Iconic Structure at Utah State Gets New Roof Over Summer Breaks

The roof on Utah State University’s iconic Old Main structure was replaced over the course of three summers by the team at KBR Roofing. Photos: Davinci Roofscapes

There was no summer break for the team at KBR Roofing these past three years. As soon as school ended in May for students at Utah State University, the team got to work on re-roofing the iconic Old Main structure on campus.

Originally built in 1889, Old Main has served its community for more than 125 years. Now listed on the National Register of Historic Sites, the imposing structure is home to the president of the university and a multitude of offices and classrooms.

“Every summer we tackled a different phase of the re-roofing project,” says Brent Wood, project manager at KBR Roofing. “This structure is so critical to the university that it made complete sense to invest in composite roofing. The old, curling gray wood shingles simply had to come off.”

Each summer, the crews from KBR Roofing focused on a different element of the project. “We encountered a few challenges along the way,” Wood notes. “First, since the structure was built so long ago, many of the walls were not square. Second, due to a fire on the north side in 1984, this section of the roof had to be re-sheeted. Third, we had to fabricate four new cupolas. And fourth, we had to custom create a pedestrian bridge 106 feet on top of the center to access the east tower.”

With all their challenges, Wood relates that the easiest part of the project was installing the DaVinci Roofscapes Fancy Shake tiles. “We used the regular shake on the roof surface and then the beaver tail and diamond tiles to accent different parts of the structure,” Wood says. “They were a dream to install.”

Passing Historical Review

Before installation began, representatives of Utah State University and Design West Architects sought permission to use the composite shake tiles on the Old Main project.

Originally built in 1889, Old Main is listed on the National Register of Historic Sites. The building houses the president of the university and a multitude of offices and classrooms. Photos: Davinci Roofscapes

“USU has an on-campus architectural review committee that monitors and approves all changes to buildings, signage and landscaping,” says Quin E. Whitaker, PE MBA, structural engineer/project manager at Utah State University. “Our Facilities team was required to meet with the State Historical Department of Utah to gain approval of the Fancy Shake shingles. When we met with the state’s representative, he declined all proposed roofing samples, including one from DaVinci. We asked him to go look at the DaVinci tiles installed on our Geology building back in 2012. As soon as we got there, he immediately told us the composite tiles looked great and met his expectations.”

Getting approval was critical, notes Whitaker. “Old Main is our flagship building,” he says. “It houses the president of the university, her staff and many other administration officials and classrooms. We didn’t wish to skimp on the quality of this roofing product. Gaining approval on the DaVinci product was especially important since we anticipate that five historic buildings on the campus quad (including Old Main) will all have the same composite roofing tiles installed in the coming years. The DaVinci product has an authentic look, backed by a strong warranty, which we appreciate.”

Going the Extra Mile

With the green light received, KBR Roofing started the Old Main roofing project in May of 2015. At the same time, the roof specialists from the university’s carpentry shop created new cupola bases.

“Bryan Bingham and Mike McBride at our university were intimately involved in the project,” says Whitaker. “I’ve never seen the level of craftsmanship that they were able to achieve for the cupola bases. Everyone involved in this project gave 110 percent.”

A cupola on the backside of the structure features beaver tail tiles. Photos: Davinci Roofscapes. Photos: Davinci Roofscapes

Going the extra mile involved quite a few special considerations for KBR Roofing on this project. The team manufactured a 15-foot pedestrian bridge to allow access from the roof to one of the towers. Located more than 100 feet in the air, the new bridge complements the building’s structure and meets code requirements.

On the north side of the building, workers crafted new metal sheeting on four finials. At the south tower, the stone finials were in need of renovation. The roofers contracted with Abstract Masonry to revitalize the stone, mortar joints and other surrounding brick features. They also contracted with Rocky Mountain Snow Guards for snow fences and snow guards that were installed around the entire structure. Drift II – two-pipe snow fences were put in place at the eaves over pedestrian and vehicular areas as a barrier to snow movement with RG 16 snow guards applied in a pattern above to hold the snow slab in place.

“Three of Old Main’s four towers now have a new DaVinci roof on them covered with the company’s attractive diamond shingles,” says Whitaker. “KBR Roofing was amazing. They also had to radius the railing for the two large rotundas. This company, in my estimation, is top notch and the only company that could have pulled off this project.”

TEAM

Architect: Design West Architects, Logan, Utah, www.designwestarchitects.com
Roofing Contractor: KBR Roofing, Ogden, Utah, www.kbrroofing.com

MATERIALS

Composite Shingles: Fancy Shake composite cedar tiles, DaVinci Roofscapes, www.davinciroofscapes.com
Snow Guards: Drift II and RG 16, Rocky Mountain Snow Guards, www.rockymountainsnowguards.com

Snow-Retention System Utilizes Snap-Fit Design

AceClamp ColosSnapAceClamp offers the Color Snap, a patented snow-retention system that utilizes a snap-fit design. The product ships to roofers with fully assembled, ready-to-install components and snap-in ice clips. The product is available for either standing seam metal roofing or membrane roofing with a variant of the product known as Color Snap-M. According to the company, both varieties offer greater installation flexibility, are easier to install, and help to reduce labor costs by minimizing preparatory tasks.

“We aimed to reduce setup, installation times and labor costs significantly and we’ve had an overwhelming response from our clients on just how cost-saving the Color Snap product can be. We’re happy to let roofers, architects, and engineers know that Color Snap is now available for delivery and that they can count on AceClamp to continue producing innovative solutions and clever products for the greater roofing industry.”

For more information, visit www.aceclamp.com.

LMCurbs Celebrates 50th Anniversary

LMC celebrates its 50th anniversary this year by launching a new website, completing the addition of new CNC machines, and looking forward to adding quality products and services to its current product offerings.

LMC celebrates its 50th anniversary this year by launching a new website, completing the addition of new CNC machines, and looking forward to adding quality products and services to its current product offerings.

2016 marks an important anniversary for LMCurbs, a supplier to the metal building industry for aluminum roof curbs, roof hatches, snow guards, skylights, roof walkways, utility clamps, solar attachments, industrial fans, ladders and more. LMC celebrates its 50th anniversary this year by launching a new website, completing the addition of new CNC machines, and looking forward to adding quality products and services to its current product offerings.

Started in 1966 by Sam Funderburk, Longview Mechanical Contractors (the parent company of LMCurbs) concentrated on being the best Mechanical Contracting business in the surrounding area. LMC then began manufacturing roof curbs in the late ’70s to diversify the company and began marketing to all 50 states. Since the mid-’80s, LMC has been owned and operated by David and Randy Funderburk focusing on the continuous efforts of diversifying the company. Now there are multiple businesses focusing on specific industries. LMCurbs focuses on the metal building industry reaching all 50 states and some international markets. LMC Fabrication Services focuses on local metal fabrication for various oil/gas, construction and manufacturing companies. LMCurbSolar focuses on the attachment methods for roof mounted solar arrays reaching all 50 states and some international markets.

Today, LMC employees multiple family members that started with the company at young ages and worked their way up to management positions. LMC is now a third-generation family owned business.
Along with looking back at the strategies, work ethics, services and products that helped LMC succeed, the company and its employees plan to continue focusing on expanding their offerings and capabilities to service and retain current customers, as well as expand their market share to obtain new customers.

Polymer Shakes Mimic Cedar while Protecting Historic Estates

When it was time for homeowners at the historic Fleur du Lac Estates in Homewood, Calif., to select new roofing materials, they looked for a product that would mimic the look of cedar but bring them advantages to protect their homes and buildings from Mother Nature. After a comprehensive search, they determined that the Class A fire and Class 4 impact ratings of Bellaforté polymer shake tiles from DaVinci Roofscapes met their needs.

The Class A fire and Class 4 impact ratings of the Bellaforté tiles bring peace-of-mind to residents within the Fleur du Lac Estates, Homewood, Calif.

The Class A fire and Class 4 impact ratings of the Bellaforté tiles bring peace-of-mind to residents within the Fleur du Lac Estates, Homewood, Calif.

A prime filming location for the 1974 movie “Godfather II,” Fleur du Lac Estates is now a private condominium development located on the beautiful west shore of Lake Tahoe. A Yacht Club and Boat House, 22 individual homeowner units and a variety of shared recreational facilities make the historic 1938 compound a much-sought-after retreat.

Fire Resistance a Prime Benefit

Years of harsh weather conditions took their toll on the real cedar shake roofs at Fleur du Lac Estates. Damage from repeated leaks, hail, ice dam issues, snow and other weather conditions recently convinced the board of directors it was time to invest in new roofs for the entire estate.

“We started with our two most valuable community structures, the Yacht Club and Boat House,” says Stewart Dalie, maintenance supervisor and project manager at Fleur du Lac Estates. “Our plans are to reroof all of the buildings in the Tahoe Blend over the next five to seven years. We did a tremendous amount of research to determine what roofing products would look realistic in this setting, meet the new codes required for roofs in our area, yet offer us superior qualities and a long life span.

“Selecting the fire- and impact-resistant Bellaforté shake material from DaVinci Roofscapes means we won’t have to be concerned with the potential spread of flames should our area ever be touched by wildfires. That’s a huge concern for our geographic area. However, not having to worry about wind-blown embers landing on a roof and then catching the building on fire is a tremendous relief.”

The Class A fire and Class 4 impact ratings of the Bellaforté tiles bring peace-of-mind to residents within the community. The durable roofing tiles have the appearance of natural hand-split cedar shake with slanted sawn edges and staggered lengths, but with the hassle-free qualities of a manufactured product. At a 1-inch average tile thickness, Bellaforté Shake roofing tiles remind many residents of jumbo cedar shakes prevalent in the Lake Tahoe area.

The Bruce Olson Construction team incorporated snow fences and snow guards from Rocky Mountain Snow Guards into the structures.

The Bruce Olson Construction team incorporated snow fences and snow guards from Rocky Mountain Snow Guards into the structures.

Safeguarding a Historic Setting

It’s not surprising that homeowners at the upscale Fleur du Lac Estates want to invest in the best possible roofing material. This is a mountain and lakeside homeowners association where every home has a deeded slip in the marina, resort-style services are the norm and aesthetics of the community are vigilantly upheld.

Originally the summer home of famous industrialist Henry J. Kaiser, the 15-acre lake-shore site was constructed beginning in 1938. After Kaiser sold the estate, it went through a series of transitional uses from the 1960s to 1979, including serving as a private school and as the site for many on-location scenes for Francis Ford Coppola’s film, “The Godfather II.” Only in the 1980s did the current project begin to refurbish existing key structures and transform original homes on the property to individually owned homes.

“Our community has always embraced the history of this setting while looking toward protecting its future,” says Lane Murray, general manager at Fleur du Lac Estates. “That’s one of the key reasons we wanted a roofing product that has the look of real cedar shakes but with manmade advantages like resistance to fire, impact and high winds.”

Superior Roofing Installation

Despite a variety of challenges with removing the old roofs and prepping for the new synthetic shake tiles, the team at Bruce Olson Construction, Olympic Valley, Calif., has successfully tackled their first DaVinci Roofscapes installation project at Fleur du Lac Estates.

“The roofing surface for the Yacht Club and Boat House were in bad shape and very uneven,” says Taylor Greene, general manager of Bruce Olson Construction. “We had to plane these into workable surfaces before getting started. Once we got started the product installed beautifully. We added flashing material to cover some valley locations, which made the project look exceptional. To achieve the realistic look, gable end flashing that concealed the manufactured edge of the DaVinci product was added.”

The company, which does residential and multifamily new construction, works in several states, including Hawaii. It has already started work on several additional roofs in the Fleur du Lac complex.

“The Bellaforté roofing looks amazing,” Greene says. “Best of all, these polymer shakes are perfect for this geographic area. Traditional wood shakes ‘hold’ the water from melting snow. Those saturated shakes weigh more and cause the freeze line to be a part of the shake. With the DaVinci product, the water is not absorbed into the tile, so snow melting is faster and more efficient. This can also help reduce the ice damming effect in many locations.”

Laughing at Mother Nature

Nestled amidst stunning mountain peaks and world-famous ski conditions, Fleur du Lac Estates can experience heavy snowfall during the winter months. The property is just five minutes from Homewood Mountain Ski Resort and the area usually sees snow in excess of 180 inches total. That’s one reason why the community decided to have the Bruce Olson Construction team incorporate snow fences and snow guards from Rocky Mountain Snow Guards into the structures.

“In our area it’s very common to use snow guards and fences to help keep snow from falling on individuals and property,” Greene explains. “The previous structures at Fleur du Lac Estates didn’t have any type of snow-retention system. We believe having these products in place now—which were very simple to put in during the polymer shake installation—will make life much easier for property owners no matter how much snow Mother Nature delivers each season.”

Rocky Mountain Snow Guards custom designed the snow-retention system for Fleur du Lac Estates, incorporating its Drift III+ snow fences and Rocky Guard RG10 snow guards. The system was developed to handle the 180-PSF snow load that can occur in this geographic location.

“The snow guards are attached in a pattern above the snow fence that creates friction to hold the snow ‘slab’ in place while the snow fence provides a barrier beyond which the snow slab won’t slide,” says Lars Walberg, president of Rocky Mountain Snow Guards. “Using the combination of snow guards and snow fences gives this project a balanced snow-retention system that has the ‘look’ the owners desired.”

For homeowners, the new Bellaforté roofs on the Yacht Club and Boat House are tempting reminders of what will be on their own homes in the years to come.

“Now that the Yacht Club and Boat House roofs are complete we’re hearing very positive comments from our residents,” Murray says. “Folks are eager for the work to continue in the common areas so that their individual homes can soon get these terrific-looking new roofs!”

Sno Gem Celebrates 20th Anniversary

As Sno Gem Inc. celebrates its 20th anniversary in 2014, it is an opportunity to reflect on its journey from start-up to the forefront of the snow retention industry.

Like many businesses, Sno Gem was born out of necessity. The Smeja family had founded Metalmaster Sheet Metal Inc. in 1977, which was growing into one of the largest commercial sheet metal and roofing businesses in the industry. They came to realize there were few snow guard manufacturers, to meet the increasing demand for snow retention products, and for integration into the roofs they were consistently installing. “The roofing business was growing and they were doing a large portion of the work in the Chicagoland area,” says James T. Carpenter, Vice President of Operations at Sno Gem. “The business was consistently buying snow guards for their projects and at one point, the Smeja family made the decision to design their own snow guard.”

The Sno Gem “Original” Polycarbonate design was the initial snow guard product developed by the company. With the Smeja family incurring decades of combined architectural sheet metal experience, it was essential to create this snow guard to have a large base for securement and attachment, that’s when the 25 square-inch base was created, which was more than any other snow guard found within the industry. This meant additional surface area to bond to the roof panel with, and thus, creating increased attachment strength per unit. Another similar product offering was the Sno Gem Junior Polycarbonate design. This is a snow guard with a 12.5 square-inch bonding surface and a narrower base. The design of the Junior model was ideal for metal panel systems, with intermediate ribs, and/or corrugated metal panels which are more common with pre-engineered metal buildings and post-frame building systems and designs.

“The Smejas are an innovative and business-minded family,” Carpenter says. “Early profits were directly invested back into the company and they consistently increased their marketing budgets by advertising in more trade publications and attending industry trade shows. These efforts increased market awareness of all of the Sno Gem products, for consumers, architects and contractors.”

Sno Gem has consistently been quick to react to the latest in consumer demands, industry trends and has developed snow retention systems for slate, shingle and membrane roofing since their inception. The Sno Barricade was Sno Gem’s first bar snow retention system for standing seam metal roofing applications and is now one of the company’s most popular systems. The Sno Barricade can be finished in either a powder coating application, or with a Kynar finish to match any roof panel finish and color.

More recent innovations include the iClad and Sno Blockade snow retention systems, both are bar/fence systems made of aircraft-grade aluminum extrusions. These designs are compatible with most standing seam metal roofing systems currently on the market. These innovative products draw their strength from Sno Gem’s unique attachment design of the patent-pending WaveLock Technology. WaveLock Technology features three or five points of attachment and is designed to maximize the system’s strength, without piercing, marring, or penetrating the roof panel, or its finish. Sno Gem also recently introduced the PV Cube, a clamp-to-seam solar panel racking and mounting system attachment product, which also employs the same patent-pending WaveLock Technology.

“We’re proud of the innovations that Sno Gem has introduced into the industry over the past 20 years and we’re looking forward to working with our customers to meet their needs in the future,” says Rock Smeja, third-generation family business member and Vice President of Marketing. “We remain very hands-on, within the day-to-day operations of Sno Gem, to ensure that we are always on the cutting-edge of not only snow retention, but the overall industry as well.”

MasterSpec Small Project Enhanced with 55 New Sections

ARCOM is pleased to announce that MasterSpec Small Project has been enhanced to include 55 new sections. Architects and specifiers will now have access to more than 320 sections commonly used for small projects. The additional sections include sustainable design requirements, reroofing preparation, waterproofing and roofing, snow guards, chairlifts and much more. These abridged specification sections are developed specifically for projects limited in size, scope and duration with simpler contractual requirements.

In response to growing client demand, MasterSpec Small Project now features some of the tools and resources included in the flagship MasterSpec software, namely Supporting Documents and Paragraph Builder, two of the most popular tools. MasterSpec Supporting Documents feature checklists, tips, and background research information, helping specification writers improve their efficiency while also reminding them of items that might be overlooked when compiling specification projects. Paragraph Builder is a cloud-based time-saving tool that hosts manufacturer and product information that are continuously and automatically updated.

MasterSpec Small Project is preferred when architects, engineers and specifiers are working on residential, light commercial, renovation, and design-build projects, as well as facilities management and interior fit-out work.