As technology advances, so does our demand for efficiency. New technological innovations challenge old business models & approaches, and this is true in markets such as construction. FRAMECAD’s approach to cold formed steel construction is the world’s most advanced end-to-end design and build system.
➔ Cold Formed Steel (CFS): What is it?
➔ CFS Process
➔ CFS Products
➔ Video: 6 reasons why CFS is a superior construction method
➔ CFS as a Construction Material
➔ CFS Projects
➔ CFS Case Studies
➔ Make the switch - Download FRAMECAD E-book
Cold Formed Steel (also known as CFS, Light Gauge Steel & LGS), is one of the most sustainable materials used in modern buildings and is increasingly popular due to environmental factors as well as cost and efficiency. It can be seen in common household appliances & buildings all over the world. Cold formed steel's uses, composition, and properties are essential to understanding its benefits in the construction industry.
Cold-formed steel starts with the production of raw steel, combining iron ore and steel scrap with small amounts of carbon in a Basic Oxygen Furnace (BOF). The molten steel is then reduced into thinner strips of steel, and a protective coating of zinc is added through the galvanization process. The final product is called a ‘coil’ and is produced using a roll-forming machine. Using CFS in this end-to-end process makes a socially responsible building method that helps lower carbon emissions across the construction industry.
The name cold-formed steel comes from its application as it is very malleable and doesn’t require any heat to mold in its final form. Instead, the steel is bent into shape by a machine.
Cold formed steel process is a design-led operation, meaning that less skill is required at the time of construction and more when designing it. The steel used to make frames and components is sourced from quality coil productions. They are shaped into coils with roll-forming machines before they are bolted together on-site to complete the building. The cold formed steel process is highly effective as it can run large quantities of steel at high speed with consistent quality and precision.
The wide range of functions in a system like FRAMECAD allows increased productivity and versatile output to produce roof trusses, wall frames, and floor joists to exact measurements. This creates a scalable solution and a streamlined process while time and costly waste.
Detailed design speeds up compliance and minimises room for error. Using the cold forming process can offer a much more predictable construction schedule and less on-site cost than if you use traditional building methods. For example, the lighter material is easier to transport with on-site labour. It’s also not necessary to operate heavy machinery. This means less construction time and a better-finished product for the client.
For all building types, whether modular or prefabricated, hotels or hospitals or schools, cold-formed steel is an ideal building material for all construction. It has strength and ductility that makes it stand out. In addition, steel framing walls are narrower than those made with other materials, allowing you to maximise space capacity.
Cold-formed steel is an excellent building material for commercial projects. It can be manufactured into various cold formed steel products, such as prefabricated panels, decking systems, L-shaped roof trusses, steel frame walls and all types of systems. This is especially important if you live in a densely populated area because it is lightweight and easy to transport. It's also an excellent option for sloped or difficult sites that would otherwise require significant foundation work. It's structurally stable and does not need an interior wall or ceiling framing. So, it can be built on-site with minimal materials, minimizing construction costs while saving time and resources in the long run.
From fast return on investment, lower labor costs to a more accurate method of construction, CFS is clearly the future of construction. With FRAMECAD discover The Way the World Constructs.
Unlike traditional wood, cold formed steel doesn’t shrink, split, or absorb moisture and resists warping, termites, mold, and – all of which make it the perfect choice for constructing high-quality buildings.
Cold-formed steel is a uniformly manufactured product, meaning the quality remains consistent. This translates into less scrap to haul out over time since there's less waste, and the best part; all of it is recyclable. Cold formed steel framing can contribute to lower scrap disposal costs and can also help to bring down project expenses by providing an opportunity for discounts on builder’s risk insurance and other types of construction insurance.
Cold formed steel also has various physical properties that make it suitable for use in many different settings. Its strength and ductility make it perfect for construction in regions with high winds or earthquakes. It has also been found that zinc-coated steel framing can protect from corrosion for up to 200 years.
Each piece of composite contains a minimum of 25% recycled material, it is 100% recyclable at the end of its lifespan and does not release volatile organic compounds meaning it is exceptionally sustainable.
Traditional construction methods become ineffective and uneconomical when building projects are in areas with high wind speeds or seismic activities, salt-spray zones, and other complex environmental locations. FRAMECAD's innovative offsite construction methods are ideal for these locations and open many new development opportunities.
Building confined sites that don't allow for easy access can be tricky. However, if you use modular construction, you can make it easier to complete the task quickly & without a huge budget. For example, time dedicated to ‘wet’ trades, including cement and plaster, can be reduced. You may also face issues with material supply and costlier shipping routes.
Check out the cold formed steel projects below to see how we've helped businesses improve their productivity and efficiency through this new construction method.
“We should be doing things better and we should be better at doing what we’re doing”, is the mantra of Australian manufacturers, Austruss, who produce frames and trusses as well as bathroom pods and modular construction.
FRAMECAD has extended its dedication to developing light gauge steel construction knowledge in Africa, including now having dedicated design, technical, building products, and support staff based in our South African office.
Foshan Tuhe Equipment Co. Ltd in China came up with three designs that they knew would appeal to different audiences wanting residential housing.
The US Navy have been doing some important exploratory work into the benefits that cold formed steel systems can provide for rapid, humanitarian housing. Read how FRAMECAD is supporting this important work.
Prefabrication of modular solutions in controlled factory environments can be more accurate in terms of quality than on-site construction, given the potential risks associated with unexpected occurrences. The construction process for parts such as facades and bathrooms that are time-consuming and occur primarily on-site can be done off-site, speeding up project timelines & reducing congestion.