OSB stated less resistant to vapor

The National Research Council of Canada claims that OSB is near 100 times less permeable to water vapor than plywood, according to a recent study, publicized by EIMA.

“In the study, laboratory dishes partially filled with water were set upright and sealed at the mouth with samples of both sheathing materials,” EIMA said in an October press release. “The water evaporated from the dishes capped with plywood, but did not from the OSB-covered dishes. In fact, the OSB-covered dishes still held water eight months later.”

A later release from EIMA suggested, “When used in a wall assembly, designers should be aware of OSB’s characteristics and how it interacts with moisture.”

Texas plaster and lath associations develop programs

The Texas Lathing and Plastering Contractors Association and the Texas Bureau for Lathing and Plastering are developing an informational and training program on the use of Portland cement stucco and one-coat stucco.

The TLPCA hopes that once it is developed and distributed, the program will create a greater awareness and understanding of the stucco products. The program is also designed to be helpful to building code officials as an informational resource to contractors in their employee training programs.

The program is being created in such a manner that it can qualify for the AIA Distant Learning Program and also as an accredited program for the Texas AIA program to begin in 2001. The associations assert that completing the program will not only assist the architects in maintaining their competence and achieving their professional goals but also allow them to obtain continuing education credit as required by AIA.

SBCCI approves Sto EIFS

The Southern Building Code Congress International has revised its evaluation of Sto RainScreen and RainScreen II drainage systems for Sto EIFS for use on all types of construction. Previously, the SBCCI permitted the drainage systems for use on only Type VI construction. RainScreen and RainScreen II are exterior wall claddings for use on residential and commercial wall construction manufactured by Sto Corp. They are Class PB EIF systems that incorporate a drainage cavity and secondary weather-resistive barrier in the wall assembly.

BPB Celotex opens gypsum plant

BPB Celotex, of Tampa, Fla., recently opened a new gypsum board manufacturing plant in Carrolton, Ky. The plant will produce 700 million square feet of gypsum board annually, including 1/4-, 3/8-, 1/2- and 5/8-inch-thick boards with square, beveled and tapered edges. It is the company’s only plant to manufacture the 54-inch wide product.

All plant process materials are recycled, including water supply and product trim. High-grade synthetic gypsum as byproduct from Louisville Gas and Electric Co. and Kentucky Utilities is used. The plant, completed in October 2000, cost approximately $72 million and features totally computer-controlled equipment. At capacity, it will employ 100 salaried and hourly staff.

“We want our wallboard to become the preferred product,” says Gary Esch, vice president, manufacturing-U.S. “Benchmarking will give us a monthly report on customer service, cost and productivity, allowing us to see where we can make improvements when necessary.”

Restrictions push cost of housing

Higher restrictions on growth are pushing the cost of housing beyond the reach of millions of young families, according to Robert L. Mitchell, president of the National Association of Home Builders.

“In many high-growth markets, teachers, police officers, fire fighters and other public servants are commuting 50 to 100 miles to work each day because they can’t find affordable housing to rent or buy close to their jobs,” Mitchell said. “Growth boundaries, large-lot zoning and resistance to infill development are pushing people to satellite cities in search of homes that are affordable to middle-income families.”

Armstrong discontinues supplies of Rulon

Armstrong Ind., has discontinued supplying wood panels and wood coffers manufactured by the Rulon Co. facility located in Brunswick, Ga.

Rulon will continue to manufacture and supply selected discontinued Armstrong Wood Panel and Wood Coffer styles.

Lafarge announced third-quarter earnings

Lafarge Corp. said that declining drywall prices and higher operating costs in its gypsum division reduced third-quarter earnings, confirming what the company had indicated in a press release issued in October.

For the three-month period ending Sept. 30, 2000, the company posted net income of $127.3 million ($1.72 per share on a diluted basis), compared with a net income of $139 million ($1.90 per diluted share) in the third quarter of 1999. Net sales for the quarter increased 2 percent to $892.3 million from $872.4 million last year.

Seminars offer hands-on demonstrations

To introduce contractors to the benefits of Decorative Interior Finish System, USG Corp. is hosting a series of hands-on installation seminars around the country. Conducted by Edwin Jackacki, USG’s product line manager, trowel products, the seminars are targeted to drywall contractors, plasterers and painters.

Revised standard practice certifies concrete laboratories, personnel and equipment

American Society for Testing and Materials C 1077, Standard Practice for Laboratories Testing Concrete and Concrete Aggregates for Use in Construction and Criteria for Laboratory Evaluation has been revised by Subcommittee C09.88 on Evaluation of Laboratories in Committee C09 on Concrete and Concrete Aggregates.

“The revised standard will now place a requirement on all technicians working in the laboratory to be certified by either ACI or NICET,” said subcommittee chairman Robert Jenkins.


The EIFS foam featured in November 2000’s Product Focus section is manufactured by Wind-lock Corp.