When designing the Waimarama Surf Club in Hawkes Bay, architects Paris Magdalinos were looking to soften the hard concrete and steel exterior.
Natural timber screening was specified, however the challenge was to find a product that would provide the necessary durability in this harsh isolated coastal environment.
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®) certified Vulcan Screening provided an excellent solution due the stability of the thermally modified timber combined with engineered vertical grain pattern.
The timber was factory finished with silicate which protects the timber while allowing it to silver off gracefully.
Silicate is a factory applied three coat system. The first two coats are a water-soluble alkaline silicate that penetrate the timber, forming insoluble silica particles inside the wood.
The final coat is a water-based silane emulsion that forms a flexible, water-repellent silica network inside the surface layers.
The protective properties of silicate are impressive – lasting up to ten years for decking and 15 for cladding, i.e. up to four times the lifespan of current coatings.
Importantly, the product is totally biocide and emission-free, and can be cured without heating and applied to wet/damp wood, reducing energy costs.
Silicate allows the natural beauty of the wood to show through, without the common blackening seen in exterior applications.
In 2017, the Waimarama Surf Tower picked up a New Zealand Institute of Architects (NZIA) Award for Small Project Architecture.