05 November 2015

Continuous innovations in cladding materials mean more people than ever are looking beyond traditional materials to create stand-out cladding designs. But, when it comes to ultimate design flexibility and striking aesthetics, vertical slating is hard to beat.

Vertical slating provides continuity between roof and facade and is fast becoming a popular architectural choice for modern, clean lines. In particular, fibre cement slates deliver a visually appealing and low maintenance solution.

Garden Studio

Indeed, our range of Thrutone fibre cement slates have been used in numerous  projects, most recently by architect Moon Design + Build to create a unique garden studio at a Victorian property in Bristol. Used to hide unsightly blockwork behind the garden structure and achieve a horizontal emphasis to reduce the perceived height of the building, the project was shortlisted for a prestigious architecture award.

Slates can be fixed to timber framed structures or masonry walls and requires a batten configuration. Among the installation methods available to create different aesthetics are broken bond, where slates are staggered and overlapped horizontally to create a more patterned or layered effect - as seen on the Garden Studio - and panel detail, which delivers a more precise pattern and modern clean lines. 


Responding to market demands for cladding products that deliver greater design versatility, Marley Eternit launched Vertigo - the UK’s first architectural facades system specifically designed for use in vertical applications. It encompasses the popular fibre cement slate design but comes with three types of fitting options which can be used to achieve different cladding effects. These include a nail holed system, specifically for use on the facade, invisible fixings, as well as a traditional slating system. Panel and broken bond are just two designs options achievable through Vertigo and installations are simple, meaning contractors and joiners who may have previously felt facades were outside of their core services can confidently add vertical slating to their portfolio.

To give you an idea of its simplicity, here are six basic steps to achieve a modern panel design with Vertigo – just one of the aesthetics achievable.  

1 - Fix the vertical battens with adjustable galvanised steel brackets. These can be adjusted to fit the thickness of the insulation and provide a clear air gap behind the slates.
2 - Mechanically fix timber joists vertically to the supporting wall.  
3 - Apply a EPDM waterproof rubber strip to the supporting framework at the joints between each row of slates.  
4 - Nail or screw fix the panels of Vertigo slates to the vertical battens, overlapping each slate. 
5 - Keep following this installation method and then move to the next row. Use a total of 12.9 slates per square metre.
6 - The finished result - fixings are hidden to create a clean and contemporary finish.

Combining striking aesthetics with ease of installation is essential in an increasingly competitive marketplace, which is why vertical slating should be a key consideration in any project.   

Have you embarked on a vertical slating project? Share your experience here ...

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