Page 1

S P E C I A L I S E D T E X T I L E S A S S O C I AT I O N I N C .





Fabritecture’s challenging project DDT – success in diversity

43086_02_cover.indd 2

4/08/16 1:46 PM



43226_1_Hardback Awning FP.indd 2

2/08/16 9:33 AM



11 30


18 32




STA NEWS Report from STA president, Beatrice Moonen


Dave Elliott part 3, dodger and bimini design








11 12

Make a Swag campaign Gale Pacific’s Landmark Recycled 340 Rhino Linings’ Polyurea Kai Combe’s Australian adventure

DESIGN Fabritecture’s design for ITE West College, Singapore


10 11


MEMBER PROFILE Darling Downs Tarpaulins

EVENTS Upcoming events for the specialised textiles industry, locally and internationally



SUPEREXPO2016 WRAP-UP 14 15 16 18

Wrap-up Vox pops Gallery Awards for Excellence winners

43086_03_contents.indd 3

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

2/08/16 1:55 PM


Editorial Contributions by the STA Editorial committee ASSOCIATION MANAGER Ana Drougas

Welcome to the third Connections for 2016


t’s already probably receding into a distant memory for most of you, who are just too busy getting on with plying your trades to dwell on the past, but in putting this issue of Connections together, I’ve been trawling through mountains of photos of SuperExpo2016 – so to me it all still feels very fresh. And as I look at the images I’m reminded of what a positive and exuberant event it was. Shane Jacobson was an inspired choice for MC of the Awards for Excellence dinner, but it doesn’t matter how good a host is, if the crowd aren’t feeling it, that host will be hitting their head against a brick wall. At the Gold Coast in June, the vibe was upbeat, friendly and busy. I talked to a bevy of bodies on the expo floor and you’ll find just some of their responses on page 15. I had to cut this section severely to fit everyone in, but the thumbs-ups and excitement could have filled several pages. Kelly Morgan from Ricky Richards is always a cheerful presence, but her “Some of the sales team have just gone for lunch now… at three o’clock!” perfectly summed up the whole event for me. Also in this issue we have images of all the winners at the Awards for Excellence and a great design project from Fabritecture, which coincidentally was the big winner at the Awards. Congratulations to everyone at that company and, indeed, to all the winners and special commendations. And may I add my hearty congratulations to that one-woman dynamo Connie Hellyar, the deserving winner of the Woman of the Year Award. I’ve been editing this magazine for over two years now and her help and enthusiasm have been a constant and a blessing. Well done, Connie… and enjoy your retirement, such as it is! The member profile this issue is the ‘darling’ of Toowoomba, DDT and we’re also pleased to bring you the third part in Dave Elliott’s series of marine fabrication articles I hope you enjoy the issue. Madeleine Swain Editor

EDITOR Madeleine Swain Advertising Neha Minhas 03 9948 4918 Design ART DIRECTOR Keely Atkins DIGITAL PRE-PRESS Nikita Bansal PRODUCTION COORDINATOR Jamuna Raj


Connections magazine is published on behalf of the Specialised Textiles Association Inc by Niche Media Pty Ltd ABN 13 064 613 529 1 Queens Road, Melbourne, Vic 3004 Tel: 03 9948 4900 / Fax 03 9948 4999 Printing Graphic Impressions












Specialised Textiles Association 201/22 St Kilda Rd, St Kilda Vic 3182 Tel: 03 9521 2114 / Fax: 03 9521 2116 Email:

NEXT ISSUE OF CONNECTIONS Remember this is your magazine, about your industry. And we always love to hear your feedback or ideas for the direction of the magazine. If you have any suggestions for articles or features that you think may be appropriate, please don’t hesitate to contact the editor directly at or Ana Drougas in the STA office at or on 03 9521 2114.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_04_editorial.indd 4

All unsolicited material should be addressed to the attention of the editor at the address above. Material will only be returned if a postage prepaid self-addressed envelope is supplied. Niche Media Pty Ltd accepts no liability for loss or damage of unsolicited material. Connections is a publication of Niche Media Pty Ltd, ABN 13 064 613 529, 1 Queens Road, Melbourne Vic 3004 Australia, tel +613 9948 4900, fax +613 9948 4999. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording, internet, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the publishers. While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this publication, the publishers accept no responsibility or liability for any errors, omissions or resultant consequences including any loss or damage arising from reliance on information in this publication. The opinions and material published in this publication are not necessarily endorsed by the editor, publisher or Niche Media Pty Ltd, unless where specifically stated.

4/08/16 11:16 AM

RI We’re about making ideas happen!




43225_1_Ricky Richards FP.indd 2

2/08/16 9:29 AM


President’s report For her first report as the newly elected president of the Specialised Textiles Association, we reprint part of Beatrice Moonen’s acceptance speech given at SuperExpo2016.


t is indeed my honour to accept the position of president of the Specialised Textiles Association of Australia. I want to thank the outgoing STA president, Glenn Barlow, for his enduring energy. He has a deep passion for this association and industry. Together with his father and son, he is part of three generations of businesses in this industry. Glenn is a natural motivator and instrumental in my taking a more prominent role in the STA. I welcome the new Council of Management (CoM). Our three new members are Harold Nankervis from HNS Canvas in New South Wales, David Hamilton from Morley Canvas in Western Australia and Matt Gisler from Miami Stainless in Queensland. Ongoing CoM members are Tim Bell from The Nolan Group and Kieron Drake from Kenlow, both from Western Australia. I look forward to a great year working with these talented people. It was pleasing to see more members wishing to join CoM than places available this year. This is indicative that members want to be involved in the direction of the association. The STA has a number of very worthwhile committees where participants are very welcome to join. The committees of Fabric Structures, Training or Women in Textiles are making a difference to the course of events in our working lives. Members should seriously consider involvement in them. As the second female STA president, I am pleased the STA has recognised the contribution of women in the past and continues to support and encourage women today. STA members represent the essence of small business in Australia. Members come from general textiles fabrication, such as marine fabrication, canvas, tents, tarpaulins, awnings, agriculture, geo textiles, shade structures, installation, design and materials, and equipment suppliers. We are innovators seeking out new materials, technologies, designs and uses of products to

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_06_president.indd 6

advance our niche industries. Thirty years ago shade structures didn’t exist, knitted shadecloth was woven, scissors did most cutting and 3D design was a dream. This is today’s textile industry. With internet and social media marketing, and high performance materials and processes, tomorrow will be even more exciting. By nurturing our positives, I want to contribute to making this a stronger association for members. Raising consumer awareness, raising work standards, cutting red tape, encouraging employment and training, ongoing cooperation between suppliers and fabricators, attracting new members and working with affiliated organisations are the issues for the coming years. We keep raising the bar to provide more beautiful, unique and complex products. SuperExpo2016 didn’t disappoint. So too at SuperExpo2016 the spirit of friendship and cooperation was clear, as marine fabricators workshopped together to advance and learn their trade. Over the years the STA has fostered relationships with many associations. SuperExpo2016 – the biggest windows and specialised textiles tradeshow in the country – was a great success due to the bonds and mutual respect we share with the BMAA (Blind Manufacturers’ Association of Australia). Last year our friends from OFPANZ (Outdoor Fabric Products Association of New Zealand) joined us in Melbourne as we celebrated the STA’s 75th anniversary. This year we welcomed OFPANZ president, Megan Cummins, and together announced the location for next year’s annual event, which will be in Queenstown, New Zealand. I look forward to a great year as president of the STA.

Beatrice Moonen – President

2/08/16 2:20 PM

AT M O S P H E R E External Screen Range

Our Atmosphere external screen range is designed for optimal outdoor living. The new colour range showcases shades that co-ordinate and contrast with a wide range of popular outdoor finishes, from bricks and paint, to coated aluminium and steel. Selected colours also available in 1% construction.


All Tempotest® fabrics are made in Italy and are designed with an elegant and timeless aesthetic, the hallmark of Italian style. Tempotest fabrics are constructed from premium solution dyed acrylic fibre with outstanding technical features that easily withstand the diverse Australasian climate.


Premium Italian Acrylic Fabric

Contact The Shann Group for our new catalogues, or visit our website:

ti d j 2016 i dd 1 43219_1_The Shann Group FP.indd 2

27/07/2016 4 26 28/07/16 1:48 PM


UPDATE FROM THE SPECIALISED TEXTILES ASSOCIATION OFFICE STA manager, Ana Drougas provides a rundown of the industry association’s latest news. SUPEREXPO2016 WAS ONCE AGAIN JUST THAT – SUPER! There was so much taking place during SuperExpo this time around with the trade exhibition surpassing all expectations (size and quality of exhibits), introduction of the two-day marine fabricator workshop and not to mention visitor numbers – up by 60 percent from our 2013 event. Take a look at page 14 for a round-up of SuperExpo2016 and the marine fabricator workshop, and a gallery of pictures of the event. You can also see all the winning projects from the Awards for Excellence from page 18. They’re also now on the STA website at au/2016winners.


Connie Hellyar (OneLink Agencies and Chair of the Women in Textiles Committee) has been honoured with the 2016 Woman of the Year Award. Since the establishment of Women in Textiles and the Woman of the Year Award three years ago, several nominations have been received from members wanting to nominate Connie for the Woman of the Year Award. However, Connie felt that as the chair of the committee and the instigator of the Award, she should not be included in the nominations. In 2016, it was very clear that this time the nominations could not be ignored. Connie’s integrity, incredible customer relations and dedication to our industry over many years has seen her become an immensely respected figure among her peers and, in particular, young women in the industry. Her confidence and ability to mix it with the best of them in sales and marketing has held her in great stead for

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_08-9_STA report.indd 8

many years and is truly inspiring. I am sure you will agree that Connie is a very worthy recipient of the 2016 Woman of the Year Award. Congratulations Connie.

SPECIALISED TEXTILES ASSOCIATION WELCOMES THREE NEW COUNCIL OF MANAGEMENT MEMBERS At the Annual General meeting of the STA in early June, we said goodbye to three councillors who had served their three-year tenure on Council – Daniel Gollan from HVG Fabrics, Connie Hellyar from OneLink Agencies and Glenn Barlow from Positive Resolutions. Following the voting procedure at the AGM, from a total of six nominations received, we are excited to announce that the three new councillors are: Matt Gisler from Miami Stainless in Queensland, David Hamilton from Morleys Canvas in Western Australia and Harold Nankervis from HNS Canvas in New South Wales. Our three new councillors join Beatrice Moonen, president, Kieron Drake from Kenlow in WA and Tim Bell from the Nolan Group in WA. Should you wish to contact any one of our councillors directly, please refer to the ‘About Us’ section on the STA website.

INTRODUCTIONS FROM NEW MEMBERS OF THE COUNCIL OF MANAGEMENT David Hamilton, Morley Canvas, Western Australia I’m a secondgeneration canvas fabricator from over here in WA. I manage our company, Morley Canvas, which has been going strong now for 33 years. We specialise in anything from general canvas work to marine trimming. I grew up in the company running around under tables as a kid and

helping out during the school holidays and weekends, and have now been employed full-time for six years and manager for a little over two. I jumped on the STA Council because I want to bring a bit of youth back into the industry and focus on helping the smaller fabricators like us. I look forward to the next three years on Council and hopefully I can make a difference. Matt Gisler, Miami Stainless, Queensland I’m a marketing and business alignment specialist with broad expertise in market-based management strategy, planning and execution in both domestic and overseas markets. My specific focus is on successful growth and positioning in competitive markets. I have experience with a broad range of sectors, including manufacturing, wholesale and distribution, including import/export, services, design and FMCG (fast moving consumer goods). My objective is to help grow the STA by using my professional skill set to promote association benefits, such as the vast knowledge and expertise of members, as well as the support and integrity of the STA to potential members and associated new industry sectors. Harold Nankervis, HNS Canvas, New South Wales My career highlight I feel is starting my business from nothing and building a small but successful business over the last 28 years with the help of my wife. I feel that my life experiences from business to Apex, being a freemason, racing sidecars and raising four children will allow me to bring some different ideas to the table.

2/08/16 3:47 PM


NEW MEMBERS The STA is pleased to welcome the following companies to its membership.

SYDNEY SHADE SAILS (NSW) PTY LTD Manufacturer of custom shade cloth shade sails, waterproof shade sails (PVC membranes), privacy screens, clear blinds, wind breaks, custom canvas products, e.g. tonneau covers, bags, covers for machinery, gazebo covers and others. Contact: Leonard Collins Email: Tel: +612 9592 0401

transport industry, Southern Tarps offers a complete range from lightweight poly up to truck strength PVC and canvas. Contact: Chris Uther Email: Tel: +612 8339 0055

ACCREDITED MEMBER OF STA The STA is also proud to announce the following company has gained business accreditation.


One of the largest suppliers of tarpaulins in Australia, servicing overseas aid agencies, state emergency services, building and construction industries, mining and agriculture, as well as the

From shade sails and tarps to custom canopies, Goodridge creates madeto-measure products for workers and adventurers looking to protect their belongings or experience the thrill of touring the Australian outback. Contact: Chris Goodridge Email: Tel: +612 6762 7422





77 Roussett Road, Wanneroo WA 6065 Tel: +618 6500 3517 Led by managing director Neil Johnston, Supreme Shades designs, makes and installs shade sails. Everything is made in-house, to ensure the highest standards of quality, delivery and services. “It is by looking after our customers and giving them good service that we get much of our business through referrals and repeat business,” says Johnston.





3/99 W West Burleigh Rd, Burleigh Heads QLD 4220 P 1800 022 122 E

Stainless Steel Hardware

43086_08-9_STA report.indd 09

2/08/16 3:47 PM


WOMEN IN TEXTILES – MAKE A SWAG CAMPAIGN Connie Hellyar reports on the great success of this year’s make a swag campaign for the St Vincent de Paul Society.


s I sit here in my office reflecting on the past 12 months I can’t help but be humbled by the end result of the WIT’s Make A Swag Campaign. It’s not simply the swags that were so kindly made with love that make me reflect on what a outstanding community we have among us, but the passion with which so many embraced the cause. The suppliers of fabric that came knocking, asking what they could do to be part of this venture, fabricators from all sorts of industries, many of which were not aligned to general canvas manufacturing, stepping up and making 20 or more. Suddenly, I’m acutely aware of the incredible honour that both Clare and I have had to be part of this incredible journey and, albeit that I am now more or

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_10-12_news.indd 10

less retired, it will be a great honour to share in another year and hopefully far exceed the 95 swags we managed this year. There have already been pledges from Western Australia and Victoria offering to make swags for next year’s Vinnies’ Swag Campaign. It becomes abundantly clear when you walk through our major cities and see the plight of not only the young, but also the vulnerable elderly sleeping rough, often through circumstances that they have had little control over. Knowing that our industry has made such a huge difference to potentially 95 individuals makes my heart proud. Vinnies take these swags out in its soup kitchens, which go out nightly. These volunteers ensure that each swag is given

to the person who they know needs it most. The standard of swags that Clare and I delivered to Vinnies in May blew them away. Nic Horton from Vinnies just couldn’t believe the quality. If you would like to be part of this next adventure and think that you can make the time to make even one swag, then please call us and we will put your name on the list. Donations are not required until May 2017. Finally, Clare and I just want to say a huge thank you to all of you that shared this amazing 12 months and we hope that this will only get bigger and better. Thanks for being here for us. Connie Hellyar and Clare Corban Connie 0404 086 158 / Clare 0408 221 181

2/08/16 2:37 PM

Polyurea pure being applied at a sewage plant.



very year Australia sends tens of millions of tonnes of waste to landfill, despite a portion of that material being recyclable. Gale Pacific is undertaking research into ways to address this problem and is introducing recycling initiatives for its Australian coated fabrics. The first development is Landmark Recycled 340, a new version of the company’s technical fabric, Landmark, which has been used for flexible crop storage for over a decade. Such fabrics usually have a three- to five-year lifespan before being sent to landfill, but Gale Pacific is now picking up the end of life fabric so it can be recycled and re-processed into Landmark Recycled 340. Landmark Recycled 340 is the first recycled technical fabric to be designed and made in the company’s Australian manufacturing facility. It has the same performance standards as the original Landmark 340, but is created using repurposed Landmark fabric. “Landmark Recycled 340 was first manufactured in June 2015 and we have been conducting field and lab trials since then. This coming grain season will be the first time the recycled PP polyfabric will be manufactured and supplied on a large scale,” says Emily Joyce, category manager – commercial at Gale Pacific. The recycling process involves shredding and washing the end of life fabric, then extruding it into pellets. The pellets are then sent to Gale Pacific’s unique extrusion coating plant in Melbourne to be converted into ‘new generation’ Landmark Recycled 340. The manufacturing process results in a strong,

43086_10-12_news.indd 11


C durable and environmentally friendly new product that has been laboratory- and field-tested, across tensile strength, flex crack resistance and UV durability. Joyce says the reaction in the marketplace has been very positive. “Each of the grain sites where the recycled fabric is being tested has reported that there has been no variation from the original fabric… The fabric gives large volume users an alternative to landfill, which has a huge benefit, not only to their sustainability practices but also their bottom line as they no longer have to pay for landfill disposal.” And in the long-term? “The original product will always be required to enable us to make the recycled version, but we will manufacture less of the original fabric and more of the Recycled version,” explains Joyce. “At this stage we estimate that the fabric could be recycled up to three times before it can no longer go back in to Landmark Recycled; at that point though the fabric can still be recycled, it will just be used in alternative end products.”

orrosion at wastewater treatment plants and subsequent leakage has been tackled by Gold Coastbased company Rhino Linings Australasia. The company says degradation of infrastructure costs industry over $1 billion each year, with pipelines, storage tanks, clarifier ponds and sewage channels most affected, especially submerged areas. Coatings are being developed to refurbish the infrastructure assets that are strong, flexible and resistant to chemical attack. It has developed Polyurea, a sprayapplied coating, first used in the early 1990s, but now refined. The Rhino Linings Pure Polyurea comes as a twopart solution that is mixed under high temperature and pressure (3000 psi at 65 degrees Celsius) in a specially designed spray apparatus. When applied, the excellent chemical cross-linking produces a dense but flexible surface. The high density makes the coating Serpentine Galleries © Ron Ellis almost impervious to abrasion, water and chemicals. “Many people do not know that spray applied Pure Polyureas are a very good method of protecting most structures,” says Dennis Baker, special projects engineer. “We need to educate the engineering marketplace about the benefits and cost-effectiveness of this versatile and adaptable material.” More information is available from

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

2/08/16 2:37 PM




hey came from far and wide for SuperExpo2016. Indeed, some came from as far away as Ogden in Utah. Re-vive Upholstery is a small but dedicated family business run by husband and wife team, Glen and Julie Combe. The couple attended the expo with their 16-year-old son Ky and promptly left him behind when they went home. But this wasn’t an alarming case of child neglect – the Combes were leaving Ky in the capable hands of some of Australia’s most highly regarded marine fabricators, in order to learn more about his craft. The Combes say Ky is already one of the best sewers around, but that the level of training he could receive from the likes of Aaron Stroud, Adam Gillatt, Dave Elliott and Neil Hancock is truly world class and better than anything he could access back in the US. Stroud explains that he and the other fabricators organised a full itinerary for the young craftsman. After SuperExpo, Ky had a long weekend’s R&R on Moreton Island in Queensland and then headed to Swan Reach in Gippsland, where he spent four days patterning boats and making covers with Stroud’s Canvas Barn Marine Trimming, before going to Melbourne to spend the weekend at the Boat Show with Hancock. Next stop was Gillatt and Bundoora Boat Upholstery, where Ky spent a few days learning about Gillat’s plotter, cutter table and how he runs his workshop. “Adam is at the forefront of ski and wake boats, similar to what Ky works on at home,” explains Stroud. Then it was back with Hancock to spend four days at the Aussie Boat Covers workshop in St Kilda, before flying north again for a further couple of days with Dave Elliott at Dave’s Custom Trimming in Brisbane. Then home! Stroud notes it was lucky that Ky wasn’t due to go straight back to school on arriving in Utah. “The poor guy is going to sleep for a month!” he says.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_10-12_news.indd 12

Ky, Julie and Glen Combe with Aaron Stroud (right).

4/08/16 9:35 AM



We are a national association representing fabricators, installers and suppliers of textiles, equipment, accessories and services in the specialised textiles industry.

JOIN ONLINE TODAY Go to or phone/email Ana on 03 9521 2114 or


Business Accreditation Program


Government Lobbying


HR and Industrial Coverage


Legal Services


Insurance Services








Focus Groups




Awards for Excellence Recognition Program

Specialised Textiles Association Inc. Suite 102, 22 St Kilda Road, St Kilda Vic 3182 Phone 03 9521 2114 Registration Number A0010895W ABN 83 594 171 330 01 MAM93



STA Member Drive 2016 indd 1 43227_1_STA Member FP.indd 2


1/08/2016 11:02 am 2/08/16 9:36 AM


A SWINGING AFFAIR The second SuperExpo, jointly presented by the STA and the BMAA, drew the crowds to the Gold Coast in June. And the consensus was that it was an outright hit – even bigger and better than the inaugural event in 2013. On the following pages we share some of the highlights, including images and vox pops, plus all the winners of the STA’s Awards for Excellence.

2016 AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE WINNERS The Awards dinner is always a highlight of any STA expo and SuperExpo2016 was no exception. With the beautiful Sheraton Mirage Resort as the venue, Shane Jacobson (aka Kenny) as the MC and the best band on the Gold Coast – how could the event not be a successful and entertaining night?

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_14-17_expo wrap.indd 14

What a funny, funny man Shane Jacobson turned out to be! Several members have said that they felt he has been the best MC so far. That is a big statement. While the night was an entertaining one, the Awards dinner is primarily about showcasing member projects and announcing the winners. A special mention must be made of the fantastic achievements of Fabritecture,

which won four Awards and a Special Commendation, but the STA would like to congratulate all members who took home an Award and/or Special Commendation this year: A & B Canvas Australia, Abacus Shade Structures, Campbell & Heeps, Canvas Barn Marine Trimming, David’s Custom Trimmers, Fabritecture, MakMax Australia, Pattons, Sail Structures Pty Ltd, S B Marine Trimming, Shade to Order.

2/08/16 4:06 PM


And the word is… There was a very positive vibe among the crowds at SuperExpo2016… here’s what a few of the attendees had to say. It’s great. A good cross-section of both the industrial fabrics customers that we have through the STA and blind fabrics customers that we have through the BMAA. So first morning, so far, so good. Rick Haggerty, Elizabeth Machines

It’s definitely worthwhile coming to SuperExpo. It’s the only exhibition we do these days. And we’re in several different industries. If this exhibition were every two years we’d do it. The frequency would be about right. Kevin Matherson, Shann Group

Always a great turnout, we always love coming out here and meeting customers who have already got our machines and potential customers. It’s a great way to see what’s going on in the market and interact with the people that we work with. Michael Clark, Aeronaut

I think it’s bigger, better and brighter this year. There are certainly far more people coming through the doors than there were last time. Connie Hellyar, OneLink Agencies

It’s been really buzzy – really busy. Some of the sales team have just gone for lunch now. At three o’clock! It’s been great. Kelly Morgan, Ricky Richards The presentation on all the stands is fantastic. Darren Hayes, Blinds by Boronia It’s a bigger area than last time. It seems to be very well laid out compared to a lot of expos you go to. People have got double-sided sites, so you can go through them from either side. But the blind people, which there’s a big predominance of, they go all out. Des Tebb, Tebb’s Canvas

The buzz of everyone here, I think it’s a really good vibe. As Australia, I think our industry should be really proud of what everyone’s brought to the show. There have been some really cool ideas. I love it; I think it’s amazing. Clare Corban, Goodearl and Bailey We’ve got a much better response from people. Good quality of people that’s stopping by. We’ve had some good feedback and some excellent prospects. Russell Edwards, Reflective Blinds Very exciting time for Shann as they really invest in new development and new products coming into the windows and awnings industry. So it’s a great to be part of that. Kelvin Howsan, Shann Group

LET US HANDLE THE BIG JOBS BULK WELDING IS OUR SPECIALTY Why not stick to what you do best and leave the bulk sewing and welding (hot air, hot wedge, RF welding) to DDT. At our wholesale prices, you can improve your bottom line. Contact Max or Michael for a quotation


SIZE IS NO PROBLEM Darling Downs Tarpaulins are geared to cope with those very large jobs like green houses, shade houses, shade sails, dam liners and bulk storage covers.

Phone: 07 4634 2166 Fax: 07 4634 7725 Email: Web:

40527_4_DDT TP.indd 2 43086_14-17_expo wrap.indd 15

25/11/14 8:18 PM AM 2/08/16 3:14


GOLD COAST MARINE FABRICATOR WORKSHOP UPDATE The marine fabricator workshop took place over two days right next door and during SuperExpo2016. With maximum attendance (and a wait list) expectations were high and delivery did not disappoint. The workshops were an amazing success, the best by far. Lots of new faces, quality presentations, and the participation by attendees was terrific. The Marine Fabricator Division has raised the bar once again and is now taking on the challenge to deliver an even bigger and better workshop in the near future. Thank you to all on the Marine Fabricator Division Committee (Neil Hancock, Shane Beashel, Dave Elliott, Aaron Stroud-Smith, Paul Gibson, Abbey Gazzard, Nigel Dawson and Tom Frame) for their work in not only getting the workshops up and running, but also raising awareness and the bar for all marine fabricators. Thank you also to: • The presenters for sharing their knowledge: Adam Gillat (Bundoora Boat Upholstery), Shane Beashel (SB Marine Trimming), and • The sponsors for their support in making this event possible: Bainbridge International, Coats Australia, Dasec, HVG Fabrics, Innova, Miami Stainless, The Nolan Group, Paskal, Weathermax and Elizabeth Machines.

NEXT YEAR So, where to from here, you ask? Well, if you were at the Awards dinner, you would have learned that in 2017 the STA is partnering with OFPANZ (Outdoor Fabric Products Association of New Zealand) to hold a joint conference in Queenstown from 25 to 27 May. Work has already begun on the conference program, with a focus being on informative and educational sessions – as well as activities to make the most of the location.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_14-17_expo wrap.indd 16

2/08/16 4:07 PM


42882_3_Strataglass HPH.indd 172 43086_14-17_expo wrap.indd

15/04/16 3:24 PM 2/08/16 3:14


AWARDS FOR EXCELLENCE WINNERS This year’s winners and special commendations in the Specialised Textiles Association’s Awards for Excellence were announced at the Gala Dinner held during SuperExpo2016. With Shane Jacobson emceeing the proceedings, the following projects were celebrated, with 10 winners and six special commendations from 10 different categories, as well as the Woman of the Year.

CATEGORY MARINE TRIMMING EXTERIOR WINNER COMPANY: S B Marine Trimming PROJECT: Hanse 470 Project location: Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club FABRIC NAME: Stamiod 6002, Makralon, Achilles roll glass FABRIC SUPPLIER: Bainbridge, Nolan UDA COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Bainbridge Five years ago, the client slipped down a flight of stairs and broke his back. After four years of operations and rehabilitation, he was in a position to go back to what he loves and bought a yacht. The problem was that the boat in its current set-up was very difficult for him to use and, given that his goal was to live onboard with his wife and cruise the Whitsunday Islands, a radical change in design was necessary. We threw a few ideas around and once we started down this road, the project grew into an awesome outdoor space, which is extremely functional for the client.

CATEGORY MARINE TRIMMING INTERIOR WINNER COMPANY: David’s Custom Trimmers PROJECT: The Comfort Room Project location: Royal Queensland Yacht Squadron FABRIC NAME: Sunbrella Furniture FABRIC SUPPLIER: Bainbridge Australia COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Foamco We recommended against using stripes for the curved backrests of the lounge, as straight lines won’t allow for curves and create optical illusions, which could potentially play with people’s eyes, especially when the boat is moving around at sea. The interior designer insisted upon an even more complicated checkered pattern. However, with some patience, every panel was successfully mirrored and lined up accurately to create quite an eye-catching effect.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_18-25_award winners.indd 18

3/08/16 9:16 AM

CATEGORY WINDOW FURNISHINGS, BLINDS AND AWNINGS (INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL) – DOMESTIC WINNER COMPANY: Campbell & Heeps Project: Shade With a View PROJECT LOCATION: 3/49 Yerrin Street FABRIC NAME: Docril Bark FABRIC SUPPLIER: Ricky Richards COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Lukris Trading and Acmeda The challenge was to make a component in-house that would solve an ongoing problem that was frustrating installers. The swivel toggle is not fixed, it can move – that’s what makes it special. It is not complex innovation but it is unique. No matter what angle the sail approaches the cleat, the bolt is always perpendicular to the cleat. The results were fantastic. Zero frustration. Zero damage to hardware. Installation times halved. Swivel toggles are installed on every tension shade structure. It is now a universal fixture on all of our installations.

CATEGORY MARINE TRIMMING EXTERIOR SPECIAL COMMENDATION COMPANY: Canvas Barn Marine Trimming PROJECT: Kinross Exterior PROJECT LOCATION: King’s Cove Marina FABRIC NAME: Stamoid Open, O’Sea Clear Vinyl FABRIC SUPPLIER: Bainbridge, Nolan UDA COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Frank Marine, RWB Industrial The owner had requested a ‘hard top’. The cost moving the boat, then installing and manufacturing a hard top was outside of the budget constraints. We overcame these difficulties by installing a ‘hard top’ look soft roof, manufactured by skinning a stainless frame with a marine PVC fabric that matched the paint colour of the vessel’s roof... The owner felt like he had real involvement and consequently ownership of the design and build process, which was very important to him.

43086_18-25_award winners.indd 19

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

3/08/16 9:16 AM


CATEGORY SHADE SAILS OR STRUCTURES – DOMESTIC (USING KNITTED SHADE CLOTH ONLY) WINNER COMPANY: Abacus Shade Structures PROJECT: Bob Jones Residence Sydney PROJECT LOCATION: 25 Hession Road FABRIC NAME: Monotec 370 FABRIC SUPPLIER: Ricky Richards COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Waratah Steel Ideally we should have been digging footings when excavations for plumbing and the pool were being dug. This late timing meant that underground services were everywhere. Plumbing, electrics, paving were all in the vicinity of the proposed structure location. The solution was to keep the posts and the excavating down to a minimum by using only one post. Any machinery had to be driven over ground protection mats so as not to harm the grass or pavers. So we had to build a structure that did not impact on the surroundings or hit underground services!

CATEGORY SHADE SAILS OR STRUCTURES – COMMERCIAL (USING KNITTED SHADE CLOTH ONLY) WINNER COMPANY: Fabritecture PROJECT: BAC Taxi Shade PROJECT LOCATION: 11 The Circuit FABRIC NAME: Solar Shade 600 FABRIC SUPPLIER: Nettco COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Confidential The project utilised high strength shade cloth that was specifically chosen to handle the high wind loads in the open area and large spans of the project site. The main challenge for this project came with manufacturing the mesh. Due to the durability requirements of the material, the mesh was created using old style knitting machines, which were much slower than anticipated. The needles broke on the weaver, and had to be replaced with smaller needles, which caused delays. The connection detail solution developed was unique to the project, and was required to handle the high load requirements and larger spans of the structures.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_2_18-25_award winners.indd 20

4/08/16 9:46 AM

CATEGORY SHADE SAILS OR STRUCTURES – COMMERCIAL (USING KNITTED SHADE CLOTH ONLY) SPECIAL COMMENDATION COMPANY: Sail Structures Pty Ltd PROJECT: Botanic Gardens Conservatory PROJECT LOCATION: Cairns Botanic Gardens FABRIC NAME: Monotec 210 FABRIC SUPPLIER: Ricky Richards COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Proknit Industries This type of design in fabric has never been created before and is unique. The design being based on the shape of the Licuala leaf presented a number of challenges for our design and construction team. We were able to achieve the design parameters by using a shotgun track tensioning system on the outer edge of the fabric with the final tension being applied to the outer edges using a custom track system… Both the architect and client are extremely happy with the project and commented that the design has exceeded their wildest dreams.

CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) LESS THAN 250 SQUARE METRES WINNER COMPANY: Fabritecture PROJECT: Perth Children’s Hospital PROJECT LOCATION: Perth Children’s Hospital FABRIC NAME: Stamisol FT381 FABRIC SUPPLIER: Innova The canopy structures were installed around the existing crazy, complicated playground landscape, which meant extra planning for the coordination of machinery for installation was required. This was also due to the height of the site and limited accessibility. The steel had to be crane-lifted to level 2 from the street and ground levels… The end results are stunning architectural canopies that are kid-friendly and interactive. The colourful fabrics and complex steel geometry create truly eye-catching structures.

43086_18-25_award winners.indd 21

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

3/08/16 9:16 AM


CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) 250 TO 2000 SQUARE METRES WINNER COMPANY: Fabritecture PROJECT: Australian Embassy, Jakarta PROJECT LOCATION: Jalan H R Rasuna Said Kav C FABRIC NAME: ETFE with Standard Frit Pattern FABRIC SUPPLIER: Asahi Glass Company The use of stainless structural steel was the most complex element of this project, as the material can be very challenging to work with. A 100 percent trial assembly in the factory was completed prior to installation as stainless steel is extremely difficult to modify. This meant no holes or drilling could occur on-site, so everything had to be perfect before it arrived on site. Project-specific challenges experienced during installation included language barriers, working with local contractors, customs issues with delivery of materials and equipment, and collaboration with the Indonesian Government… The completed project produced an unreal result. The ETFE canopy resembles a floating cloud above the chancellery courtyard, providing an aesthetic protective solution for the outdoor area.

CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) LESS THAN 250 SQUARE METRES SPECIAL COMMENDATION COMPANY: Shade To Order Pty Ltd PROJECT: Halifax Holiday Park PROJECT LOCATION: 5 Beach Road FABRIC NAME: Ferrari SA FABRIC SUPPLIER: Innova COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Shade To Order Pty Ltd The area is renowned for its strong winds; the client wanted something that looked good and practical. In order to avoid ponding and to get water running off the surface at an acceptable rate six new columns were installed and their heights varied. The results were quite dramatic indeed. Not only did the structure survive the worst storm the area has received on record, but the results produced an eye-catching membrane structure that provides UV and rain protection over their barbecue and entertainment area.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_2_18-25_award winners.indd 22

4/08/16 9:46 AM

CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) 250 TO 2000 SQUARE METRES SPECIAL COMMENDATION COMPANY: Fabritecture PROJECT: Elizabeth Quay Ferry Terminal PROJECT LOCATION: The Esplanade FABRIC NAME: Custom Digital Printed 2 layer 250um ETFE Film FABRIC SUPPLIER: AGC COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Confidential The result of the project is an incredible, timeless piece of fabric architecture and artwork. The structure incorporates a stateof-the-art ETFE cushioning system and a majestic artwork frit pattern, designed by a local artist as a tribute to the area. The aluminium fin plate cladding system provides a dynamic finish while hiding an efficient structural design that houses a complicated lighting, plenum and hydraulic system. The structure is like artwork protruding from the water that provides a functional day-to-day hub for transiting passengers.

CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) 250 TO 2000 SQUARE METRES SPECIAL COMMENDATION COMPANY: MakMax Australia PROJECT: Coolum Hotel PROJECT LOCATION: 1820 David Low Way FABRIC NAME: FR700/FR1000/TF400 FABRIC SUPPLIER: Shann COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Steelman Brisbane/Everything Marine The client requested an enclosed patron area that would be protected from the elements, but would also enjoy the natural light of the Sunshine Coast. The fabric structure when complete would be part of the heating, cooling and lighting delivery. The completed fabric structure has allowed for an extended use of the area – ensuring protection from the elements in addtion to creating an ambience within the courtyard. It has also created a more intimate dining/socialising destination.

43086_2_18-25_award winners.indd 23

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

4/08/16 11:13 AM


CATEGORY GENERAL – BANNERS, FLAGS, INFLATABLES, FABRIC ART WINNER COMPANY: Canvas Barn Marine Trimming PROJECT: Kangaroo Tales PROJECT LOCATION: Wurinbeena Ltd FABRIC NAME: Kangaroo Hide FABRIC SUPPLIER: Kangaroo Hide COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Various, general hardware The entry is a re-locatable sculpture installation designed to enrich traditional ceremonies and contemporary performances staged in the art space. Bark tanned kangaroo hide is extremely soft and the hide is generally very thin. The cutting had to be extremely precise and careful so as not to cut the artwork. That being said, some parts of the hide, such as the tails, are very thick. The constantly changing thickness of the skins required extreme dexterity and skill. The artwork is, of course, irreplaceable. The fur pieces were pieced together around the main art skin, and this had to be done in an artistic way that complemented each artwork.

CATEGORY TENSION AND AIR SUPPORTED STRUCTURES (COATED FABRICS, PVC, MESH, PTFE) GREATER THAN 2000 SQUARE METRES WINNER COMPANY: Fabritecture PROJECT: Pacific Fair Resort Roof PROJECT LOCATION: Pacific Fair Shopping Centre FABRIC NAME: FGT-600 PTFE FABRIC SUPPLIER: Chukoh COMPONENT SUPPLIER: Confidential By far the most complex challenge geometry wise is the inner and outer edge. These are created using a large number of tangential curves, which, when connected together, create the undulating curved geometry required. The entire structure was modelled in Teklar and AutoCAD and then fed back into the client’s master revit model to do a final check for geometry and clashes. Fabricating the steelwork for the roof posed a major risk for the project. To overcome this challenge, the entire roof – excluding column – was trial assembled during fabrication in sections… There were a lot of other trades sharing the same site with limited access as the site was basically enclosed by the existing infrastructure of the shopping centre. This made an already complex installation methodology even more complicated.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_2_18-25_award winners.indd 24

4/08/16 11:13 AM



After the death of a volunteer fire-fighter in the Great Southern region of Western Australia, the subsequent enquiry found there was not adequate protection for the bush fire-fighters that found themselves in a situation of being trapped by a bushfire. Protective radiant heat shields, fitted to the cab of the fire-fighting vehicles, effectively turn the cab into a fire haven. Since the completion of the project the radiant heat shields have been used in at least two incidents where they have been accredited to saving the lives of fire-fighters in the field.

The project was aimed at delivering a new innovation to the sea helicopter rescue services that work in a variety of conditions at sea in emergency situations. It needed to be integrated into the high risk sea rescue market where mechanical failure of a helicopter almost certainly means death. The purpose was to provide a neat, practical solution to the challenge of saltwater corroding helicopter parts as a result of sea rescues. The client requested a multipurpose, adaptable solution, which could be adapted to as many different types of helicopters, as well as the helicopters’ numerous different internal configurations, currently in service as possible.

CATEGORY WOMAN OF THE YEAR WINNER: Connie Hellyar COMPANY: OneLink Agencies For those who know Connie, it probably comes as no shock that she wins this very special recognition as the 2015-2016 Woman of the Year. Her integrity, incredible customer relations and dedication to our industry over many years have seen her become an immensely respected figure among her peers. All of this said though, this award is based on an absolute standout performance over the past 18 months. This came via Women in Textiles, which Connie was instrumental in forming some years ago to recognise the great work achieved by women in our industry. Connie, along with another exceptional woman, Clare Corban, has put our industry and association

43086_2_18-25_award winners.indd 25

in the spotlight with the incredible Swags for the Homeless campaign (see page 10). The coordination, organisation and logistics of this were done in personal time and at personal expense and throughout she wore the association’s name like a badge of honour, a truly amazing effort. As Connie prepares to retire after a terrific career, we wish her all the best and once again congratulate her on winning the Specialised Textiles Association Woman of the year 2015-2016, a very well-deserved award for very special person. (Glenn Barlow)

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

4/08/16 11:13 AM


COMPLEX AND COMPOUND FRAME BENDING In the third part of his series on marine fabrication, Dave Elliott discusses how to incorporate the ever-changing face of dodger and bimini design.


hink outside the box. One of my sayings to customers is: ‘If I have done my job properly, the covers have become part of the boat.’ Take a spray dodger, for example, I generally recommend if the gel coat is white, then the dodger should be white, as it is a continuation of the deck lines. I like having a plan and list of questions to ask a customer regarding their use of the boat. This helps establish a vision of the finished product. With a dodger/bimini combo, the customer’s answers establish whether I introduce compound frame bending to help with window shape, winch clearance and cockpit entrance clearance. Adding compound bending definitely adds more time and cost to a project, so establishing budget constraints is a big factor. Always offer three choices, so if the customer allows, you can then let your mind stray from conventional shapes. To start, 95 percent of dodgers I do never get folded down, so straightaway, you can start moving frame mounting points aft and sliding front frames higher to allow for more wrap-around vision in the clears/windows. You can then offer them the upgrade of removable polycarbonate windows. This adds better visibility for the customer and is better for manufacturing as it separates all panels; i.e. the roof and three or five window panels. Another added option is to offer side and back handles on the dodger. I sell that option as a safety addition, but it also keeps dirty hands off the dodger’s fabrics. You can also offer pockets inside for accessories, sunscreen or mobile phones etc. Shane from SB Marine Trimming (Aus) offers LED lighting in his biminis. Every addition or option value adds to the end visual result and the profit margin. After all, we are not only in business to make money, but to offer quality products. These two examples of similar designs on different boats highlight what can be achieved with compound bending and changing mounting points. The first is a 53 Jeanneau (Images 4 and 5). I started with the dodger – there is compound bending in the front frame. This is needed to create front to back frame symmetry. Rolling the aft supports establishes a flow between the window, the joiner panel and into the bimini. The dodger is also tracked to the deck for a seamless flow. The bimini frames are compound rolled forward, aft and outboard. This process strengthens the frames and opens up the entrance area to the cockpit and adds better entrance outside the frame into the helm.

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_1_26-29_marine F.indd 26


Before. 2

Old and new frames. 3


4/08/16 9:56 AM







41787_1_Carr TPH.inddF.indd 2 43086_1_26-29_marine 27

11/03/15 9:00 PM AM 3/08/16 2:15




The next group of pictures highlight a similar design, on this Beneteau (Images 6 and 7), a stanchion rail mounted bimini with rounded frames shows the extra cockpit entrance created, with the compound process. It also highlights what a small outward roll can do to add symmetry between the dodger and bimini. With both boats, the dodger design (Images 8 and 9) shows how much extra window space is made by different frame design and thinking outside the box. The changes for the customer take a standard dodger to an adaptable accessory that can be altered for changing conditions; i.e. weather or racing – you can remove the windows and stow on the bunk below. The next example (Images 10 to 13) was an owner’s request for a more permanent window with a removable fabric roof panel and folding frame design. On this boat the original bimini is much wider than necessary, hence why the aft dodger frame is wider to help with adapting a better joined panel/ link sheet. The frame on this trimaram (Images 1 to 3) was made specifically to gain extra roof length and shade. A traditional longer frame would have been useless and rendered the winches unusable. A before and after shot shows the extent of change achieved by using compound bending. It transformed the catamaran cockpit. To summarise, it is a classic example of how by changing the basis of all dodgers and biminis, the frame can ultimately change an ugly and impractical enclosure to be very aesthetically pleasing and practical, creating better clearance for winches, cockpit entrance, shade and safety with the addition of handles. I hope this has inspired some fabricators to go the next step and stop thinking in black and white, and come over to the grey side. Think outside the box. Dave Elliott MFC David’s Custom Trimmers


CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_1_26-29_marine F.indd 28


3/08/16 2:15 PM




Aaron (Azz) Stroud Long before meeting Dave, I had admired and studied his work; the compound curves rolled into some of his frames intrigued me. Let me say, that you have to think well outside the box and understand the process of bending and rolling regular bows very well before proceeding. You will also require plenty of spare material; things can go wrong quickly. There are more tools required than usual to help create these frames. We utilise a Bendarc bender and crowner, along with a steel 300-millimetre wheel from a sheep shearing plant secured to the bench, holes drilled into the leg of the bench to insert the


tube and tweak, as well as numerous blocks of wood that are screwed to the bench in many arrangements to help get the finished product. The standard bender and roller need to be altered to be used for these projects; the handle on the crowner is quite often removed during these rolls to stop fouling on the frame. The key to getting a compound curved frame looking right is spending the time on board measuring and getting your shapes right before heading to the bender and crowner. We have now fabricated and fitted many frames with compound curves in the frames. We find these frames

are great on half cab trailer boats to extend a bimini further forward over the windscreen. They create a look more fitting to the curves of modern vessels and open up many more options to make your clients boat look great and be functional at the same time. It is also a great up sell on your product that can add to your profit margins. So grab some tube and have a play around; you will be amazed at what you can create. Aaron (Azz) Stroud – Canvas Barn Marine Trimming

SEAMTEK 36 The versatile and reliable welding machine for technical textiles • Works as a seam welder or tape welder • Very strong and smooth step motors • Test program to optimize weld parameters • Very good access and view during welding

Plastral Pty Ltd I 130 Denison Street I Hillsdale NSW 2036 Phone: 61 2 9695 3200 I

41725_4_Plastral 3PH.indd 2 29 43086_1_26-29_marine F.indd

We know how.

17/03/15 AM 3/08/16 10:46 2:15 PM


IT ALL BOILS DOWN TO DESIGN Fabritecture managing director, Jethro Jones, describes one of the most challenging projects the company has ever encountered.


t is a common misconception that tensioned fabric structures are simple in design and easy to build. The final product may appear simplistic; however, the design process is anything but simple and is pivotal to the success of all tensioned fabric structure projects. To illustrate the importance – and complexity – of the design process for tensioned membrane structures, we present a detailed account of a project for which Fabritecture was engaged to design and build for the new ITE West College development, in Singapore. Our brief was to provide lightweight, aesthetic weather protection over an

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_2_30-31_design.indd 30

outdoor events plaza and elevated walkways with an area of approximately 75 by 45 metres. The 3000-square metre PTFE canopy that was ultimately designed and installed by Fabritecture, sits at a height of between 20 and 35 metres, and is supported entirely by cables, providing a beautiful, ‘floating’ form above the events plaza and walkways below. The PTFE membrane canopy was designed with an anticlastic form with a very high pre-stress of 5KN to accommodate the large spans. A complex system was designed to provide structural support to the canopy, comprising highstrength Galfan cables (two 75-metre over-fabric cables, two 45-metre underfabric cables, catenary edge cables and guy cables), steel membrane clamp plates, structural shackles and complex structural steel wall brackets. Incredibly, the entire canopy system weighed only 6.5 kilograms per square metre, due to the efficient use of the surrounding concrete buildings to support the large forces generated by the tension structure. To achieve the required form and cover, the canopy had to be fixed to the concrete structures of four surrounding high-rise buildings and a floating walkway, with a total of 24 fixing points, which ranged from level 4 to level 10 of the buildings, and with no rigid support structure allowed.

Detailed structural analysis of the membrane roof needed to be completed so that the extreme forces generated could be taken into account when designing the high-rise structures. In addition, 24 unique sets of high-strength cast-in bolts needed to be designed, supplied, positioned and cast-in during the construction of the high-rise structures. Prior to final detailing and patterning of the membrane roof, each set of cast-in bolts needed to be accurately surveyed due to the stringent tolerances required for the structural system to work effectively. Due to the lack of access to the fixing points, coupled with the extreme vertical height, the as-built survey was completed using a combination of traditional and 3D laser survey methods. Following completion of the as-built survey, the final patterning and detailing of the membrane roof was completed so that the Galfan structural cables, membrane plates, and steel brackets could be fabricated. During design, detailed analysis was undertaken of water flow off the canopy, as well as the thermal effect the canopy had on the airspace below the roof. A water diversion system was used in some areas, to control the water run-off from the roof. The installation of this canopy was as complex as its design. Access was a major constraint, due to the fact that no large and heavy access equipment could be

4/08/16 10:01 AM


located directly below the membrane roof, meaning a crane could not be used to lift the roof into position. We worked with our engineers and rigging experts to design a complex and detailed lifting plan. The major constraints that impacted this lifting plan were: ● the only area available for laying and fitting out the fabric was the events plaza ● the membrane roof needed to be lifted vertically between 25 and 40 metres simultaneously from at least 10 points ● mobile crane access was only available for lifting two of the points at one end of the roof ● there was no access for cranes or access equipment to the events plaza area ● at all times during the lift, the membrane roof had to be able to shed water in case of rain, and ● the entire 3000-square metre canopy needed to be lifted and secured in one continuous process to ensure that it would not pond water or be damaged by winds. The lifting plan involved the following: ● five supervisors, five local riggers and 10 local labour ● all supervisors and crane operator connected via two-way radio ● one 200-tonne mobile crane connected to lift two points at one end of the membrane roof vertically, and up and over the innovation walkway ● 10 two-tonne electric chain motors with integrated control system, to simultaneously lift the 10 other points

43214_Triax TPH.indd 2 43086_2_30-31_design.indd 31

down either side of the membrane roof a two-stage rigging system devised using cable slings and a midpoint changeover rigging point, due to the chain motors only having 20 metres of chain, and ● each point changed over and rigged to shackles and slings for safety (not left on chain motors), once the membrane roof lifted into position. The lift ran smoothly and was completed in a period of 16 hours exactly as planned. Following the lift, the membrane roof was systematically tensioned to the side and end points using a combination of chain blocks and cable tifors. In order to tension the membrane to the correct fixing point design loads, final tension on the four main guy wires was completed using two 20-tonne hydraulic rams and pressure gauges. The initial tensioning of ●

the 3000-square metre roof was carried out over a period of eight days. The membrane was then further progressively tensioned over the next two weeks with the final tension on the main guy cables being completed using two of 20-tonne hydraulic rams with stress gauges, in order to monitor the tension forces needed for installation. Overall, this unique project was one of the most challenging that Fabritecture has encountered. The end result – very simple in form, yet highly complex in design at every stage. C For more information about this project, view this video: watch?v=Gz2j-BOCDxo For more information about Fabritecture, visit:

27/07/16 11:11 AM AM 4/08/16 10:01


DDT: DIVERSIFYING IS THE KEY In the 1936 film Follow the Fleet, Fred Astaire memorably sang ‘I’m Putting all My Eggs in One Basket’. But if the team at Darling Downs Tarpaulins had followed his lead they may well have been out of business by now. Managing director, Michael Ryan, says the firm has survived and, indeed, prospered by working hard to diversify.


yan has been with Toowoombabased Darling Downs Tarpaulins (DDT) since 1984; it was his first job. Industry veteran Max Brady started the company the previous year and Ryan has worked his way up through the ranks until eventually he and his wife bought half of the business from Brady in 2013. “Max is still half owner and progressively we will buy the other half,” says Ryan. The business is clearly in his blood. The first ever recipient of the Certificate III in textile fabrication in 1996, Ryan grew up on a farm and says a lot of DDT’s customers are the same sort of people. “So there’s a fair bit of synergy there.” A quick glance at DDT’s website shows the company has an extremely wide range of products – servicing many industries from agriculture to mining to transport and beyond, but it wasn’t always so. “There was a time when I started when we had two seasons,” says Ryan. “We had

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_32-33_member.indd 32

a cotton season in the first part of the year and then the grain season in the latter part of the year and in between we’d concrete the driveway or fill in time. We worked hard over the years to diversify and increase our flexibility and our ability to respond to different situations quickly. “We got into a lot of different areas to spread that load a bit. Mining was one such response. Max got into dam lining in the late 80s for just that reason. We’ve really worked hard to try and even out the highs and lows.” The company now has a staff of about 16, mostly men in the workshop, with three women in the office. Ryan says that’s a situation he’d like to change, but it’s really difficult to do so. “Our first ever apprentice actually was a young girl from Cecil Plains. She was fantastic, but since then I haven’t been able to attract any [females]. It’s very difficult to attract women into the industry for sewing particularly. I’m really at a loss.

We cannot even get girls to apply for the apprenticeship,” he says. “And yet they make better tradespeople,” he continues, citing “attention to detail and very neat work” as his reasoning. Ryan believes regular communication is a key to a good workplace culture. “Most mornings I have a toolbox meeting with everyone. The first couple of minutes might be talking about the weekend or the footy game or particularly what people have achieved. Or, if someone’s done a good job, I’ll always bring it to the fore and point it out,” he says. Another vital element is training. “We have four apprentices at the moment. It was one thing that Max instilled in the business that training was very important,” he explains, noting that all of his staff visited SuperExpo2016 during its run. “It’s great to see how excited they were, the young ones walking around, going ‘this is awesome’. To see and probably to feel

3/08/16 11:07 AM

Ryan says the company has outgrown its site recently, but any new facility would be built locally. “There are a lot of things happening in Toowoomba, with our second range crossing, which has just started,” he says. “We’ve got the international airport started there last year. And there’s a new abattoir being built. All the feedlots are full because they’re supplying all this organic beef. A shopping centre in town has just tripled in size. It’s been going on for a while. So Toowoomba is really poised for the next 10 years or so, it’s really going to go ahead.” So, no more concreting driveways then? “No concreting,” agrees Ryan. C a part of this industry, I think that’s really important too. They realise they’re part of the bigger picture.” It can only have been as a result of great teamwork that DDT succeeded when faced with a massive challenge recently – an 18,000-square metre floating cover for an ethanol plant in North Queensland. “We produced this tarp, it was too big to make in one piece, so we made it in three sections and took it to the local showgrounds, with our welding gear… and did two seams on the showgrounds.” Putting it in place called for a whole other level of ingenuity, involving an inflated front face, a leaf blower and some tow points. Then there was the scare when, during installation, a gust of wind blew it about 40 metres into the air and nearly took one of Ryan’s workers with it.

43086_32-33_member.indd 33

Issue Three 2016 CONNECTIONS

3/08/16 11:07 AM



Specialised Textiles Association and Industry events for 2016

Hardback Awnings


Ricky Richards


Shann Group


Miami Stainless


(If you know of or are holding an industry relevant event, please send details to – we would be happy to publish it.) For details on all Specialised Textiles Association events, go to SEPTEMBER LSAA 2016 CONFERENCE AND DESIGN AWARDS Thursday 1 to Friday 2 September MADA, Caulfield East, Victoria ‘Design Beyond Boundaries’ The Intersection of Architects and Engineers For further information go to:

STA PERTH INDUSTRY GOLF DAY AND NETWORKING WITH INFORMATION SESSIONS Friday 16 September This event is open to all in the industry and includes a flexible program for the entire day – golf, information sessions and networking event. Register for the full day or just part of it. For further information go to:

13 & 35

Darling Downs


STA INFORMATION AND EDUCATIONAL NETWORKING EVENT Thursday 6 October 2016 Sydney NSW (venue to be confirmed) This event is open to all involved in the specialised textiles industry. Network with industry peers and participate in informational sessions that will help you in your day-to-day job and running of your business. To register go to:





IFAI EXPO 2016 Tuesday 18 to Friday 21 October Charlotte Convention Centre, Charlotte NC, US IFAI Expo 2016 is a trade show event for the speciality fabrics, advanced textiles and shade and weather protection arenas, featuring a host of opportunities to take your career to the next level. For further details go to:








NOVEMBER NATIONAL CHRISTMAS CHEERS Tuesday 29 November Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide Venues to be confirmed Open to all Specialised Textiles Association members and guests. Register at:

CONNECTIONS Issue Three 2016

43086_2_34_events.indd 34

4/08/16 10:03 AM

Save the date for the specialised textiles & outdoor fabric products industry conference

25 27



Rydges Hotel, Queenstown NZ

For further information, Please contact Ana Ph: +613 9521 2114 E: ofďŹ

The 2017 Conference is brought to you by:


43204_4_STA FP.indd 2

2/08/16 3:23 PM

43198_1_Hiraoka FP.indd 2

27/07/16 9:24 AM

Connections: Issue Three, 2016  
Connections: Issue Three, 2016