Perforated metal is a versatile material, but how is it made?

How is perforated metal made?

Perforated metal has been used for the last 150 odd years for a number of purposes. First developed as a filtering system for coal miners, the original perforation process was lengthy and exhaustive. In the old days, labourers would manually punch individual holes into a metal sheet, but thankfully, more efficient manufacturing processes have been developed since then.

Our manufacturing process

We start with a coil of sheet metal in the desired gauge of the product we're making. There are a few different methodologies for different products, however for standard products the coil is fed into one of the machines. The machine's rollers pull the metal through, and the holes are punched by needles mounted on a rotating cylinder as the sheet metal moves through the machine.

For more specialised products such as Pic Perf, the whole sheet would be loaded into a turret punch, where the pattern is programmed in. This way the machines can punch the right configuration of different sized holes to present the larger image. The turret punch allows multiple needle profiles and sizes to be swapped into the punching position, so it's perfect for jobs that require unconventional patterns or greater detail.

Perforated metal manufacturingOur factory is set up in such a way that we can produce perforated metal in a huge range of profiles.

Our flexibility with customisation

One of the things we pride ourselves on is our ability to provide unique tailored perforated metal solutions to our customers. We've set up operations in such a way that we can be flexible in terms of delivering specific or one off products. In many cases we've had to create new tooling to complete custom jobs. We are not put off by this, and we are certainly not the type of company to say "we can't do it." If it can be made, we can find a way to make it.

Our team are always looking for ways to improve the range.

Our engineering team are always looking for ways to improve the range, and this involves some experimentation. Trying out new methods, experimenting with tensile strengths and folding/trimming techniques to the get the best possible product out of the design and manufacturing teams. It's this dedication to flexible solutions and experimentation with materials and processes that helps us stay ahead of the market.

Perforated metals have a huge range of applications. From facades, screens and balustrades to filters, grilles and ventilation. Meshstore is your one stop shop for pre-made perforated and expanded metals, woven and welded wires, and metal planking and railing products. Backed by the industry leading Locker Group, you can shop online right now, check out one of our branches, or contact us for more information.

Pictured: You this summer.

4 Locker Group products ideal for your next spaceship project

Summer is on the way, which means it's time for that classic Australian pastime; getting your mates around, firing up the barbie and slapping together a spaceship in true DIY fashion. We've all done it, and we know you're about to as well, that's why we thought we'd provide you with a brief guide to how our products can add a touch of class to your cosmic cruiser.

Gridwalk

This expanded metal flooring solution is one of our most popular for spaceship floors, suitable for everything from general flooring, to catwalks to mezzanines in the engine room. Basically, anywhere you need durability and affordability – Gridwalk will be there. We've provided Gridwalk as flooring to a number of industry-leading interstellar agencies, so you know it's the best. It can be fixed via clips or direct welding and we're proud to say that Gridwalk meets every technical standard in The Milky Way. 

Alutread

Alutread is lightweight though extremely tough, specifically designed for aggressive environments including the harsh vacuum of space. It's a fantastic material for external walkways on larger projects. Because the robust aluminium alloy is corrosion free, the Alutread will hold up against solar winds and all that radiation. This means that if you do have to venture outside the ship, you'll be just as safe as if you were inside. While it's true that in space, no-one can hear you scream, Alutread will make sure you never have to.

The dark industrial hallway.No spaceship is complete without the obligatory dark industrial hallway.

Gripspan

Our Gripspan planking offers anti-slip surfaces in a range of tread profiles. We recommend this highly durable steel planking for loading ramps. We don't know exactly what you'll be up to as you blitz the spaceways this summer ("what happens in space, stays in space") but chances are you'll find yourself in a situation where you need to get on board and depart in a hurry. Gripspan will help you avoid nasty slips and spills that might put the rest of your operation in jeopardy. Available in lengths as long as you can carry, Gripspan is perfect for any size spaceship project.

Animal Flooring Options

If we know anything about space, which we do, it's that there are creatures aplenty. Maybe you'll want to bring a few of those feathery Dog-things back from Kepler-6B for your Nan? If you're looking to bring back some alien livestock, then you should consider some of Locker Group's animal flooring options. These options boast extremely high tensile strength, and are available in different weaves and specifications to suit all manner of strange beasts. Let us know what you'll be transporting, and we'll have the solution for you.

If you're looking for out-of-this-world materials for your spaceship project this summer, look no further than Locker Group. To find out what else you can use our products for, get in contact with us today.

Case studies
Whatever the job, Meshstore has you covered.

Meshstore’s fast shipping benefits even the smallest contracts

 

Picture, if you will, the following: You’re installing woven wire flooring in a recently built shearing shed. Being a professional, you made adequate preparations for materials and time – yet something odd has happened. Despite your infinite wisdom, you have miscalculated the number of panels you need and have come up short. Unfortunately, you’ve travelled a bit off the grid for this job and getting additional supplies will be difficult. What do you do? Who can you trust?

We understand your needs

Of course, the anecdote above won’t be a common occurrence, but it does illustrate the fact that it’s not always possible to pop into Meshstore and grab what you need. Not all jobs take place in centralised locations, and unfortunately these are usually where you find the highest density of materials and equipment. While sometimes you may find yourself in driving distance of a branch, this will not always be the case.

A lot of our customers work in remote locations, and many on projects that are heavily time reliant. Outside of this, we understand that timely completion of a job is vital to your success as a contractor. In this sense, timing is always a big issue, and sacrificing quality (in terms of either workmanship or materials) is not an adequate tradeoff for completing a job on schedule. Meshstore knows that you need the best, and that you need it ASAP.

Workers seen through perforated sheet.Whatever your application, Meshstore will ensure your product arrives on time.

A range for all applications

Meshstore stock a range of perforated, expanded and woven metal sheets, as well as planking, welded metal wire and handrail solutions. We have a long history in the production of perforated metal and wire products, and as such we’ve had plenty of time to perfect manufacturing practices to ensure we are producing only the highest quality product.

Our extensive range of metal products cater to a huge range of applications, from safety and security to screening and decorative – the only limit is your imagination. The good news is, you are not limited to buying these products in our physical branches. Meshstore offers our entire range online, and with our dedication to fast shipping, there has never been an easier way to stock up.

Quick dispatch & fast shipping

In most cases, when you place an order it will be dispatched the next working day. In order to get your goods to you as soon as possible, we prefer to ship from your closest branch. However, if they don’t currently stock the items you are looking for, we can source them from any of our branches. We know you don’t have time to waste, and that’s why we ship our orders as quickly as we can – so you can finish the job, collect your paycheck, and move onto the next one.

For more information about our product range or our shipping options, contact Meshstore today.

Gold on the ceiling: A case study of PwC Sydney, by Futurespace & Civardi Furniture

Global accounting and consultancy firm PwC recognised that business is changing. Their clients were implementing new technologies and processes that eclipsed those that came before, and PwC realised that in order to meet the demands of this changing landscape, they needed to change too. Looking to make a fresh start, PwC worked to establish new premises that would integrate technology and modern, sustainable design to create a space that is less business, and more destination. The goal was to provide an environment that lent itself to creativity and collaboration, one that could boost efficient workflow while retaining the flexibility to support the working processes of a multitude of different clients.

PWC SydneyPwC's client experience centre in their new Barangaroo offices. A design that welcomes from the get-go.

Project background

While PwC developed new premises in many of their locations, it's the Sydney office that utilised Locker Group's woven wire. Situated west of the CBD in the multi-award winning Barangaroo development, PwC is situated at One International Towers, Watermans Quay. Their clients will find the new customer experience centre over four levels, beginning at the welcoming centre on level 17.

PwC brought in Futurespace for the interior design. As a forward thinking architecture and interior design agency, Futurespace had the passion and approach to create a truly unique design. Inspired by the emergence of companies introducing disruptive business models, PwC hoped to to change the way their business operated, and this needed to begin with where the business was operating. Dedicated to many of the same principles that PwC hoped to integrate into the design, Futurespace was the best agency for the job.

Futurespace Design Director, Gavin Harris, explained that moving away from a more traditional consultancy layout was essential. It was important to design a space that had multiple settings, that would foster collaboration and greater results for PwC's client base. Harris described how the Futurespace team looked at hospitality, branded airport lounges, and other types of co-creation spaces to inform the way that the PwC customer experience would need to function.

Of course, it was more than simply function that PwC required. The customer experience centre also needed to look and feel unique – the multiple interactive elements had to come together as a cohesive whole. This is where the gold ceiling comes in. Locker Groups Planar 441 woven wire was used as a ribbon that winds its way through the space and connects everything together. The wire is visually striking, particularly where it dips and becomes a shield for the window of the foyer. This feature, coupled with the unique viewing portal, makes an immediate impression as soon as clients step out of the lift.

PWC Sydney foyerThe foyer of PwC's client experience level.

Why Locker Group's Planar 441?

In bringing Planar 441 to PwC, Futurespace teamed up with Civardi Furniture, a specialist joinery manufacturer dedicated to pushing the boundaries of materials and design. Civardi have their own extensive portfolio of innovative and visually pleasing solutions, and this is what drew the team at Futurespace to collaborate with them.

Gavin and his team had an idea early in the design process about using a material that would render the ceiling a transparent gold. The downward curve of the wire against the foyer window was something the team had hoped to implement early on, believing it to be a strong welcoming statement that was both interesting and inviting. While trialing possible materials, tone, colour and profile were taken into consideration as the designers weighed up the strengths of different types of metal to see if their vision was possible.

Gavin explained that finding the right woven wire product is what brought the idea to fruition. Locker Group's Planar 441 offered the right amount of reflectivity and transparency without sacrificing lighting, sound, or aesthetics. It was ideally suited as the consistent texture between the shielding in the foyer and the ceiling panels, lighting the way for PwC clients.

PwC client loungeFuturespace and Civardi make the most of Planar 441.

Implementing the woven wire

While Gavin and the Futurespace team had hoped to implement a feature like the woven wire ceiling, it was not without it's challenges. Initially there was some concern around how it would be mounted, and whether this would negatively impact the lighting, sprinklers and fire alarms, and that optimal acoustics would remain intact. In turn, it was also important that these essential fixtures didn't detract from the metal's beauty. With proof of concept coming from Civardi, the panels were able to be installed via a supporting spring line.

The final product

Ultimately, Gavin, the Futurespace design team and the specialists from Civardi created a wonderfully vibrant and engaging environment. Locker Group's Planar 441 woven mesh panels create a strong impression from the very moment a client enters the building. This new space will change the way PwC interact with their clients, and it was all achieved by a winning combination of creative minds, skilled hands, and top quality materials. For more information about Locker Group products, or to find out what materials we have that will suit your next project, get in touch today.

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