Metal mesh has a variety of internal and external applications.

3 types of mesh patterns and where they’re useful

Architectural mesh is valuable both in terms of the many aesthetic opportunities it provides and its practical benefits, like privacy, protection, temperature regulation and more.

Wire mesh and other types of this versatile material can do everything from protecting visitors, employees, and residents from direct exposure to sunlight to creating an eye-catching visual that makes a facility that much easier to find. Mesh can also serve capably in a variety of roles within a structure, defining distinct areas of a building and screening off more private places from open work floors.

There are a wide array of different mesh patterns available, as well as many methods for creating this material. Expanded metal mesh, perforated sheets, and many other options allow you to choose the best fit for your project and its individual needs.

While metal mesh patterns are often seen as a purely stylistic choice, there are some practical considerations to keep in mind when selecting them. Let's look at what distinguishes the different categories of mesh patterns and what makes them useful.

A view from inside a screened-in area of a park.A more open mesh pattern can provide increased visibility and allow for free air circulation.

1. Open mesh patterns

An open pattern provides plenty of airflow and access to light while still serving as a physical barrier, whether attached to a balustrade, filling a role as fencing or a security screen or dividing parts of an interior space. A degree of visibility is often useful, whether it's to give customers a preview of what's to come as the move into the next area of a storefront or simply to allow workers to avoid turning a corner or moving through an entryway blindly.

A more open mesh can also capably serve as a sunscreen in certain areas, such as the first floor of a building in a developed downtown or central business district. Depending on the direction a building faces, how much direct sun exposure it receives each day and the desired temperature and lighting, open patterns can still perform capably as sunscreens.

One area where care should be taken with these patterns is their role as privacy screens. Standing alone, they may not obscure as much of an area as is needed to provide the desired level of protection. However, they can be paired with other elements, such as glass panels, if the primary objective is to prevent the spread of sound.

2. Closed mesh patterns

Patterns that keep more of the metal in place, which can be achieved with expanded metal mesh among other options, emphasise discretion. Whether your facility has to meet privacy guidelines or requirements, as is typical for medical facilities, preschools and child care centres, or you simply want to create a more distinct division between spaces, a less open pattern can help you achieve this goal.

Limiting the amount of sunlight that passes through metal mesh is vital in some instances. If the material plays a key role in regulating temperature, the orientation of the surface it covers or is installed behind and the average exposure to sunlight can mean reducing the amount of visible light that streams through. Getting the correct placement and choice of material is in everyone's best interest.

Metal mesh can also be used to screen off part or all of offices, hallways, conference rooms and other areas where a sense of openness and an expectation of privacy need to be balanced. Utilising a closed pattern can provide a unique aesthetic while limiting the number of walls and completely closed off areas. At the same time, these mesh screens can help create the proper environment within the space and help create the proper sense of privacy as well.

Exterior fencing is another application where a less open pattern can offer the right mix of benefits. Separating a thoroughfare or main street from an employee break area or space intended only for residents of a building means offering a sense of separation and security for those inside. Using a mesh pattern with fewer or smaller holes in this application can help create the right atmosphere for these spaces.

3. Metal mesh curtains

More flexible than fixed installations of metal mesh, curtains can include a unique functionality depending on how they're installed: movement. By placing metal mesh curtains on a sliding track, it's easy to divide spaces when and if necessary. Whether you're creating a sense of privacy while still allowing airflow in a retail business or separating different teams in an office space, there are many applications where metal mesh curtains can capably fill an important role.

Metal mesh can also be installed in a fixed position, serving as a permanent barrier that still allows light to pass through and air to circulate. Potential applications include the sides of open stairwells, where mesh can fill a safety requirement as well as an aesthetic purpose, and in front of exterior windows, where metal mesh curtains can serve as sunscreens. Mesh curtains add another option to the range of fixed mesh panels that are available, providing increased flexibility and another tool to craft a unique, functional and visually striking indoor or outdoor space.

Finding a dependable partner for your metal mesh needs

Metal mesh is versatile, functional and visually appealing. With so many different metal mesh types and patterns available, finding the best fit for your project doesn't have to be a complicated or drawn out exercise. When you partner with a dependable and experienced provider of metal mesh, you can count on knowledgeable support throughout the process. That stretches from selecting the right pattern to ensuring the installation goes as smoothly as possible.

Locker has more than 60 years of experience providing an extensive product range to clients in the architectural and industrial fields, along with supporting customers involved in mines and quarries. To learn how we can support your metal mesh needs, get in touch with us today.

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