Melbourne-based SBS Group is taking advantage of the opportunity that light gauge steel offers, providing smart building alternatives and solutions to builders, architects and contractors across Australia with pre-fabricated light gauge steel framing systems.
In particular, SBS Group specialise in designing and manufacturing pre-fabricated light gauge steel wall and roof truss framing systems for the top level of commercial and multi-residential projects.
They initially began using the FRAMECAD System when they were searching for a smarter solution for precise, engineered steel framing solutions. Importing original architectural drawings into FRAMECAD Detailer and Structure, they design walls and trusses, and are provided with critical layout information for erecting frames on-site.
Framing is manufactured using the FRAMECAD Manufacturing System, which automatically cuts steel to length, and punches holes in the correct place every time – resulting in accurate, straight, and true results.
Panels are then put together by the SBS team, ready to be delivered to the construction site to be erected quickly and easily.
By replacing traditional structural steel and timber with cold formed steel framing, the following improvements are achieved:
So how does that look in context? In the projects below, the top level of each multi-level residential process was constructed utilising SBS Group framing systems, with frames designed and manufactured off site utilising state-of-the-art FRAMECAD technology, then installed quickly and easily, reducing labour, time, and costs.
LOCATION / Maribyrnong, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Rothelowman
BUILDER / Element Five
FLOOR COUNT / 6
NUMBER OF UNITS / 29
This six level apartment building, built by Element Five with steel framing from SBS Group, combined independent structural steel, timber walls, and roof truss trades. Utilising light gauge steel, the high-strength, engineered wall frames and roof trusses for the top level were delivered straight to site for immediate and fast erection. With framing manufactured to true and accurate site specifications, no packing or straightening of walls for plasterboard was required.
LOCATION / Camberwell, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Rothelowman
BUILDER / Cobild
FLOOR COUNT / 4
NUMBER OF UNITS / 15
With a focus on minimising site labour, time, and costs, the SBS framing system made all the difference to the Summerhill Apartments project. A mix of ground floor retail and 15 apartments, this luxury project was sped up through the use of top level wall and roof truss framing, pre-fabricated in SBS Group’s factory to straight, true, and accurate specifications. Using FRAMECAD Detailer and Structure, along with the FRAMECAD Manufacturing System, SBS Group coordinated all stages of the construction process, from design through to delivery of framing. Once on site, these lightweight walls and roof trusses were easily fixed into position – with nearly all the installation able to be completed using only manpower.
LOCATION / Glen Iris, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Ewert Leaf
BUILDER / Project Group
FLOOR COUNT / 3
NUMBER OF UNITS / 18
Even on luxury projects such as Leopold Stonnington, finding cost and time savings is key. To achieve these, pre-fabrication is often the answer. Using their Build SmarterTM system, SBS Group was able to identify savings across the top level wall and roof trusses, balustrades, and feature boxes. Then, utilising the FRAMECAD System, framing was detailed, engineered, and manufactured using light gauge steel, before being delivered directly to the site for installation. The result? Significant cost savings, along with reduced time on site and labour.
LOCATION / Bentleigh East, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Daryl Pelchen Architect
BUILDER / B Central Constructions
FLOOR COUNT / 5
NUMBER OF UNITS / 29
As the levels stack up, so too do the challenges of building using traditional construction materials. The answer is often light gauge steel. When it came to the Oslo Apartments, SBS Group completed shop drawings, frame layout plans, and engineering (including 1507 certification) in-house, for both loadbearing and non-loadbearing frames. Following the manufacture of framing using the FRAMECAD Manufacturing System, frames were simply delivered, lifted, and installed in sections, resulting in significant time savings.
LOCATION / Oakleigh South, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Ausco Group
BUILDER / Ausco Group
FLOOR COUNT / 4
NUMBER OF UNITS / 127
Although concrete was used for the lower levels of this low-rise apartment building, Ausco Group identified an opportunity to utilise the speed and quality of light gauge steel framing for the top level. SBS Group designed and supplied the cold formed steel framing and trusses, integrating with the hot rolled steel and concrete elements to ensure that everything was structurally integrated. This also achieved fire compliance without the need for an alternative design being proposed, speeding up the building permit process. Due to the lightness of the frames, which were manufactured off-site and then delivered, crane time was minimised, with only load in required and the rest being handled manually.
LOCATION / Carnegie, Victoria
ARCHITECT / Fender Katsalidis
BUILDER / Ironside Constructions
FLOOR COUNT / 4
SIZE / 2074 m2
NUMBER OF UNITS / 48
Combining award-winning developer Setia with architect Fender Katsalidis resulted in a luxury apartment building like no other at the Maison Apartments, with a focus on quality workmanship and best practice sustainable features. Although traditional timber framing was originally documented, the construction team decided to take advantage of light gauge steel for wall and roof truss framing on the top level to eliminate rotting, twisting, or straightening, and reduce building time. Using the FRAMECAD System, SBS Group fabricated lightweight, staggered stud walls off-site, which were then easily installed without the need for specialised lifting equipment. The use of light gauge steel, instead of a hybrid method of structural steel and timber, led to significant simplification and reduction of building components required to complete the project.
For multi-level buildings, it’s becoming increasingly obvious that timber, concrete, and hot-rolled steel aren’t always the best options – especially when it comes to the top floor. That’s why so many developers are now looking for ways to save on time, labour, and costs during the construction process.
All 422 load-bearing wall panels for levels three through seven of this 7-story (five levels on two levels of podium) project was fabricated at Douglass Colony's headquarters in Commerce City using FRAMECAD and shipped directly to the jobsite where the building was erected in a total of 40 working days, including all wall panels, flooring systems, and detailing with concrete poured and cured.
Dynamic Steel Frame hold the honour of having constructed the largest light-gauge steel (LGS) three storey apartment building in Australia using the FRAMECAD System. Located in the inner-western suburb of Yarraville, Melbourne, this three-level residential building illustrates how LGS is changing today’s approach to construction
In the US, the framing industry is changing rapidly. Concrete contractors are becoming a rarity and timber continues to offer challenges due to inferior material and a lack of availability. These days, US construction companies are turning more and more to cold-formed steel (CFS), and FRAMECAD partner Intellisteel is revolutionizing how these steel framed structures are built.