Natural lighting options

Natural lighting options

With many housebuilders looking to deliver inviting open-plan family spaces at the heart of a new property, PHPD discovered how Stockton-on-Tees based Made For Trade is developing solutions to help bring natural light into the centre of the home.

Single storeys are not particularly common in new-builds as developers seek to maximise floor space on each plot. However, with more developers looking to incorporate family-orientated kitchen/diner spaces – often overlooking the garden – many are opting for designs that include a single storey at the rear of a home. To increase their desirability, these spaces are being flooded with natural light.

Although popular solutions include bi-fold doors and roof windows, there is another option to bring even more light into a home and incorporate a classic design into a modern space: the roof lantern. In their original form, these glazed architectural Cupolas have been around since the Middle Ages and have been used to adorn the most splendid of buildings. Popular too in Victorian times, roof lanterns were often elaborate metal framed structures and therefore largely the preserve of the well-to-do. It is only relatively recently that new manufacturing techniques and advances in glazing and sealing techniques have bought the concept into the mainstream.

The Stockton-on-Tees manufacturing plant

Streamlined fabrication
At the cutting edge of this new technology is Stockton-on-Tees based Made For Trade, which has more than 35 years of experience in the window fabrication market. Having looked closely at what was already available, the MFT Team set about designing a product that would meet the needs of the installer as much as the homeowner.

The result is the Kornice, a simple to install system which the company are confident successfully blends a contemporary yet classic design with cutting edge technology to create a lantern that is both pleasing on the eye, but is also amongst the strongest and most thermally-efficient in its sector.

Ian Bousfield, Marketing Design Manager at MFT, explained: “Over the years the in-house design team has accrued a vast amount of fabrication experience and this has given us a real edge in developing innovative installation methods to help reduce lantern build time to minutes instead of hours. In fact, the precision manufacturing enables the components to all fit together perfectly straight from the factory and pre-fitted seals mean there is no onsite requirement for additional cutting, drilling or sealant. For a typical three metre by 1.5m fully-glazed lantern we are talking in terms of less than 30 minutes.”

Sight lines
“The extra slim sections are also married through carefully sculptured bosses and entirely hidden fittings to ensure that sight lines flow unbroken through the roof,” Ian added. “We believe that it is the most robust roof lantern on the market and has been tested to support loads up to 3.5kN/m2.

“We have also paid particular attention to thermal efficiency with total isolation of the external aluminium profiles from the interior one. When combined with high performance glazing, its ability to reduce heat transfer is out there with the best.

“We launched a prototype of Korniche at a trade show back in 2016 to gauge feedback from potential installers and used this to fine tune our manufacturing process. Full scale production began at the beginning of this year and the response from the trade has far exceeded our expectations.”

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