SIP Briefs July/August  2003

SIP Production Climbs 50% In Five Years
The volume of single-family homes constructed with Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs) has increased by a stunning 50% in the last five years, from 8,000 homes in 1997 to 12,000 homes in 2002.

This makes SIPs the fastest growing building system when compared to the growth rate of log, modular and other forms of panelization, according to the results from the annual production survey conducted by the Structural Insulated Panel Association or SIPA (Gig Harbor, WA)

“The growth rate of the SIPs industry continues to be strong as more and more builders and homeowners are preferring the high, energy-efficient performance and lost cost of home ownership associated with living in a SIP home,â€? says Bill Wachtler, executive director.

The following are survey results and estimates for 61 SIP manufacturing companies in 2002: SIP production for 2002 was 51 million square feet.

70% of production was used in either single family or mu ltifamily housing. 30% of production was in nonresidential construction, including agriculture buildings. An estimated 12,000 living units (mostly single family) were built with SIPs. An estimated 2,300 nonresidential buildings were built with SIPs.

Details call 253-858-7472 or via e-mail at Pataluna Elected SIPA President
Damian Pataluna of FischerSIPs (Louisville, KY) is the new president of the Structural Insulated Panel Association (Gig Harbor, WA). Pataluna was elected by unanimous vote at the SIPA Board of Directors meeting on May 7 at the SIPA Annual Meeting and Conference at the Hilton in the Walt Disney World Resort, Orlando, FL. He succeeds Dave Gauthier of Winter Panel Corporation.

Frankly speaking, President Pataluna will only have to remember one name to address the other elected officials of SIPA. Frank Kiesecker, R-Control/Advance Foam Plastics, was elected 1st Vice President, Frank Wopperer, Thermal Foams, was elected 2nd Vice President; and Frank Baker, Insulspan., was elected Secretary/Treasurer.

SIPA would also like to welcome its newest board members, elected to represent their respective membership classifications. Michael Readwin of Greensmart Homes., was selected to fill an open manufacturer position. Two new board seats were created this year for the design professional and builder segments of the industry. By majority vote, Don Ferrier of Ferrier Builders., was chosen to fill the builder seat, and Paul Foresman, Design Basics., was elected to represent design professionals.

Due to vacancies on the board, three new members were also elected in at the Annual Meeting: Bill Moffatt of Olympic Manufacturing Group, Mike Stanton from Ashland Specialty Chemical and Chris Kreple, W.H. Porter.

Re-elected to their respective board positions were Frank Baker of Insulspan., Emil Taraba of Thermapan, Inc, Ron Reindl with PFS Corporation, Tom Williamson of APA – The Engineered Wood Association, and Jim LeRoy of PanelPros.

Team Industries Acquires Insulated Building Systems
Team Industries (Grand Rapids, MI) has expanded its business through acquisition, purchasing the assets of Insulated Building Systems (Winchester, VA). Terms of the sale were not disclosed.
Both Team Industries and Insulated Building Systems (IBS) are AFM Corporation Primary Manufacturing and Marketing licensed facilities, which produce the R-Control Building System. Team Industries produces, for instance, EPS and SIPs used increasingly in the construction industry.

The location of IBS, the combination of operation resources, machinery and marketing focus allows Team Industries and IBS to coordinate efforts on the eastern half of the U.S. with its product branding, says Tim Feagan, president of Team Industries.

“IBS has proven itself to be an established leader in geographic areas not currently served by Team Industries and where demand for structural insulated panels and EPS products continues to increase,â€? Feagan says. “This acquisition reaffirms our commitment to investing in growth companies such as IBS that are beneficiaries of conversion from traditional EPS markets to higher quality innovative products that use EPS.â€?

Team Industries us ISO 9001 certified and a shareholder of AFM Corporation.

SIPA Building Excellence Awards
The winners of the SIPA Building Excellence Award Competition were announced at the annual meeting in Orlando. This year’s competition included five categories: single-family homes over 3,000 sq. ft., single-family homes under 3,000 sq. ft., multi-family commercial buildings, agricultural structures and commercial structures. All projects were built with a minimum of 50% structural insulated panels, and were judged on the energy-efficiency, engineering innovation and other SIP-related factors in the success of the project. Judges for the contest were Jeff Christian of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory and Craig Hedgecock, PE, PSM.

The Grand Prize Winner:
The Fenner Residence, submitted by Sun Builders (Nevada City, CA) This overall winner was submitted in the single-family home over 3,000 sq. ft. category. It was chosen as the winner in that category as well as overall winner for its beauty, energy efficiency and design. Built with structural insulated panels from R-Control/Advance Foam Plastics, it is an “ancient Japanese Tatami construction module meets modern American construction system home,â€? according to Sun Builders. “This new ‘California Sushi’ style home uses SIP shell construction wrapped in traditional Japanese design elements: Engawa, Tokinama, exposed beams, round windows, and shoji panels to create a unique balance of old and new.â€?

Sun Builders, Inc., adds that the Fenner Residence is “the ultimate in demonstrating the wealth of possibilities for SIP construction styles!â€? This richly detailed home demonstrates the flexibility, universal adaptability, and ultimate look of SIP construction. Rich finish materials (bamboo, western red cedar, slate, Douglas Fir, Japanese tiles) are artfully composed on the monolithic wall and roof shell of structural insulated panels providing the best possible mix of a high efficient SIP frame overlaid by an organic pallet of cladding materials.

Sue Fenner, owner of the home, couldn’t be happier with her award-winning SIP home. “I am continually amazed at the energy efficiency of this house. I only need to turn on the heat when it is below 40 degrees outside. And when I do turn on the radiant floor heating, after an hour or so the house is warm enough to shut the heat off for several days.â€?

Runner Up
The runner up was awarded to the Single Family Homes under 3,000 sq. ft. category winner, The Woodbend Spec. Model, submitted by Taras Construction & Consulting (Brunswick, OH. Built with Insulspan panels, the Woodbend Spec. Model is unique due to its “System-built approach,â€? according to Taras Construction. Along with SIPs, the home utilizes engineered I-joist and wood beams for the floor decks, a highly efficient furnace and water heater, and Low-E glass windows and doors throughout the home.

“The Woodbend Model received a Five Star Rating from the coveted Energy Star program. Built among fifteen other homes in the Woodland Development in Ravenna, OH, this two-story colonial makes maximum use of floor space. The first floor contains a great room, study, dining room and kitchen with a master suite tucked away to the rear of the home. The second floor holds an additional master suite perfect for teenager privacy, plus two more bedrooms with full bath,â€? according to Taras Construct

Multi-Family Commercial Buildings Category
The Wilson, NC Duplex, submitted by Panelwrights of NC, Wilson, NC. Built with Insulspan panels, this structure features Low-E Argon Windows, Energy Star Appliances, SIPs exterior wall package, raised heel truss roof system, with R38 blown Cellulose, compact fluorescent lighting throughout, HVAC 1 ton 12 seer air source heat pump with duct work in condition space, and humidity control system

Agricultural Structures Category
The Kaiser Horse Facility, submitted by Energy Panel Structures, Inc., Graettinger, IA. Energy Panel Structures, Inc., felt SIPs were best for this project for several reasons. “SIPs were used to save labor. The building is used year-round; SIPs allow for easy heating in winter and cooling in summer… They offered the best climate control for the horses. The SIPs are also impact resistant to reduce maintenance and unsightly damage, thus making the continuous plywood the perfect application for a horse facility.â€?

Commercial Structures Category Winner
The Central Bank, submitted by Energy Panel Structures, Inc., Graettinger, IA. According to Chris Spaeth, Energy Panel Structures, Inc., “This facility utilized the unique architectural designs to invite customers into the facility, and was able to incorporate energy efficiency without sacrificing the beauty of the building…The financial institutions wanted an architectural profile that invited customers into their facility. SIPs were able to compliment the project with time savings, energy efficiency, and yet still allow the architect his design criteria.â€?

Most Unique Application
The judges also awarded the Most Unique Application Using SIPs to Energy Panel Structures, Inc., for the Crave Brothers Cheese Factory, with its water resistant walls, built in coolers and processing rooms and USDA finishes.

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