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Designing with Plastics

This issue of
Designing with Plastics
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Indelco Plastics Corporation

An ePublication of the International Association of Plastics Distribution

February 2009 | Focus: Construction

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Hotel developer chooses CPVC for water distribution system

REPRINTED FROM THE IAPD MAGAZINE

The Hilton Garden Inn® in Romulus, MI, was constructed using FlowGuard Gold® and Corzan CPVC® pipe and fittings for the plumbing system and BlazeMaster® CPVC pipe and fittings for the fire sprinkler system.

The Hilton Garden Inn® in Romulus, MI, was constructed using FlowGuard Gold® and Corzan CPVC® pipe and fittings for the plumbing system and BlazeMaster® CPVC pipe and fittings for the fire sprinkler system.

Beyond cost, hotel developer Cooper Companies considers long-term performance and reliability when specifying building materials, placing high value on those that improve the quality of a guest’s lodging experience. Such was the case in building a new Hilton Garden Inn® in Romulus, MI. Following the recommendation of builder Mark McCray, superintendent of Walton Construction Co., the decision was made to install an all-CPVC water distribution system to help meet that goal. This included all plumbing pipe and fittings in the complex, as well as the fire sprinkler system.

“Based on past experience and my knowledge of the superior performance characteristics of CPVC compared to other materials, it was clearly the material of choice,” said McCray. “CPVC provides a fast, quality plumbing installation that requires less maintenance than traditional systems.”

Quality and quick installation
For more than 40 years, CPVC has been used in a variety of plumbing system applications in millions of hotels, condominiums, buildings, apartments and homes with great success. Unlike other materials, CPVC plumbing systems will never pit, scale or corrode, which substantially reduces the risk of leaks, premature failures and costly re-piping. Exhibiting superior toughness and reliability, the all-CPVC system provided Cooper with a high-performance, yet easy-to-install, solution for the new property’s potable water system.

According to McCray, because CPVC systems are also extremely lightweight, fast and easy installation translated into reduced overall labor costs. “The number one advantage of a CPVC plumbing system for a property owner is the cost savings over other systems,” said McCray. “It generates an overall savings for the owner through reduced labor time, and the inherent performance capabilities of CPVC eliminate the risk of the system corroding and failing.”

Available in iron pipe sizes ranging from 1/4" to 16" and copper tube sizes up to 2", CPVC pipe and fittings were installed throughout the Hilton Garden Inn to meet high- and low-volume demands. Whereas installing other materials, like metallic systems, requires torches and heavy equipment, fabrication and alterations to the CPVC system were made on site using simple hand tools. Joints were created with either solvent cement, flanging or threading, adding to a cleaner, safer installation.

Quiet performance ensures restful nights
Key to the quality of any hotel’s accommodations is the ability to ensure a quiet stay. For instance, guests would rather not have to listen to their neighbor’s water running late at night or early in the morning. That fact was another consideration that influenced Cooper Companies to select an all-CPVC plumbing system. The thermoplastic properties of CPVC systems offered a quieter system because the material does not transmit sound as easily as other materials, thus minimizing the sound of water flow.

Another advantage the CPVC system offered in decreasing noise levels was the significant reduction of water hammer that is characteristic of metallic pipes. Water hammer is the result of pressure fluctuations that develop in a pipe when the flow is suddenly changed, which creates a variety of disruptive sounds, depending on the design of the plumbing system. Because CPVC is more dimensionally yielding than other materials, it can actually expand slightly and absorb the “energy” or noise to significantly reduce (or eliminate) water hammer.

View the complete article online.

This article was written by Corzan Piping Systems.

In This Issue:
Hotel developer chooses CPVC for water distribution system
Exhibiting superior toughness and reliability, an all-CPVC potable water system provides a new hotel with a high-performance, yet easy-to-install, solution.

Variety of applications for polycarbonate multiwall sheets
Polycarbonate makes a great choice for skylights, roofing, windows and ceiling applications.

High quality nylon in mobile cranes
Sliding properties, wear resistance, vibration dampening, weight and, not least of all, good machinability, make cast nylon a great choice for mobile cranes.

Applications in Construction
Plastic construction applications are varied.

Test your knowledge
What do you know about plastics in the construction industry?

Online plastic resources
IAPD offers many online search resources at www.iapd.org and www.theiapdmagazine.com, including distributor, processor, trade name and fabrication capability searches.

Find an IAPD Plastics Distributor or Processor

Search for Suppliers by Trade Name or Material and Shape

Search for Plastics Fabrication Capabilities

Search Other Plastics Articles Published by IAPD

View Past Issues of Designing with Plastics

About IAPD
The International Association of Plastics Distribution, founded in 1956, is an international trade association comprised of companies engaged in the distribution and manufacture of plastics materials.

Members include plastics distributors, processors, manufacturers, resin manufacturers, manufacturers’ representatives and associated products and services, all of whom are dedicated to the distribution channel.

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Variety of applications for polycarbonate multiwall sheets

REPRINTED FROM THE IAPD MAGAZINE

The material used in this skylight application was Gallina policarb 32 mm – 7 layers, clear.

The material used in this skylight application was Gallina policarb 7-layers 32 mm, clear.

Polycarbonate multiwall sheets can be used for a wide variety of applications: skylights, roofing, curtain walls, office dividers, swimming pool enclosures, greenhouses, point-of-purchase, displays and signage. Polycarbonate sheets have been used throughout Europe for many years because of its energy-saving properties. It is mandatory in that part of the world to show the amount of energy saved regarding any construction. The main advantages of multiwall polycarbonate are the following: it is lightweight, high-impact resistant, UV protected, works well in a wide range of temperatures, and has excellent fire resistance.

Following are some examples of the variety of uses of polycarbonate multiwall sheets:

Skylight application
The first example of the use of polycarbonate is an application for a skylight in an indoor water park in Wisconsin on Lake Michigan. The requirement for this project was a large skylight where there was a wide distance between purling and rafters. The material needed to be able to span the distance and be light in weight to reduce the cost of construction. It was also required that the material needed to have a high insulation factor and be resistant to heavy snow and wind loads. The solution was using polycarbonate “7-layers 32 mm” clear.

Roofing application
Another example of the use of polycarbonate was for an office and industrial building in San Francisco, CA. This project required maximizing the amount of natural light inside the building while keeping the insulation value high and maintaining the appearance of the existing exterior walls. The solution was using corrugated twin-wall material that allows overlapping so that the two materials, the old and the new, fit perfectly. It allows a lot of light to go through these “windows” while keeping the high insulation. The easy installation saved the contractor about one-third of the labor costs that he would have had with alternative materials.

Window application
Another example of the use of polycarbonate multiwall sheets is a window application in a manufacturing facility. The requirement for this was to allow as much light as possible in a very dark production facility without interrupting the work area and to keep the insulation factor high. They also wanted the area covered by the polycarbonate to match as best as possible the color of the existing exterior wall. The solution was to use a polycarbonate “tongue and groove” system with one-foot-wide panels which allowed the constructor to follow the visual line of the building, and make the installation very simple. This allowed them to open small areas at a time without interrupting the work inside the building.

Ceiling application
Polycarbonate was also used in the project of a decorative hanging ceiling in the DuPage County Court House in Illinois. The requirements for this project were lightweight material, easy installation, attractive appearance and cost-effectiveness. The solution was to use a special 20 mm polycarbonate system with battens and an aluminum connector on the top side which met all the requirements for the project.

View the complete article online.

This article was written by Gallina USA LLC.

High quality nylon in mobile cranes

REPRINTED FROM THE IAPD MAGAZINE

Boom head of an AC 500-1 mobile crane with sheaves made of cast nylon. (Photo courtesy of Demag Mobile Cranes GmbH.)

Boom head of an AC 500-1 mobile crane with sheaves made of cast nylon. (Photo courtesy of Demag Mobile Cranes GmbH.)

When seeking suitable materials that need to fulfill specific functions and bring economical advantages, the design engineer can no longer ignore modern plastics. Multitudes of plastics are available for the most varied applications. Many of them are geared toward specific applications and have much better properties than the conventional material. The group of engineering plastics contains the high quality cast nylons with their modifications using fillers and additives. Deciding factors such as sliding properties, wear resistance, vibration dampening, weight and, not least of all, good machinability, have all led to making highly loaded components from cast nylon. Due to these factors, cast nylon has secured a place in mobile crane construction.

Sheaves made of cast nylon
On cranes, the wire rope is an important and highly loaded part. The safe functioning of the crane relies heavily on the wire rope’s capability, and, unlike other components, the wire rope must be replaced before it fails. The working lifetime of a wire rope is a function of the contact area between the rope and the sheave. Sheave materials with a low modulus of elasticity have a low point contact pressure which leads to longer wire rope life. For this reason, thermoplastics are considered.

The following characteristics are required from the material:

  • Elasticity for extended rope life.
  • High wear resistance.
  • Sufficient strength even at low temperatures.
  • Resistance to most weather conditions.
  • Resistance to lubricants.

These requirements are filled superbly by cast nylon. The application of sheaves made of cast nylon has proven itself for years and has clear advantages over metallic materials. The most important advantages are given below.

Reduction of wire rope wear
Wire rope, which runs over metallic sheaves, has higher wear due to higher point contact pressures between the rope and the sheave. Only the outer strands of the rope come into contact with the metal sheave. The wire rope wears out due to breaks in the outer strands resulting from this point contact; this can lead to failure.

Cast nylon sheaves prevent this due to their elasticity. Not only do the outer strands of the wire rope come into contact with the sheave, but also nearly the entire surface area of the strand. This lowers the surface pressure between rope and sheave and leads to a significantly longer rope life.

Weight reduction
Nylon is one-seventh the weight of steel. Because of the weight savings, the use of cast nylon sheaves can result in significant weight reduction while maintaining the same load capacity. A mobile crane with 18 sheaves can realize weight savings of over 2,000 lbs., which reduces the corresponding weight per axle. The light weight also has a positive effect on the boom and simplifies handling and installation.

Vibration reduction
The good dampening properties of cast nylon reduce vibration which gets transferred from the rope to the metal sheaves to the bearings and the shafts. Cast nylon sheaves are good for the rope, the bearing and the shaft. A reduction in operational noise can also be noticed.

It should be further noted that the manufacturing process of cast nylon sheaves is much less expensive than producing steel sheaves. For those reasons, nearly all crane manufacturers use cast nylon sheaves in their cranes.

View the complete article online.

This article was written by Marc Licharz and Andreas Weidenfeld, Licharz, Inc.

Applications in construction

The construction industry has considerable potential for plastics. While the most evident applications appear to be in the glass and glazing areas, many other opportunities abound.

Potential for plastics applications include: safety signs, safety guards, wall coverings, glazing, heavy equipment windows, concrete forms, house trim boards, curtain walls, skylights, roofing, piping, floor protection, pile driver pads and sheaves.

For more ideas, there are many construction application articles online at www.theiapdmagazine.com. Just check "construction" when you search the archives to find them. There are also many other free resources on the IAPD web site at www.iapd.org.

Test your knowledge

What do you know about plastics in the construction industry? (Answers are at www.iapd.org/popquiz.html.)

1. Multiwall polycarbonate's applications were featured in the above article. What is the standard warranty for most multiwall polycarbonate?

  1. 30 years
  2. 20 years
  3. 10 years
  4. 5 years

2. Temperature and moisture can affect the materials used in construction applications. What physical property is affected by load, temperature, moisture and/or chemicals?

  1. Flexural Strength
  2. Poisson's Ratio Test
  3. Yield
  4. Creep

Online plastic resources

Your IAPD Distributor is your choice in finding the right material for your application. Go to www.iapd.org to find a distributor in your area. You can search by company name, location or product category.

The IAPD Magazine web site at www.theiapdmagazine.com allows you to search by material, trade name and fabrication process. You can also search for fabrication capabilities.

Indelco Plastics Corporation

© 2009
IAPD

International Association of Plastics Distribution
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Overland Park, KS 66209 USA
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Phone: +913.345.1005 | Fax: +913.345.1006

Designing with Plastics is published by the International Association of Plastics Distribution. While every effort has been made for accuracy, IAPD encourages you to verify information with a plastics distributor to ensure you select the correct plastic products to meet your needs.