Beneath the facade
What makes each Equitone facade panel so unique? The answer lies in the legacy of its exceptional material. The invention of fibre cement in the late 19th century was born out of a filtration process that combined the elements of mineral materials, water, air and fire. The result made such an impression that the material was named ‘Eternit’ in reference to its superior durability. Etex, the Belgian industrial group and holding company of Marley Building Systems in South Africa, has manufactured fibre cement materials since 1905, and the most prestigious incarnation in this proud heritage of unique materials is the Equitone faҫade material range.
In the 1950s, leading architects, such as Walter Gropius, pioneered the use of coated fibre cement panels using the ventilated facade (rain screen) system. And today’s leading architects continue to use fibre cement in innovative expressions.
‘Leading architects of our time are exploring and transforming the Equitone material into remarkable facade designs,’ comments Marinda De Beer, the product and specification manager for Facades at Marley Building Systems. ‘The highly expressive fibre cement sheets are available in 8mm and 12mm widths, and lend the perfect flair for a vivid surface texture or accent for whichever design options an architect may want to explore,’ she says.
Equitone facades also lend themselves to healthy living design as they boast a host of qualities under the banner of green building practices, particularly the provision of well-ventilated and comfortable inner buildings. Environmentally friendly building technology is a hallmark of Marley Building Systems, which offers innovative, sustainable and complete building solutions to the market.
The efficiency and durability of Equitone’s cladding solutions speak to this cutting-edge mindset and present significant advantages, including:
• elimination of thermal bridges
• reduction in the impact of direct solar radiation
• reduction of structural movements
• evacuation of moisture, thanks to resistance to mould and fungi
• prevention of condensation inside the building.
In addition, Equitone facades provide excellent sound insulation and are fire-resistant, boasting an Euroclass A2 rating.
Most Equitone facade materials are not treated with artificial colour coatings, giving the equitoned (or through-coloured) materials a raw, unfinished character. There are six different materials in the Equitone range, which each have unique finishes and colour options:
• Equitone [linea] – a unique 3D material that plays with light and shadow.
• Equitone [tectiva] – characterised by a rough, slightly sanded surface that is delicate to the touch.
• Equitone [natura] – displays the raw texture of the core eternity fibre cement material, comes in a large panel size, and can be transformed into any size or shape.
• Equitone [pictura] – a smooth and ultra-matt architectural finish.
• Equitone [materia] – the surface is not treated and shows the raw texture of the base material.
• Equitone [textura] – the finish is highly glazed, granular and acrylic.