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Specifiers Journal 2015-2016

Specifiers Journal 2015-2016

Sustaining Timber as a

Sustaining Timber as a Material of Choice Architects use timber in design in highly imaginative ways both visually and technically. Raw natural timber is a thing of great beauty and the aim is to conceive architecture that exploits this natural quality to achieve elegant and aesthetically pleasing design. In commercial building projects timber is widely used to balance the visual impact of industrial finishes to provide texture and warmth. New larch is wonderfully golden yellow with a nice lustre. As time goes by the wood takes on a greyish lustre and a number of common problems begin to appear. Larch is a fatty, resinous type of wood containing a large tannin concentration. This together with moisture attracts and ties up accumulations of dirt. Rot and algae thrive in this environment. The tannin in the wood itself protects wood by petrifaction or the creation of fossils. When Sioo Wood Protector is applied it crystallizes within or at the wood fibre; it is reinforced and cemented. It is an effortless and unique process that does not damage the fibres. Thus a layer of silica is created in the wood, reinforcing it and making it more durable. At the same time, without tightening the wood, this layer creates a barrier that fungi and vermin cannot penetrate. Sioo is open for diffusion. The layer of silica makes the wood unrecognizable as feed for fungi and vermin. Sioo Surface Protection in turn fixes the wood protection in the wood chemically as well as physically. Thus it has a double function, as an extra fixing agent and as a water repellent. Sioo Surface Protection is also open for diffusion but creates an optimal environment for the two products in cooperation to effectively protect and preserve wood. The Sioo products only contain natural ingredients which are biocide and emission free. The system Sioo Impregnation is environmentally friendly and water based. However, for timber used externally, as a result of rapid deterioration and discolouration there is evidence that clients are increasingly questioning the choice of timber, particularly to clad facades. When moving around urban environments it is not uncommon to see timber clad building facades that have blackened and which look unsightly. Many of these facades, typically where larch or cedar has been used, have been assembled untreated to present the beauty of the wood in its natural state. Timbers that have been treated have often been so with treatments that impede the natural appearance, which provide inadequate protection and have also blackened. Indeed, recent testing by industry bodies has shown that almost every treatment on the market fails to prevent discolouration after relatively short periods. This provides a significant challenge to the timber industry, one which requires a radically different response. The Problem As an example let us consider the issues confronted in using larch. Larch is a common and popular choice for unpainted wooden facades and decking. The advantage is, particularly with larch from Siberia, that this relatively slow growing wood consists predominantly of dense heartwood. Because of this the wood contains a large element of protective resin leading to good resistance to rot. 54 SPECIFICATION JOURNAL 2015-2016 is oxidised and the wood is darkened. That is why larch deteriorates in a short period of time with the problems of algae and rot and discolouration. Deterioration is quite common where the wood is open to sun and rain. Similar problems occur with cedar, oak and thermowood. A different approach Significant breakthroughs have taken place with a very different approach to protecting timber. Based on the use of silicates, solutions have been developed which are completely safe, are highly effective in protecting wood, give long life and a finish entirely natural in appearance. One such solution known as Sioo Impregnation is in widespread use in Sweden. Developed in Gothenburg, it is specified by architects and used by constructors and consumers attracted by its beneficial properties, performance and appearance. Sioo Impregnation Sioo Impregnation is a system consisting of Sioo Wood Protector and Sioo Surface Protection. The two components are designed to be used together in damp and humid environments and interact to create a unique patented effect and to protect wood. The effect is due to the properties of the mineral silicon which used in context with wood is quite new on the market. In effect the method imitates how nature The result and advantages Sioo Impregnation produces excellent results for all types of wood – new as well as old. Larch, cedar, fir, spruce, oak, other hardwoods and thermowood all benefit when treated. Very pleasing results are achieved for terraces and decking, jetties and bridges, cladding, garden furniture and wooden statues. This is a solution that gives long life, a beautiful natural toughened surface which prevents cracking and is completely friendly to people and the environment. The effect of Sioo can be seen in the picture with the first larch clad house five years after treatment. The second house is untreated. Sioo Wood Protection AB Von Utfallsgatan 20 SE-415 05 Gothenburg Sweden T: +46 31 42 42 62 UK T: +44(0)7788 54 2859 sioouk@icloud.com www.sioo.co.uk

Long life protection of decks and cladding Environmentally friendly Made in Sweden Sioo are leaders in wood protection using silicon technology to provide a highly effective proven system to protect wood of all types. It gives long life, a beautiful natural surface and is friendly to people and the environment. Safe, Natural and Sustainable Sioo Wood Protection AB Tel: +44 (0)1325 350453 E: sioouk@icloud.com www.sioo.co.uk