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PicPerf® is a process Locker uses for all of their perforated metal image designs

The role PicPerf® plays in our perforated metal designs

Adding visual details to your architectural design is key to drawing in curbside appeal. As the cornerstone of our architectural range, a perforated metal sheet by Locker is developed in-house and offers precision-made features to add the spark you're looking for in a façade.

We rely on PicPerf® for all of our perforated metal image design work. While you may have seen it mentioned in Architecture and Design or one of our end-of-year Lookbooks, this article will highlight what the process is, how it works and why we use it.

Perforated metal designs integrated into a facade to add intricate asethetics. Perforated metal designs integrated into a facade to add intricate asethetics.

Customised perforated metal

PicPerf® is a digital imaging processing program made specifically for perforating metals. It takes positive or inverted images and converts them into our perforated metal program. The software uses the holes in the sheet metal and background colour to create a textured 3D effect. It can be scaled for large or small spaces depending on the needs of the project.

Background lighting and viewing distance are taken into consideration as we design the image for the program. For example, a positive image will rely on a dark background, where an inverted image needs some sort of background light either natural or synthetic. The optimal viewing distance will depend on the size of the holes used for the façade.

We may also need to use a coated metal either in light or dark colours to achieve the correct contrast.

Additionally, the thickness of the perforated sheet metal is determined by how large the façade is and the size of the holes necessary for the project. The detail required for the image is another factor when determining metal thickness.

We highly recommend using aluminium for exterior façade, but we also offer stainless steel and mild steel. Aluminium has incredible resistance to corrosion and will be able to maintain the original design for longer without much need for maintenance or short-term replacement. Steel, however, while only suitable for two-tone images, is an excellent option for indoor applications.

Benefits of using custom perforated metal

If you're looking for architectural uniqueness, perforated metal façades or partitions offer the ideal solution. Perforated panels are used for protection from the sun, wind, air filtration, sound control and separation. A customised design provides visual interest and adds aesthetic value to a space.

A façade or partition can even provide a level of opaqueness to a space as you can see through either side of the panel. A customised partition is an excellent option for spaces such as a bus stop or an airport where some sun protection is necessary while waiting for transportation. The pattern you choose will also provide visual relief in an otherwise dull environment.

Perforated metal design and production steps
Locker uses PicPerf® to customise a perforated metal sheet based on your needs. All it takes is a few easy steps:

  1. Provide the image you want to be used for the metal panel. This will include the folds and bolts necessary.
  2. We will input the image into PicPerf® where we will determine if the image will be split into multiple panels, how large or small the holes will be and the thickness of the sheet itself.
  3. Once the terms are agreed upon, we will send the completed image to our perforation machine to punch the image into the sheet.
  4. The surface will then be treated, powder-coated or anodised for the desired finish.

We will include bolt holes into the production to ensure the panels are ready for installation. The bolt holes are incorporated into the design of the façade or partition.

If you're looking for a unique design and a façade or partition that will add visual appeal to your next project without compromising the integrity of the building, contact us for more information.

Natural materials from the landscape can help you put together a facade that truly integrates with the space.

How to blend architectural façades in with the landscape

Architectural design can take on many forms either to stand out from or to blend in with the surrounding geography. Adding colour, texture and shapes from the surrounding environment of a new building wall façade can add a more harmonious design to the area. This article will explore why you may want to incorporate your next building into the landscape rather than giving it a distinctive design.

A seamless transition from nature to structure can add a lot to a landscape.A seamless transition from nature to structure can add a lot to a landscape.

Why blend your architectural façades?

Building façades offer benefits to buildings such as shielding them from wind, protecting them from the sun, facilitating passive cooling or providing opportunities for natural ventilation. The architectural design could incorporate features that absorb flood waters or improve aesthetics as well. All of these elements are in response to the surrounding environment of the building and the intent of the structure itself.

A blended architectural façade design offers a more harmonious quality to a landscape. Instead of constructing a structure that is meant to stand out, a balanced design causes less impact on the surrounding area.

A 2018 journal by Nazire Papatya highlights the importance of sustainable building design, citing that using the landscape as a base for your drawings could improve its energy efficiency and synchronicity with the environment. This could not only mean using perforated metal façades but pulling in colours of the local plants and ground to deepen the visual impact.

Architectural methods to implement this design

While Papatya's dissertation on architecture design primarily focuses on using plant life to manage sustainable structures, there are man-made options you can use as well. The best way to blend a new building with the landscape is to first survey the land. Understand how the space slopes and consider the likelihood of heavy rain, wind or sunshine at certain times of the year or day. Then take in the colours you might use that will coordinate with the landscape.

Generally, a building is meant to communicate a sense of comfort and safety from the elements. This doesn't mean you need to build a fortress made out of titanium metal, but consider a façade that not only protects and provides durability but compliments the area around it as well as the function within.

Perforated metal, expanded metal or woven wire could serve these purposes perfectly as they are not only versatile but can coordinate with the landscape via a coloured coating. The material you choose should also take into consideration how it will fade over time. Choosing a metal that is corrosion resistant like aluminium can add improved longevity to the structure while maintaining its original intent.

A traditional or contemporary design could determine how you incorporate different materials as well. An exterior wall with floor-to-ceiling windows, or ground-to-roof perforated metal could meet your needs for either a modern or traditional design — it's all a matter of how you choose to incorporate colours and textures of the elements around the building to inspire you.

Locker offers an architectural design solution

From ideation to construction, Locker offers the façade solution you need. We are the leader in the perforated sheet metal market, offering a range of woven and welded metal mesh for a full-service design to product solution. We specialise in mild steel, galvanised steel, brass and stainless steel metal material available for your needs, both made-to-order or custom designed.

Adding a visual spark or integrating your design with the landscape is easy with Locker's decades of experience. We can ensure you get both a product that is perfect for the needs of the building as well as your architectural vision.

To get started or to learn more about our product solutions, contact us today.

webforge locker

2021 Lookbook

There is a reason Webforge Locker are market leaders, we are continually exploring and developing new applications or methodologies to utilise our vast range of products; perforated, expanded, wire and pic perf metals to the expansive range of Flooring and Safety Barrier Solutions; grating, handrail, gripspan, Monowills link.

As one brand, Webforge Locker can offer a barrier system incorporating a metal material or a façade system incorporating a safety barrier solution.

Our systems approach have led us to utilise the Locker Architectural range with the Webforge Safety barrier technology, therefore using one supplier and installer – saving time and money

Toorak Road Level Crossing Safety Barriers is just one example of Webforge Locker system solution. Utilising Monowills Link 2 rail safety barrier with perforated metal balustrades: more details in our 2021 Lookbook.

Another example is The ConRac carpark facility currently under construction utilising the Aurora system; Aluminium perforated façade with vehicle safety barriers, the only system of its kind on the market.

For more details read our 2021 Lookbook.


Lookbook 2021
Expanded metal stair treads can look great and keep you safe

How to make expanded metal stair treads safe and look great


Worried about aligning your stairways with the overall aesthetics of your building? Instead of sacrificing function for style or vice versa, there are patterns and metal types that you can coordinate together for safe stair treads that look great. This article will explore how to achieve both with expanded metal while meeting Australian Standards.

Industrial stair treads can prevent slips and falls. Industrial stair treads can prevent slips and falls.

Anti-slip treads

Understanding the purpose of stair treads can help you plan ahead and coordinate where possible. A stair tread is a surface you step upon when you climb or descend a set of stairs. Additionally, picking out the right tread can reduce the likelihood of slips or falls.

You can choose certain styles of expanded metal that work with the function of the stair. Specific decisions regarding the width, length and style of the expanded metal can help improve:

  • The load-bearing capacity of the stairs.
  • The safety of each step.
  • The stairs’ resistant to harsh weather conditions.
  • The longevity of the staircase.
  • The steps’ draining capacity.

Choosing the recommended widths and lengths of the treads can also help improve the economy of the project ahead.

Stair metal material

The metal type you choose should be determined by where the stairs will be used and the aesthetics of the rest of the building. Each metal type has its own strengths and weaknesses depending on if it is exposed to outside elements, chemicals, high traffic volume, and so on.

Stair treads are available with either bolted or welded fixing and come in several choices of grating styles, in the following materials:

  • Steel: Known for its strength, durability and sustainability, steel is a great option for stairs that will not be exposed to weather conditions or chemicals.
  • Aluminium: Lightweight, flexible and sturdy, aluminium is best for outdoor stairs because of its natural resistance to corrosion.
  • Stainless Steel: Very strong and durable, stainless steel can withstand high payloads and heavy traffic. These stair panels are less expensive and easy to install.
  • FRP: Ideal for scenarios where traction is necessary. FRP surfaces are naturally rough and slip-resistant. This material is typically used for outdoor industrial applications also because of its rust resistance.

Webforge offers Australian-made expanded metal steel for our stair treads so you know you can count on the quality of the material while supporting local businesses.

Pattern functions and benefits

The function of the stair tread will determine which pattern you should choose. While you can select any pattern, you will want to pick one that will provide the right amount of safety for pedestrians.

Serrated treads with bar grating are constructed with stair-specific reinforcement and additional safety adjustments. The treads’ nosing will help improve traction, the life of the stairs and the visibility of each tread. Following AS1657, the nosing on a tread should be easily visible against the background of the stair.

The holes in the treads will help minimise any pooling on the stairs from rain, snow or spills. Safety grating, for example, typically has smaller hole sizes for drainage but provides a lot of slip resistance and is ideal for an industrial platform, walkway or set of stairs.

Depending on how much weight the stairs will likely need to endure, the holes and patterns will need to align with requirements. Larger holes will allow for better drainage whereas smaller ones can help support more weight.

Our pattern and load bar recommendations will give you further insight as well. The table draws suggestions based on the material, pattern and load bar selected for your project. Below the table is another that outlines the recommended hole centres.

Safety and style

In most industrial instances, it’s hard to make a set of stairs stylistically aligned with the rest of the building when function and safety are paramount. However, in matching the style and metal type, you can more easily pull together a uniform look. Most metals can also be coated in a painted layer that can improve their longevity as well as change the colour of the metal for a more seamless aesthetic.

Handrails are a necessary part of every stairway project, and matching the expanded metal stair treads and handrails together can help create a put-together look that serves both the eye and the pedestrian.

Webforge Australian expanded metal

If you’re looking to improve the safety and aesthetics of your next stairway project, contact a Webforge professional today. We only source Australian-made expanded metal so you can rest assured that you’re receiving the best metal quality. Webforge professionals are experienced and available to help you with any questions you may have.

Expanded metal must go through a machine with predetermined metrics to achieve the diamond pattern industrial businesses look for.

Expanded metal: Sustainable, durable and versatile

There are more uses for expanded metal than creating fences or perforated metal sun covers, although these are popular and helpful applications. This versatile and durable material has the potential to underscore stunning architectural design.

This article will uncover the characteristics of expanded metal, how its made and how to utilise it to its fullest potential.

Expanded metal can be both functional and decorative to fit your next project.Expanded metal could be the solution you've been looking for.

Architectural expanded metal characteristics

Expanded metal is sheet metal pre-cut and stretched to form diamond shaped openings across its surface. It can easily be adapted to use for a variety of architectural metal projects. Expanded metal can provide many functional solutions as well, such as:

  • Security
  • Ventilation
  • Privacy
  • Sun protection

The material has characteristics that are unique to it and help improve its functionality in different architectural use cases. Expanded metal can be described as:

  • Rigid
  • Adaptable
  • Aesthetically appealing
  • Lightweight
  • Strong
  • Decorative and functional
  • Flexible

It can be decorated with powder coating or by changing the size of the cuts made to the material during production to support certain design elements of the project. The larger the cut, the more sunlight and airflow can move through it. With smaller cuts, more privacy and sunshade is provided — the perfect solution for facades.

From an architectural perspective, expanded metal can provide texture and depth to a building facade or ceiling without taking away from its structural integrity or design.

Its durability depends on the type of metal you choose. All of Locker's expanded metal is sourced from Dandenong, Victoria steel or aluminium. Both materials are corrosion-resistant. With a powder coat or finishing, they can prove to be more durable against harsh weather conditions.

What makes expanded metal sustainable? There is rarely any scrapped metal at the end of a project. The panels are predetermined and instead of cutting forms out of the metal, as is the case with a perforated sheet, the holes are precut.

A brief expanded metal technical design overview

Depending on how you plan on using the expanded metal, we have a host of product types designed specifically to solve certain structural needs.

To help you decide on diamond sizes and types, we've narrowed down manufacturing specifics to three styles:

  • Security and fencing
  • Agricultural
  • Sunscreen

These categories can help you choose the correct range for your use. However, Australian-made expanded metal can be employed in just about any space you need it.  The versatility comes from how it is manufactured.

Raw material is put through an expanding machine, where it is cut and stretched using a pressured slitting and stretching methodology. The larger the cuts, the more flexible the panel is and the thicker it must be to support the slits. You can choose any variation of hole sizes. At the end of the process, the metal is cut into sheets or rolled into coils.

Expanded metal applications

Outside of the three categories, there are many ways you can use expanded metal. Choose a long-way diamond (LWD) or short-way diamond pattern (SWD), large cuts or small, or even add colour to the expanded metal sheet to improve its visual effect. The pattern of the expanded mesh can be staggered, providing the most open space, or aligned in straight columns and rows.

Expanded metal can be seen in any number of applications, such as:

  • Facades
  • Walls
  • Grilles
  • Handrails
  • Infill panels
  • Walls
  • Ceilings
  • Floors
  • Doors

The intended use of the material will help determine the open area percentage you will need. The larger the space, the more air, water and light can come through the cuts. Typically, architectural expanded metals can be used for building structures, trim, decoration, railings or roofing. Some expanded metals could be combined with concrete to help support the structure's strength.

We use expanded metal most often for building facades. We've helped design vertical facades, polygonal facades and free form facades that are not supported by a wall or structure but simply used for their design and function. A free form use of expanded metal could be outdoor partitions or a part of an art piece adjacent to a building.

What separates Australian metal from the rest

At Locker, we take pride in providing Australian-made metal from Dandenong, Victoria. This is metal you can trust from the manufacturers that are committed to the integrity of our product. We offer an extensive range of expanded metal products and custom designs that can fit any project idea.

Reach out to a Locker professional to learn more about our process, the materials we offer or to get started on your own project.

Wire mesh can bring a building to life, add depth and cut down on energy costs.

Why wire mesh is a breakout architectural design

Windows don't provide enough sun protection for your outdoor/indoor space, but you want natural light — without worrying about constantly cleaning curtains. Wire mesh could be your fix-all solution, while adding a tinge of stylistic flair to your architecture.

Keep reading to learn why architectural mesh is the breakout architectural material you should use in your next project.

Wire mesh should be considered as part of your next architectural design.Wire mesh should be considered as part of your next architectural design.

Components of wire mesh

Architectural wire mesh is also referred to as architectural wire cloth. This material is factory-made with woven wire to form uniform, parallel spaces and symmetrical gaps. It can be made with a variety of materials, but Locker uses low-carbon steel, high-carbon steel and nickel.

Decorative mesh provides design professionals with the perfect combination of style and function. It can both separate one area from another, like a wall, and allow natural airflow and light through a space, like a window with curtains.

Wire mesh is a versatile material that offers a wide range of exterior and interior applications while lending itself to timeless elegance and a modern appearance. 

Types of wire mesh products

Metal woven wire can add beautiful elements to your building. From car parks to cladding, enclosures and balustrades, wire mesh has a multifaceted look that can fit into any project. It is perfect for outdoor uses because of its durability in the face of extreme weather conditions and resistance to corrosion. This material is easy to maintain and can be customized to reduce metal waste.

Fences and enclosures

Designing an outdoor space with this adaptable material is easy and can bring a building to life. Layer the woven wire to create a rippled effect or manipulate it into a shape that aligns with the architectural design vision. Wire mesh can be used around pools, playgrounds, sports venues and many other structures that utilise safety and security fencing.

The Juliette Cycleway Overpass Bridge, highlighted in our 2019 LookBook, used powder-coated woven wire throughout the pedestrian path to provide protection for visitors and add an interesting, colourful design element to the area. We used inter-crimped wire to improve the locking tightness and fencing rigidity.

Facade cladding

Wrap the entire exterior of a building facade or just a few sides of it with cable metal mesh to protect the building from environmental exposure while changing its presentation. Cladding is not used for the wall itself but as an added "coat" in front of the wall. This creates incredible depth and uniqueness. This is a great use for offices, lobbies and even elevators to improve the look of otherwise ordinary spaces.

In 2018, we worked with architect Hansen Yuncken to design a wire mesh curtain, mentioned in our 2018 LookBook, along the central facade of the Monash University Caulfield campus' library. It created a truly inspiring enhancement to the space that provided shade for the students inside without making them feel locked away from the outdoors.


YYou can use wire mesh for function as well. An infill panel can work in tandem with your railing system. You can create a protective barrier to fill the large open area for pedestrians while directing high trafficked areas. The railing contributes to the overall aesthetic of the area while maintaining transparency.


Want to increase the high visibility properties of an outdoor space while maintaining airflow? Give pedestrians and visitors a chance to experience the outdoors with an architectural wire mesh canopy. You can easily manipulate the material to construct a fascinating design element while creating shade and shelter. Architectural canopies create a sense of playfulness or luxury to a space that can be a point of interest for the overall design.

Custom ceilings

If you're ready to impress and inspire onlookers, use wire mesh in your next project. Modern design has created a path for wire mesh to add a sense of luxury to ceiling style. It can add texture, vastness or intimacy to a space as it works seamlessly with various lighting and privacy needs.

2018 was the year of wire mesh. We worked with Futurespace to help develop a woven wire mesh ceiling project. It was used to form a ribbon along the ceiling that would break the mould of what a professional building "should" look like. Without sacrificing any metal, we developed a material that would support the aesthetic of the space, as well as ideal conditions for visual and acoustic considerations. 

If you're looking to add more interesting elements to your project, reach out to a Locker professional today to get started. We provide custom builds, colours and materials that can work with the architectural intent of your project.

A powder coating on raw stainless steel provides extra protection.

How to utilise perforated stainless steel sheet metal

Perforated metal is used for more than just a screen or ventilation for your computer tower (although it's great for these uses too). Stainless steel perforated metal can define a space with unique designs, patterns and placements in a way that other sheet metal cannot.

Read on to learn more about how to best utilise stainless steel perforated panels in both commercial and industrial spaces.

Perforated metal can design a space such as a car park facade.Perforated metal can design a space such as a car park facade.

Stainless steel perforated panels: A quick breakdown

Metal panel perforation can be found on park benches, playgrounds, building facades and more. Stainless steel is corrosion resistant, but it is not corrosion proof. Powder coating for stainless steel increases its corrosion resistance and is more commonly found rather than raw material. The powder can come in different colours which add additional design elements to the metal depending on the project. No matter what design path you take, this mesh-like metal sheet can add value to any project.

Perforation has a unique quality that can both divide space and keep an area open enough to see through on the other side.

Perforated stainless steel has been used for both commercial and residential spaces to offer a distinct light filtration. The perforation can cast a shadow across a surface that creates glimmering light beams and shapes — truly beautifying an otherwise blank surface using just sunshine or a well-placed light fixture.

The holes can be any variation of size and shape to incorporate idiosyncratic design elements. Keeping in mind, however, with a bigger hole size, the thickness of the stainless steel sheet needs to be increased as well.

Things to consider for stainless steel panels

Every space has its own list of things to consider when building such as air filtration, maintenance, durability and more. Perforated sheet metal can accommodate many items on your list so, if you're thinking of using this material, here are a few things to consider:

Commercial uses

Perforated stainless steel is a great option for architects looking to save on materials while making a space more attractive. The reason for this is that stainless steel is typically an affordable metal to build with.

Stainless steel is known for its resistance to bacteria and pathogens as well. It's easy to clean and makes a space that would, for example, be used in a playground, more sanitary. When it comes down to maintenance costs in the long term, how easy it is to clean a surface could be on your list of considerations.

Function is certainly a priority but design is also an important consideration with perforated metal.

Perforated stainless steel sheet metal has made its way into the architectural space because of its interesting aesthetic. It's a smooth material, typically a shiny silver colour and you can vary the size of the holes depending on the sheet thickness.

Industrial cases

Industrial spaces use perforated stainless steel for its functional benefits as well. It can be used as a filter, a platform, for ventilation or more.

Any project can benefit from a stainless steel perforated sheet's durability. Whether used as a platform or holding up against an entire year's worth of snow, stainless steel is one of the strongest types of sheet metal on the market.

If used for outdoor purposes, industrial builds need to depend on a metal's resistance to corrosion. When used as a facade on a building or as a partial shade cover in a park, stainless steel can help cut down on maintenance or replacement costs.

To top it all off, stainless steel is also recyclable. When the inevitable upgrade happens, stainless steel doesn't need to be thrown into the dumpster to sit for thousands of years. Instead, it can be repurposed or reused somewhere else, making it a highly sustainable option.

Utilising perforated stainless steel sheet metal

Developing a space using stainless steel panels can help you bring in a number of unique design elements that could either blend an area together or define the vibe of an entire block.

There are many ways to use stainless steel perforated panels from functional to design; but if you take into consideration all of its uses, you can get the most out of this sheet metal type.

When you partner with Locker, there is no limit to what you can do with perforated metal because we provide both custom and standard panels to work with your designed vision. Contact us today to get started.

Locker Pic Perf

Case study: Cheltenham Station Car Park Façade


Cheltenham Station, located in Victoria is a train station that was first opened in 1881, serving the south-eastern Melbourne suburb of Cheltenham. As part of a Melbourne 2030 plan for renovations, the station has had consistent upgrades to its design and functionality since 2010.

This case study dives into the details of the Pic-Perf façade with Aurora rail and Ingal crash barrier and how Locker was able to create a stunning design that was not only within scope but more sustainable as well.

Between the design and the construction, Renrow and Locker worked closely to meet deadlines. On-time and within scope, Locker’s Aurora system helped pull together different teams into the same timeline.


The design to construction scope was estimated at 24 months. Because of its location, maintaining a comfortable living space for residential areas nearby was top of mind. The car park façade needed to be aesthetically pleasing and reduce light pollution flooding nearby homes from the car park, while also allowing for a 50% open area to meet ventilation requirements.


We were working with a new builder, S.J. Higgins, that was not integrated yet with our Aurora system which created initial setbacks. However, as soon as the builder was up to speed, the rest of the project flowed with ease.

“Our Aurora system eliminates requirements for any secondary support usually provided by the builder,” says Mark Anderson, head of national projects at Valmont, a Locker company. “Therefore, we were able to provide a fully integrated system that required no additional support beyond the primary structure.”

A range of samples and trials were reviewed before arriving at the current design and structure that met the expectations of the project manager, stakeholders, and the architect, Cox Architects.

“The architect envisaged a ‘tree branch design’ across the façade that would vary throughout each elevation” continued Anderson. “The image needed to be replicated through the Pic-Perf software ensuring that the subject was clear, visually appealing and easily identified. The background colour contrasts needed to be considered to ensure a high-resolution image that would be developed and accepted by all parties concerned.”

In the end, all site drawings and materials were delivered in line with the builder’s program.

The Aurora system was a great option for the client because its sustainability allowed it to grow depending on the fluctuations of the project. There was a reduction of all of the steelwork originally detailed for the design that the Aurora system was able to turn into a cost-effective solution.

Where the existing car park was drab and needed to be upgraded, we took the foundations of the building and added texture, design and colour to make impactful changes.

A conscious collaboration caused this project to be both stylistic and sustainably made. The three-storey car park façade is a statement point for the district.

The result

By using Aurora, our integrated system made it possible to ensure that the installation was completed within the allocated period which would not have been possible through other methods.

“The fact that we could offer a turnkey solution for the façade that simplified the original concept whilst maintaining architectural intent appealed to the builder because they only had to award a single contract which covered design, certification, engineering, supply and installation,” Anderson said.

The grand opening of the Cheltenham Station car park occurred in July of 2020. The three-level car park provides a covered space for commuters and rail passengers to safely park their vehicles as they go about their day.

In the end, Anderson says the “result provided a stunning image that captured the architectural intent and is considered to be one of the construction highlights of any build throughout Melbourne and beyond.”

The new construction offers residents and commuters:

  • A less congested space.
  • More light and airflow.
  • Better driver safety.
  • Stunning design quality.
  • Car light block for nearby residents.

As a result of the collaboration, workmanship, professionalism and diligence for this project Cox Architects, S.J. Higgins, DACA Windows and Locker produced an eye-catching, Pic-Perf architectural product.

Locker can accommodate any project size and offer a variety of architectural and construction solutions with a scale of expanded and perforated metal, curtains and wire mesh. Our product range includes screening, interior applications, façades and balustrades.

If you want to know more about this project, others we have underway or if you want to get started on your own, please reach out to one of our professionals today.

Locker Laser Design

Case Study: High Society in Belconnen, Canberra


High Society in Belconnen, Canberra is a bustling business district home to the tallest tower in Canberra. It is a stunning building that features unique curves and floor-to-ceiling windows that reflect the city with elegance. Inside are stone benchtops and top-end appliances to create a luxury living experience. Residents can enjoy exclusive, private amenities on-site or venture out to the surrounding shops and restaurants for a taste of local culture.

This case study outlines how Locker worked with our partners to meet builder deadlines despite challenges brought on by the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic to create a striking car park façade.

Project background

High Society needed to upgrade the façade of their car park to blend in with the area’s growing business and residential mixed population. Our plans involved a roughly 2,200 square metre, four-level podium car park façade of folded aluminium laser-cut panels.

“We were first engaged in October 2019 at the initial design stage to massage an idea into an achievable laser-cut design,” says Mark Thompson, technical sales representative from Webforge, Locker’s sister company. “Over November, we manufactured and provided samples for our client Renrow, to provide to the builder and sign off, which was agreed to in December 2019. The order was placed late January 2019 with a schedule of custom rolled raw material and then COVID-19 hit the world!”

The project didn’t stop for the pandemic so Locker put in a substantial organisational effort to meet the expectations of our client and put together a stunning façade. It took not only precise coordination but clear communication.

“The time schedule became crazy [once the pandemic hit] and we had to meet stage scope KPI’s which were either met or within a very tight timeline just after,” says Thompson. “[Reaching project KPIs and tight deadlines] was achieved with a considerable team effort from myself, our Dandenong staff, our aluminium suppliers, powder coaters and transportation company.”

A softer car park provides residents and shoppers a breezy and safe space to park their vehicles. Teamwork, dedication and vision brought this façade to where it stands today.

Unique design solutions

Not only was the project set in a bustling businesses area in Belconnen, but the designers wanted the project to be as environmentally friendly as possible. Therefore, the façade needed to become something that inspired both innovation and sustainability for anyone who walked by.

“This building is the jewel in a fast-developing area of Belconnen and has set the standard for the area,” says Thompson. “The design of this building met all green standards within an operating district. Delivery, craning of goods and labour were carefully structured to meet government, residents and project restrictions.”

The satin bronze coating provides the car park with an elegant appearance that integrates well with the wood panels around the beams throughout. The rippling laser cuttings coupled with the folded panels to create a visual pulse design. To better reflect the curves along the High Society building, we added similar waves with more angular features to make it distinct yet welcoming to shoppers, commuters and residents.

Laser cut aluminium is a durable material that can do several things for a car park façade, including:

  • Bringing in natural light.
  • Cooling off a space with shade.
  • Preventing large pests from entering.
  • Creating small windows to the outside for weather checks.
  • Allowing for airflow.
  • Providing more visibility throughout the building.

The result of the project was a stunning façade that not only met client expectations but sets the tone for the surrounding area. Each laser cut panel was custom made to create a show-stopping product that was aesthetically pleasing while working for the patrons who used the car park. The new façade addressed the airflow of the car park to make it more comfortable and safe from carbon dioxide. It now provides a shaded space for vehicles that will stay cool throughout the summer months.

The perforated metal provides a safe and cool space for vehicles. With minimal direct sunlight, vehicles can stay cool in the summer.

Locker is your solution to creative sheet metal façades

At Locker, we can collaborate with many different teams, budgets and stakeholders. Our laser cut metals provide top-quality architectural products that fit in with a variety of applications for architectural , industrial, mining and quarry products. For more information on how your next building facelift can integrate woven wire, expanded metal and more for more stunning façades, reach out to a representative today to get started.

Decorative expanded metal mesh: Uses and designs


Decorative expanded metal mesh provides a unique quality to otherwise traditional architectural design. While it can reinforce the security of a building, it can also provide a host of other benefits that can upgrade your building facade.

Explore what it would mean for your next project to include decorative expanded mesh.

Industrial style meets functionality with decorative expanded mesh.Expanded mesh can be an excellent source of decorative inspiration.

What can expanded metal mesh do for you?

Metal mesh begins as a sheet of solid metal that then utilises machinery to cut into it. The sheet is then stretched to form a diamond shape, mesh-like and flattened final product. The benefits of using metal mesh include primarily lie in the ventilation and filtration they provide. Filtering light, supporting air flow, regulating temperature and allowing liquids like rainwater to drain.

Perforated metal starts as a solid metal panel that goes through a hole-making process. However, expanded metal mesh is cut before expansion, making it a stronger material.

Similarly, wire metal mesh is a welded material that appears to have similar qualities to perforated and expanded metal. However, it is composed of several pieces of metal welded together. The result is a grid-like appearance.

How does it work?

Creating your dream decorative design starts with a solid metal sheet or coil that is fed into a machine. This expanding machine is preprogrammed with a fitted tool that creates the  pattern as the metal is expanded with pressured slits. These slits give the metal more space to expand while producing a consistent pattern.

Designs to try

Architectural elements of expanded metal mesh bring together the sturdy reliability of a metal structure with the design aesthetics to make your plan unique. There are several designs and ideas you can use for your architectural expanded metal project. Here are a few you probably haven’t seen yet.


This design can be raised or flattened. It appears as a series of arrowhead designs facing upward. It can bring an element of prestige and elegance to your partition or wall design.


Utilise this design to bring in minimal light,  depending on the size of the shapes. It gives off a slanted light filtration pattern at certain times of day, a higher sense of privacy and is popular for some public spaces.


A popular design from clothing fashion to furniture, this simple and minimalist style can bring a softness to a space that is familiar and approachable.

Raised horizontal diamond

A highly modern idea that brings the typical diamond design forward in a new twist. Expand the slits to be larger than the palm of your hand and draw the waves of each curve forward to invite passersby to engage in the metal. Hold the design away from the building slightly to bring more dimension to the decorative metal mesh.

Decorate with Locker

We pride ourselves on performing quality work for every customer that comes through our doors. Whether you’re focused on decorative architectural design or industrial applications, there is space for you to express your creativity. We have premade panels and Pic Perf, which allows you to create almost any design for your metal sheet.

Create something that aligns perfectly with your design vision. Give us a call today to get started.

Each perforated metal project is reviewed for quality before presented to the client.

Design something new with rectangular perforated metal

Creating a unique design that is both efficient and appealing to your audience is a distinctive challenge that can inspire creativity and sometimes influence a shift in the design world. Architecture is more than building models in AutoCAD, it can motivate your clients or decision-makers to think outside the box.

Rectangular shapes may not be the most popular hole type but we'll divulge the ways in which it could be the solution to your design rut.

Shade your interior with rectangular perforated metal. Perforated metal is the perfect shade and texture addition to a building facade.

Perforated sheet uses and types

Perforated metal is versatile in both use and style.

When you think rectangular metal, grating, sieves or animal care might come to mind. It is a great way to have some drainage while providing a reliable and safe surface to walk on. You can find grating used for this purpose on farms, in industrial areas and for drainage.

In the construction industry, this metal type is often used for sound absorption. Managing sound can include strategically placed perforated metal that deflects vibrations and creates a more noise-aware space. You can find this technique in schools and more recently in our project with the Taronga Institute of Science & Learning.

The architectural side of this designed metal can bring to life a new type of facade texture. Design hasn't always taken a front seat in industrial architecture, but using rectangular perforated metal can lead to functional and aesthetically pleasing results. You can customise the size and shape of the hole pattern to accommodate different needs and uses.

From a design standpoint, perforated metal mesh can be used to add subtle elements to a building side, shade or partitions. It provides clear boundaries for space without closing it off from airflow or traffic. It's an excellent choice for an outdoor space because, depending on the metal you choose, it will only require minimal maintenance and is not a great conductor of electricity.

Metal types

At Locker, we use two types of metal for a perforated plate: aluminium and steel. While both are great metal type options, they have their own specific advantages for certain project types.

Metal corrosion

Corrosion is a top concern for most construction involving outdoor metal. Both aluminium and stainless steel are resistant to corrosion, but perforated steel must be painted or coated to be more resistant, where aluminium is naturally corrosion resistant.

Strength and malleability

Steel is a strong and reliable material, however, aluminium is more malleable. In terms of designing the metal into shapes outside of a typical panel, aluminium might be a better choice. If your design only asks for traditional, strong perforated metal sheets, steel is a resilient option.

How it's made

Perforated metal originated with hand-punched holes. While Locker professionals still keep a close eye on the process itself and quality check each product before being presented to the client, machine perforation is standard practice today. This allows for more precise results and reliable panel designs.

Locker technology allows for precise machine punches that align perfectly with your desired hole shape, length and width. You can choose pre-made designs like rectangular shapes, but you still have the creative freedom to create any design you need.

There are a few ways to create perforated holes. Perforating is the punching of metals or other malleable materials, creating varying shaped holes with a punch and die using a mechanical or hydraulic perforating press. The punch and die are shaped to produce the desired shaped hole.

You can dive deeper into this process in our blog dedicated to the subject.

The future of perforated metal

Opting for a rectangular pattern is a unique way to add textural designs across the surface below or adjacent to the panel. Ornamenting your outdoor space doesn't have to create major costs in terms of maintenance and expensive outdoor material. Across the world, architects are leaning into the possibilities of perforated metal.

The benefits of utilising this type of decorative metal are endless, it just takes more creativity to see the possibilities and imagine boldly.

There are more patterns than rectangular and the typical circular. Try diamond, triangular, faded or something truly your own. The aim is to coordinate the story of the building inside and apply this metal to match. Choose a unique design or paint the metal to add dimension and character to any space.

The industrial benefits of rectangular perforated metal span from farming to the food and beverage industry.

There is no limit to how using perforated metal can benefit your business in big and small applications. Contact Locker to discuss possibilities and how we can shine through as your partner in personalised perforated metal projects.

Protect your space with aluminium diamond grille

A guide to aluminium security mesh

Keeping your building structure safe from intruders, insects and other pests is a priority for every property owner. The goal for most designers is to find an option that both looks great and has high functionality.

If you want security built for durability, long-lasting strength aluminium security mesh could be an excellent choice.

A guide to aluminium security mesh

Aluminium security mesh can protect any high-valued spaceRely on the strength of an aluminium security mesh fence.

Deciding on aluminium mesh for your project opens up a new level of style and function for your design.

Aluminium security mesh is durable, weather-resistant and long-lasting. Add in our ability to help create any design you need, and you can imagine the possibilities of such material.

While it can be utilised to create an interesting building facade, aluminium mesh serves important security functions as well. This cost-effective material can be used for a variety of functions.

Security mesh stays strong even when facing heavy impacts. This makes it an excellent choice for prisons, farms, high-security buildings and more. Wherever a simple door or chain link fence is not enough security for the building and its occupants, aluminium security mesh could be your solution.

Security screens protect against high impacts and unwanted intrusion. They do so by dissipating force from the location of the impact. Instead of the blow's force focused on one small area, the energy is dispersed throughout the mesh screen.

Aluminium in particular has a high force-to-impact ratio that helps maintain low maintenance costs related to fixing tears over time.

Where are mesh screens used?

We can accommodate any project big or small. However, security mesh is typically used in areas where a high level of security is a must.

Security mesh screens are typically used in correctional facilities. They surround the site or act as a barrier along corridors where staff can both see what is happening throughout the area while maintaining boundaries where they need them. Aluminium security screens are resistant to tearing caused by most other sharp metal materials, making them the perfect medium for building safety.

Similarly, this screen can be used for high-security settings like:

  • Government buildings.
  • Police offices.
  • Military training areas.
  • Computer rooms.
  • Advanced tech facilities.
  • Airports.

Perforated aluminium can be manipulated in different ways for many types of functions, for example, the cutouts in the metal can be changed to fit any style. We also provide stock items for faster installation.

While many high-security settings, such as those listed, may seem to be an uninteresting space to design, any area can be updated and manipulated to look awe-inspiring. You could use security mesh along the facade of a building for added shade, or even control pests.

Aluminium vs. Other metals

While there are many materials to choose from while considering security mesh, perforated aluminium is one of the top options. Along with its durable qualities, it is also less expensive than most metals. Where security mesh is used, aluminium is an option when working with a tight budget.

As an outdoor material, it can last through any weather conditions. The finish applied to aluminium adds a protective layer against corrosion. For this reason, aluminium outlasts steel for outdoor construction.

Stainless steel is also known for its conductivity. In inclement weather, aluminium is less likely to attract lightning than stainless steel. However, this material can still become the site of a lightning strike so be sure to follow safety precautions during thunderstorms.

When considering security walls or fences, you can approach the project in several ways: which material to choose from and how the material is constructed. While perforated or wire mesh is an option, the expanded mesh is most likely the best choice for a security screen for several reasons.

Perforated vs. Expanded mesh

Perforated metal is a material made of stainless steel or aluminium that has cutout holes in it of any shape or size. Expanded mesh is most typically used for security and includes a material that is reinforced by expanding the metal into a diamond pattern. Expanded mesh can be made from galvanized steel, stainless or, of course, aluminium.

The uses of both do vary and overlap in some ways, but the expanded mesh can be used for both partitions, as in a farm or prison, or even for windows and frames.

The difference between the two mainly lies in the manufacturing of the material. Perforated metal was first a sheet that then had holes cut into it. Expanded mesh was once a metal that had a series of cuts made into it before expanding it into a larger, more reinforced sheet. To which, expanded metal is understood as a more affordable option, as there are not any added steps after the metal has been stretched.

Finally, expanded metal is stronger because it doesn't have to go through a hole punch process that breaks down its foundational structure. It was fundamentally perforated before the metal underwent any changes.

Diamond grille security

Locker is the leading manufacturer of expanded aluminium security mesh. We can accommodate your project quickly and with precision, whether you choose a stock option or want a truly unique design.

Contact one of our service professionals and see the difference.