Dave Friessen

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Using 3D Plasma Cutting to Make Structural Steel


The use of steel in industrial architecture has been common practice for decades, and now the material is becoming popular in homes and other types of buildings. The ideal term for the framework of a multi-story building or structure is structural steel. Nowadays, a popular method for working with structural steel is three-dimensional plasma cutting. Most people, and even some architectural professionals, are still getting familiar with this new-age technology, but the benefits are beginning to make themselves known.


Structural steel is largely considered the skeleton of a building and is constructed with angles, beams, channels, columns, and plates, all of which are also made of steel. There are several methods used to fabricate structural steel, but the most popular method at the moment is three-dimensional plasma cutting. This technique evolved from plasma welding technology and is generally considered more advantageous than standard welding techniques.


The former technique for creating structural steel involved using a metal-toothed bandsaw to cut through steel cross sections and using beam drills to cut holes or slots into the steel. This technique has been used for several decades. Unlike this “metal-against-metal” cutting technique, 3D plasma cutting makes cleaner, more accurate cuts without producing metal chip by-products. This new method of cutting steel also allows for cutting through thicker metals, as opposed to laser cutting technology that can only cut through a limited range of thickness.


Older metal cutting methods are getting closer to being officially retired. The need for bandsaws and beam drill lines is slowly disappearing and being replaced by a uniform automated system that fabricates structural steel flawlessly. 3D plasma cutting technology is not only faster and more accurate, it also costs much less than older methods of cutting and fabricating structural steel. With the industrial future right around the corner, architectural firms everywhere can keep up with the changing demands of working with steel.


Adding Aesthetic Value to Your Home with Wrought Iron Gates


Gates and fencing around a home are idyllic. It’s picture perfect in every fairytale and when installed around your own home, can add a significant quality of hominess that you enjoy returning to at the end of each day. Wrought iron gates are one option for outfitting your home and adding to your curb appeal.


Benefits of Wrought Iron

Wrought iron fencing is well known for its security, privacy, and durability. These are all important factors to consider when you are choosing gates for your home. A wrought iron gate, moreover, can bring an impressive aesthetic quality to your yard and house. Handcrafted gates in particular can be especially pleasing. Despite the traditional image of simple poles and spikes, wrought iron gates are available in many different styles, ranging from classic to modern.


How to Choose a Contractor

Once you have decided to go with wrought iron, it is important to choose a trusted local contractor who can install the gates well. When you are making this decision, there are a few factors to consider:


  • Durability: Do your research and read customer reviews to know whether the contractor works with durable materials. You want to install supremely wrought iron that isn’t going to rust and corrode after a year or two.
  • Installation: You also want to make sure that your contractor will work with you throughout every step in the process, from measurement to installation. Wrought iron gates are not typically a DIY process.
  • Cost: The price of your purchase will certainly be one of the main factors in choosing a contractor. If you are considering one that charges less, understand where they are cutting corners. Hand-wrought gates as compared to factory-produced, for example, may be more expensive, but the quality is likely to be higher.


When you select a qualified and trusted contractor for your wrought iron gates, you can begin the process of adding value to your home’s curb appeal. Choose a design that compliments your own tastes and the character of your home to fully maximize the aesthetic impact.

The Importance of Structural Detailing in the Modern Construction Industry


There are a number of ways structural steel can be used in the construction process. From steel beams, braces, and trusses, to metal decking and handrails, it’s one of the most widely used materials to date. The process of designing and creating the plans for these items is called structural detailing. Continue reading to learn a bit more about the important role detailing plays in the modern construction industry.

What Detailing Is

Steel detailing is a profession that works closely with contractors, steel fabricators, engineers, and similar professions to create ant plans and documentation needed. These are then used to create the structural steel materials used in a wide variety of projects. Project types can vary being residential, commercial, industrial as well as commercial in nature. In many cases retailers may subcontract so they can work with a wide variety of clients. Others may prefer to work as part of a single company or firm.


How Detailing is Used

Detailing is used in creation process of steel fabrications. The plans a detailer makes can be used to create beams and braces, columns, trusses, stairs and handrails, and even metal decking or plates. All of these can be used in a wide variety of construction projects. The drawings use to create these parts are often referred to as shop drawings. Once the pieces have been created the construction firm uses an erection drawing also created by the detailer to begin the assembly of the steel parts. Erection drawing often include dimensions, locations, and any addition instructions needed to put the fabricated parts into place.

A structural steel detailer can an important member for any construction team. Not only can the design the steel parts needed for the project, but they often also create the instructions needed for assembling the pieces at the work site. They work closely with the engineers and contractors of a project to help insure that the steel pieces needed are designed in a way that fits with the end vision.

American Style in Wrought Iron Doors


Anyone who studies architecture can tell you that American styles have some unique aspects. Where European styles are deeply rooted in period history and follow a set motif, American styles tend to blend elements together from a wide variety of design traditions. Wrought iron doors can be one great example of how this is done as many have both modern and classic elements incorporated into the same design.


Multiple Styles Available

These doors can fit well with a wide variety of home styles and often come in a wide variety of designs. Whether your home has a mix of gothic and modern architecture or is a classic Victorian style, there are a number of door configurations that you may find to be a good fit. Choosing a new style of door can also be a great way up update your home’s look. American style doors are created to be as much a melting pot of design ideas as home architecture often is. Consider your home’s base style and choose a door to complement it, or choose one to stand out for an added bit of flare.


Designed to Fit Your Home

These doors can also be designed to fit a number of doorway styles. Some wrought iron doors are designed to fit in standard door sizes so that you can have them installed in any traditional doorway. Others are created with decorative side or top panels if you would like the additional design element. Iron Doors may also come as double doors as well as single for those who enjoy a wide entryway.


If you’re looking for American style wrought iron doors, you don’t have to feel confined to one single design motif. These doors often pull from a variety of design traditions in order to come up with something new, much the way many American designers do. Think about your home’s style, your doorway type, and what elements you personally enjoy, when choosing your next door.

Why You Should Install Wrought Iron Fences and Gates

iron fence

Wrought iron has been used in countless residences since the 16th century. This material can be used in a number of structures around a residence, including railings, fences or gates. It almost provides a regal aesthetic to any abode. One thing is certain: when you have this material in your yard, it is going to be one of the first things visitors notice.


One major advantage is that iron can be used for various items. You can construct a front gate out of it. A huge benefit is that it works great for when you want to install an electric gate you can operate from inside your house. You can also add a more prestigious layer to your garden by installing a wrought iron gate around a flower bed. It is a durable material that is perfect for protecting your foliage.


If you are going to install an iron fence, then it only makes sense to get other structures made out of iron, too. You can install an iron arch at the entrance of your garden to enhance its regality. You can also get benches made out of iron so that you have a comfortable, leisurely area to sit outside and enjoy nature.


One important aspect to remember is that you want to get original iron instead of steel made to resemble iron. The reason for this is that iron is much more durable and will last a longer time than other metals.


Wrought iron tends to cost more than other materials, but it is relatively low maintenance. It will last for many years, so it is certainly an investment worth making. Additionally, you can extend the longevity of your gates or fences by getting the iron painted. Paint will help ward off the effects of rust. It also adds a certain stylish flair, so make your property look pristine with beautiful iron structures.

Understanding Wrought Iron: The 101


Iron is one of the most widely used building materials in human culture, regardless of where in the world you look. It is used in construction, manufacturing, and fabrication, providing the infrastructure of our lives. In addition to its large-scale use in constructing skyscrapers and freeways, iron also provides opportunities for the homeowner, both in building infrastructure and in décor. Of course, most buildings that have an iron infrastructure are larger, so your average town house will not incorporate it into its skeletal design. It might take advantage of iron in a decorative way, though, and the strength and power of this material can still add a lot of longevity to a home’s features.


Most architectural iron work these days is in the form of wrought iron, which is used in largely decorative ways in a variety of locations around the house. This type of iron is distinguished by its bent appearance, hence calling it “wrought.” The effect is gained by heating and bending the metal to make various grades of twists and flourishes along its length. Properly executed, iron pieces lose no strength through the process, and they gain an aesthetic that simply can not be imitated by any other construction material.


These pieces are used in a variety of ways, including as towel racks, curtain rods and drapery rings, spindles for staircases, and even as architectural flourishes built into doors and walls. Iron trim has also been popular in some places, both as an accent to traditional wood trim and as its own imposing addition to a home.


To fully understand how your home could benefit from wrought iron, you need to talk to a contractor with experience designing and installing architectural iron in residential settings. That way, you can hear the options and ideas that would best fit your home, specifically. Get in touch with a specialist in this exciting niche today to learn more about your options.

The Basics of Wrought Iron Fencing

iron fence

Ask a few contractors about different options for commercial fencing and you’ll probably hear a few different options. With the number of materials available, you can spend weeks learning about the different fence types for your business. Fortunately, you don’t have to look much further than a wrought iron fence. With all the benefits that come with this option, it’ll be hard to convince yourself to go with anything else.


At the outset, you know a wrought iron fence is going to be one of the strongest options. You can get a sturdy fence made of wood or vinyl, but neither have the durability of iron. This is an important factor when it comes to commercial fencing, as you need to make sure your property and company are protected. When it comes to fencing that holds up to time and the elements, iron is the way to go.


Of course, you want more than a fence that’s strong. In order to impress clients, you want to have fencing that looks good as well. Over the years, fencing companies have become better and better at designing iron fences to match a variety of aesthetics. In addition to height and length, you can get fencing that comes in a number of different patterns. From extremely ornate to very simple, a wrought iron fence can look exactly how you want it to.


On top of the security and appeal, metal fences make it easy to see beyond your perimeter. You can see through the bars with ease so you don’t have to worry about anyone sneaking up to your gate’s entrance. After all, you’re looking for a fence, not a wall.


It’s important that you get commercial fencing that makes sense for your business. With unparalleled security and plenty of visual appeal, it’s going to be hard for you to find anything that works better than wrought iron.

How to Make a Statement With a Wrought Iron Fence

When someone arrives at your residence or place of business, the fence is the first thing they see. With both residential and commercial fencing, the structure is primarily meant to act as a perimeter and a means of protection. However, a good fence should also provide some aesthetic appeal. That’s what makes a wrought iron fence the best of both worlds.


As the methods for producing this type of fencing have improved, so have the designs. Business owners can get iron fencing that matches the style of the building so that the fence doesn’t appear to be out of place. If you’re able to use your commercial fencing to both keep people out and impress your clients, you’re definitely getting your money’s worth.


Speaking of money, the cost of a wrought iron fence is far less than what many people expect. Newer materials allow fences with this classic appearance to be mass produced and molded into a variety of great designs, making the purchasing and installation process far easier and more affordable than what you might anticipate.


In addition to saving money on installation, you can also gain money with increased property value. A handsome iron fence is something that prospective buyers like to see, so using this material is a very smart investment.


Above all, a wrought iron fence will protect your property. These structures are incredibly strong and durable while also being very difficult to scale. Simply by going with this type of fencing, you’re making the statement that trespassing is not acceptable. Your iron fence will act as a very strong deterrent to any unwelcome guest.


If you want to make the most of your commercial fencing, wrought iron is the best option. When you install a fence that’s both durable and beautiful, you can feel safe inside and confident that people on the outside are impressed by the look of your property.  


How to Bring Your Custom Ironwork Ideas to Life


If you’re looking to enhance the interior or exterior beauty of your home, architectural ironwork is an age-old means with which to so. Ironwork has been around for ages, and the ways in which ironwork is used as a necessary building component and an aesthetically pleasing piece of architecture makes it all the more useful.


The enhanced manufacturing speed for ironworks has obviously surpassed that of the days of the blacksmith, and then some. The manufacturing capabilities thus enhance the variety of shapes, sizes, and other customizable elements of ornamental metals, meaning you can have custom work done to match the aesthetic of your home.


Wrought iron is typically used for fencing, gates, light fittings, and so on. Forged works tend to be the strongest of the bunch, with the ability to hold large amounts of weight. This option is used when you want a dual functioning piece that supports plenty of weight while acting as a decorative piece, too. Cast iron is the most economical of the bunch. This is due to the fact that cast iron is the most mass produced of the bunch.


Architectural ironworks are available in all shapes and sizes and can enhance the beauty of your home in limitless ways. Bringing your ideas to life is as easy as consulting with a trusted professional who can make your vision a reality. Metal has been used as a transformative and useful element for homes and buildings for centuries, and the beauty of custom metal pieces is as prevalent now as it was before.


With so many options available when it comes customizing your home with beautiful ironworks, it’s important to understand what you can afford, as that impacts the type of metal construction you will be dealing with. Find a company you can trust that will help you bring your ideas to life.

Useful Iron Bollards Echo the Past

One reason people give for starting a house restoration project is to form a connection with the past. Whether your particular project is an accurate historical architectural recreation, or you just want a hint of nostalgia with an eclectic mix of elements that create a style unique to your preferences, consider including iron bollards as a decorative, as well as useful part of the plan. These 3-foot-high metal posts have been used for centuries to enrich the beauty of structures and landscapes as well as serve as practical barriers and guides.

No matter what time period, or special look and feel, you are aiming for, these charming decorations are currently being manufactured to meet your requirements. Most time periods and styles are represented in the vast array of styles and colors available on the market today. Companies that specialize in architectural iron will have a selection of iron bollards that will fit your specifications and preferences exactly. Working with design professionals, you will be able to select the exact fit for your particular project that will accurately represent the correct time period or subtly suggest the sensation you are trying to achieve. Continue reading