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Complete building solutions: Aaron Blutstein visited building systems provider--Lindab--at its Luxembourg manufacturing site to find out how UK manufacturers can benefit from its complete building solutions.


Modern manufacturing sites often need open, flexible space. For example building premises with minimum or no interior columns has numerous benefits for manufacturers-the unobstructed interior allows you to move materials and use your valuable space in the most efficient way possible.

But despite more and more UK businesses giving serious detailed thought to building investment and improved facilities, many manufacturers fear the cost too substantial to consider.

During PWE's recent visit to Lindab the company was keen to stress that although investment in a new building will incur an obvious cost, choosing a pre-engineered metal building could result in valuable cost savings 'built-in'. Lindab says it can offer complete building systems that are quick, economic and aesthetically pleasing.

The company explained its building solutions include all primary and secondary framing elements, various roof and wall panel systems including insulations and all flashings, bolts, fasteners and sealants. Integrated accessories, such as crane beams and rails, and mezzanines are also available.

Lindab also highlighted its buildings are custom-designed to a client's requirements and can create large span structures without intermediate columns up to 80m span.

One significant benefit of its building systems is it is able to offer complete flexibility in design and architecture and freedom to choose materials and equipment in combination with strict cost controls and scheduling. Different roof and wall panel systems, in various combinations allow you to create the building you want-in other words the building will be tailor-made for your needs. In addition, the actual construction is undertaken by Lindab builders, independent but local buildings contractors certified by Lindab.

Sheet metal-simpler building processes

Surveys have shown that product quality, short construction time, flexibility, lower costs, short capital tie-up through quicker access and a host of design possibilities are the benefits that many associate with steel building systems.

Sheet metal used as a building material continues to make building processes simpler and more efficient. The use of lightweight construction technology in the form of exterior wall joists, joists, lightweight beams and steel battens manufactured from sheet metal offers quicker construction times and more economical total solutions. In addition sheet metal is a ductile, durable and recyclable material. And it is for this reason that an increasing number of manufacturers throughout Europe are looking at steel building systems.

Probably the most significant advantage attributed to Lindab Building Systems is the use of an automated fabrication technique for its structural framing members. Lindab's David Black told PWE : "Columns and rafters are produced from high yield plate steel and welded to form "I" sections that typically taper in their length with the greater depth being where the most strength is required." This process results in an aesthetically pleasing interior and will also reduce the content of steel required in their buildings versus conventional steelwork solutions, resulting is cost savings.

The company's Luxembourgmanufacturing plant -measuring 28,000m2 - where some of the steel structures are produced, is arguably one of the most modern in its field, and uses advanced robotics and CNC machinery, able to produce approximately 12 buildings (12,000m2) per day. As a result the company says it is able to respect delivery deadlines.

Through a close network of branches, retailers and distribution centres, the company is promoting nearness and delivery reliability for its solutions.

Cost analysis

The development of Lindab's computer pricing tool--Cyprion--is designed to allow building projects to be priced very quickly. Further development of this tool has added a 3D imaging package allowing potential clients to have a visual 'walk through' of the building before manufacture or construction commences. In addition to the pricing of the steelwork and claddings, Cyprion will include for all accessories such as roof lights, doors and windows.

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Russian manufacturing expansion

Lindab is expanding into Russia. A manufacturing unit for the ventilation business area is now open for business in the St Petersburg region.

In order to meet the increased demand from the Russian market, Lindab's operations are being boosted with local manufacturing. The St Petersburg unit is Lindab's first step in local manufacturing in Russia. The Profile business area will follow suit with a production unit for Building Systems to be ready during the second quarter of 2008.

"Local production has many advantages compared to importing products from Lindab's other European factories", says Lindab's business area manager for Ventilation, Hannu Paitula. "Being present locally is also a prerequisite to forging customer relations and obtaining the strong position that we strive for."

The ventilation market in Russia is growing rapidly at a rate of 10-15 % annually.

Lindab Buildings' early roots originate from the Butler Manufacturing Company, founded in 1901 in the USA. Lindab buildings have been manufactured and marketed in Europe since the early 1960's, and thousands of buildings have been supplied throughout Western, Central and Eastern Europe.

The Lindab Group purchased Butler's European operation in 2002 and ASTRON in 2005.

The company is also a leading supplier of metal profiles, rainwater systems, and ventilation systems, and operates in more than one hundred locations in twenty countries. Its head office is located in Grevie, Sweden.
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Author:Blutstein, Aaron
Publication:Plant & Works Engineering
Date:Jun 1, 2007
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