Elit Facade: glass fibre reinforced concrete (GFRC) replaces natural stone

17.05.20234 minutes

Elit Fasad, a manufacturer of products made from GFRC, fibreglass and metal, has won recognition and credibility among Russia's major property developers over the past 10 years. At RosBuild, the company will present facade models with different textures, designs and geometries, as well as showcase production processes and examples of completed work. Evgeny Alexandrov, Commercial Director of Elite Facade, spoke in more detail about the advantages of the companyЎЇs products and experience.

Pavilion No.8, stand 81D80

First, I would like to point out that we are a manufacturer, not an intermediary company. We have a production capacity of 7,500 sq. m. with 172 employees. This allows us to manufacture products at a good price and just in time.

We have our own laboratory on the premises where we carry out research, develop new textures, colours and carry out tests. We are one of the few companies capable of taking on a huge volume of work, we are ISO certified and we work with foreign contractors.

One of the benefits you claim is that the price of the facade can be reduced by a factor of about five by matching the texture of the natural stone with GFRC. Is this really the case?

Yes, our analysts have specifically investigated the cost of cladding in two different materials on the basis of the projects that have already been delivered. The Mostman aparts house, the Fairmont Vesper and the Laikovo housing estate are prime examples. We saved about five times as much by replacing natural stone with GFRC.

Marble, granite, sandstone and other natural stones are a beautiful and long-lasting facade material. However, construction technology is changing over time, and natural stone is gradually replaced with GFRC. It is not only as good as stone in terms of technical characteristics, but also has a number of advantages.

How is natural stone inferior to glass fibre reinforced concrete?

With GFRC products, there are fewer problems with delivery, installation and subsequent operation. Incidentally, the production speed of a complex piece is also higher with GFRC than with stone, and the risk of rejects is lower.

The best thing about glass fibre reinforced concrete is that it doesnЎЇt fade or become stained in the sun. They do not darken like natural stone. There is no need to sand or polish them additionally. The only thing we recommend is to treat the surface every three to five years with a hydrophobisator for better water repellency.

By adding a texture, fractions in the form of minerals, mica, mirror and glass chips, as well as pigments in the mass, we can simulate any texture of the stone. On large objects no difference can be seen at all.

Why is the price per square metre not fixed? What does it depend on?

Since all products are made to order, we calculate the price individually, based on the cost of the components to obtain the desired texture, quantity, dimensions and variety of shapes for facade dЁ¦cor, timing, volume, and so on. But it is worth noting that Elite Facade is a full-cycle production company and one of the largest in the country. Even the embedded parts and subsystem elements are made in our own factory. Therefore, the prices are favourable and in the construction process we are more flexible to the customerЎЇs needs.

When is GFRC more expensive than natural stone?

Flat panels made of natural stone are more favourable in terms of price. This is usually due to the technological process and the purchase price of the material for imitation of the desired texture.

How is the GFRC facade cladding produced?

Our factories use the shotcrete method. By spraying evenly the concrete mortar together with the alkali-resistant glass fibre onto the prepared mould, an even more solid product is created. Glass fibre reinforced concrete has a service life of at least 50 years. And the glass fibre reinforcement does not add extra weight, which reduces the load on the substructure and consequently on the buildingЎЇs facade.

What will you be exhibiting at RosBuild in February? Who do you expect to see at your stand?

At our stand there will be examples of textures, shapes and colours of glass fibre reinforced concrete, fibreglass and metal, and production processes and examples of commissioned work. We look forward to seeing our partners and regular customers, as well as informing new customers about the possibilities of using our products and answering their questions.

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