How do you clean anodized aluminum?

CherryAirport09Anodized architectural finishing gives a tough and long-lasting surface to aluminum. This is particularly useful for high-traffic areas of a building, where hardness and abrasion resistance is vital. While anodize is as hard as sapphire (the second hardest substance in the world), it still requires regular maintenance and care.

Although anodized aluminum is exceptionally resistant to corrosion, discoloration and wear, it can be marred by harsh chemicals, abuse or neglect. Periodic maintenance inhibits long-term accumulation of soil, which can accelerate weathering of the finish.

It depends on the weather

The environment of the building will influence the cleaning frequency your anodized surfaces require. Factors such as smog, condensation or low rainfall areas can contribute to a surface needing more frequent cleanings to remove salt and dirt build-up. Areas that have seasonal rainfall to help remove water-soluble deposits and soil will require cleaning less often.

TampaMuseumofArt-close-up-webIt depends on the placement

Regardless of climate, recessed and sheltered areas usually become more heavily soiled because of the lack of rain-washing. Overhangs, bottoms of fascia panels and sheltered column covers are particularly susceptible to soil build-up. If not addressed, this can lead to accelerated weathering of the anodized finish. Integrating this as part of the building’s overall maintenance schedule is the most efficient and economical way to make sure soil and salt build-up is kept in check.

It depends on the build-up

The severity and tenacity of the soil build-up will determine progressively stronger cleaning procedures that can help maintain a building’s anodized surfaces. Be cautious. Experiment on a small area of the building, using stronger methods until you find the one that works.

  • For light soil, flush the surface with water using moderate pressure. Let it air dry and check to see if the build-up still remains.
  • If the build-up remains, move to scrubbing with a brush or sponge while spraying with water.
  • If, and only if, that does not remove the build-up, then add a mild detergent cleaner to the scrubbing.
  • If heavy surface soil persists, add an abrasive cleaning pad to the mild detergent washing. Be sure to always scrub in the direction of the metal grain.
  • If detergent is used, rinse the surface thoroughly, multiple times, with clean water after scrubbing, to avoid detergent residue building up in place of soil.

It depends on the cleaner

Methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) or similar solvents should only be used to remove oil, wax, polish or similar material from your surface. Extreme care must be exercised to keep MEK from damaging any organic sealants, gaskets and finishes around anodized surfaces. If the anodize is protected with a clear, organic coating, do not use MEK solvent, as it may deteriorate or remove the coating completely. Do not use aggressive alkaline or acid cleaners on or near anodized aluminum.

It depends on deterioration

Even if well maintained, architectural finishes, including anodize, could eventually need repair. There are solutions for both minor and major damage and deterioration of anodize, so plan accordingly. For small scratches and rub marks, minor touch-up paint can be used. The paint should closely match the color of the factory-applied anodize finish. Use caution when applying touch up paint to the damaged area. Be aware that the touch-up paint will not be as hard as the original finish and is not intended for areas larger than a few square inches.

harsh-chemical-damage-webWhen larger anodized areas are damaged beyond what a simple touch-up can fix, it is time to call in a professional. Large, full-service finishing companies often employ field service workers who are able to prepare and apply architectural paint finishes in the field. The coating used should meet the American Architectural Manufacturers Association’s AAMA 2605 specification and be tinted to match the existing finish. This can be a difficult goal, particularly if only a portion of the existing surface is being refinished or the finish has already experienced some fade. Be certain to ask for an onsite sample to approve of before the full project begins.

Learn more about anodizing and its care and maintenance by clicking here. For personalized assistance in selecting or repairing anodize finishes for your aluminum building products, please contact Linetec’s regional sales managers, email sales@linetec.com or call 888-717-1472.

Is antimicrobial protection the right choice for my project?

microbes

Bacteria cells

When looking through the options available for architectural finishes, it sometimes can be difficult to know if certain choices are appropriate for your project. One such decision may be whether or not to include antimicrobial protection.

What threatens buildings on a microscopic level?

Microbes (or microorganisms) are living cells that are only visible once they have multiplied to the millions. Types of microorganisms include bacteria, algae, fungi and mold. Once microbes have multiplied to a large enough number on a surface, they may begin to cause stains, odors and even deterioration of the metal surface.

Unfortunately, by the time you can see an area of microbe build up, the damage is already underway, so prevention is the best form of protection.

germ-hand-webWhat areas are the most vulnerable?

 Microbes are prevalent in high-traffic areas. Anti-microbial protection may be a smart choice if your project is an office building, hotel, school, retail center, senior living facility, apartment, hospital or clinic.

Antimicrobial finishes can protect high-touch surfaces of metal products, such as doors, windows, curtainwalls, entrances, panels and column covers. The treated finish discourages microorganism build-up, while protecting the metal product beneath from damage and deterioration. This treatment is not meant to replace regular cleaning practices. When standard maintenance is combined with a resistant finish, microbe build-up and damage will be one less worry.

How can a finish stop microbes from causing odors, stains and even deterioration to metal?

Mitigating an invisible, destructive threat requires solutions on a chemical level. Antimicrobial protection begins with the composition of the finish itself. Starting with a 70% PVDF-resin based fluoropolymer coating, an ion exchange mechanism is infused into the coating’s chemistry. This small adjustment allows the finish to protect itself when the conditions are right for microbe build-up.

The most prevalent microbial threats to surfaces – bacteria and mold – need moisture to flourish. The ion exchange mechanism in the antimicrobial finish is activated by the presence of moisture, causing it to release silver cations. The silver disrupts microbes’ metabolism and reproduction. If a microorganism can no longer eat or reproduce, it cannot grow or damage the architectural metal products.

This protection can be added to PVDF-based finishes that meet AAMA 2605 requirements. The protection still allows you to select nearly any color option. Standard and custom colors, mica and metallic coatings are available with antimicrobial protection.

For personalized assistance in selecting and specifying the right coating for your aluminum building products, please contact Linetec’s regional sales managers , email sales@linetec.com or call 888-717-1472.

Whitepaper: Antimicrobial Protection for Public Building Applications

Linetec and J & D Tube Benders honored at Manufacturing Excellence Awards

Wausau ChamberWAUSAU – A pair of businesses received awards at the Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce’s second annual Manufacturing Excellence Awards held on Tuesday, October 17. The Chamber honored manufacturers that have demonstrated excellence in their practice at the event held at the Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center in Rothschild.

WausauChamberAward-2017-LinetecLinetec received the 2017 Manufacturing Excellence Award in the large manufacturer category and J & D Tube Benders Inc received the award in the small to medium manufacturer category. The large manufacturer category included those businesses with more than 300 employees, while the small to medium manufacturer category included businesses with less than 300 employees.

“Linetec feels very honored to receive this award, especially considering the number of distinguished manufacturers that are based in the Wausau area,” said Rick Marshall, President of Linetec. “We would like to thank the 570 employees of our company. They are the ones that drive our positive culture and our core values, enabling Linetec to perform well and consistently for our customers.”

“J & D Tube Benders would like to thank the Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce for recognizing our company as the recipient for 2017.” said Tom Felch, President/Owner of J & D Tube Benders Inc. “It truly is an honor to be recognized for this award. The efforts of all of our employees is what makes our company what it is today. We encourage involvement from our employees at work, as well as in the community that we operate in. Our management team believes our responsibility reaches far outside the walls of our building.”

Roxanne Baumann, Director of Global Engagement with the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership, was the keynote speaker at the event.

WSAW/WZAW’s Jeff Thelen served as the master of ceremonies for the event.

The event was part of the Chamber’s celebration of Manufacturing Month. The recipients displayed excellence in contributing to the growth in the region’s economy, operations, innovation, workplace culture, quality jobs, supply chain management and commitment to the region.

The finalists were:

Small to medium manufacturers (1 – 299 employees):

AROW Global Inc

FreMarq Innovations Inc

J & D Tube Benders Inc

Wilson-Hurd A Division of Nelson-Miller

 Large manufacturers (300+ employees):

County Materials Corporation

Domtar Paper Co LLC

Linetec

Watch video profiles, produced by US Workstories, for both the finalists in the Small to Medium category and Large category on the Chamber’s YouTube channel.

Customodal was the presenting sponsor for the event. The platinum sponsors were Ellis Construction and Ruder Ware LLSC,  the gold sponsors were Marshfield Clinic Inc, River Valley Bank and Wipfli LLP, the silver sponsors were Greenheck, M3 Insurance, MBE CPAs and MCDEVCO Inc and the bronze sponsors were The Boson Company Inc, The Dirks Group LLC, Newmark Grubb Pfefferle, REI Engineering Inc and RMM Solutions Inc. WSAW/WZAW was the media sponsor and US Workstories was the video sponsor.

Nueske’s Applewood Smoked Meats and Greenheck received the award in 2016 in the small to medium and large categories respectively.

Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC) encourages manufacturing employers to host tours as October is Manufacturing Month in Wisconsin. For more information on statewide events, visit wmc.org.

Caption for Linetec.jpg: Linetec received the 2017 Manufacturing Excellence Award in the large manufacturer category. Mike Schauls, from left, Tammy Schroeder, Rick Marshall and Jane Kessel represented the business at the program.

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The Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce is the source for business information in the Wausau Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA). We strengthen member businesses and enhance the region by building business success. For more information on the Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce, visit us online at www.wausauchamber.com or call 715-845-6231.

Shining the spotlight on Brushed Stainless anodize

LinetecBrushedStainlessAnodize-web2Those of you who have visited us at this year’s industry events were treated to a preview of our new proprietary Brushed Stainless anodize finish. We are excited to announce that this finish is ready for the spotlight and for your specification.

Stainless steel has long been used in the architectural construction industry for its luster, richness and highly reflective appearance. This unique look could only be found in stainless steel until now.

Our new Brushed Stainless anodize finish emulates the clean, bright surface that architects and specifiers find desirable in stainless steel. Helping enhance and protect architectural aluminum products, Brushed Stainless anodize creates a similar look on aluminum offering a more cost effective, lightweight option.

BS-banner-webDue to cost, stainless steel can be value-engineered out of a project. Our new Brushed Stainless finish offers the popular look of stainless steel at less cost and almost one-third the weight of actual steel, with greater fabrication flexibility and all the strengths of anodize. It resists fingerprints and scratching, and requires minimal maintenance including in high-traffic areas offering excellent wear and abrasion resistance.

A high-performance anodized finish has an extremely long life span, has exceptional stability to UV rays, is non-hazardous and produces no harmful or dangerous by-products. In line with Linetec’s core value of Environmental Responsibility, Linetec has implemented the newer electro-polishing technology to achieve the highly reflective aesthetic properties of stainless steel on aluminum.

Linetec’s anodize finishes meet the requirements of the American Architectural Manufacturers Association’s stringent Class I specification standard, AAMA 611-14. The anodized aluminum resists the ravages of time, temperature, corrosion, humidity and warping, for a long product life cycle. Anodized aluminum may be specified with recycled content and is 100 percent recyclable.

shutterstock_flat sheets-webFor more information on our new Brushed Stainless anodized finish, or for personalized assistance in selecting and specifying the right coating for your aluminum building products, please contact Linetec’s regional sales managers , email sales@linetec.com or call 888-717-1472.

Manufacturing Excellence Awards

Wausau ChamberLinetec is proud to be nominated for the Wausau Region Chamber of Commerce’s Manufacturing Excellence Awards.

We are one of three finalists in the category of Large Manufacturers (300+ employees) recognized for contributions to growing the region’s economy, operations, innovation, workplace culture, quality jobs, supply chain management and commitment to the region.

The awards will be announced at an event on Oct. 17. For more details, please see http://www.wausauchamber.com/events/details/manufacturing-excellence-awards-2017-10-17-6685

To learn more about joining our team, please see http://linetec.com/Careers/Careers.html

 

Linetec’s painted finish and thermal improvement services boost energy-efficiency of University of Pennsylvania’s New College House

UofPa_NewCollegeHouse25-72dpiThe University of Pennsylvania’s $127 million New College House opened for the 2016-17 academic year as the first new student residence on campus since 1972. Designed by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (BCJ) in collaboration with the University, the first purpose-built College House brings together undergraduates, faculty, staff and graduate students in a shared suite-style community. The 198,000-square-foot, 350-bed building promotes sustainable, 21st century living and learning, and is pursuing LEED® Silver certification.

Supporting the project’s energy-efficiency goals, Wausau Window and Wall Systems’ curtainwall, windows and sun shades were installed with painted finishes and thermal improvement systems by Linetec, a long-standing leader in environmentally conscious practices, paint finishing and thermal improvement services. These services were key contributors to the window systems’ energy-efficiency, visual appeal and durability.  read more

UofPa_NewCollegeHouse31-72dpiNew College House’s large, vertical transparent towers frame the views of Penn’s surrounding campus community and Center City Philadelphia. Bounded by Woodland Walk and 34th and Chestnut streets, the seven-story building with a publicly accessible, lifted lawn serves as a pedestrian gateway to campus.

UofPa_NewCollegeHouse39-72pdi“In this city of neighborhoods, we sought to embrace the many scales of community that define the collegiate experience unique to Penn,” says Frank Grauman, design principal from BCJ. “The New College House is, therefore, both inviting and secure, open and private, embodying the comfort of home, and the power to form a campus gateway worthy of this place.”  read more

 

Linetec People to Know: Tom Danen

ESGR-Award-Danen-web

Tom was recently honored with the Patriot Award presented by Department of Defense. From left to right: Spc. Andrew Jimenez, Tom Danen – Linetec and Dave Monk – ESGR representative 

 Q:  Tell me about your job

A:  I am the 1st shift applications supervisor at the paint facility. I supervise the mainline applications team, flex line, as well as oversee our wood grain process.

Q: What did you do prior to Linetec?

A: Linetec was my first full time job. Prior to Linetec I had summer jobs and part-time work after school and on the weekends. For all four years of high school, I worked at Kalepp Fish Farm during the summer. In addition to working at the fish farm, I also worked at Blue Odyssey supper club as a waiter/bartender in the evenings and on the weekends.

Q: What is your favorite part of your job?

A:  Definitely the people that work here.

Linetec has great core values. I truly believe that most everyone that works at Linetec is happy to be here and that shows through quality and team atmosphere.

Q: What poses the biggest challenges for you?

A:  The speed of our business definitely is a challenge; however, those same challenges make us better. The pace of material flowing through the facility and changes in priorities make a daily routine ever changing.

Q: What is the biggest change you’ve seen over the years of doing your job?

A:   Our building expansions and growth. When I started here at the paint facility, we used to rack where we currently unload. Wausau Window and Wall Systems used to occupy what we now call “Paint North.” We had an in-line washer and the off-line booth was down in applications. I would have never thought that we would grow as much as we have and would need to add as much building as we have already, and still, we potentially need more space.

Q:  What is something you are looking forward to?

A:  Two answers for this one: one work and one personal.

On the work side, I look forward to the growth of the company and how we will handle the increased volume. In particular, I’m excited to see the growth of our specialty finishes – such as our wood grain and terra cotta textured finishes – and what we may implement as our next specialty finish.

Tom-bow-and-arrow-webOn the personal side, we are approaching one of my favorite times of the year – fall, when the weather gets a little bit cooler and the archery season opens.

Q: What do you enjoy doing outside of work?

A:  I have a passion to be in the outdoors: hunting, fishing, spending time at the family cabin, riding four-wheelers, camping, cutting firewood, making maple syrup, shooting archery and the list continues.

Q: What is something that most people do not know about you?

A:  Well there are two things that most people do not know and they are: I used to motocross race ATVs, and that I really enjoy shooting 3-D archery and even shoot competitively.

TomDanen-hunting-web     TomDanen-ATV-web