Wood finish powder coating to realise vision of a timber facade

Stunning facade combines the strength and longevity of metal with the warm, natural appeal of a wood finish


A brand-new Skills and Innovation Centre has been added to the Earl Street/Broad Street elevation of the South Staffordshire College’s campus, a £28million project. This 7,500 sq metre, 3 storey building will house leading-edge construction, engineering and hybrid vehicle technology workshops, along with innovatively designed social spaces.

The building takes pride of place on the college’s town centre site and a suitably striking external envelope has been planned. The architects’ envisaged a facade of long vertical fins giving the appearance of timber. This would also screen a roof-top substation from view.

The Project

Maple Sunscreening won the contract to supply the extensive vertical fin façade and proposed using lightweight aluminium instead of timber to achieve the of span required. This project is a perfect example of one of the key advantages of PWF on aluminium, over wood, namely the ability to accomplish very long spans with structural integrity.

Powdertech Wood Finish (PWF ™) was selected as the most appropriate powder coating since it is formulated to match the natural variations in colour, grain density and grain pattern of wood. Importantly, PWF meets fire reaction classification A2-s1, d0. The client selected the preferred shade from our collection and the aluminium extrusions began to arrive at our plant. We coated 4000 metres of aluminium, comprising mainly rectangular sections of  extruded aluminium, of sizes 200mm and 100mm x 50mm. Now installed on the building these look stunning, giving the impression of enormous lengths of wood wrapping around the building.

Why PWF?

  • The finish combines the strength and longevity of metal with the warm, natural appeal of wood with a high level of colour and gloss retention
  • Excellent corrosion protection and resistance against abrasion and weather.
  • Conforms to Fire Reaction classification A2-s1, d0
  • A high level of sustainability using aluminium, with a coating that can be removed at end of life leaving the underlying metal unaffected
  • ‘Green’ credentials of PWF – no solvents, no VOCs, no hazardous waste.
  • Low maintenance - unlike wood.
  • The PWF range conforms to EN 12206-1 and Qualicoat specifications.
  • Can be applied to most metallic substrates including aluminium, galvanized steel, cast metals and stainless steel
  • Powdertech has over 35-years’ experience in professional architectural powder coatings. Colour, tone and texture are our passion and we have the expertise to develop bespoke finishes.

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