Expanded metal bulked up Build a Body's facility design.

Expanded metal as the perfect facade

Constructing a facade for a workout facility meant that the structure needs to both welcome members and encourage them to reach their goals. That was the visual angle for the project Build a Body came to Locker with. Working with Goldman Group contractors and the MSK Architects firm, we created an expanded metal facade that exceeded expectations.

Let's take a look at the project details and uncover what design elements made expanded metal the preferred material.

Black expanded metal design aligned with the brand and the intention of the fitness centre. Black expanded metal design aligned with the brand and the intention of the fitness centre.

The project

Set in Dural, New South Wales, a suburban area of Sydney and a primarily residential, semi-rural area, the project needed to speak to the people who lived nearby. The personal trainer gym is a family-run business that helps its members not only reach their fitness goals but also build a sustainable lifestyle.

With this in mind, the client approached Locker looking for a facade that could both create a barrier down a second-story walkway, and also create a cohesive design that connected both levels. Additionally, the walkway is west-facing and would get very hot during the summer, so it had to provide both ventilation and sun protection. The facade would be exposed to the elements all year round and needed to withstand all types of weather conditions.

The facility aesthetic is sleek and involves clean lines, a welcoming logo and a high-end feel. The facade would bring in a more rugged look that communicated the determination of the people inside.

Safety standards involved

A safety barrier for this specific project meant creating not only a balustrade but a screen to keep pedestrians from harm. We constructed the facade according to AS1657.

It's not enough to have a screen that keeps a pedestrian from falling off the edge of the walkway, you need a balustrade that is accessible if the walker needs something to hold as they travel along.

Our approach

Locker constructs every project with both architectural design and safety standards in mind. We take into consideration the goal and requirements of the project each time a client approaches our business with an idea.

Locker professionals decided that expanded metal should be the material of choice in this project. This metal type offered a strong, rugged solution to bring forward a strong industrial look, excellent ventilation and resilience. SUN919A was the product primarily used in this project because it has a lightweight aluminium profile and 25% open area. This offered the perfect level of structural soundness, ventilation and sun protection the client needed. It's not damaged easily and the metal sheets could be easily manipulated to fit the space the client envisioned.

In addition to the client's initial needs, we also have to consider how the product is shipped and assembled on the work site. We developed the 502 square metres of product in sheets that could be easily delivered and put together without any last-minute adjustments.

The final results

The final product resulted in a seamless design that communicated all of the aesthetic requirements of the client, set forth by the architect.

With black coating, the facade carries the palette of Build a Body, and presents a more rugged feel to the front of the business. The colour also matches the roofing and the lettering of their logo — creating a cohesive look.

Staff members can easily travel from one workout to the next without burning up from the sun, yet still feeling the breeze from outside. The expanded metal design gives an effortless industrial look, while offering pedestrians a chance to check on the weather outside and see the environment around them.

Expanded metal design made easy

At Locker, we develop projects that meet the needs of Australian Standards and exceed the expectations of our clients. This project result met all of the requirements of Build a Body and was easy to put together at the work site.

No matter the goal of your project, we can work together to find the best solution. To learn more about expanded metal custom designs or to get started on your own, contact Locker today.

Laser-cut facade design made easy by Locker.

Laser cut to perfection: Trinity Grammar School

Child-proofing any space can prove to be a challenge no matter who you are. But, Trinity Grammar School in Strathfield, New South Wales approached Locker about constructing a facade for one of the buildings used to teach year five and six students the arts. Adjacent to the heritage building on campus, we were faced with the task of harmonising the two structures together with a singular design using laser-cut metal sheets.

The results were spectacular. Let's take a look at what went into the project to get it where it is today.

An intricate, laser-cut design made to add intrigue and inspiration to an all-boys school.  An intricate, laser-cut design made to add intrigue and inspiration to an all-boys school.

The project

The Trinity Grammar School is a primary and secondary school for boys in inner-western Sydney. It was founded in 1913 and offers students the chance to explore and learn in the earliest years of their development. The campus is blanketed with green grass, brick buildings and intricate triangular permanent art designs that are reminiscent of Anglican-style decor.

Working with Stephen Edwards Construction and TZG Architects firm, Locker was tasked to develop a facade outside of their creative arts building. Because young children use the building, the caveat was developing a design laser cut into metal sheets that would not pose a safety hazard to the students.

Light and ventilation were also necessary for the design so a straightforward metal sheet or wall would not have met the needs of the space. The facade needed to stretch three floors and look similar to the surrounding decor of the building.

Safety considerations and parameters

Large-scale external walls must follow AS5113:2016, an Australian Standard of safety against fire. This includes fasteners, sealants and fixings of the building's facade. The ventilation of the wall is a consideration as well when faced with fire resilience.

The AS/NZS 1170 and AS/NZS 4284 work together to ensure the facade is energy efficient, wind resistant and can hold its structural integrity in the face of an earthquake.

Design preferences and safety standards for the project were taken into consideration as we approached the project, and acted as a guide toward our final solution.

Our approach

Locker professionals decided to work with three-millimetre aluminium laser-cut panels for this project. Aluminium is a strong, weather-resistant material. It is corrosion-resistant and holds its shape over many years no matter the weather conditions — making it a low-maintenance option.

Aluminium is helpful for more intricate designs like the one used in this project because of the metal's flexibility. Laser cutting the metal panels offered the chance to leverage the client's design, and ensure that it would hold its integrity in the final product. The material is excellent for conducting heat, which helps dissipate hot Australian summers, and helps keep the building inside cool without using too much energy.

As an eco-conscious community, aluminium was also a great choice because of its sustainability factors. It's 100% recyclable, and much of the aluminium ever produced is used today according to the Australian Aluminium Council. Locker strives to always use Australian-made metal materials to continue the sustainability of our projects.

The laser-cut panels were uniquely designed by the architect to call back some of the decor elements from around the campus. With some adjustments to protect the children nearby, the result was a beautifully intricate facade that allowed for ventilation, sunlight, sun cover and creating inspiration.

The final results

The final look of the building creates a sense of prestige, yet welcomes creative influence. The children and staff of the school can enjoy the sun as it comes in and check the scenery outside without falling victim to the sweltering heat known to Sydney summers.

Working with the design elements already existing around the building, the facade blends in to create a cohesive look and feel. You can pick out the triangular shapes that play on the school's trinity name.

Custom laser-cut solutions for any occasion

Whether you're looking for laser-cut custom designs or standard aluminium facade cladding, Locker has the solution you need. Laser cutting allows you to create 2D design elements, and make any building front look interesting, intricate, spectacular and unique.

We work with your design vision to help you find the best metal solution for your needs. Depending on where and for what purpose your metal sheet is being used, our friendly professionals can support your custom-made project based on the requirements of the space.

If you want to learn more about other laser-cut projects by Locker, or if you have an idea of your own, contact a Locker professional today to get started.

Simple and elegant, Locker designed each panel to be completely unique from all the rest.

Chelsea Station: Perforated and expanded metal charm

The Victoria state government turned to Locker to help them manufacture the perfect metal screening for Chelsea Station that would carry throughout the length of the platform. With varying sizes, designs and considerations for the project, we could offer an all-in-one solution that met all of the client's needs.

Let's explore the details of this project to uncover why the mixture of perforated and expanded metal panels was the perfect answer to this project.

Breezy and intricate, each panel of this train station walkway has its own unique design. Breezy and intricate, each panel of this train station walkway has its own unique design.

The project scope

The Chelsea Station is located on the Frankston line, which serves the greater suburban Melbourne area. Established in 1907, the station has seen many people, changes and upgrades. As part of a greater project to improve the railroad line, this design was poised to establish Chelsea as the lead in innovation, safety and intrigue.

The client came to us with a fairly simple need: to give the Chelsea Station a facelift with new screens for the walkways, awnings and fences. Design for the railway had to be cohesive throughout and the project had to offer both wind ventilation and space for pedestrians to see the space around them. The colours were chosen by the client to work with the aesthetic already in play in the area.

Perforation is important in metal panelling at a railway station because commuters need to see the environment around them. When a train is coming in, they need to see which line to look for. Additionally, the holes in perforated panels act as a way for the breeze to come through and keep the space cool. A hot day with steaming machinery rushing past is a recipe for disaster without any space for the wind to come through.

In terms of materials and necessity, aluminium was the metal of choice for this project. It has incredible malleability for both perforation and expanded metal while maintaining its shape no matter the weather. It's virtually maintenance-free because of its resistance to corrosion.

Our unique approach

Working with our client, we decided to make a completely original and unique screening design. The aesthetic cladding stretched along the ramps, platforms and the pedestrian bridge, so we had a lot of space to work with a design idea.

We worked on over 650 individual drawing drafts — all programmed by Locker — before deciding on positioning the round holes at varying slot sizes, placed completely randomly. The Locker team was able to employ special coding techniques on Pic Perf to develop a new crypto pattern with slots and round holes together.

The materials we used included:

  • R25448
  • R03240
  • R03240
  • R25448
  • R06440 (Eclipse 600)

Around 742 screens were perforated, and a majority were folded and branded with fixing holes to complete the project. The longest sheet produced was over 4.80 metres high along the ramp.

Two aluminium grades were used — 5052 H32 and 5005 H34 — which have medium to high alloy strength. These aluminium grades are more resistant to change to marine and industrial atmospheres — making them perfect for longevity. Another quality that made the grade level perfect was that these types have the ability for a tight radius while bending, making them perfect for sheet metal work.

The outcome of the project

We have manufacturing locations across Australia. This project was developed right in the client's backyard in Victoria. As a general rule of kind business practices, we ensured that each piece of the final product was preassembled and could still be transported to the worksite. Each piece is laid in order so the client can assemble the product with ease, devoid of last-minute complications.

The result of the hard work of both teams is a cohesive design for all of the pedestrians rolling into Chelsea Station. The colours invite a sense of breachy relaxation, where the holes and slots work together to create the look of a shimmering sea.

With Chelsea Beach and Victory Park just kilometres away, a lengthy commute makes pedestrians that much closer to paradise at Chelsea Station.

Locker is your perforation and expanded metal specialist

Whether you're designing for a carpark, a new train station stop or developing a perforated sun shade for your office building, there is nothing Locker can't do when it comes to metal manufacturing. We have an extensive product range that gives you the freedom to develop your vision and bring it to life.

From perforated and expanded to woven or spiralled wire, we can help you create something unique that meets the needs of your project. All of our metals are manufactured and sourced in Australia so you can trust in the quality of the product and the service. Reach out to a Locker professional to learn more about our products and services.

As a call back to the local vegetation, Locker created a custom perforated metal design.

Custom perforated metal: Muddy Creek Overpass

Perforated metal is sometimes associated with the park benches or partitions at your local train station. But what if you could customise a perforated metal sheet to a design that would both impress and align with the local aesthetic? That's what the team at Locker did for the Muddy Creek Overpass in Ador Park, Rockdale, New South Wales.

Eye-catching perforated metal design up-levelled this walkway crossing.Eye-catching perforated metal design up-levelled this walkway crossing.

The project

The client approached Locker because they wanted to upgrade the overpass with a custom design that would blend in with the creek's local flora. The colours needed to be subtle to work alongside the suburban area nearby.

Perforated metal is a piece of sheet metal that can be bent and manipulated with holes of any shape or size to create a mesh-like look. Standard perforations are sequential smaller holes, about one millimetre in circumference without any design specifications. However, the perforations can be easily customised to fit any scenario. The one caveat of requesting larger holes for a design is that the metal needs to be thicker.

Together, our team and the client decided perforated metal was the style of choice for this project. This choice created a clear distinction between the walkway over the creek and brought in sunshine, ventilation and visual openness simultaneously. It offered a way to separate the outdoor space from the walkway to create a sense of enclosure and safety.

Safety standards

When walking over a body of water, there needs to be a sense of security from a possible fall or trip. Technical Direction TD2002/RS02 has several standards designers need to consider:

  • Safety screens must last up to 50 years.
  • Existing bridges with a new screen need to be retrofitted to the structure.
  • There must be a minimum of three millimetres up from the walkway surface.
  • There should be space for the pedestrian to see their surroundings while on the overpass.

With these parameters in mind, we got started with the project right away.

Our approach

The client wanted a custom design for their pedestrian walkway barrier. We decided to work with perforated metal because it offered the most structural soundness. Its characteristics also allow for more creativity and visual depth.

The client offered a design already in mind, which we began working on with laser cutting. As we considered the use and location of the barrier, however, we realised that the sharp edges of the laser cut would be a hazard. To solve this, we decided on using our PicPerf® technology so the perforations were instead stamped into the metal sheet.

The result was a smooth solution that looked great and produced the design effect the client was looking for. The holes of the perforated metal were fairly small, so we used three millimetres thick Australian-made aluminium.

We included laser-cut tabs into the metal panels so they could form part of the balustrading as well. This helped to align with safety standards and helped to work the design throughout the entirety of the 90-metre fencing.

The result

Customized perforated metal designs create a unique look that communicates the focus the architect created while allowing for a uniform commercial look. The result of the overpass screen was a clean, white bridge barrier that looks incredible and blends in with the surrounding aesthetic.

Local flora near the small neighbourhood around the creek gives off the impression of countryside memories, easy days and welcomed comfort. The overpass screening offers this same appearance with an image of tall natural grass standing above the water rushing below. The colour choice was subtle, helping dissipate the hot Australian heat while working with the black chain link fencing behind it — a contrast that worked perfectly in this project.

Now, pedestrians can safely walk across the body of water without fear of slipping, falling or even blazing heat. With both shade and ventilation, the neighbouring commuters can enjoy the bridge all year long.

Custom perforated metal by Locker

Developing a custom perforated metal sheet is made easy when you work with Locker. We take all of your considerations and put together a solution that is both pleasing to the eye and aligned with local Australian standards.

We offer a variety of metals, hole sizing and coating methods including anodising, powder coating and electroplating depending on the location and use of your screen. We'll work with you to find the perfect solutions for your needs and architectural goals.

If you're ready to get started or to brainstorm a project idea, contact Locker today.