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Issue 25

July 2009  

Quad-Lock Makes Waves in the North Atlantic

ICF? What's ICF? That was the first challenge presented when promoting Quad-Lock as the solution for the local Kindergarten facility in the Faroe Islands.

This North Atlantic island location was the perfect environment for using insulating concrete forms - with its rugged landscape and severe, coastal weather conditions. So for his first challenge, Torfinn Johansen of Kubbi ApS had to convince the municipality that ICFs were not an "untested" and new idea, but a well established and superior building product, produced and used successfully for decades.

Read the profile
Read the full Project Profile
on the Faroe Islands Kindergarten Project.


 Introduction to ICFs Webinars

Quad-Lock's Introduction to ICFs Webinars are still going strong.

See the complete schedule & register!

Join our Live Webinars!

"The goal of these webinars is really education" says DJ, Quad-Lock's Eastern North America Sales Director. "There is a lot of mis-information out there. Really all we are trying to do is be helpful to people who are interested in this building technology - if it helps sell Quad-Lock, that's great; but the real benefit is boosting the ICF industry."

During these 1-hour presentations, attendees will gain:

A basic understanding of ICF
An understanding of the types of structures you can build with ICF
Knowledge to make a more informed buying decision
Insight into the Quad-Lock difference

Reserve your seat in one of these upcoming webinars.


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Message From the CEO

 

Dear Partners,

 

The current economic crisis has some people questioning whether the environmental/green advancements and plans we have made in the past decade are still valid, or should be put on hold in order to concentrate on and fix the economy first.

 

Others believe that the current crisis can only be solved by looking at environmental goals at the same time. For example, if our cars and homes were more efficient and used less energy, then energy prices would not have the impact on our economy that they have had last year and still do now. Another example is that the increased infrastructure spending of our governments offers a great opportunity to achieve some environmental goals at the same time: who would not insulate a school at the same time as it is being renovated?

 

You can see that I am biased towards the group that thinks that environmental goals actually can help us to get our economies out of survival mode.

 

I just read an interesting article that fits right into this thinking: In the last issue of Scientific American there is a short article that talks about the environmental impact of crossties for railroads. You might now wonder what does that have to do with you? A lot, I think, because this argument is also one between wood and concrete. Someone has calculated "that making enough concrete ties to keep one kilometer of tracks aligned for 100 years generates the equivalent of 656 to 1,312 tons of CO2. That amount is about one-half to one-sixth the amount that timber ties contribute, because concrete versions last longer and timber releases CO2 as it decays."

 

So if we assume that a minimum of 600 tons of CO2 are saved per kilometer of track, then we could potentially save in the USA alone (170,000 miles of track) more than 160 million tons of CO2 over the next 100 years, if we switched them all to concrete (assuming that they are all wood now). That is more than Argentina's total annual CO2 emissions!

 

You can see that even such a small change could create much needed construction work right now, and at the same time significantly reduce our environmental footprint over decades.

 

The same concept applies to what we all aspire to do: replace wood framing as the leading residential building method with concrete construction, for healthier, more durable and environmentally friendlier homes.

 

Best regards,
Hubert Max

 

Technical Questions That Expose the Competition

 

Many of you have sat through my presentation of "Uncovering The Hidden Costs: Some Questions To Ask The Competition", which lists many of the questions that our competitors have a hard time answering. Since their solutions are often not well thought out or are non-existent, the customer usually ends up spending far more money than they had anticipated, even though they bought the "cheaper" product. Richard DeVito from Innovative Building Products in Pompton Plains, New Jersey recently took a sale back from "Brand X" block by asking these very same questions.

 

Rich drove to meet with a prospective client on a large custom home who had narrowed his choice of ICFs down to "X" block and Quad-Lock. In the room were the general contractor, the architect, the project manager, and the building owner. They had all sat through the competitor's presentation some days earlier, and had all but made the decision to buy "X". The atmosphere was polite, but cool. Rich was well prepared. He set up his samples and the discussion began to flow.

 

Having reviewed his copy of the Quad-Lock C.A.S.E (Constructability, Adaptability, Site Management, Efficiencies) binder, Rich knew the right questions to ask and could demonstrate how our product would better solve problems than the competition. He even had a custom PowerPoint presentation prepared, which outlined all of his points. Let's look at just a few excerpts from that conversation:

 

Rich: "How do you plan to form your door and window buck-outs?" The GC replied that the recommendation from "X" was to use 2" x 12" pressure treated lumber to span across the whole width of the walls. Rich then asked if they realized that this would create a thermal bridge around each and every opening, negatively off-setting the R-value of the ICF shell that the client chose specifically for its energy efficiency. Rich then demonstrated that smaller (therefore, less expensive) lumber could be used INSIDE the Quad-Lock cavity, thereby preserving the continuous insulation envelope. It immediately became clear that "X"s advice came ONLY because they couldn't fit dimensioned lumber inside their cavity due to plastic ties blocking the way.

 

Rich: "There are a lot of corners and angles on this plan. How did the other guys suggest that you build all of these?" Of course, pre-formed 90 and 45 degree blocks were cited as the answer. Rich asked if these needed to be secured somehow, knowing that the answer would be extra long zip ties, spray foam, and bracing on the outside of the wall. When Rich brought out our 90 degree and angle corner brackets, all eyes were fixed on him as he explained that 90s, and in fact EVERY degree of angle, could be fashioned by using these simple accessories along with the other 3 common Quad-Lock components. When Rich made clear that there was no need to tie blocks together or work on the outside of the building to support corners, there was no further need for discussion.

 

Rich: "How is the site for storage?" The GC said that space on the site was critical, and logistics could end up being a nightmare. Rich explained that our panels would all be delivered in flat packs, effectively cutting the storage space required in half for product delivered to the site. By that time, all Rich could see were nods of approval.

 

My point is this: Every aspect of Quad-Lock's design has been considered from the point of view of solving building issues on the job site. None of our competitors have put this degree of thought into the actual process of building with their systems. Many have gotten little further than containing concrete between two pieces of EPS. It is surprisingly easy to uncover weaknesses by simply asking the right questions, mostly about how the competitors intend to solve various issues in building. The Training and Technical Services Department has done a detailed study of every major competitor in the marketplace, and has fashioned an easy-to-use, side-by-side comparative guide for use by salespeople (the C.A.S.E. Binder).

 

Rich DeVito is an example of the professional salesperson who researches his product and the competition, knows the questions to ask, and knows that the answers will be in his favor.

 

Douglas Bennion
Training and Technical Services Department

We Need Your Help....

Proven Energy Efficiencies

As part of our on-going development of materials to assist in the sale of Quad-Lock, we want to create a library of statistics about structures built with Quad-Lock Insulating Concrete Forms. You can help us by submitting your energy bills, along with the bills from a comparable house in your neighborhood for us to add to our library. When you do this Quad-Lock will pay your highest month's energy bill for your troubles.

Contact us for more information.


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Best regards,
Quad-Lock Building Systems


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