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ISSN 2305-9648



new business opportunities at africa’s leading timber exhibition

booK now!

for more information: +27 (0)12 751 7604

furniture & Kitchen production | forestry & sawmilling | Wood materials, machinery & Veneers tools, loggers and mobile saws | timber construction and supply | industry surface & treatment technologies many more timber related products, machinery and services.

New Product Launches | Live Demonstrations | Timber Talks | Great Deals | Competitions

21-23 March 2013 Gallagher Convention Centre | Johannesburg | South Africa proUd sponsors:









woodex - 2013


cover story - Lightness of being


industry insight - Timbersoft


architecture - Leaf House


events - HWZ InternationaL


furniture - Pierre Cronje


feature - novatop


architecture - Rossignol


dÉcor - Southern Eleven


research - Timber homes

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news - Hubtex


profile - Matriarch Equipment


news - Makita


architecture - Sounds of silence


news - ProNature


news - Wood


news - forester's boots

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Of paper children and letting go For many a writer, a body of work is often likened to the process of parenting - like a child, the written word is conceived, moulded, crafted, broken down and reworked into what one hopes will become an impressive, fully functional piece of literature and life.


hrough careful nurturing, it grows in depth and develops its narrative and character and, with precise pruning, it is cut back once more, hopefully to spring back from its confines to bloom more beautiful than ever. But one of the most difficult things for a writer, once all the pain of writing and re-writing is forgotten, is to let go, to send that ‘paper baby’ out into the public sphere to forge its own way in the world. In the month of March, Timber iQ celebrates its very first anniversary. Launched to an overwhelmingly positive response last year at WoodEX for Africa 2012, it is fitting that we observe this special occasion at the 2013 event, surrounded by our loyal supporters and raison d’être. It has been my greatest pleasure as the editor of Timber iQ to watch what was once a fledgling publication develop into a well-loved title that has carved, and continues to carve, its special niche in the marketplace. With every issue, Timber iQ continues to define its identity with one main goal – to showcase and celebrate timber in its vast number of forms and applications.

readers, contributors and advertisers for their unwavering support, their sincere and considered feedback and for the sheer joy and gratitude so many of them express at the existence of a publication such as Timber iQ. May we grow this publication together, so that it is reflective of the true potential of the timber industry in South Africa. With that, I welcome you to our 1st Anniversary issue, our biggest and most spectacular issue yet. Our readers can look forward to 96 pages filled with breathtaking local and international projects, superb industry insight, great products, services and advice. It is my hope that this issue of Timber iQ informs and inspires your appreciation for and investment in the remarkable material that is timber and that you share my pride in playing a significant role in shaping what has, over the past year, become a timeless companion to our respective timber-infused journeys. Here’s to you. And to Timber iQ. Jen

It is our audience that contributes to the evolving persona that is Timber iQ, and for this I wish to personally thank our


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Forestry. An industry that does a lot more than grow trees. Forestry in South Africa is a R12 billion industry. It is the base of a local value chain that supports 750,000 people in rural areas. It generates substantial exports, helping to improve the country’s balance of payments. Most importantly, forestry is a responsible and sustainable industry, one in which Sappi is proud to be playing a leading role. Our more than half a million hectares of plantation forest are FSC™ (Forest Stewardship Council™) certified. We actively support a range of innovative environmental protection projects. We also create opportunities for local communities through tree-growing programmes and empowerment-driven ecotourism initiatives. For details, please visit our website.



THE TEAM Editor:

Jacques Cronje Jacques is a registered Professional Senior Architectural Technologist (Pr.S.Arch.T). While his architectural training is informal, having learnt by onthe-job experience, mentorship and self-study, he has degrees in building management and economics, a post-grad certificate in energy economics and has done several courses in energy efficiency and sustainable development.

Jennifer Rees 0861 727 663 076 119 8819

Editorial Assistant Alex Struck 0861 727 663

Publisher: Billy Perrin 0861 727 663

Daniel Conradie Daniel is a Candidate Senior Architectural Technologist and freelance writer based in Cape Town. He is passionate about the design process and how the technology and materials employed are composed to express it. Jason Bakery lattĂŠs, sci-fi novels and Cape Town summers assist him in retaining his sanity and fervour.

Advertising: Zahida Mahomed 0861 727 663 Angeline Martin 0861 727 663

Layout & design:

Get in touch

Craig Patterson

SUBSCRIPTIONS & DATA: Follow us @Timber_iQ

Like us Timber iQ

Visit us

Celeste Perrin 0861 727 663

Trademax Publications

Upcoming Events WoodEX for Africa 2013 21-23 March

ITFB Annual Awards 19 April

Knysna Woodworkers Festival 2013 24 – 29 September


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Tel: 0861 727 663 Cell: 082 266 6976 Fax: 0866 991 346 P.O. Box 37053 Chempet 7442

DISCLAIMER The views expressed herein are not necessarily those of Trademax Publications. Although we have done our best to ensure the accuracy of our content, neither Trademax Publications nor Timber iQ magazine will be held liable for any views expressed or information disseminated in this issue.

WoodEx for Africa


21-23 MARCH 2013 (STAND E1 - E6)








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Luxury Timber Frame Constructors Country Timber Homes is a KZN-based timber frame and solid log construction company specialising in both full turnkey construction, as well as pre-built timber home kits. Turnkey: We specialise in high quality, luxury timber frame homes, but are also able to assist with first-time homemakers and smaller construction projects. With our experienced building teams, design capabilities and full project management services, we can offer you a tailor-made solution from start to finish. We also undertake loft conversions, second storeys, alterations and additions. Pre-built timber homes: Ideal for remote locations, as well as for DIY enthusiasts, we supply all the pre-constructed structural components, allowing you to complete the finishing touches with your own personal feel. Pre-built home kits are available in standard one- to five -bedroom homes designs, either as timber frame, post-and-rail or solid log formats. Easily transportable and assembled, our pre-constructed kits are available throughout South Africa and are well suited to the export market.

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RECON THATCHERS OFFERS YOU: • Thatch roofs for houses, game lodges and lapas. • Recon Thatchers construct thatch roofs to any shape and size. • Specialized repairs and rethatching to existing roofs. • Recon Thatchers is an approved applicator of Micon Coatings namely Thatchsayf and Thatchbor flame retardants. Micon Thatchsayf is applied to existing roofs to be fire retardant for seven years. For new thatch roofs Recon Thatchers also have its own plant where thatch grass is pretreated with Thatchbor. This pretreated thatch grass keeps the flame retardant properties for ever until the roof must be rethatched. • Recon Thatchers is a founder member of the Thatching Association of South Africa (TASA). • All our structures are build with SABS approved Tanalith treated poles. The thickness of the poles, nuts and bolts for the structure is according to the Thatching Assosiation of South Africa’s standards (SANS10400). • The owner Bertus Nieuwenhuis is currently the vise chairman of TASA. • Recon Thatchers is in business for the last 29 years under the same name and management.

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All set for WoodEX for Africa Final preparations are under way for WoodEX for Africa, which will be held at Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, South Africa, from 21 - 23 March 2013. With local and international exhibitors and visitors in attendance this event will definitely be a highlight on the timber trade agenda for the year.


tephan Jooste, Director of WoodEX, says the event’s visitor promotional campaign is rolling out with advertisements and articles in a variety of industry publications. These advertisements will soon be followed by a radio campaign, street posters and newspaper advertisements. “We are very grateful for the support from our project sponsors, the industry associations, our media partners and our exhibitors. WoodEX is the ideal platform for wood and woodworking professionals to be on the frontier of the timber industry and to network, and we look forward to an excellent event this year.” Highlights at WoodEX for Africa 2013 include Timber Talks, a number of short seminars which will provide a dynamic and interactive learning experience to visitors at the event; Timber Games – a thrilling competition during which South Africa’s most skilled chainsaw operators and wood carvers will showcase their skill in speed cutting and carving competitions, as well as demonstrations by celebrated DIY guru and television personality Riaan GarforthVenter, better known as ‘Die Nutsman.’ With WoodEX fast approaching, most of the exhibition space has already been booked and exhibitors interested in still securing a stand should do so urgently. The WoodEX for Africa exhibition will feature exhibitors showcasing innovative timber and woodworking products and services such as woodworking machinery, decking, flooring, structured timber, timber treating, saw milling and logging, pulp and paper manufacturing and wood material and veneer production.


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woodex A word from our sponsors Justin Berry Executive Director PG Bison “PG Bison’s own success is inextricably linked to the growth and development of the industry in which it operates and we are therefore very proud to partner with WoodEX for Africa. As the leading manufacturer and primary upgrader of timber related products it makes perfect sense for us to become involved in WoodEX – the leading timber trade show in South Africa - as WoodEX creates an excellent marketing and networking opportunity for the timber trade to meet potential clients operating in this large market. We are very excited about our WoodEX partnership and we look forward to seeing the event grow to one of the leading timber events in the world.”

Jean-Jacques Oelofse Wood-Mizer Africa & South Africa’s Regional Manager/Managing Director “Wood-Mizer is proud to be associated again with WoodEX for Africa 2013, its presence at the expo as both an exhibitor and also as one of the main arena sponsors informed by its view that WoodEX is South Africa’s premier timber event, the occasion serving as a key opportunity for a cross-sectoral review of the latest services, products, innovations and thinking that has relevancy and bearing on the timber industry’s current and future direction. This, plus the successes achieved by Wood-Mizer during 2012 has prioritised its presence at the 2013 event. We look forward to meeting both existing and new customers at WoodEX 2013 with the event and our presences there spurring and improving sawmilling activity locally and on the continent for the benefit of all.”

Karl Hinteregger Owner, Hin-Tech “Hin-Tech is proud to be supporting the Timber Games at WoodEX for Africa. We see WoodEX for Africa as an excellent platform for the development and exposure of this unique sport and we are excited to be associated with these games. Just as Hin-Tech takes pride in building strong, reliable machines, we are honoured to be able to give something back to the industry and to support South Africa’s most skilled chainsaw operators and wood carvers.” iQ

For more information about WoodEX for Africa 2013, including exhibition packages and sponsorship opportunities, visit the WoodEX website at


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Following the great success of the 2012 Knysna Woodworkers Festival, bookings for exhibition space at the 2013 Knysna Woodworkers Festival are now open! Calling on local and national timber and timber-related industries, as well as associations to exhibit at this specialised event! Maximum exposure for all sponsors and exhibitors via extensive media coverage and premium on-site advertising!

Exhibitors to include: • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Arts & Crafts Furniture Manufacturing Timber Frame Building Timber Treatment & Preservation Paints, Coatings & Protective Sealants Forestry & Sawmilling Woodworking Machinery (Industrial & DIY) Power Tools Fastening Systems Handles, Hinges & Accessories DIY Training & Education And much more!

For more information about exhibiting at the Festival or for our premium sponsorship packages, please contact Johan Nel: (c) 073 394 0057 (e)

cover story

Lightness of being Resting lightly in a fragile landscape, House Wolfaardt embraces the charming recollections of holidays on the beach long ago here in a family home as gentle on the eye as it is on the surrounding landscape.

cover story


uilt on a portion of the Wolfaardt family’s Onrus plot that presented numerous technical and environmental challenges to the Rustic Homes design team, House Wolfaardt is testament to the creativity and tenacity of the team, and more specifically to designer, Bobby Welman, and project manager, Johannes Mathewson, who were tasked with managing the construction design. The result: a contemporary, open, airy beach house. Ingrid Wolfaardt, writer, mother, successful entrepreneur and proud owner says, “Our brief to Rustic Homes was interpreted in a clean, fresh, uncluttered way, and how delighted we are in the way the team incorporated quality components and finishes, such as aluminium and beautiful timbers, most notably our solid chestnut flooring.” Pieter Silberbauer, CEO and founder of Rustic Homes says, “The house incorporates many traditional features that have stood the test of time. Walk in and you cannot fail to sense that here is something unique - not just because of the setting,but because of how everything works together.” Ingrid insisted on bringing something special and personal to the house, so Pieter and team were briefed to include in their planning Ingrid’s eclectic collection of recycled doors, bathroom fixtures and detailing, all reminiscent of the beach houses on the Wild Coast where, as a child, Ingrid spent so many perfect holidays.

Challenges: The sensitivity of the plot on which House Wolfaardt was built was of particular concern. Falling within 100m of the high water level, constrained by height restrictions and being home to a protected Milkwood forest, the build demanded clever planning and sensitive detailing.

Planning: Due to the tight restrictions presented by environmental concerns, approval was delayed. The Wolfaardts, however, have a glass-half-full outlook on life, so Ingrid took it all in her stride. “In hindsight, the delay gave us more time to mull over the design and to aim for perfection in every detail. Extra time made room for thought, enabling us to resolve issues such as the utilisation of space and to include all those special touches that weren’t there initially. We took time to study the terrain and we worked with what we had here… We used the time well.”

Rocks: The foundations, which had to be set in existing rock, presented a challenge met by suspending the house using brick piers on the rock, as well as a plinth wall of brick. This wall and the perimeter walls were clad in stone sourced entirely whilst excavating the foundations.

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cover story

Milkwoods: Beautiful and endemic to our coastal areas, Milkwoods are protected. Therefore, it was important to the clients and environmental authorities alike that the Milkwood forest surrounding the house remained undamaged during the build. An Environmental Impact Assessment was conducted and Nature Conservation was consulted. “Environmental Affairs were involved from the moment we started,” says Ingrid, “We invited them to join us on site on day one, and that was a great move, because we learned what needed to be shifted or moved right at the start of the project. My husband, John, has planted many more Milkwoods and already lush new growth is evident, thanks, in part, to the shelter from the wind which our new home provides. ”


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Recycled sanitary ware and accessories were selected by the Wolfaardts to give an aged look to their new home, keeping it from appearing too clinical and modern.

cover story

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cover story

Detailing: Timber Timber devotee, Johannes, says, “Environmentalists will always prefer a dry structure, so timber frame construction was ideal for this house as it has a far lower impact on the environment than do more conventional methods. When building in sensitive areas, timber is always the preferred option. Building with timber meant that the main structure of the house could be engineered and completed off site in a safe, controlled environment at our Grabouw factory.” Treated pine was used for much of the structure. In many areas the beams were left fine sawn and exposed with a lime washed finish. This contrasted beautifully with the painted timber ceilings and the characterful ‘wormy’ chestnut floors supplied by Bestwood Flooring and selected by Ingrid and John Wolfaardt. Decking was completed using Balau and the external cladding with Jarrah, a sturdy and stable timber once used in the manufacture of railway sleepers and requiring little or no maintenance. House Wolfaardt’s classic beach house feel was completed with grey corrugated aluminium for roofing and some of the external cladding. Low maintenance stainless steel and/or aluminium fasteners were used. The handrails are galvanised and, with time, will weather to complement the soft, natural appeal of the house.


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cover story

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Insulation Home to an abundance of light, the house is well connected to its surroundings with beautiful views guaranteed by the extensive use of double glazed glass, which also helps regulate the ambient temperature. The living area and mezzanine/gallery bedroom form a double volume space. This not only helps regulate the temperature but also highlights the home’s easy flowing and relaxed character. State-of-the-art insulation in floors, walls and ceilings and double glazing quieten things down dramatically and the Wolfaardts are enjoying an internal climate comfortable in all seasons. Ingrid agrees, “I find the insulation excellent. I don’t think I will ever need a kaggel!”

Flooring Internal flooring was completed using solid ‘wormy’ chestnut. True to the clients’ appreciation for honest detailing this characterful timber adds great charm to the interior, to such an extent that the floors have become a major feature of the house, warm and tactile as they are under foot. “All the contractors that Pieter and Johannes worked with were special; the entire process was a happy, collaborative one. Many people discover that building a home can turn out to be an extremely stressful experience, testing the best of relationships. However, we loved how the Rustic Homes team provided John and me with an opportunity to be really creative. It was just fabulous and best of all what fun we had!”


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Rustic Homes is firmly established as a leading player in the field of timber home building, constructing homes that are built up to a standard and not down to a price. The Rustic Homes team never forget the importance of the client’s input from day one of the planning until handover and beyond. iQ

For more information (t) 021 859 5193 (f) 021 859 3646 (e) (w)


Given the beauty and versatility of timber, Rustic Homes’ architects and designers continue to create landmark homes in the Western Cape. Having pioneered timber construction here, we have perfected the technology that makes our bespoke-built homes immune to the vagaries of our climate.


Unrivalled finish and craftsmanship. It all starts here at our factory in Grabouw’s beautiful Valley of the Marsh Rose: a unique workplace where craftsmen pursue their passion for building homes that people love to live in... A place that welcomes clients to experience for themselves excellence at work, and to meet the people responsible for the faultless fit and finish of every panel and beam of every Rustic Home.



Call Mel (Mondays to Wednesdays) on 021 859 5193

industry insight

Efficiency and Productivity in the Timber Industry With the rising cost of electricity, recent minimum wage increases and high raw material cost threatening the existence of the timber industry in South Africa, the time to take a critical look at efficiencies and productivity is way overdue. Words: Henco Viljoen, Timbersoft cc


one are the days where quantity took precedence over quality and effectiveness. To survive, the maximum return on investment must be achieved from every single log entering the gate. To achieve this, sawmilling will have to raise the bar in efficiency and productivity.

The main areas in which improvements are possible: 1. Recovery 2. Electricity 3. Labour efficiency

Recovery: Recovery is not only about improving gate-in-togate-out recovery, but also about improving each element in the process. The key here is being able to identify where improvements are possible. However noble it is to chase a good gate-in-togate-out ‘bookkeeper’ recovery figure to keep the board of directors happy, this normally comes at a price. True efficiency is to get the sawn lumber through the process without having to rework too much in an attempt to recover ‘recovery.’ Each time a piece of lumber has to be sawn shorter, joined to make longer, or planed down to get a flat surface, not only are cost added, but also recovery is lost. True recovery should be measured by an increase in bottom line without an increase in production. The picture above is a slight exaggeration, but gives a good picture of where money is lost. With modern sawing machines and technologies implemented it has become very easy to cut boards to an accuracy of 0.1mm.


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Coupled with on-line sawing pattern optimization software to get the most out of every log. The sawing process is very visual and easy to correct if things start going wrong. The next link is the drying process. After sawing, this area is probably the biggest value- and cost-adding factor to the sawmilling process. The problem is, it is not as visual as sawing, and the end result including success or failure is only realized when the lumber stack is de-stacked after a 12-24 hour cool down period. By now, the recovery outcome can only be altered by adding more cost. The true benefits of managing the drying process with the same level of expertise and focus as the sawing process is completely under-realized in most South African sawmills. Specialist focus is required to get the balance between speed and quality right in each kiln and can only be achieved if a number of factors are done right every time.

They can roughly be summarized as: 1. Preparation – Sawing accuracy, board dimension, stacking procedures 2. Process control – Airflow, energy distribution and management, humidity control and venting

industry insight 3. Maintenance – Electrical, mechanical, instrumentation and structure 4. Schedule optimization – optimally managing the condition inside each kiln 5. Monitoring, quality control and corrective action If any of these are left out, or not managed properly, drying time and quality is negatively affected.

In kilns, the use of variable speed drives can dramatically reduce the electricity bill. The power required to drive the fan varies as the cube of the speed, e.g. if the fan speed is doubled, the power required to drive the fan increases eight times; if the fan speed is trebled then the power increases by 27 times. It is not necessary to run the fans at full speed throughout the drying process, only during the early stages when there is still a lot of moisture to move. Reducing fan speed to 80% can reduce the power required to 50% without reducing drying time.

The spin-offs of proper drying can be summarized as follows: • Reduction in drying time, resulting in a drop in electricity bill • Reduction in drying reject rate, increasing recovery and decreasing rework cost • Increase in average selling price • Fewer finger joints per length, resulting in less glue usage • Flatter drying allows for smaller set up size in wet mill, less allowance for warping and planing - increasing recovery • Less planing in the dry mill will draw less current, saving electricity and increasing the time between blade sharpening. This will also result in less wear and tear on machinery and hence extend machine life.

Electricity: Electricity can be saved by working smarter. In the sawing process, thicker saw kerf draws more current. Thinner kerf saws however tend to saw skew at higher feed speeds. It is sometimes possible to decrease feed speeds slightly and still make target production. Thinner saw kerf will save electricity and increase recovery. In sawmills where high kW machines with high current spikes operate, Power Factor Correction can be implemented. Power Factor Correction has been known to reduce the electricity bill by as much as 40-50%

Labour efficiency: People must earn their keep. In a perfect world, through training and employing better qualified people, the efficiency should improve. In the real world, however, labour unrest and minimum wages have been increasing drastically without increasing output. The problem with huge minimum wage increase is that while it increases the low down workers' salaries by ± 50%, it will create unhappiness with the higher paid labourers also wanting a greater percentage of salary increase, increasing the payroll by a big margin. I envisage large scale automation and mechanization in the not-so-distant future to counter the rising labour cost and lower efficiency. Sadly this will also result in job losses. The message is simple: Work smarter and more efficiently. Henco is a Saasveld B.Tech - Wood Technology graduate, a Control Systems and Microsoft Systems Engineer. Timbersoft cc specialises in optimising kiln drying, as well as technical assistance and custom automation in the sawmilling process. See our advert on page 81. iQ

Up to 6m long - 250 x 250 mm or bigger! Cut to order. Fully pressure treated. Cheaper than you think. Phone for a quote or see our website. Tel: 013 751 3021 / Mobile: 082 785 8215 / Email:

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Leaf House With a warm and humid climate for the largest part of the year, Brazil attracts many tourists and prospective home owners in their tireless search for the perfect getaway. Today, it seems, we have discovered one of them. Words: Daniel Conradie Photography: Š Images courtesy of Mareines + Patalano Arquitetura


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ocated in the municipal district of Angra dos Reis (a short drive South of Rio de Janeiro), a popular tourist destination on account of its tropical climate and unscathed beaches, the 800m2 beach house in question makes no attempt at conforming to the neighbourhood's aesthetic standards. Instead, a rich organic structure rests on a perfectly manicured site, allowing the viewer to move around it freely and absorb its complex geometry. Leaf House is an excellent architectural precedent when taking into account its response to the area's warm and humid climate. The standard approach to designing a building within an area susceptible to high humidity is to maximise ventilation by encouraging the movement of air throughout the building – an approach the architects followed diligently. The architects and the client were in mutual agreement with the premise that a tropical beach house should primarily serve to enhance the dialogue between nature and man, and, where possible, to blur the boundaries between them. As a result of this preoccupation with the definition of a nondefinite space, the final product appears to be more of a threshold than an actual structure. In essence, the design is a reflection of Brazil's vernacular Indian architecture, not as much a literal rendition thereof (in terms of form), but more in its particular approach to the material selection. Vernacular architecture or an approach to building design inspired by local conditions - which can include climatic conditions, local culture, materials, and techniques - develops out of the desire (or limitation) to only use local materials. The stone used in this project, for example, was collected from the site and incorporated into the material palette. Viewing the ground storey floor plan, the house is composed of 6 'leaves' that radiate from a central point. Each space is allocated a particular leaf and its extent is wrapped in a skin of sliding glass screens. The result of this particular strategy is a floor plan consisting of a punctuated series of enclosed pavilions, all unified beneath the commanding roof element.

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Movement in between the pavilions serves as a reminder to the viewer that the house takes no stance in defining an interior. It was part and parcel of the architects' intention to remove any residual areas in between these primary volumes in an attempt to maximise the flow of air throughout the house. The downstairs living spaces are populated by large furniture pieces and traditional Indian hammocks, all of which are dressed in natural fabrics in pale white and cream tones. Colour is introduced in the palette through the employment of various tropical plants. Completing the composition, a snaking pool weaves through the space, and where it meets the central formal dining room passes through it and becomes a pond for aquatic plants and fish. Upstairs, four bedrooms and bathrooms hover over the spaces below, each bedroom enclosed within its own pod. The bedroom interiors employ a very dramatic colour scheme of polished wooden floors, wood-clad walls and weaved reed ceilings. Set against this somewhat static and singular backdrop, airy fabrics in rich colours provide privacy and movement to the spaces.

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Ground floor plan: Scale 1: 200 1. pool veranda 2. fireplace 3. rear veranda 4. dining room 5. home theatre 6. suite 7. Closet 8. bathroom 9. kitchen 10. store room 11. washbasin 12. swimming pool 13. pond 14. stairs


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Selectively sourced hardwoods from around the world

Eco Timber Traders is a KZN based timber merchant specialising in Exotic Hardwoods. Eco carry over 40 different species of timber which are supplied in large or small quantities to the furniture and cabinet industry, as well as joiners, shopďŹ tters, the kitchen industry and anyone that uses quality hardwoods. Eco Timber Traders supports suppliers that offer FSC timber and timber that comes from well managed, sustainable plantations. Call them for all your Hardwood, Softwood, decking, ooring and natural edged timber slab requirements.

Contact Us Tel: +27 (0) 31 701 7023 Fax: +27 (0) 31 701 9576 Email Hans: Email Rob:

architecture Undoubtedly the roof is the star of the ensemble - an awesome eucalyptus structure, both in terms of its scale and sheer complexity - and is dressed in pine shingles. Its form evokes images of billowing sails – an appropriate metaphor, considering its coastal context and the design's intent to maximise natural ventilation. Most commonly, the roof element of a building is simply left as an exercise of capping the spaces, shielding it from the weather. In this particular case, however, it is the roof that serves as the primary generator for the form of the building and provides the framework for the spaces it encompasses. The roof's overbearing influence amplifies the intent of blurring the boundaries between the interior and exterior realms, as well as serving as an effective shield for the contents from the harsh tropical sun. The unique geometry of the roof also directs a large portion of rainwater to its centre, where a large steel post funnels water into a reservoir where it is used for flushing toilets and irrigation. It seems that the archetype for a successful tropical beach house, or at least one seemingly successful interpretation thereof, should be to strive towards it not being a house at all. The Leaf House is merely a large cover, enhancing the existing conditions, eliminating the undesirable and providing the perfect venue for the ultimate getaway. iQ

Second floor plan: Scale 1: 200 1. mezzanine - open circulation 2. suite 3. closet 4. bathroom 5. open to below 6. stairs


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Quick facts Location: Angra dos Reis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil Completion date: 2008 Project: Mareines + Patalano Arquitetura Architects: Ivo Mareines Rafael Patalano Paula Costa Flรกvia Lima Rafael Pretti Construction: Laer Engenharia


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HWZ International's 3rd Annual Wood Conference inspires and informs

Held at the Cape Town International Convention Centre on the 8th of February, the Conference presented a unique opportunity for the exchange of ideas, information and inspiration on the topic of wood, in its various states and applications, as a viable and natural building material.


ith the aim of uniting anyone in the industry with a connection or interest in wood as a sustainable building material, the Conference also provided a space for highly targeted, effective networking, as well as an opportunity for international experts to address and share developments in the wood industry abroad. With a heartening welcome from Irene Flückiger, the Consulate General of Switzerland, and an introductory speech by Thomas Rohner of cadwork, Jacques Cronje of Jacques Cronje Timber Design delivered a discussion and analysis of ‘Timber Homes in South Africa: past, present & future.’

Jacques Cronje, registered Professional Senior Architectural Technologist.

Taking a look the history of timber home building in South Africa, as well as current attitudes towards timber home building in the country, Cronje concluded that although timber home building forms a small percentage of the overall home building market in South Africa, the good news is that attitudes towards the material are positive, especially among those who have experienced living in timber homes, and that there is much room for the popularity of this material to grow.

Thomas Rohner of cadwork - organiser of 3rd Wood Conference.


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events Jirí Oslizlo, chairman and CEO of Agrop Nova A.S. in the Czech Republic and Switzerland, highlighted the many benefits of using wood in buildings. Making reference to Novatop products and systems that boast exceptional quality, innovative composition, for superb energy efficiency and climate control, and are prepared with precision, Oslizlo affirmed that timber is a unique material that can fulfil the aesthetic, sustainable and design-flexible aspects we have come to require of a building material.

Jirí Oslizlo, Chairman and CEO of Agrop Nova A.S. in the Czech Republic and Switzerland.

Project manager at WSP, Johannesburg, Mel Barton, took to the stage after Oslizlo to elaborate on the energy and thermal performance of the Novatop House, based in Cape Town. Built specifically to undergo performance testing, the Novatop House’s resultant performance throughout the year has been compared with that of a typical existing South African construction for a dwelling with no insulation. It was found that the Novatop House required approximately eight times less power to maintain optimal comfort levels, representing a significant saving over time to potential homeowners. Reverend Otto Bernd Kohlstock is the director of iThemba Labantu Lutheran Community Centre, a church-based NGO with an outlook that underlines the importance of coupling the written word with sincere and meaningful actions. Among many others, the Centre offers the disadvantaged people of Philipi free access to nutrition, education, health care, and empowerment through income generating and skills development projects.

Mel Barton, Project Manager at WSP Johannesburg.

Reverend Otto Bernd Kohlstock, Director of iThemba Labantu Lutheran Community Centre.

Luyanda Mphahlwa.

Luyanda Mphahlwa, introduced by Kohlstock, is an architect, and an advocate for African-inspired design and its role in “re-envisioning South Africa’s post-Apartheid architectural landscape.” ( Mphahlwa highlighted the role of timber as a sustainable building material in his contribution to the Design Indaba’s 2007 Freedom Park 10 x 10 Housing Project. Deciding to create a double-storey structure from timber and using sandbag construction as wall fillings, the project, drawing from African-inspired design, came to involve the community. Andy Raymond Horn, Founding Director and Principle Architect of Eco Design Architects & Consultants, delivered a talk on ‘Practicing Environmentally Responsible Timber Sourcing & Treatment,’ underlining the benefits of harvesting and treating timber locally, using non-toxic natural treatments and finishes, indigenous plant recipes and moon phase harvesting methods for improved stewardship of the planet.

Andy Raymond Horn, Founding Director and Principle Architect of Eco Design Architects & Consultants. // FEBRUARY 2013


events Michael Louw, an architect who currently teaches second year Technology in the BAS programme at the University of Cape Town’s School of Architecture, Planning & Geomatics and runs the annual Imizamo Yethu platform design-build project, presented on the journey of his career and its significant connections with timber. Louw draws on timber’s capacity to be reused and recycled and the importance of this factor in the Thesen Islands development, as well as some of his students’ remarkable responses to design briefs using wood, to illustrate the dynamism of his colourful career and the flexibility of timber as a material with which to design and build. Regional Engineer for the National Home Builder Registration Council, Anton Marais discussed the role of the Council in timber construction and its role in protecting consumers, promoting and maintaining quality standards in the industry, and building capacity of home building and housing consumers with specific emphasis on the historically disadvantaged. Making reference to the benefits of the Council, as well as the services on offer by the Council, Marais highlighted the regulations that govern timber construction and the importance of adhering to these. Chris Haring, President of the Haring Group’s Management Board discussed, ‘Wood as a creative and job-creating material in Africa.’ Haring highlighted the importance of adding value within the (African) country by processing raw materials there, instead of exporting them, resulting in a wealth of meaningful benefits for the producing country (Gabon, for example), including skills and industry development, which go hand in hand. Haring says, “Our activities in this country (Gabon) therefore constitute entirely intelligent and self-supporting development assistance.”

Michael Louw, architect and teacher of Technology in the BAS programme at the University of Cape Town’s School of Architecture, Planning & Geomatics.

Regional Engineer for the National Home Builder Registration Council, Anton Marais.

Haring also mentions, and showcases, to an extent, the work of Master Swiss Carpenter, Marc Lüdi, saying, “Today, he is practising and developing housing structures and wood interiors at a very high-end finishing level here in Cape Town.” Furthermore, making reference to the Saldome in Rheinfelden, a spectacular dome-shaped structure for the storage of approximately 80 000 tons of salt, Haring commented that, “The three interlocking (timber) arch systems have an impressive natural aesthetic appeal and are clearly effective as supporting structures.” The Saldome has a diameter of 93m, is 31m high and employs the use of about 1 500m3 of untreated timber.

Chris Haring, President of the Haring Group’s Management Board.

Katharina Lehmann, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive of Blumer-Lehmann AG, Holzwerk Lehmann AG, BL Silobau AG and Erlenhof Energie AG, discussed the process of building TAMEDIA, an office building for a publishing house in Switzerland, as a prime example of urban timber construction. Lehmann highlighted the benefits of timber as a versatile material with which to plan, work by machine or by hand, erect and assemble for a final product that is a truly breathtaking world class feat. TAMEDIA stands testament to the incomparable flexibility of timber and the sheer beauty of a sizeable project completed entirely in this material.


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Katharina Lehmann, Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Executive of Blumer-Lehmann AG, Holzwerk Lehmann AG, BL Silobau AG and Erlenhof Energie AG.

events HWZ International’s 3rd Wood Conference reiterated the importance of timber as a viable and sustainable building material, as well as the need to make use of timber resources more effectively and with greater care. As a modern building material, wood offers exceptional possibilities with limitless design potential and great aesthetic appeal. iQ

3rd Wood Conference delegate feedback: First of all, I take this opportunity to commend you for organising and excellent event with the Third Wood Conference. I must admit that it was the best seminar I have attended - from the speakers to the delegates and not to mention the food. Everything was international class! Besides gaining valuable knowledge, I also made acquaintance with delegates from the UK, Switzerland and other parts of Europe, who flew down especially for this event. This event was also great for networking! Once again, thank you for organizing this great event, including the hospitality. I am looking forward to the next one! Sam Ahmed (Pr. S. Arch. T.) Once again I found the conference most informative and well worth the time and effort to attend. Many thanks for your input in sorting out the arrangements. Arthur Coombe-Davis (Quantity Surveyor) Thank you so much. I thoroughly enjoyed the conference, and I would like to see more architects speaking on the role wood can play in the more impoverished areas of our beautiful country. Although Luyanda didn’t speak for long, it was the start of a very inspirational and thought-provoking talk. Ryan van der Vyver (Architect) I want to tell you how much I enjoyed your excellent conference – very interesting and well organised. Thanks a lot! See you at the next one! Thomas Leach (Architect) A really great, well organised conference. Frank Millenaar (Architect)

For more information, please contact: Cell: 076 401 9120 Email: Web:


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The HWZ International 3rd Wood Conference team.

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Designer furniture icon, Pierre Cronje, announces the opening date of his new showroom in Johannesburg Pierre Cronje reveals the date of the opening of his exciting new Kramerville showroom to be 11 April 2013. He had planned to open shop late in March 2013, but, considering the school holidays over the Easter period, decided to postpone the event to Wednesday, 11 April 2013.


he new showroom’s location, no 16 Desmond Street, Kramerville, is the former Fabric Library building, known to many interior designers and décor enthusiasts. The new Pierre Cronje venue, with its 700m2 showroom capacity, will be ideally suited to showcase the large variety of solid wood furniture pieces that have become iconic in distinguished homes, restaurants and hotels in South Africa. Pierre Cronje says that the Kramerville showroom will not only boast finished Pierre Cronje pieces, but customers will be able to have individual solid wood items designed and made by hand to their specifications.


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He says an element of the Pierre Cronje factory will shine through in the design of the showroom, educating visitors on Pierre Cronje’s South African manufacturing heritage. Pierre Cronje’s furniture pieces reflect not only their design, but also a lifestyle. Continuing on the feel of the showroom in Johannesburg, he says, “The furniture will be the centre of attention in the new showroom, with the wood speaking for itself.”

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"The furniture will be the centre of attention in the new showroom, with the wood speaking for itself."

In celebration of the new showroom, Pierre Cronje plans to offer irresistible discounts on items in the showroom for three weeks from 11 April 2013. The successes of his previous sales in Cape Town show the popularity of the Pierre Cronje brand and the desire to own the exquisite wooden designer pieces. iQ For more information, visit


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NLA Imported Timbers opens a Merchant Division NLA has been importing and distributing timber, board, composite decking and related products into South Africa and neighboring countries for over 26 years. With a combined experience of over 120 years in the timber industry, NLA have developed solid relationships with reputable and reliable suppliers worldwide, which enables them to provide their valuable customers with customised product and service requirements. With a national warehousing and logistical capability, NLA is able to deliver their products quickly and efficiently nationwide. NLA have now launched it’s new merchant division in Johannesburg due to increased demand for smaller quantity requirements from their customers. “Our target market for the merchant division is any size business requiring smaller quantities of timber” says John Teixeira, sales and marketing director for NLA. “We will not offer boards, decking or any other products from the merchant business that will conflict with the operations of our loyal customers”, says John. NLA will use the same strategy in the merchant division that has brought them their success in NLA, that is to exceed their customers’ expectations through exceptional service and sincere relationships.

We live our mission to exceed customer expectations. Our most important value is honesty and integrity. We have built our business on sincere and mutually beneficial relationships. We have a customer centered culture that none of our competitors have been able to copy although many have tried. We are committed to your success. We don’t only sell timber, we offer solutions. We offer value for money. We have a wide range of products. John Clement Sean Robin Reena

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A solo for solid timber and glass construction House Stöckli, designed by Swiss architect, Pascal Flammer, employs the use of Novatop wooden panels, highlighting the building's simplicity in design. A rectangular ground plan, gabled roof and composite roof covering seem to be nothing unusual, but at a second glance, finer details become apparent. Words and photographs: Katrin Brunner and Barbara Renz


ascal Flammer kick-started his now-awarded career by designing a house which bears the name Stöckli. The house, which was built with an entire exterior and interior of wood, was a groundbreaking trend. "The idea simply came into my mind," says Flammer. Stöckli is partly a basement building, but its larger part rests on a bed plate sunk under ground level. The depth was carefully calculated, so that after the process of landscaping, the height of the worktop in the kitchen is level with the built-in furniture along the windows, and the garden.


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"The room thus becomes a single space, and thanks to its visual communication with the surroundings, it is also very generous," explains Flammer. Solid Novatop panels bonded together with wooden laths, stacked in a crosswise manner, were used partly as part of the sandwich envelope and partly as the final interior layer – these panels highlight the aesthetic appeal of the wood, which is one of the most distinctive features of this product.


"The room thus becomes a single space, and thanks to its visual communication with the surroundings, it is also very generous," explains Flammer. Flammer incorporated the same material for the cladding of the body of the kitchen units, as well as for the built furniture, doors and shelves. The treatment consists of multiple coatings of natural oil containing white pigment. "In the past, it was done this way," says Flammer. "Oiled wood looks nice and retains its natural appearance. Thus far, there haven’t been any problems."

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The noticeable fillings of the openings are not, with the exception of the opening parts, connected with any frames, which makes for greater visual space. None of these fillings has more than 8m2 and the length does not exceed 6m, so the handling was also relatively easy. The perpendicular design of the project is disturbed by the two circular window openings located in the gutter walls, against which the sliding door between the two adjoining rooms operates. The spiral staircase which connects all three floors is based on the same shape. "Is it not impractical?� we asked Pascal. “What does practical mean? I think that the extreme regard of 'practicality' has crept into civilization and is the main reason why most of the houses being built are boring, grey, and simply ugly," he concludes. iQ For more information about Novatop, visit


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Rossignol Global Headquarters Photography by: © André Morin, © Christian Rausch, Hérault Arnod

The image of Rossignol, a historic leader in the world of skiing, is intimately linked to the mountains and to snow. The project for its global headquarters has nothing to do with the stereotypical office building, but is a tribute to nature and to the peaks, but also to technology, which is inseparable from top-level sport. 52

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architecture The roof, which envelops the whole project, is topography in osmosis with nature and the landscape. Its organic, timber-clad shape echoes the profile of the mountains that surround the site. In order to create the “House of Rossignol,” the Rossignol Group will be assembling on these sites different entities that are currently spread over several locations, but which all contribute to the company’s identity.

The roof covers three types of space: • The racing ski production workshop, the brand’s technological showcase, and technical rooms, all grouped alongside the motorway. • The office floors, which include the administrative and sales departments, R&D, research and design, etc. • The street, spectacular and bright, the space of social encounter, which crosses the building from side to side. At its end, the street widens to become the showroom.

On the motorway side, the façade creates a kinetic and dynamic effect reinforced by the repetition of the logo, which appears gradually. The front of the building rises to form a roof over the workshops and then on to the apex, and descends again on the south-western side to cover the office area.


he plot stands in the middle of a plain surrounded by mountains. It is a stretch of former farmland, marshy and perfectly flat, bounded on the northern side by the Lyon-Grenoble motorway. The architecture has been designed specifically for Rossignol, a fusion of the company’s functional and fantasy aspects, in a surprising and minimalist form: it is inspired by board sports, by fluidity of motion, and also by relief, snow and glaciers sculpted by the elements.

The roof, which envelops the whole project, is topography in osmosis with nature and the landscape. Its organic, timber-clad shape echoes the profile of the mountains that surround the site. // FEBRUARY 2013




It is then intercut with patios planted with birch trees that seem to grow through the roof: nature and building intertwine. The irregular profile of the roof and office façades leaves the opportunity for future extensions as required. Additions can be built without disrupting the balance and identity of the project. From the start, the architecture embodies its own growth process. The roof ridge, with a glasshouse running along it, is situated above the street, a high-level space giving onto the “high-altitude restaurant,” the highest point of the structure, which makes reference to ski slope restaurants. Inside, the building functions like a “hive” in which the different functions come into contact and interact, where people enjoy the experience of working together and meeting each other. The originality of the programme is that it assembles very different functions, from production to services, under a single roof. The aim of this assembly is to create a global synergy which eliminates barriers between design, service and technology. Each person in their own diversity – engineer, designer, technician, secretary, salesman, etc. – meets in a reciprocal encounter. To encourage this internal communication, social spaces are distributed around the building.


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The restaurant, situated right at the top and at the gravity centre of the street, is designed as the primary locus for the company life: two great glass roofs divide up the panoramic views to the sky and the mountains, on one side to the Vercors and on the other to the Chartreuse. A large roof terrace is available for alfresco lunching, protected from the noise of the motorway. Whether on the terrace or around a wooden fire, the restaurant turns the midday break into a special moment. Only two materials are used for the external envelope: wood (natural larch) and glass. The structure is made of steel, like an organic skeleton that outlines the shape, with its multiple warped surfaces. The roof frame is visible in the workshop and offices. The post and beam frame of the service floors straddles spans of 12 to 15 metres to leave the space as free as possible. The workshop space has a primary horizontal roof overlaid by the timber over-roof, creating a hidden space between the two, which contains all the technical systems and machinery. This means that no technical elements are visible from the outside; therefore the external shape is pure. The building is designed for minimal environmental impact. The technical choices make it an efficient and energy-saving building, well insulated and protected from the summer sun by the timber over-roof. The systems are optimised – the heat produced by the workshop machines is recovered and re-injected into the heating network. The offices receive natural ventilation through automatic window opening. iQ

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Showroom exterior

Datasheet Location entr’alp 2 - La Buisse - Saint Jean de Moirans

Client Skis Rossignol SAS

Project management Hérault Arnod Architectes Project team: Jérôme Moenne-Loccoz (project manager), Alexandre Pachiaudi, Camille Bérar, Nicolas Broussous, Matthias Jäger

Competition team: Florent Bellet, Adela Ciurea, Israel Lopez Vargas, Alexandre Pachiaudi • with François Deslaugiers (for the panoramic lift) • Batiserf - Structure • Nicolas - Fluide • Forgue - Economiste • Cap Paysages - Paysagiste



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DESIGNER WOODEN CREATIONS Established in 1996, Africque Designer Wooden Creations specialize in the construction of wooden decks and balustrades. Africque Designer Wooden Creations was part of a team of Landscape Architects whose creative garden designs have been awarded several 1st prizes at the Safari Garden Expo Shows held in Pretoria. We strive and pride ourselves in our craftsmanship and exceptional product quality. Each deck constructed is unique.


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Timetable • Competition: 2006 • Work beginning: spring 2007 • Delivery: June 2009

Programme • Offices and open spaces for administrative departments, R&D, design, etc. • Racing skis workshop • Showrooms

Images Labtop-rendering, Hérault Arnod

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Model Atelier FAU (photos © André Morin)


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The South meets the city Manhattan meets the Southern Way in the design of Southern Eleven, a new Southern style BBQ house in Spinningfields, Manchester. Design objective: To design and build a restaurant that is authentically Southern States of America, but with a modern, trendy, and urban twist. Based on a brand positioning of an authentic Southern style BBQ house for diners today, a sophisticated casual dining eatery was established to illustrate the concept of ‘Southern Way meets Manhattan.’

Challenges: Based on an American concept, finding the right partners in the United Kingdom to execute the concept of the restaurant was a challenge - so too was project-managing the build from South Africa. Ensuring that the original vision for the restaurant was met and delivered with the right execution and detail required constant input and attention.


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dÉcor Inspiration: Tassels/fringes (cowboys, Indians and modern fashion). final product: Tassel influence in lighting and wall art (photography).

Inspiration: Totem poles. final product: Carved pole wall separating restaurant from kitchen.

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dÉcor Inspiration: Chopped wood/wood textures. final product: Natural wood lamps and communal table.

Inspiration: Saloon furniture. final product: Saloon-inspired bar and table legs.


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dÉcor Inspiration: Communal table. final product: Communal table.

The result: City Life’s ‘Definitive Guide to What’s On’ in Manchester gave Southern Eleven an overall rating of 4/5: 5/5 for décor, 3/5 for service and 4/5 for the food. The reviewer states “S11 has not skimped on the interior, and I like it… it balances nicely between stylish and cowboy.” The restaurant is busy and the client is looking to roll out one or two more stores in the region for others to enjoy hospitality the Southern way. iQ


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Timber homes in South Africa Past, present & future

This is an excerpt from a presentation delivered by Jacques Cronje at the HWZ International Third Wood Conference, 8 Feb 2013, CTICC, Cape Town. Statistics Despite statistics such as that 70% of the developed world’s population live in timber frame homes, and despite the resurgence in the popularity of timber homes in Europe in the last decade, my question is whether or not timber homes in South Africa will maintain such a relatively miniscule share of the local market. According to the 2011 Census, homes of a current value of R1m and upwards, which are not ‘bricks or cement block/ concrete’ account for less than 0.38% of the total, with the figure for new houses built from 2000 to 2010 at just over 0.5%

Timber homes in South Africa a brief history The predecessors of the timber home in South Africa are the wood frame and iron clad homes, some imported in kit form from Europe, and others designed and built here from the late 1800s to the early 1900s. The most well known of these is the Smuts House, prefabricated in the UK, shipped to India, and later brought to South Africa where it was re-erected at Doornkloof for Jan Smuts in 1909. An example of an iron clad timber frame building designed and built locally, is the Globe Tavern in Barberton, which opened for business in 1887 and was designed by Arthur Hubert Halder. Another example is the Millwood House, now a museum in Knysna. The house was originally built in Millwood during the ‘Gold Rush’ in 1885, and was later relocated in sections


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to Knysna by ox-wagon, and re-constructed where St. George’s Church Hall now stands. It was moved to its present site in 1910. An example of a remaining timber clad building from that era is the Woodcutter’s Cottage, built in the 1880s, on display at the George Museum. After this era of timber frame building, iron clad timber frame buildings fell out of favour with the local authorities, and a period followed when they were all but completely outlawed. Many of our older title deeds still contain clauses such as ‘no corrugated iron.’ Up to the 1950s, the few timber buildings that were built were still being built of hardwoods. It was only around that time, with the introduction of preservative treatments that softwoods, such as Pine, started gaining in popularity as a construction material, and it was in the 1960s that timber buildings were re-introduced as an alternative to brick and mortar. Among the pioneers of this re-introduction of timber homes were Searles Homes in Great Brak River, who initially built timber frame homes to house the staff for their shoe factory. Others were Elgin Homes in Grabouw, and NST in Knysna, who introduced solid wood and log cabin building systems. While it is evident that much of the design was based on function, an exception to this was the magnificent Bruynzeel House in Stellenbosch, with its hyperbolic paraboloid roof, designed in 1960 by Aart Bijl and built by Kees Bruynzeel, a Dutch wood merchant. The majority of timber homes at the time, however, were relatively inexpensive holiday homes built along the southern cape coast, many of which were prefabricated.

In 1982, some members of the timber building industry got together to form the Timber Frame Builders Association, now called the Institute for Timber Frame Builders, which went a long way in achieving the recognition the quality timber buildings enjoy today, particularly with regards local authorities and lending institutions. If we look at a graph from the 2011 Census data showing the percentage of ‘non-brick & cement block’ houses since 1960, we see that beyond the spike in the 1960s (from close to zero % before that), little if no growth in percentage up until now. This is while the percentage of timber buildings continues to increase year after year in many parts of the world, as people become more aware of the benefits of available systems. It is my guess that the perception of timber homes as a cheaper and less desirable alternative, perhaps still a result of its humble iron clad origins and later cost– effective prefab holiday houses, still persists among many.

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Why timber homes? What is the fuss all about? Should we not just continue doing things here as we always have, building most buildings out of bricks and mortar? What are the benefits?

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For the client: 1. Insulation – and therefore energy costs. Perhaps not yet such a huge issue, but with a potential electricity hike of around 16% for the next 5 years at this stage, it soon will be. 2. Natural home – Many clients choose to build a timber home because they want a more natural home that better fits into its environment. The same applies to beach resorts, and lodges in nature reserves. 3. Ease of construction and time to construct – It takes significantly less time to build a timber home than a similar brick and mortar home. It’s also easier to alter or add on to it at a later stage – and a lot less messy. 4. Difficult and sensitive sites – Due to using relatively lightweight materials, several of my projects have been on difficult-to-access sites, where getting timber there is pretty easy compared to bricks. For sensitive sites, timber construction also allows one to nestle right in between the existing vegetation with minimum disturbance. There are also cost savings on steep sites, by using suspended floor structures.

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Percentage of non 'brick & cement block' main dwelling houses valued currently at R 1m or more, built from 1941 onwards Data from 2011 Census.

For the environment: 1. Less energy used = less emissions – Until such time as our energy is produced from renewable resources, and not coal, any savings in energy are savings in harmful emissions. 2. Low embodied energy – Of the various readily available raw materials for building, timber has, by far, the lowest embodied energy, and if grown in a sustainably managed plantation, is a truly renewable building resource. In terms of strength to weight, radiata pine, for example, has a strength-to-weight ratio 20% higher than structural steel, and more than four times that of unreinforced concrete in compression. 3. Carbon sequestration – Trees absorb carbon as they grow and this carbon is locked away when the timber is used for construction – so the more timber used instead of more energy- and carbon-costly materials, such as masonry and concrete, the lower the carbon footprint of your home. 4. Treatment – Most preservative treatments, which while providing the benefit prolonging the lifespan of timber indefinitely, have not been considered ideal from an environmental perspective. This is changing with the introduction of new preservative treatments such as Tan E, which was recently accepted by Ecospecifier global.

For the architect/designer: 1. Contemporary – Driven by technology, everything around us is advancing in leaps and bounds. Timber, along with other new lightweight building systems, allows us to be part of that technological revolution, rather than building the way we were in the pre-digital age. Technological advances in design software and digital fabrication technologies are now too allowing timber to be cut and fashioned to any shape or form.


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2. Versatility – Thanks to the extreme versatility of timber, your timber home could be anything from a humble log cabin, to a grand Cape Cod style beach house, a sleek glazed all round clad post and beam house, or a digitally crafted open-plan contemporary house with a freeform double curved roof. 3. Building Regulations – Timber homes are included in the South African National Building Regulations standards, in SANS 10082, Timber Buildings. When built to these standards they also automatically achieve the standard required for registration with the National Home Builder Registration Council (NHBRC). They are also easily designed to meet the requirements of the new Energy Efficiency regulations SANS 10400 Part XA .

For the builder: 1. Passion – Speak to any specialist timber builder and you are likely to find someone with a passion for their craft and for working with wood. Who would you rather have building your house? 2. Precision and neatness – Building with timber is a precise form of construction. Everything needs to be just right to work. For a builder and all involved it’s easier to monitor and see that everything is working according to plan.

Timber Building Poll held in conjunction with Timber iQ Given the clear advantages and consistently small uptake, I recently set up a poll, along with Timber iQ magazine, to help determine attitudes towards timber homes in South Africa.

We had just short of 120 respondents, of which 29% were in the design or architecture field. What was most interesting was that 38% of the respondents had previously or currently live in a timber home – and clearly wanted to share the advantages. Although I had not anticipated that such a large percentage of respondents would have lived in timber homes, their responses were of the most interest, particularly because, in each of the following cases, their responses, on average, rated higher than those who had not lived in a timber home. When asked to rate timber homes compared to brick, where an answer of 1 is much less, and 5 far superior, in favour of timber, the average scores were as follows: {The first figures for each are for people who have lived (or still do) in timber homes, and the figures in brackets are the averages for all respondents.} • • • •

Energy efficiency Time taken to build Maintenance requirements Risk of fire

3.93 4.60 2.87 2.60

(3.80) (4.41) (2.70) (2.35)

So, while at best the results could be said to be biased, as it was mostly people who like or have lived in timber homes and who took time to do the survey, what I found relevant is that the comments by people who have lived in them showed that timber homes, even amongst this sample group, perform and are generally better than general perception.

saving electricity saving money saving nature

Eco-friendly solution for energy-efficient buildings

Conclusion So to answer my initial question about whether timber homes will remain marginal in the built environment in South Africa… My guess is that is that, as the pressure on resources increases, efforts to slow down global warming will escalate, energy costs will escalate, along with the ever evolving technologies, there will be a shift and possibly a large one. And at the current low base of at best 0.5% of the market, even a 0.5% shift from brick to timber frame represents a 100% increase in demand for timber homes. And a relatively small, compared to elsewhere, 5% shift, represents a 1000% increase. I think the timber building industry may soon get very busy. iQ

// FEBRUARY 2013


We invite you to our permanent exhibition stand at Eco Exhibit in Cape Town!

HWZ International SA (Pty) Ltd, Cape Town


European examples augur well for newly launched Hubtex in S.A. Many local timber companies are taking note of how Germanmade Hubtex specialist lift trucks have helped improve efficiencies in well-known European companies.


oscor Lift Truck Company (GLTC) was recently awarded the sole distribution agency for Hubtex in southern Africa. One story that has generated a particularly positive response is that of German timber specialist Dauerholz AG, an innovative leader in the field of internal logistics. They bought the first Hubtex electric multidirectional sideloader – the Hubtex MQ 60 2150 - to carry packs of waxed timber across longer distances at their production site in Dabel, a former military base. In a patented process, Dauerholz AG applies an entirely ecological process to native pine timber using a special wax to make a very durable timber-based material. A company spokesperson says the process has the potential to reduce the use of endangered, valuable tropical timber. With a process that was ‘green’ in nature, it was logical to acquire an environmentally friendly, ‘green’ stacker: “We had all but decided to invest in an additional threewheeled four-way stacker,” explains Peter Weller, Dauerholz AG operations manager. “But as soon as we became aware of the MQ 60 2150, which is specially designed for internal and heavy-duty external deployment, I knew it was ideal for this particular application.”

Hubtex Electrical Multidirectional Sideloaders The Electric Multidirectional Sideloaders (EMS) are a signature product of Hubtex. They are suitable for the versatile handling of long loads, stacks of metals sheets, chipboard, tools, cable drums, rollers, oversized pallets and round-bar stock. With capacities from 0.8 tons to 50 tons, the EMS is suited to both indoor and outdoor applications and can be used in guided or unguided operation in very narrow aisles. They also feature multidirectional steering to maximise maneuverability. The three most popular Hubtex EMS series are the 2150 series (used at Dauerholz AG) , the 2120 series, and the 2130 series. The 2150 series is a robust machine with extremely high load capacities. It transports and handles long and heavy loads in combined indoor and outdoor applications.


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Due to its powerful travel motors and large plastic tyres, it can reach speeds of up to 16km/h. These sideloaders can be used in outdoor areas and are proven workhorses even in poor weather conditions. The 2130 series machines are known for their versatility. With multidirectional steering, they are the entry level for heavy load handling. With their soft plastic tyres, they handle long and heavy loads of up to 6 tons in both indoor and outdoor applications. The heavy-duty 2120 series, also with multidirectional steering, is characterised by its robust design and high load capacities. With its largesized Vulkollan (PU) tyres, these are mainly used indoors or in canopied outdoor areas.

The 2150 operation at Dauerholz Weller says there are several value-adding features on the machine, including the guide rails making it very easy to maneuver. ”Its electronic, multidirectional steering ideally combines high handling speeds with maximum maneuverability in confined spaces. This ensures excellent material flow and supports a highly efficient production process,” he said, adding that its zeroemission, quiet electric motor means the 2150 perfectly suits the ecological ethos of Dauerholz AG.

Timber Frame Technology (Pty) Ltd. Original Home builder

Timber Frame Technology (Pty) Ltd. has specialised in Timber Frame Construction for the last 20 years and have mostly build Lodges in environmentally sensitive areas.

The company started out doing only loft extensions, but has since been qualiiied to build timber frame homes and lodge developments. Timber Frame Technology (Pty) Ltd. has been involved in the design and construction of Lodges in the KNP, Timbavati, Klaserie, Sabie Sand and Maputo Special Reserve.

The compa company prides itself in working around nature and has always been sensitive towards the environment. Timber Frame Technology (Pty) Ltd. is currently managed by André Serfontein and André Serfontein Jnr.

Based in Nelspruit with a footprint across the greater Mpumalanga, Mozambique and Swaziland areas, the Serfonteins’ involvement in the total package ensures delivery of the best possible product within in the allocated time, ensuring total client satisfaction.

For more information, contact: André Serfontein Cell: 083 305 8525 Email:

André Serfontein Jnr Cell: 072 347 3561 Email:

news The unit is used inside the Dauerholz post-processing facilities for 80% of the time and outdoors for the remainder. It is used to place undressed timber that has been submerged in special wax on the processing station; to carry the finished finger joint planks from the hall to the planning mill and to carry the undressed timber from the warehouse to the corresponding halls. During an eight hour shift the unit is used continuously for two to three hours. Asked about the risks involved in using such a newly developed machine, Weller said that at no point did he think his company was taking any risks. “The fact of the matter is that in Hubtex we found a partner who shows total commitment to our cause,” he concludes.

Not for timber alone In many organisations timber is but one of the products out of several that has to be carried and the versatility of their specialist lift trucks is crucial. One such company is Stark AG. Based in the Swiss town of Altstätten and managing some 3,000 extremely diverse products, including, of course, timber, they face significant logistics challenges on a daily basis. The turning point for them was in 2009/2010 when they tackled these challenges by implementing a new logistics concept and making the largest investment in the company’s 60-year history. Their primary solution? Six Hubtex units – two orderpicking platforms, three electric multidirectional sideloaders with fixed cabins and one with an elevating ‘man-up’ cabin. “The Hubtex units, combined with the new IT infrastructure and electronics enabled Stark AG to increase its productivity by 30%,” the company reported. Since the upgrade, Stark AG has been receiving their wood products via a semi-automated order-picking system comprising order-picking platforms and the specially manufactured industrial trucks supplied by Hubtex. Ralf Jestädt, managing director of Hubtex, underlines the significance of this contract for his company: “Although we have produced these units individually for many different woodworking companies, the size and variety of the fleet commissioned by Stark AG is unique in the global market – a fact that is highlighted by the total carrying capacity of 31,000 kg.” The two differently dimensioned order-picking platforms EZK 30 and EZK 40 offer load capacities of 4,000 and 3,000kg respectively and are suitable both for smaller individual panels and full bundles. The units are just 2,200mm wide and are wire-guided through the 2,500mm wide aisles.


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Two employees take the panels from the racks and place them onto transfer shelves for further loading as per the customer order. The Hubtex electric multidirectional sideloaders MQ 40 and MQ 70 (load capacity of 4,000 and 7,000kg) are used to transfer the consignments directly into the trucks; the MQ 100 model can carry up to 10,000kg. The MQ 40, with its low, four-way mast that can be extended up to 8 metres, was required since one hall has a height of just 3 metres. Meanwhile, Goscor Lift Truck Company’s MD, Darryl Shafto says Goscor is pleased to be partnering with a company that makes trucks of such outstanding quality. “As the examples above illustrate, Hubtex has really made an indelible impression worldwide for their quality, ingenuity and service,” Shafto says. He adds that Hubtex’s wide range of products will enable GLTC to broaden its offering of materials handling solutions in the local market. “With Hubtex’s four-way reach trucks, as well as their lift trucks that can handle long loads, new markets in which GLTC has not operated before are now open to us. These markets include the steel and timber industries, the glass industry, builders’ merchant outlets, and others,” Shafto says. In fact, with products that range from simple manual forklift trucks to high-lift picking trucks and rail-mounted lift trucks with load capacities ranging from 0,8 tons to 350 tons, Hubtex’s product range covers several industrial sectors, including, of course, lifting and transport equipment for the textile industry – weaving mills and warp knitting factories - where Hubtex started business. Shafto says that naturally, one of Goscor’s primary targets in South Africa will be the timber industry, including timber wholesalers, sawmills, wood-processing companies, kitchen manufacturers and others. “Many of the more common products that are lifted and carried include chipboard, plywood, timber roof trusses, construction and finished timber along with kitchen worktops, and doors,” says Shafto. Lars Beuel, Hubtex sales manager material handling, says he is optimistic about the new venture in South Africa. “We saw very quickly that GLTC is a consummately professional company and that our products will add strategic value to their current range. I look forward to working with Darryl and the Goscor team and to building a memorable partnership in that country,” he says. Goscor Lift Truck Company has established a powerful reputation in South Africa as the sole local distributor of Crown, Doosan and Bendi products and has, since 1984, offered a world-class sales and support service in the materials-handling equipment industry. iQ

TIMBER PRESERVATION SERVICES TEL: 021 534 7001/2/3 | FAX: 021 534 7004 | EMAIL: An Operation of United Tube (PTY) LTD



Own treatment Plant Facilities to rework timber SATAS Accredited Imported Pine timber available Various Tanalised (CCA) and new generation Vacsol Azure (Clear) treatment options available to protect your timber. TM


• H2 Low Hazard – Interior Use: Timber to be used under a roof. Timber not to be in contact with the ground and not exposed to leaching and weathering. • H3 Moderate Hazard – Exterior Above Ground Use: Timber not to be in contact with the ground but may be exposed to leaching and weathering. • H4 High Hazard – Ground Contact Use: Timber may be in direct contact with the ground.

BOARDS • 18mm Shutterply Treated and Untreated 1.220 x 2.440 • 21mm Shutterply Treated and Untreated 1.220 x 2.440

COMPETITIVE PRICES AVAILABLE ON REQUEST “ Lonza Wood Protection has obtained third-party verification on health, eco-toxicity and environmental claims for Vacsol™ Azure™ pressure treated wood through Ecospecifier Global”.

Credit facilities available to approved customers Stock subject to availability Deliveries available For more information on Treated Timber visit


Pieter: 071 350 7641


Moaim: 072 514 9509


Willie: 083 634 8284


86 Fitzmaurice Avenue, Epping 2


Matriarch Equipment For the past three years, the South African company, Matriarch Equipment, has developed a reputation as a leader in the design and manufacture of timber handling grapples in the industry.


he company was established by brothers Justin and Ashley Bell during 2009, when a gap was identified in the market place for high quality, locally produced niche handling equipment for both the sugar cane and timber industries. The brothers set out with a vision of developing loading and extraction machinery, but decided that timber grapples were a good product on which to ‘cut their teeth’ in the manufacturing game. “We started from scratch and needed to establish certain systems and processes within the business in order to lay the foundation for the development, manufacture and support of our products going forward,” says Ashley. The initial plan was only to develop two sizes; a 0.35m2 and 0.41m2, as these are commonly used in the timber industry on tri-wheel loggers and trailer- or truckmounted cranes.


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The MT360 and MT420 grapples were accepted extremely well by the market and soon after the launch of these first two entry models in February 2010, requests for larger capacity grapples came pouring in from the market. “Grapples are high wearing components within a timber harvesting operation and should be viewed as such,” says Justin. “There comes a time when repairing an old grapple, versus replacing it with a new one, is not financially viable in the short to medium term.” Matriarch Equipment now produces nine different models of timber grapples, from the MT360 (0.35m2) to the much larger MT1800 (1.8m2). The company supplies grapples mostly to the Southern African market, but has, in the past, also supplied to markets abroad, such as Malaysia, Indonesia and South America. “We hope to grow our export market as we grow our business, in order to spread our risk across the different markets around the world,” says Ashley.


Today, timber grapples are not the only product line on which the company focuses. Since 2010, the Matriarch team has been working on the development of complete loading tools. The brothers decided that a low risk approach to this development was to adapt and optimize a well proven excavator for loading both timber and sugar cane. This was achieved in late 2010 when Matriarch Equipment manufactured a prototype sugar cane loader, using the upper structure of a 13 ton excavator, coupled with a custom built chassis, incorporating four-wheel drive, high floatation wheels and excellent ground clearance; suited for harsh and undulating underfoot conditions. To date the company has manufactured five of these units, a mix of timber and sugar cane loading machines. Research and development plays a major role in day-today operations at Matriarch Equipment. “Without R&D we’re at risk of falling behind the curve, and the company stagnating, so a great deal of emphasis is placed on this area of the business,” says Justin. The Bell brothers view innovation as key to the survival of the business in the long term. “We’re working on some very exciting projects currently,” says Ashley. In addition to the development and manufacture of products, Matriarch Equipment is also an importer and distributor of Indexator Rotators from Sweden.


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Various heavy duty rotator models are offered by the company at competitive pricing. Matriarch also holds a comprehensive stock of Indexator spare parts to ensure adequate support of the product in field. “Indexator is viewed as the industry leader in rotator systems globally and we can think of no better strategic partner to compliment our grapple offering,” says Ashley. iQ More information on Matriarch Equipment can be viewed on the website:


– – – – –

Low Hazard: Inside above ground Moderate Hazard: Outside above ground High Hazard: Outside in ground High Hazard: Outside in contact with heavy wet soil or in fresh water High Hazard: Prolonged immersion in sea water H2







Accurate and splinter-free cutting from Makita Makita's plunge cut saw - the 165mm SP6000K - is ideal for kitchen contractors, furniture manufacturers and shop fitters alike, particularly when building worktops with melamine and laminates. Snags and tears are eliminated by its depth-stopper (pre-cut feature), which makes for splinter-free cutting when scoring a preliminary groove at a depth of 2mm without having to change the blade.


he plunge cut saw is a safer option than a circular saw and makes accurate, straight cuts in worktops. Think of the SP6000K as a portable panel saw that can cut accurately up to 3m in length with the optional 3m rail.

The SP6000K is tilt-resistant – a simple slide of the lever on the base plate prevents the tool from falling down towards the blade case when the saw head is bevelled on a guide rail. The position of the cutting line is always the same, regardless of the bevel angle. The bevel range is from -1 to 48 degrees. The plunge cut saw is lightweight at 4,4kg, harnessing a magnesium die cast for the base, blade case, blade case cover and gear housing. It measures 341 x 225 x 250mm. A non-slip soft grip with elastomer surfaced main and auxiliary handles enhances operator comfort and control. Sawdust is ejected backwards and a vacuum can be attached for a dust-free environment.


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news The plunge cut saw is a safer option than a circular saw and makes accurate, straight cuts in worktops. Think of the SP6000K as a portable panel saw that can cut accurately up to 3m in length with the optional 3m rail. Electronics control the soft start function that protects the operator and the saw from initial torque load, as well as the variable speed control dial for cutting a variety of materials such as Perspex and Aluminium.



Well controlled by its top and rear grips, this plunge saw can cut as close as 18mm to the wall. Blade replacement is simple and a locking lever sets the blade at the replacement position, while a wrench can be used through the hole of the blade case. The saw’s designers have also made provision for hex wrench storage. Powered by a vigorous 1300W motor, the SP6000K has a no load speed of 5200 r/min. The model is supplied with a TCT saw blade, clamp set, a 2.5m power cord and a 1.4m guide rail. Optional accessories include a 3,0m guide rail and a bevel cut guide. iQ

For further information contact Robert Cameron-Smith at 011 878-2600.

& Timber iQ Design & Construction

Stand the chance to win a Makita SP6000K 1.4m rail and rail bag (Retail value R5600 incl. VAT) by answering this easy question:

Does the Makita SP6000K have a pre-cut feature to prevent chipping in melamine and laminates? Email your answer with your name and contact number to Closing date for entries is the 31st of March 2013. Winner to be announced on Timber iQ’s Facebook page and in the April/May issue.

Terms and conditions

1) The closing cl date for the competition is the 31st of March 2013. Trademax Publications reserves the right to amend the closing date and draw date. 2) The winner will be randomly selected from the total pool of entries received. 3) By entering this giveaway, acceptance of the rules is implied. No correspondence will be entered into regarding the draw, and the judges’ decision will be final. 4) Entry is limited to residents of South Africa. 5) By entering this competition, you grant permission for Trademax Publications, as well as, Makita Rutherford to contact you for marketing or other purposes. Your information is confidential and will, wi under no circumstances, be handed over to a third party. 7) Trademax Publications will use reasonable efforts to contact the winner telephonically or via e-mail on the contact number or e-mail address as provided by the winner. 8) Should a winning participant not be available on the contact details provided, that person's right to the prize will be deemed to have been waived and the prize will be forfeited. Trademax Publications reserves the right to then award the prize to the next randomly drawn participant. Trademax Publications will exercise all reasonable measures in contacting prize winners. 9) The winner will be contacted during working hours, between 8am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. 10) Any person who is a director, member, partner, employee or agent of, or consultant to Trademax Publications or Makita Rutherford is prohibited from entering. 13) A copy of these rules can also be obtained from Alex Struck at This prize draw is run in accordance with the rules of the Consumer Protection Act.


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timbersoft cc kiln drying and technical assistance specialists

Our experience spans 56 years + in Sawmilling and Drying, 15 years IT and Automation. We have upgraded more than 50 kilns across Southern Africa.

We do: • Custom Kiln Design and Building • Upgrading of existing Kilns and Controls, using PLC, SCADA and WiFi Technology • Setting up and fine tuning of drying schedules via on-site visits and remote monitoring • Fine tuning of drying schedules on any Drying Control System (Not just our own) • Custom automation systems • Technical sawmilling assistance

Stationed in Nelspruit – Mpumalanga, and Port Elizabeth – Eastern Cape Contact: Johan Viljoen 082 8755171 E-mail:


Henco Viljoen 072 3318857 "The Timbersoft kiln upgrade was the most positive upgrade that we could do. Timber quality improved and we had a huge drop in our electricity bill." André Lombaard - Riversdal Sawmill



Sounds of silence Located on the south side of the busy Narinkka square in central Helsinki, Kamppi Chapel offers a place to quiet down and compose oneself in one of Finland's most lively urban spaces.

Photograph by Marko Huttunen.


Photograph by Tuomas Uusheimo.


Photograph by Tuomas Uusheimo.


ith its curved wood façade, the small sacral building flows into the cityscape. Simultaneously the chapel’s gently shaped interior space embraces visitors and shields them from the bustling city life outside. The chapel can be approached from all directions: From the direction of the Simonkatu, one arrives at a small square opening up towards the Narinkka square. From there, a flight of stairs leads down to the entrance level. Entrances are located in two glass façades facing the Narinkka square and the Lasipalatsi building. Only the actual chapel space is located in the wooden volume. Secondary spaces are located in a space opening up towards the square. The entrance space doubles as exhibition space, in which one also encounters clergymen and social workers. The sacral space is a calm space, in which the lively neighbourhood seems distant. Light touching down on the curved surface and the feeling of warm materials define the space. The chapel’s inner walls are made of thick oiled alder planks and the furniture is also made of solid wood. The façades are made of sawn-to-order horizontal finger jointed spruce wood planks, which are treated with a pigmented transparent nanotech wax. The constructive frame consists of CNC-cut gluelam elements. iQ

Client: Helsinki Parish Union and the City of Helsinki Completion: April-May 2012 Total floor area: 352 m2 Architects: K2S Architects Ltd., Helsinki Kimmo Lintula, Niko Sirola and Mikko Summanen Design team: Jukka Mäkinen, project architect Kristian Forsberg Abel Groenewolt Tetsujiro Kyuma Mikko Näveri Miguel Pereira Outi Pirhonen Teija Tarvo Elina Tenho Jarno Vesa Structural engineering: Insinööritoimisto Vahanen Oy Matti Kivinen, Ulla Harju HVAC-designer: Insinööritoimisto Äyräväinen Oy Pasi Heiskanen Electrical and automatization designer: Insinööritoimisto Nurmi Oy PekkaLarinoja Acoustical design: Insinööritoimisto Akukon Oy Henrik Möller


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Bundu Pale is a family-owned business. We supply CCA treated poles, structural timber, deck plank, droppers and fencing material. We also specialise in sandblasted decking and square poles. We deliver throughout Southern Africa.

Cape Select Furniture

We are a SATAS accredited supplier.

Manufactures of quality, bespoke solidwood furniture – since 1981

Contact Person: Teunis Janson Office: 0716717878 013 7334262 Cell: 0829261624 Website: Email:

There is no substitute for style‌ Enrich your life with quality that lasts a lifetime Contact us for a personal meeting to discuss your requirements: E-mail: Website: Phone Francois on: 021 945 3291 or 0833212861


FOR SALE Second-hand beam saw type 3000 Open to offers Note: Most of pneumatic tubing needs replacing, due to not having been used in years.

For more information, contact: Roy Steyn (t) 021 534 1494 (c) 082 803 4713 (e)


ProNature Truly eco-friendly wood finishes


n a world where synthetic- and petroleum-based lacquers, laminates, paints and thinners are everyday solutions to our everchanging environment, ProNature provides a real alternative - a range of entirely natural sealants and treatments for many interior and exterior paint applications. Sealants and other decorative finishes made from natural raw materials are aimed at the market as direct replacement for today’s conventional paints manufactured from petrochemicals. The specially formulated and researched ProNature products offer the purest, environmentally sound alternatives to treating, waterproofing and maintaining wood and mineral surfaces. For reasons of environmental safeness and ease of restoration, surfaces like wooden floors should not be "sealed.” Even though the hardness of two component synthetic coatings cannot be achieved with natural coatings, synthetic coatings are also not entirely safe from scratching and wear and can only be repaired by complete removal and recoating. This is never the case with ProNature's natural coatings and treatments because they are absorbed by wood and stone, thereby nourishing and protecting from the inside out rather than by sealing off the surface. Maintenance or repairs are simply done by applying a fresh layer of ProNature natural wood finishes. ProNature coatings and treatments have the added advantage of not containing any ingredients which could cause harmful emissions, like formaldehyde or aromatic solvents.


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Main ingredients for ProNature products are: • Plant oils, i.e. Linseed oil, Sunflower oil, Tung oil, Beeswax and Carnauba wax; • Natural solvents, i.e. Orange peel oil and Gum turpentine; • Essential oils, i.e. Eucalyptus oil and Rosemary oil.

news The ProNature range, amongst many other products, comprises of: • ProNature Outdoor, for all exterior and interior wood, outdoor furnishings, wooden decks and staircases, pergolas, etc. • ProNature Indoor, for all interior wooden substrates, including table and kitchen tops, bar counters and all other working surfaces exposed to frequent use, contact with water or water-based materials. • ProNature Floor, for the impregnation and treatment, protection and waterproofing of all wooden floors and staircases. It is also suitable for cork flooring, i.e. tiles, etc. • ProNature Wall, interior and exterior waterborne natural resin based wall finish EnviroTouch is currently the only company in South Africa producing a range of 100% natural finishes. Natural paints do not contain petrochemicals. We strive for highest local content in sourcing our raw materials, we promote our products by providing information and samples to the public and the professions, promote involvement of urban communities in supplying raw materials, i.e. grow linseed for oil etc., and finally, by ongoing research and development. iQ

For information on these or other ProNature products, contact us on 0860 105 299 or e-mail or visit our website at


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Wood Mother Nature's building material There are very few building materials that boast the environmental benefits of wood. Compared to alternative building materials, the manufacturing of wooden building products produces less air and water pollution, requires less energy across the product's lifecycle, and generates less CO2 emissions. 92

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ays Charl Jacobz from Swartland Wooden Windows and Doors, “Wood is a fantastically green building material – it is a sustainable material that boasts low embodied energy and low carbon impact, it is durable and long-lasting, with great insulating qualities, and it is aesthetically beautiful to boot.” He says that the concept of green building has become increasingly mainstream over the last few years as more and more consumers become aware of the benefits of choosing eco-friendly building options: “Green building pivots on choosing materials that reduce a building’s energy consumption and decreases the negative impact it makes on the environment.

In fact, the lifecycle of the wood is fully optimised to ensure that no wood is wasted in the manufacturing process – the wood shavings are used as gardening mulch, and the larger wood chips are used by chicken farmers for their chickens' bedding,” says Charl. Charl notes that not all wood is equal – solid wood is far more environmentally friendly than engineered wood: “Wood products that need more processing, such as plywood, MDF board, chipboard, and so on, require more energy to produce than solid timber. That being said, they still require substantially less energy to produce than their non-wood components.”

Carbon impact Apart from the long-term financial rewards inherent in making environmentally-friendly options, going green is also a good way of doing your bit for the environment.” He notes that using wood wherever you can in your home is a good place to start due to the following reasons:

Embodied energy “Embodied energy refers to the total amount of energy required to extract, harvest, process, manufacture, transport, construct and maintain the materials used in building applications,” explains Charl. He says that wood has a comparatively low embodied energy: “Wood requires a minimal amount of energy-based processing when compared to other building materials, such as concrete, plastic or steel. In fact, solid-sawn wood products, such as Swartland’s range of wooden windows and doors for example, boast some of the lowest levels of embodied energy in the industry.” Charl explains that the sun provides the energy to grow the trees from which the wood is harvested, while fossil fuels are required to produce other non-organic building materials, such as steel, plastic and concrete. Wood is also comparatively lighter than other materials, so the transportation energy is significantly less. When extracted from the environment, wood is in a ready-to-use state, and requires very little processing relative to other materials. The most energy-consumptive process in lumber manufacture is the kiln drying process. To ensure that the wood that is used has the ideal moisture content of 8%, which is ideally suited for the South African climate, Swartland kiln-dries all of its own timber in its own kilns. Although this process does consume quite a bit of energy, it is an essential part of the manufacturing process, as it guarantees the longevity and durability of the final timber product. “To reduce the levels of embodied energy, however, Swartland fires its kilns with waste wood off-cuts generated in the mills.

Much of the discussions around global warming pivot on how to slow the increase in carbon emissions. Carbon has an enormously negative impact on ecosystem sustainability, and forests play an incredibly important role in the earth’s carbon cycle, explains Charl: “Through the process of photosynthesis, the biomass contained in our forests and other green vegetation remove carbon from the atmosphere – through this process, carbon dioxide and water are converted into sugars that the tree uses to grow, and this creates the wonderful by-product of fresh oxygen, which gets released into the atmosphere.” He says that using wood in your home can actually help offset carbon emissions: “Studies have shown that a single tree can absorb around 5kg of CO2 each year, and at harvest, much of the carbon remains stored in the wood, keeping it out of the atmosphere. Even after decades of use, the wooden products can be recycled, reclaimed and reused, which means that they can continue to store the carbon indefinitely. The carbon will only be released when the wood finally deteriorates or if it gets burned or mulched.” Wood can actually be carbon negative explains Charl, “Since wood has such a low level of embodied energy compared to other building products, and since it is onehalf carbon by weight, wood products can actually have a carbon negative rating.”

Sustainability Unlike metal- and fossil-fuel-based products, such as plastic for example, wood is a renewable material. With proper management, forests can produce a flow of wood indefinitely. However, the emphasis is on proper management, as the sustainability of this resource requires forestry and harvesting practices that ensure the long-term health of the forest environment. This is why it is essential that when choosing wooden products, you ask for wood that is from a sustainable source.

// FEBRUARY 2013


news “Swartland, for example, only sources wood from strictly monitored sources and gives preference to responsible loggers. The company has even placed its own representative in Gabon, where a lot of its wood is sourced, for on-site monitoring of the harvesting process. By doing this, Swartland is able to guarantee that all the wood used for its products is sourced in a sustainable and responsible manner,” explains Charl. He notes that Swartland uses a variety of hardwoods and softwoods: “The softwood we use is SA Pine, which is exclusively harvested under strict control of the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC). Okoumé is Swartland’s choice of hardwood – it is from Gabon in West Africa, and obtained solely from sources involved with responsible logging programmes. Meranti is another popular hardwood that comes from rainforests in Malaysia and Indonesia. However, due to uncontrolled harvesting of these rainforests, Swartland does not use Meranti.”

Insulation The heating and cooling of a home can account for up to 50% of all its utility costs. In this regard, wood is a great choice as it is an excellent insulator, says Charl: “Wood’s cellular structure contains air pockets that limit its ability to conduct heat and help minimise the energy needed for heating and cooling – in fact, wood is 400 times less heat conductive than steel, and 8,5 times less conductive than concrete. This is what makes it such a great building material, as it is so much easier to insulate than other materials.” Swartland’s range of wooden windows and doors set the industry benchmark with regards to being exceptionally efficient insulators, says Charl. “Apart from the fact that wood is a great insulator, Swartland's windows and doors are manufactured with care to ensure that they offer maximum insulation. Independent tests conducted on Swartland’s wooden windows for example, by the South African Fenestration and Insulating Energy Rating Association (SAFIERA) have shown that they have the lowest U-rating of all tested windows in South Africa. Tests completed on Swartland’s double-glazed wooden windows achieved a U-value of 1.86 that was much lower than the SANS204 default U-value for timber windows.”

Longevity Another benefit of wood as a building material is the fact that, if properly maintained, it is exceptionally durable and long lasting. According to Greenpeace International, developments in timber window design and finishing products mean that modern, high performance timber windows need minimal maintenance and potentially have a significantly longer lifespan than PVC windows.


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It notes that in general, wood can last for over centuries if inspected and adequately maintained, while their PVC counterparts need to be entirely replaced after 20 to 25 years. Charl concludes: “So whether you are renovating or undertaking a new-build, choosing good quality solid wooden windows and doors for your home is a very good choice – good for your pocket due to their great insulating qualities and the fact that they can last for decades, good for the environment as wood boasts a low carbon impact, low embodied energy, and it is a sustainable material, and what’s more, wooden windows and doors can give any home a beautiful and organic aesthetic that is only inherent in solid wood – Mother Nature’s green building material.”

The Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) The FSC is an independent, non-governmental organisation established to promote responsible management of the world’s forests and is probably the most well-known forest certification program worldwide. More than 280-million acres of forest worldwide are certified to FSC standards and are distributed over 79 countries. The FSC program includes two types of certifications. The Forest Management Certification applies FSC standards of responsible forestry to management of the forestland. A Chain-of-Custody (COC) certification ensures that forest products that carry the FSC label can be tracked back to the certified forest from which they came. More than 9 000 COC certifications are in use by FSC members. The FSC has certified 18 certification bodies around the world. iQ


A walk in a forester's boots The first journey: finding my feet


he first book in a trilogy about the modern day forester’s lifestyle, Greg Ellis and Ben Potgieter have woven their experiences together to create three journeys, describing the lifestyle, the highs and lows of both family and forestry life, while the central theme of fire management runs throughout. This book is the first ever written about the modern day forester’s lifestyle that combines fictional characters with factual occurrences in the South African forests. The lessons from the forest can be applied in any organisation, while art and science give the reader valuable insights into forestry, leadership, management, coaching, mentorship and the smallest but most important team - the family. “Our objective is to expose the noble profession of forestry and how it has affected many in the past, and what one can learn and apply from the journey of a forester.” The foreword by Willem de Villiers, forester extraordinaire, is a lively testament to the informative and gripping read that is the first instalment of ‘A Walk in a Forester’s Boots.’

Reviews: The book was great! The story was well written and it was easy to identify with the main character. This is a great way to teach mentoring/management concepts without preaching or telling people directly what they should do. Needless to say I can’t wait for the second (and third) instalment.

Bloody brilliant! What an introduction into management – simple to use steps. If all else fails return to safety, Plan Do Check Act so well explained.

I really loved the end of chapter summaries which made me think.

The first book since The Goal (1984) that you can pick up and read in a weekend, and that captivates you completely.

The inclusion of the various BOP sheets/tables was a good thing as they helped to add authenticity to the story and made it easy for the reader to place themselves in the Forester’s Boots.

You guys have done a brilliant job in this book. Now when is the next one coming?

This was a brilliant read and I’d like to congratulate you and your co-author on a job well done. Please let Janet know that she has done a sterling job on the editing side. Jennifer Gottschalk – Business owner and Computer Science teacher at Whangaparaoa College


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Trevor Nihill – Owner of Trevor Nihill Consultants, Adelaide Australia

The first book in the series is available and can be ordered from: Ben Potgieter at The price is R250 incl. VAT and if postage is required a further R25 for delivery in South Africa. iQ

Also agents/specializing in Masterwood CNCs, Paoloni Beamsaws/Edgers and more !!!

Timber iQ February 2013 | Issue: 6  

Timber iQ - Design & Construction, the latest addition to the Trademax Publications family, is a glossy magazine with international flavour...