Aluminium rainscreen panels

Aluminium rainscreen systems from Dales are designed to suit your specific requirements.  Rainscreen panels may be modulated to suit grids with secret-fix or discrete fix options, providing a contemporary appearance.  Aluminium rainscreen plank options provide a tongue and groove appearance with the soffit planks installed vertically, horizontally or diagonally. All aluminium rainscreens from Dales are non-combustible A1 or A2 s1, d0 in accordance with the requirements of Building Regulations Part B.

All of our rainscreen options work in conjunction with helping hand support systems.

Large aluminium panels

Spalding-Micro

Kwik Fix

DF System

Design & Specification Service

PROJECT MANAGEMENT DESIGN & SPECIFICATION SERVICE

Upon receiving project drawings, Dales assigns a dedicated Project Manager to oversee each project. Project managers act as a single point of contact throughout the project’s life, from its initial design to completion. Together with the specifier, project managers establish relevant criteria, such as support methods, material requirements and budget. Additionally, the Project Manager prepares CAD drawings, calculations, NBS Specifications and quotations. Overall, this provides a complete specification service. To further discuss your project’s requirements, you can contact our Project Management Team on Tel: 0115 930 1521.

PROFESSIONAL INDEMNITY INSURANCE

Dales prioritises client confidence and assurance. Accordingly, we hold full Design/Professional Indemnity Insurance with a first-class security in the London market, which means architects and specifiers can use our products with confidence.

BS EN ISO 9001: DESIGN & MANUFACTURE

Since 1993, Dales Fabrications has worked within the constraints of BS EN ISO 9001 accreditation. Click here to view our ISO 9001: Design & Manufacture certificate. 

Integrated, Bespoke Systems

Dales consults with specifiers on a project by project basis to design and manufacture engineered rainscreen cladding systems. These rainscreens utilise different standard panel components, from discrete and secret-fix panels, smaller aluminium panels, aluminium planks and direct-fix aluminium sheet designs. The combination of these components helps form bespoke solutions for a broad variety of building types. Additionally, the modular use of standard components minimises delivery times.

 

Aluminium Rainscreen Panel & Plank Systems

Dales designs and manufactures bespoke rainscreen panel and plank systems in aluminium on an individual project basis. Dales can design panels to be installed using various proprietary rainscreen support systems for fixing to almost any substrate, and to accommodate a spectrum of insulation types and thicknesses.

 Large Aluminium Panels

Dales offers three large rainscreen panel options:

  • SFP Secret-Fix System
  • THX Discrete-Fix Panels
  • DF System Sheets (Face-Fix)

Secret Fix Aluminium Panels (SFP)

Dales Secret-Fix Soffit Panels eliminate visible fixings with either a flush or recessed panel joint. During manufacture, Dales secretly join and stiffen joints on the running length which offers an uninterrupted line. If required, we can modulate joints to grid or fenestration lines. Maximum panel width is 1200mm can be combined with panel length of up to 4000mm though typically panels are less than 3000mm .

  • Material:  2 to 3mm Solid-sheet aluminium
  • Cover width: Up to 1200mm (single panel)
  • Soffit width:  Any, using multiple panles
  • Length:  Up to 3000mm (as standard)
    3000 to 4000mm (Special order: Restrictions apply)
  • Install: Horizontally, Raked or Vertically

THX Discrete-Fix Panels

In many cases, a lower cost panel detail where colour matched fixings discretely fit within the recessed joint is perfectly acceptable. If required, we can modulate joints to grid or fenestration lines. However, this should be specified with the contract. Please contact our Project Managers for assistance with detail drawings or preparing an NBS specification clause.

  • Material: 2 to 3mm Solid-sheet aluminium
  • Cover width: Up to 1200mm (single panel)
  • Length: Up to 3000mm (as standard)
    3000 to 4000mm (Special order: Restrictions apply)
  • Install: Horizontally, Raked or Vertically

Spalding-Micro Panels

Spalding-Micro rainscreen panels can be installed to a broken-bond, stack-bond, or randomly and orientated horizontally, vertically in various cover widths. A popular option is to use different colours and random length sizing to give a contemporary appearance.

  • Material:  2mm Solid-sheet aluminium
  • Cover width: 225mm (single panel)
  • Length: 1800mm (standard)
    Up to 3000mm (to order)
  • Install: Vertically or raked

KwikFix Plank Cladding

Free from the limitations and relative high cost of extruded plank systems, Kwikfix Soffit planks are a versatile but attractive secret fix soffit plank system formed from flat sheet aluminium.

Horizontal KwikFix

A popular option is to install planks horizontally, in a ‘fletcher’ pattern to simulate tongue & groove timber. This is particularly effective when utilised with the Timber-effect powder coatings. Individual plank cover width is 175mm as standard but can be varied from around 100mm up to 250mm, if required.

  • Material:  1.2 or 1.5mm Solid-sheet aluminium
  • Cover width: 175mm (standard)
    100 to 250mm (bespoke)
  • Soffit width: Any, using multiple planks
  • Length: 3000mm (standard)
  • Install: Horizontally, Raked or Vertically

Vertical KwikFix

Dales Kwikfix Planks can be installed as vertical cladding providing an aesthetically pleasing alternative to installing planks horizontally. Planks are supplied pre-cut to suit a specific wall height up to 3m, if required

  • Material:  1.2 or 1.5mm Solid-sheet aluminium
  • Cover width:  175mm (standard)
    100 to 300mm (bespoke)
  • Soffit width: Any, using multiple planks
  • Length: Up to 3000mm (3m standard)
  • Install: Horizontally, Raked or Vertically

DF System Sheet-panels (Face-Fix)

Dales manufacture our DF System Sheet-panels with a stiffer aluminium alloy using face-fixings. Therefore, they are regularly used where previously ACM or HPL materials would once have been chosen. Sheet-panels are typically kept below 1000mm wide and 2000mm long and are supplied in 3 or 4mm solid-sheet aluminium. Fixings are usually colour-coated to match the panels.

  • Material:  3 to 4mm Solid-sheet aluminium (3103 or 3003 alloy)
  • Cover width: Up to 1000mm (single panel)
  • Length: Up to 2000mm
  • Install: Horizontally, Raked or Vertically

Support Systems

Whilst rainscreen panels can be supported using support systems designed by Dales or using proprietary helping hand support systems. More on support systems here.

Associated products

GUTTER CONFIGURATION : HIDDEN OR EXPOSED

Dales offer a wide range of decorative and functional gutter profiles.

With complete eaves systems, hidden gutter configurations provide a more contemporary appearance and accommodate the use of more imaginative fascia profiles.

RAINWATER PIPES

A range of rainwater pipes including contemporary, traditional (Cast collars) and secret fix systems are available here.

FASCIA PROFILES

Dales designs and manufactures fascia profiles to almost any shape, size or proportion including curved and elliptical designs. As part of our specification service we can prepare preliminary drawings which you insert directly into your own drawings. Dales designs all systems on an individual project basis. 25 year guarantee may be available, subject to terms and conditions. You can download example drawings here.

SOFFIT SYSTEMS

Dales offers a wide variety of different soffit types, from secret fix panels to secret-fix planks. For more details, click here.

SUPPORT SYSTEMS

More information of the various support systems that Dales can provide is available here.

WALL COPINGS

Dales designs and manufactures aluminium wall copings on a bespoke basis to suit each individual project. For more details, click here.

Solar shading Systems

Dales designs and manufactures solar shading systems on a bespoke basis to suit each individual project. For more details, click here.

Fire

 

Fire: Aluminium & Finishes

Dales Aluminium Products are non-combustible

Dales manufactures products in either plain aluminium, Anodised Aluminium or Architectural Polyester Powder Coating finishes, all of which meet non-combustible standards (A1 or A2, s1 d0).

COMPLIANCE WITH BUILDING REGULATIONS:

Building Regulations Part B: Fire Safety (June 2022 Amendments apply from 1st December 2022) mandates the exclusive use of non-combustible materials that are either A2 s1, do or A1 for specific building elements:

  1. for walls and ‘specified attachments’ of relevant buildings over 18m, and;
  2. on the external surfaces of external walls for all ‘residential’ purpose group buildings over 11m (Groups 1 & 2)

Materials must achieve classification as either A2, s1 d0 or A1 non-combustible under Fire Classification: Reaction to Fire EN BS 13501-1:2018 to be deemed suitable.

A European Commission Directive* forms part of the structure of legislation**, upon which the English Building Regulations, including Part B, rest. It lists construction materials that belong to Class A and do not contribute to fire. This includes steel and aluminium and non-organic treatments of the same (such as zinc-galvanising for steel and anodising of aluminium).

Aluminium, steel and non-organic treatments of the same (including zinc-galvanising for steel and anodising of aluminium) are A1 non-combustible and make no contribution to fire. A European Commission Directive that forms part of the UK legislation that the English Building Regulations including Part B rests upon, confirms this. Therefore, these materials do not require testing under BS 13501-1:2018.

Dales Fabrications Ltd uses Architectural Polyester Powder Coatings from all the major manufacturers including Syntha Pulvin (Sherwin Williams), Interpon D (Akzo Nobel) , Drylac (Tiger), Axalta, Powdertech. These powder coatings are independently tested under Fire Classification: Reaction to Fire EN BS 13501-1:2018 and achieve A2 s1, d0. Independent test classification certificates are available, if required.

USEFUL RESOURCES:

Dales Fabrications Ltd has also conducted independent tests (Warrington Fire) – WF 432374 – EN 13501-12018 that confirmed A2 s1 d0 classification for an architectural powder coated Dales Fabrications Ltd system. You can view a video taken during the test above.

Details of the commission decision can be found here 96/603/EC: Commission Decision

**Details of legislation can be found here SI 2019/ 465

Fire: Rainscreen Design

In regard to all aspects of detailing for fire-prevention and prevention of spread of fire, as with all projects, specifiers, developers and their main contractors should employ and consult a suitably qualified and experienced fire safety engineer. The engineer should ensure that all details submitted, specifically those details which may involve Dales PPC or anodised aluminium products are considered appropriate, suitable and compliant with current building regulations & the overall fire strategy for the project.

Dales encourages Specifiers, Developers and Main contractors to consider the RIBA Fire resources web page.

Dales design liability is limited to the reasonable skill and care of a specialist sheet-metal fabricator.

Quotations that Dales provide include only for the items expressly listed and do not cover the supply (or design) of any supplementary items such as, but not limited to; insulation, plywood, vapour barrier, fire protection, insect mesh or mastic/sealant (other than gutter sealant). Therefore, any reference to bill pages, specifications or drawings is listed for information only.

Colour & Finish

You can find the details of the colours and finishes available here.

Anodising vs Architectural Polyester Powder Coating

Anodised Aluminium:

Anodising offers a low maintenance, high performance product with practically no UV fade. Subsequently, it is ideal for aggressive environments, especially locations with high levels of UV light such as marine and coastal areas. Additionally, it offers a wide range of colours and an attractive metallic sheen that changes with the angle of view. All of this makes it a fantastic premium product that many aspire to. While it may stretch, or even break the budget, many clients nevertheless opt for anodised finish over architectural polyester powder coating due to the low maintenance characteristics and lifetime guarantee.

Anodising provides a naturalistic finish, which means every anodised item varies in appearance and the achievement of a consistently uniform finish is almost impossible. This echoes the way pieces of natural stone, wood or slate vary. This is a fundamental characteristic of anodising and represents a primary difference between it and paint finishes such as architectural polyester powder coating. In fact, the variance and shading differences that occur across anodised products of a chosen colour are a primary reason to choose anodising to protect your building. Ultimately, if you desire a uniform colour finish  then anodising is probably not the right finish for you.

Architectural Polyester Powder Coatings:

Alternatively, if you want a low maintenance, robust finish in a staggering colour palette which offers different gloss levels even for relatively small production runs of bespoke products, then architectural polyester powder coating is the solution. The colours and finishes for polyester powder coating develops all the time. Now, there are even special effect powders that simulate timber, stone, corten, verdi gris and more.

Dales uses only Syntha Pulvin powders in their second factory, which houses our Syntha Pulvin Approved Applicator facility. However, Dales are happy to provide our products in Interpon D1036 & D2525, Tiger Drylac, Axalta and Powdertech Special Effect powders using each manufacturer’s Approved Applicator, as necessary.

Guarantees:

Dales can usually provide guarantees for products, whether supplied in anodised or architectural polyester powder coated finish. However, this depends on their geographical location and specific environment and is subject to terms and conditions.

Marine specification

Marine Specification

The specifier must include Marine Specification in the contract particulars. To support the specifier, our Project Managers can advise on and provide appropriate NBS Specification clauses.

The comparison between Anodising and Polyester Powder Coating in the “Colour” section above highlights that Dales recommends an anodised finish in locations with high levels of UV light, such as the coast,  purely from a performance criteria. However, budget, contract size, and production issues may mean marine specification polyester powder coating is deemed the more practical choice.

If the intention is to use architectural polyester powder coating in a coastal or marine situation then a marine environment paint specification should be considered, especially in aggressive environments such as industrial and marine environments, i.e.. within 2km of the sea or tidal estuary.

In non-marine environments, Dales applies polyester powder coating to give an average 60 microns paint film to visible faces only, and we can guarantee this for up to 40 years, terms and conditions apply. On the other hand, for a Marine Specification guarantee to be considered, a minimum of 60 microns of paint must be applied to both internal and external surfaces and A2 stainless steel fixings used.

The polyester paint manufacturer or anodiser determines any guarantee they offer on an individual project basis upon completion of a questionnaire by the customer and a possible site visit, both of which must be complete prior to placing any order. It is important to note that if the goods are on the seafront or within 1km of the seafront then a paint manufacture may not offer a guarantee. However, anodisers might offer a guarantee.

Acutely Exposed or Industrial Environments

Further upgrades can be made to acutely exposed marine or industrial environments Marine Specification in several ways, including one or more of the following:
• changing the base aluminium alloy to a ship-building alloy,
• changing the powder coating to Qualicoat 2 specification,
• amending secondary supports to all aluminium,
• changing fixings to A4 stainless steel (provided such suitable fixings are available) or
• moving to an anodised finish.

If you consider your project may be in an acutely exposed marine or industrial environment, please contact one of our Directors or Project Managers to discuss this further. However, please keep in mind guaranteeing products installed in harsh environments is not always possible.

Guarantees:

Dales products, whether supplied in anodised or architectural polyester powder coated finish can usually be provided with guarantees. However, this depends on their geographic location and specific environment and is subject to terms and conditions.

Durability, Loadings & 3D Modelling

Durability

Dales designs our systems to give a low maintenance life of 60 years in rural and suburban conditions & up to 25 years in industrial conditions. However, this depends on the exact environment. For marine environments see above.

Operation & Maintenance Information

As part of the Dales Project Management: Design & Specification Service, we issue a full technical guide to site that includes A3 copies of all Dales detail proposal drawings in full colour and generic system fixing instructions as a comprehensive Technical Guide. Furthermore, the guide also includes a comprehensive ‘Fixings Identification List’ that identifies where each fixing is meant to be used. The detail proposal drawings also notes this information.

It is the customer’s responsibility to request a full O&M pack from Dales, which includes a complete detail drawings pack and the relevant generic fixing instructions complete with the maintenance schedule and any guarantee originally requested in the original customer order.

Loadings: General

Dales designs both gutter and fascia soffit systems to accommodate loadings in excess of those induced when the gutters operate at full capacity. Dales recommends snow guards where sliding snow may cause impact loading in excess of normal design criteria (see BS EN 12056-3 2000). For wind and other specific loadings, please contact our Project management team on Tel: 0115 930 1521.

Loadings: Finite Element Analysis FEA/FEM Modelling

As part of the overall design process, Dales may need to provide a computer-generated Finite Element Analysis (FEA) or similar report. This report may indicate whether a system Dales designs is likely to withstand specific wind or other loadings. In the case of wind-loadings, it is the customer’s responsibility to ensure that they correctly inform Dales of the “local wind pressure design cladding load for the specific element of the works” as well as the height and location of the detail that Dales are to supply.

Please note that Dales reserves the right to pass on any costs incurred in producing any such report or calculations. This also includes any additional product costs that the conclusions from the report deem necessary. Since it is not possible to fully predict all the dynamic factors that may arise, any report Dales generates through a computer-model will always be limited to some extent in its ability to predict real-life outcomes with absolute accuracy.

Therefore, it is the customer’s design and financial responsibility to ensure that any such FEA/ FEM report that Dales may provide is deemed adequate, sufficient and compliant with the project design specification by the Project Structural Engineer in terms of the; model, loadings and physical properties of the materials used.

3D Modelling

Where Dales are required to design their systems, for whatever reason, using 3D modelling software, typically AutoDesk Revitt, lead times for the preparation of detail design drawings (Dales proposal drawings) or 3D models may increase. In turn, this may affect overall lead times for providing of manufactured products and Dales are not liable for any costs however they may arise due to any increases in design time that results from the need for 3D computer modelling. Dales reserves the right to charge for any such increased design time incurred in their design office that results from the need for 3D modelling.

Thermal movement

Dales designs all systems to accommodate the extremes of temperature typical in the UK. For overseas projects, please contact Dales to discuss the requirements of your project.

Curves, Ventilation & Fixings

Curved Systems

While technically demanding and costly, the visual effect of a finished curved system always gives a finished project a ‘landmark’ quality. Dales has a long heritage of designing and manufacturing curved products since the business was first established in 1977. When specifying curved eaves systems, Dales recommends that one of our Directors or experienced Project Managers meets with the project design team to discuss the possibilities. To reach us, use the chat facility or call us on t.0115 930 1521

Ventilation

Ventilation equivalent to 10mm or 25mm gap, or greater can be incorporated into the system at various point. For more information, speak with our Senior Project Managers.

Access Panels & Off-site Assembly

Dales can adapt both panels and planked cladding during manufacture to provide large or small hinged access panels for electrical or other access. When required, pre-cut holes for items such as waste vents can be incorporated to eliminate site cutting. Panels can incorporate lettering cut-outs or partial cut-outs for signage. Further, off-site assembly can be utilised to integrate LED or other lighting and other components. To discuss specific requirements please contact our Project Management Team on Tel: 0115 930 1521.

Fixings

Fixings present a potential weak link in any system. As such, Dales take the process of fixing selection as seriously as the design of the system itself. Therefore, we select all fixings after careful consultation with manufacturers and rigorous testing for both ultimate strengths and potential incompatibility issues. We supply all necessary fixings as part of the complete package from Dales.

Sustainability

BS EN ISO 9001: Design & Manufacture

Dales Fabrications have been working within the constraints of BS EN ISO 9001 accreditation since 1993. Our ISO 9001: Design & Manufacture certificate is available to view here.

BS EN ISO 14001: ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT

Dales Fabrications work within the constraints of BS EN ISO 14001, having gained certification in December 2023. Our ISO 14001 certificate is available to view here.

Aluminium: The sustainable choice

Aluminium is recognised as one of the most sustainable materials for use in the building industry. This is due to the vast natural deposits of bauxite (aluminium ore) and product longevity, alongside low recycling costs. Around 98% of the aluminium used in UK construction projects is recycled.

Environmental Policy

Our environmental policy is available to view here.

Responsible Sourcing

Our Responsible Sourcing policy is available to view here.

Preferred Installer Network

Our network of carefully selected preferred installers are on hand to provide a full supply and fix package. These companies specialise in the installation of our materials and fit them on a regular basis and vary in size from large facades installers to smaller eaves and rainwater goods specialists.

Gallery

Request a sample

Request a sample

Profile, colour and surface finish samples available to order.

Visit our factory

VISIT OUR FACTORY

Dales welcomes all specifiers, engineers and clients to see our solutions being manufactured first hand.

Send your drawings

Send your drawings

Involve our design team early for optimum solutions by uploading your 2D drawings or provide a link to your 3D model here.

Request a site visit

Request site visit

We can bring our experience and expertise directly to you at your site.

Request a sample

Request a sample

Profile, Colour and surface finish samples available to order.

Request factory tour

VISIT OUR FACTORY

Dales welcomes all specifiers, engineers and clients to see our solutions being manufactured first hand.

Send your drawings

Send your drawings

Involve our design team early for optimum solutions by uploading your 2D drawings or provide a link to your 3D model here.

Request a site visit

Request site visit

We can bring our experience and expertise directly to you at your site.

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