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Article Date: 15th December 2016

SIG Design and Technology - Our Top Ten Roofing Design Blog Posts of 2016

Flat Roofing - Blog Posts - Mastic Asphalt - Zinc Roofing

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It’s December, the sprouts are on and as per tradition we’re counting down the top ten blog posts.

So which are the most popular posts we’ve written on our roofing design blog this year?

Have a look at what you missed, tell us what you want to read about, and maybe you can help us write about what you want to know in 2017.

Cue the music…

10. 5 Broadgate: Hot Melt Roofing at a ground scraping scale
Scraping in at the bottom, as it should, is our case study of the hot melt roofing at 5 Broadgate. When Make Architects needed a waterproofing solution for their latest project in the City of London they turned to IKO PermaTEC hot melt. In this case study we set out why and share with you some pictures of this particularly challenging roofscape.

Shortly after the roofing was completed Make partner Ben Stuart, who was package architect for the roofing, basements, structure and services on 5 Broadgate described the roofing strategy when he presented at our #PerfectRoof seminar in October 2014.

9. Live Blog: Quality in Flat Roofing – Sharing What We Know
We only published it last month, but our Live Blog of the #PerfectRoof Seminar has swept all before it and snuck in at number 9.

The seminar on 23rd November featured two speakers on Birmingham New Street, some very astute advice on Insurance Backed Guarantees and the launch of our Flat Roofing Specifiers Checklist (which you can download from a link on the live blog). More about the checklist in the New Year, so don’t forget to sign up to get more posts.

The live blog features some jaw dropping slides from Stephen Ashton of Atkins so don’t forget to pop over and check it out.

8. Constructing a Copper Clad Ellipse: The Cedar at The Grove Hotel
This is the first of our top ten blog posts to arrive from our sister site at SIG Zinc and Copper. It’s the story of a fabulous copper clad ellipsoidal wedding venue in Hertfordshire, as told by the structural engineer, Michael Wright of AECOM. Another recent post, it has garnered huge traffic very quickly because of the compelling nature of the subject matter.

As well as the stunning photography featured in the post, you get to read Michael’s description of a genuine collaborative approach between architect, interior designer, engineer, main contractor, materials supplier (that’s us) and specialist subcontractor CEL group. Between them the team brought about a gravity defying spectacle that, given the same team, you might be able to reproduce in your own work.

7. Blue Roof – what if you must have one?
Over two years ago we published a post by Ross Finnie called ‘Blue Roof: Why it is a Bad Idea’. It created a lot of interest and some controversy. Ross’ message was that there are better places to keep rainwater than on the roof – for a number of good reasons. Two years on we revisited the topic to see if things have changed, and this blog post was the result.

And are we still right? Yes, though the definition of a blue roof has changed. As Ross said at the Seminar last month, keeping large quantities of water on your roof is never a good idea, but the industry evolves to deal with the pressures of particularly urban environments.

6. Metal Roofing on the Coast – What You Should Know
Metal remains one of the most popular materials for roofs – but can you use it everywhere? Some of the buildings that best suit a metal roof and the crisp lines and functionality it provides are on the UK coastline. Just think about the minimalist lines, sweeping roofscapes and dynamic views for a moment. And then think about the severity of the weather.

You can use metals in a coastal environment, but you do need to use the right product, in the right way. We wrote this post because so many enquirers ask us about it, so pop over to the post on the Zinc and Copper blog and tell us what you think.

5. Leaking Roof? Check it isn’t Interstitial Condensation
Back in July we spoke to Ian Dryden who spends much of his working life inspecting flat roofs. He described to us an increasing concern he has for flat roofs built in the 1980s and early 1990s, and incorrectly refurbished roofs which appear to be leaking, but they aren’t. Ian has been coming across more and more of these roofs requiring refurbishment, and some of them have been repeatedly re-roofed. However, the fact is they aren’t leaking at all; instead they are suffering from a condition which has been misdiagnosed for years – Interstitial Condensation.

In this post we talk to Ian about what interstitial condensation is, what damage it can do, and how to find out if it is causing the ‘leaks’ in your client’s roof. This post has been hugely popular with our readers.

4. Mastic Asphalt – an Introduction
In this post we introduce mastic asphalt, a centuries old roofing material that is still in use today in both traditional and more modern forms.

We set out the qualities of this fascinating product and explain how Polymer Modified mastic asphalt (PMA) has been developed in the last 20 years to provide better durability, increased flexibility at lower temperatures, and greater stability at higher temperatures. These improvements, combined with a monitored supply chain, approved contractors and specification services enable IKO to provide 20-year guarantees on their Permaphalt PMA, whereas BS Mastic Asphalt installers may only be able to guarantee for 10 years.

3. Flat roofs on modernist houses: a Grand Design in West Sussex
Our DATAC accredited contractors are always getting involved in projects on TV; whether it be taking part in DIYSOS projects which we support with free materials, or working on exemplar houses which appear on Channel 4 Grand Designs. In this example, the flat roof which at 600m², was one of the largest elements of this huge house, hardly featured in the TV show at all.

Flat roofs are often out of sight, out of mind. But for that very reason they need to be well designed. In this case this Michael Manser and Mies’ inspired pavilion also involved an “invisible edge” effect which was achieved with a powder coated bespoke fabricated aluminium edging detail that specialist subcontractors A J Lucas custom-made for the project.

2. Standing Seam Zinc Roofing Design Part 1 – an introduction
We’ve covered standing seam zinc projects quite a lot, from angled cladding to bandstands. This is because double lock standing seam zinc roofing is such a popular and attractive method for covering a surface. It is used on a wide range of building types from leisure and commercial to housing and religious buildings.

In this post our colleagues at elZinc provided an introduction to the topic and looked at the design considerations; What is standing seam zinc roofing? What does it look like? How do the principal joints and cross joints work and what are the options? elZinc also looked at tray sizes, roof fixings and installation, and didn’t leave out rainwater drainage. With a great set of helpful illustrations, this post comes in at No.2 in our Top Ten of 2016.

So without further ado, here’s our number one:

1. Standing Seam Zinc Roofing Design Part 2: Three Typical Buildups

This year the metals blog posts have triumphed again, so yes, the video installation of Waitrose Aylesford’s Distribution Centre roof, which was last year’s No.1, was just a blip in the five year triumph of metal roofing popularity.

Following on from the success of the introduction to standing seam zinc roofing, this second in a series of three posts by elZinc came out top in this years’ rankings, scoring 50% more page views than its second placed rival, as well as beating all the blog posts we’ve written this year on flat roofing and green roofing. Why is that?

Since we wrote this post in April it has got more and more traffic, and we think, like the other popular posts we’ve written in recent years, it is because it provides simple, practical advice to often-asked questions, in plain English.

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Tell us what you want to read
So we’ve shared our top ten most popular posts this year. Were they what you expected? Was there a post you found useful which didn’t make the top ten? Or have we not written that post you’d like to read yet? We’d love to hear from you, and hope to include your suggestions in our plan for 2016 which already includes yet more new product choices, and many more useful and technical posts.

Drop us a line using the contact form on our website with your suggestions. And don’t forget to subscribe to the blog so you don’t miss all the technical advice, comparison tables, checklists and case studies we’ll be sharing with you.

It only remains for us to wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. See you in 2017.

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