markets the brands CIDAN and Göteneds at its factory in Götene, Sweden.

“CIDAN Machinery is excited to participate in networking and stay current with the metal construction industry,” says Larry Chandonnet, CIDAN’s president.

MCA member companies benefit from participation in association activities that focus on research, codes and standards, market development, and technical programs. The association works to increase the use of metal materials in construction by educating the building and design communities about the benefits of metal.

MCA members represent a broad scope of companies including metal roof, wall panel, shingles and coatings manufacturers, coil coaters and metal producers, distributors, equipment and accessories manufacturers, energy insulation system manufacturers, and MCM fabricators. Membership information kits for each industry segment are available on MCA’s website.

METALCON Helps Veterans in Local Community

The metal construction industry’s international event for metal construction products, technologies and solutions gives back to the local community during its 25th annual METALCON tradeshow and conference taking place Oct. 14-16 at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, Fla.

METALCON is partnering with the America’s Fund, a non-profit organization dedicated to helping U.S. armed forces’ veterans, to raise money for military veterans in need of care at Tampa’s Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center.

METALCON is no stranger to the local community. At METALCON 2006 in Tampa, U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Paul Russell ‘Russ’ Marek of Satellite Beach, Fla., was awarded a new, ADA-compliant accessible home through METALCON’s annual giving back program. Marek who was severely injured in 2005 while serving in Iraq spent more than a year recuperating at Tampa’s James A. Haley Veterans’ Hospital, which opened its Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center in 2014—this year’s recipient of METALCON’s giving back program.

The Tampa Polytrauma Rehabilitation Center is one of five facilities in the U.S. designed to provide intensive rehabilitative care to veterans and servicemembers who have experienced severe injuries.

Staff Sgt. Marek suffered serious injuries when his tank was destroyed by enemy fire. His right arm and leg were severed, in addition to parts of his right ear and left hand. He also suffered severe head trauma and burns to more than 20 percent of his body. “To date, Russ has made amazing progress in his recovery and soon is expected to be walking without assistance,” says Russ’ father, Paul Marek Sr.

METALCON Show Director Claire Kilcoyne was incredibly moved by Staff Sgt. Marek’s courage and determination to move forward. Having maintained a strong relationship over the years with Marek and his family, they look forward to joining together at METALCON’S 25th anniversary celebration.

Knowing many more young military heroes exist, Kilcoyne announces METALCON’s giving back program will continue to benefit the America’s Fund throughout each year, assisting military in all branches of the U.S. armed forces.

“Going forward we want to ensure METALCON’s giving back efforts benefit those brave individuals who’ve put their futures on the line to make all of us safer and able to enjoy all of the freedoms we have,” says Kilcoyne. “By affiliating with America’s Fund, we open the door for more recipients and donations on an ongoing basis, not just at our annual event.”

Donations can be made to America’s Fund throughout the year and can be applied to specific programs or veterans upon request.

America’s Fund is a program created to direct urgently needed resources and financial support to injured and critically ill members of the U.S. armed forces and their families. It is a self-funded program of the Semper Fi Fund. Since its inception in 2004, the Semper Fi Fund has provided more than $100 million in support to veterans and their families.

“We are honored to be chosen as the official charity of METALCON; their support will make a difference in the lives of so many service members and their loved ones,” says Karen Guenther, CEO and president, Semper Fi Fund.

Contributions to the America’s Fund can be made on the METALCON website or in the exhibit hall at The Deck, booth 973. Army Staff Sgt. Marek, along with America’s Fund representatives and METALCON management will be available for comment at the booth on Wednesday, Oct. 14.

MCA Celebrates 25th Anniversary of METALCON

As part of the 25th anniversary celebration of METALCON, the Metal Construction Association (MCA) is reinvigorating its presence on the show floor, including a new educational theater and displays at the association’s newly designed booth (#1831), as well as the annual Chairman’s Awards presentation, and expanded Metal Roofing Championship Games.

This year, MCA’s councils, which serve various segments of the metal construction industry, are represented through informative displays and educational sessions held daily in a theater at the booth. The 20-minute sessions will highlight the advancements that MCA and its members are making together to benefit the industry. Sessions include:

  • Benefits of Insulated Metal Panels (IMPs) Council – Understand how getting involved with the IMP Council helps members grow their business.
  • Industry Case Studies on Retrofit – Explore the advantages of installing new metal roofs over old roofs, and learn how the Retrofit Council works to grow market share in commercial, industrial and residential renovation construction.
  • Service Life Study – Learn about the groundbreaking study conducted by MCA and the ZAC Association that shows that some metal roofs can last as long as the buildings they cover: typically 60 years or more.
  • Seaming Guide – Hear first-hand from industry leaders about best practices for metal roof seaming, and other initiatives that the Accessories Council has under way
  • Value of MCA Meetings and Membership Benefits – Discover the benefits from MCA membership. The association is offering 50 percent off membership dues for the remainder of 2015. Learn about networking opportunities available with industry leaders at MCA’s Winter and Summer Meetings.
  • Growth and Trends in Metal Construction – Get a sneak-peak at market analytics, typically only available to members, and learn about trends and growth opportunities for metal roof and wall panels.
  • Fastener Selection Guide – Find out how to choose the correct fastener from experts from MCA’s Accessories Council.
  • Benefits of Exhibiting at METALCON – Learn how to take full advantage of all the opportunities available when your company exhibits at METALCON.
  • Metal Roofing Contractor Benefits – Discover how metal roofing contractors can get to the next level through the MCA.
  • Roofing Installation Manual and White Papers – Get the edge by learning new techniques from the installation manual and white papers put together by industry experts from MCA’s Roofing Council.

These projects and others will be brought to life by new displays, highlighting the many ways that MCA is advocating and supporting the metal building industry. Actual mock-ups illustrating best practices will be on display, as will case studies, white papers and technical bulletins highlighting the latest industry trends.

A schedule of presentations at the booth is as follows:

    Wednesday, Oct. 14

    • 12:30 p.m. Benefits of the IMP Council
    • 1:30 p.m. Industry Case Studies on Retrofit
    • 2:30 p.m. Service Life Study (1 hour presentation)
    • 4 p.m. Seaming Guide
    • 4:45 p.m. Value of MCA Meetings and Member Benefits
    • 5:30 p.m. Chairman’s Awards Presentation

    Thursday, Oct. 15

    • 12:30 p.m. Growth and Trends in Metal Construction
    • 1:30 p.m. Fastener Selection Guide
    • 2:30 p.m. Service Life Study (1-hour presentation)
    • 4 p.m. Benefits of Exhibiting at METALCON
    • 4:45 p.m. Value of MCA Meetings and Member Benefits

    Friday, Oct. 16

    • 10:30 a.m. Metal Roofing Contractor Benefits
    • 11:30 a.m. Roofing Installation Manual and White Papers

MCA will also unveil the 2015 prestigious Chairman’s Awards at METALCON on Wednesday, Oct. 14, at 5:30 p.m.

The Chairman’s Awards are an annual designation given to outstanding building projects involving MCA member companies. Recipients for these awards are selected each year from projects submitted to Metal Architecture Magazine’s annual Design Awards Program. The honorees are chosen by a panel of professional architects, which included Elaine Tisovec Fitzgerald, AIA, CCS, ArchiTech Consulting Inc., Mount Prospect, Ill.; Michael Fitzgerald, AIA, Principal, OKW Architects, Chicago; and Ted Haug, AIA, LEED AP, Legat Architects, Chicago.

The MCA Chairman’s Awards are given in nine categories: commercial/industrial; education, colleges and universities; education, primary and secondary schools; institutional; metal roofing; municipal; and residential. The judges also recognize projects with an award for overall excellence.

Award recipients are determined based on overall appearance, significance of metal in the project, innovative use of metal, and the role of metal in achieving project objectives. Photos and descriptions highlighting the winning projects will be on display in the MCA booth after the awards ceremony.

In addition, MCA has added a new challenge to the MCA/METALCON Metal Roofing Championship Games, which will take place in booth #109. This year’s theme is ‘Battle by the Bay’ and will include five different competitions where contractors can compete to win cash prizes in challenges that include the proper use of screw guns and seamers, as well as installing retrofit sub-framing, standing seam roof panels, snow retention and other common rooftop accessories.

The games will be held on each of the three days of the show, during exhibit hall hours, and each of the challenges has a $100 cash prize for the winner or winning team.

METALCON will be held Oct. 14-16, 2015 at the Tampa Convention Center in Tampa, Fla.

Triangle Fastener Releases Market Specific Product Catalogs for the Metal and Low-slope Roofing Industries

Triangle Fastener Corp. has released its Market Specific Product Catalogs for the metal roofing/building, low-slope roofing, and the interior/drywall construction industries.

Triangle Fastener Corp. has released its Market Specific Product Catalogs for the metal roofing/building, low-slope roofing, and the interior/drywall construction industries.

Triangle Fastener Corp. has released its Market Specific Product Catalogs for the metal roofing/building, low-slope roofing, and the interior/drywall construction industries. The catalogs provide information about a variety of fasteners, sealants, flashings, tools and contractor accessories, as well as technical information and installation tips. They are available for download on the Triangle Fastener website.