OT Laminated Beams

OT Laminated Beams

OT Joiners manufactures Capelam® – Grade 8 laminated pine beams. These beams are manufactured using a clear glue for the best visual appearance and are manufactured from Southern Cape Radiata Pine. The best quality timber is machined and shaped to near perfection before gluing, pressed pneumatically and kept under constant pressure until the glue is set, to produce superior quality beams.

Higher strength Lamtico® OT beams are also produced on request to customer’s specification.

OT Joiners carries stock of SABS grade 8 Pine beams in the following sizes:

  • Nominal Thickness: 45mm; 70mm; 106 mm and 140 mm
  • Nominal Width: 150 mm; 230 mm; 300 mm and 363 mm

OT Laminated Beams:

  • The only commercially manufactured beam in South Africa using formaldehyde – clear glue -SABS approved for stuctural outside use.
  • SABS accreditation for grade 8, 10, 12 and 16 beams.
  • A 100% Southern Cape Pine Lamtico®/Capelam® beam internationally famous for its very high density and structural strength measured and certified up to grade 12.
  • A whole range of (minimum, certified) grade 10 Laminated Saligna beams
  • High quality laminated Meranti beams
  • Specialised laminated Iroko beams

The laminating of timber consists of a number of manufacturing processes / steps:

Step 1: Selection of timber: The process starts with the careful selection of the timber to be used in the manufacturing process. Not all timber is suitable for laminating. The grading rules of SANS 1460 is used to remove the unwanted defects in the timber. The defects is cut from the timber planks with a cross-cut saw. The timber is then visually selected for its strength prior to the finger jointing process.

Step 2: Finger jointing: The selected timber planks is then joined together into long planks of length up to 12.0m. First a shaper cuts fingers into the ends of the planks. These fingers consist of a profile and a counter profile. Glue (conforming to SANS 10183 Service Class S3) is applied to these fingers. The profile and counter profile fingers is fitted and with the aid of hydraulic pressure squeezed to form a tight fit. Once the glue has cured (set) the finger joint area is stronger than the adjacent timber.

Step 3: Planing: The flat surfaces of the timber are planed on both faces to very narrow tolerances. These surfaces must be smooth and straight.

Step 4: Glue application: The correct amount of glue is calculated and the corresponding component’s quantities are determined prior to mixing. In our case we use an adhesive system which conforms to the exposure conditions as stipulated in SANS 10183 Service Class 3 (full exterior). The adhesive system consists of a liquid resin and liquid hardener. The glue is applied to one of the planed faces of the finger jointed planks at a spread rate as determined by the adhesive manufacturer.

Step 5: Pressing: The glued timber planks is stacked (face to back) in the laminating press. The quantity of laminates to make up a particular depth of beam is predetermined and machined accordingly. Once the press is filled with the required amount of laminates, pneumatic pressure is applied to squeeze the glued surfaces together. OT Joiners do have a unique system because unlike traditional laminating plants which uses mechanical systems to apply the pressure (which is lost over time) we use pneumatics. This ensures that the minimum required amount of pressure is applied for the duration of the press process. Heat is applied to accelerate the curing of the glue.

Step 6: Bandsawing: Depending on the raw material used and the finished size of the beam required the beams may have to be bandsawn into smaller sections.

Step 7: Final planning: The beams are planed all round to a smooth surface finish to the required dimensions

Step 8: Cross-cutting: The laminated beams are cut the required lengths.

Step 9: Final inspection: All the beams are inspected in accordance with the appearance grade for planed beams as stipulated in SANS 1460.

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