A Master Class in Metal Composite Materials: From design to build, the details that make MCM preferred by professionals

A Master Class in Metal Composite Materials: From design to build, the details that make MCM preferred by professionals

August 3, 2021

You can find them on skyscrapers or single-family homes. Gas station canopies and stadium scoreboards. Used to clad entire building envelopes or provide simple detailing support, you can find metal composite materials used in architectural projects across the country. For over 50 years, these products have provided highly engineered solutions for even the most challenging construction are a favorite for professionals across the industry.

The basicsRigid, lighter, flatter

Metal composite material (MCM) is produced by bonding thin sheets of metal to either side of a thermoplastic core with heat and pressure. It provides the rigidity of plate metal without the weight or the distortion referred to as oil-canning. Often made with painted or treated aluminum, also known as ACM, MCM are also produced with zinc, copper, stainless steel and titanium, often referred to as natural metals. The thermoplastic core can be a traditional PE or fire retardant which is required for buildings over 40 foot from grade.

Why designers want MCMDesigned how you need, wherever you need it

In addition to the richness of natural metals, MCM is available in practically limitless finish options. Gloss ranges from 6 to 70 allow understated matte and the most opulent high-gloss in shades across the spectrum. MCM can shimmer with special effects and prismatic finishes can even change appearance depending on the viewing angle. Printed patterns create the look of marble and timber without the cost, weight or maintenance. Available in 2mm, 3mm, 4mm, or 6mm, whether you need exterior or interior cladding, or any detail in between, MCM is a perfect fit.

Making life easier for general contractorsHelping meet demands and deadlines

Sustainable MCM is made from highly recyclable materials that support efforts in LEED certification. Accessible American manufacturing headquarters provides quick service and Made in the USA products on demand. In as little as 1,000 sqft, affordable MCM can be produced to custom order with manageable lead times, but sometimes faster is better. With over 100 finishes in stock, these premium materials are ready to deliver exceptional results.

A fabricator's best friendManufacturing a better relationship

Reputable MCM manufacturers will produce sheets that are trimmed and squared. Protective film performs double-duty, protecting the finish as well as providing directional arrows for installation assistance. Materials are primed on the unfished back for additional protection. Quality production operations ensure that sheets are shipped in custom-built 6-sided pallets, sized to each order, to mitigate potential damage during transport. Materials are flipped to order, delivered with the finish side facing up or down as requested. Premium MCM can be easily formed into complex shapes, challenging curves, and fit numerous installation systems.

Giving the owner peace of mindProviding more value and support

Getting the right look that lasts starts with a great finish. Next-generation FEVE Fluoropolymer paint systems provide truer colors in the widest gloss range. And when only the perfect shade will do, rely on the custom color matching expertise of your MCM manufacturer. These innovative products meet the AAMA 2605 standard, have built-in graffiti resistance and are easy to clean and maintain. Quality composite panels can come with finish warranties of 10, 20 or 30 years, and an in situ warranty gives greater value to your investment with protection that goes far beyond the material cost. MCM delivers the look, performance and longevity every building owner deserves.

Whatever the role on the design and build team, your MCM manufacturer should be there through the entire process, just a phone call away. Manage tight lead times with responsive customer support, order free samples and literature for your design board, and reach out to the manufacturer’s technical service team to get reports like the EPD, PTD, or SDS or to help navigate specifications. From the regional sales manager to the quality assurance department, find a support team that is standing by for your toughest questions. Build your next project with the help of metal composite materials.

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