LST Radiators are an essential safety feature in many spaces such as primary schools, hospitals and residential care homes meaning they must be manufactured to the highest possible standard to maintain safety standards and high-quality levels.
Contour have been blogging about the manufacturing process for how LST radiators are made, making sure that we meet our customer’s needs, creating quality heating solutions every time!
Our LST radiators are creating using different materials depending on the needs of the customer. We produce LST radiators in the following materials:
• 1.5mm Zintec Steel as a standard
• 2mm Aluminium for spaces without anti-ligature requirements
• Magnelis Steel
It’s important that our LST radiators are robust and build to stand up against the hectic environments they are installed into. The type of environment the LST is going into will affect the type of material that it’s made out of.
For example; magnelis steel is the most suitable material to use in for wet environments because it’s more resistant to rust and corrosion as it has gone through an additional treatment stage to make it more durable. We work in consultation with our clients to establish the best material to use for your needs.
Survey sheet & drawings
We carry out an onsite survey to get accurate measurements for the LST radiators that you require to ensure that they will be an exact match for your needs. Once the measurements have been approved, we can begin the manufacturing process.
We start using the survey sheets as they provide all the information that we need to create your LST radiators. The information is put into a computer to create a CAD drawing of the LST using RADAN software.
Once the CAD drawing has been created, we can begin work on creating the LST radiator itself. This starts out a large sheet of the material specified by you which undergoes a process called punching. This is where we create the places for pipework, grilles and other fittings that will become part of the structure of the heating system.
One a standard LST radiator the punch machine can carry out 1200 hits every minute with each hit using around 22 tonnes of pressure to get through the material.
The process takes between 7 minutes and 1 hour, but this varies depending on the LST radiator itself. Once this process is complete, the metal is known as a blank. This is because it has not yet been folded into the shape of the radiator cover.
Folding & welding
Folding the LST radiator takes place on a press break; this bends the blank to create the actual shape of the LST radiator. The press break can apply up to 170 tonnes of pressure. However, a standard LST radiator only requires 8 tonnes to create the shape.
After leaving the press break, the LST radiators are sent to the welding bay. Depending on the type of material that the LST radiator is made up of, the welding process will differ.
If the LST is made of steel it will have MIG welding, and if it’s aluminium it will be TIG. From here, the LST radiator needs to be smoothed off. This process is called linishing.
The LST is decontaminated of oils and finger prints that may have accumulated on the surface during the manufacturing process to make sure that it’s completely clean and ready to be painted.
Our LST radiators are painted using a dry powder coating process which seals the paint to the surface of the LST and protects it against scratches and damage that could otherwise expose the metals.
Contour powder coating includes BioCote® antimicrobial technologies. In hygiene conscious environments such as schools and hospitals this can reduce the presence of potentially harmful microbes such as MRSA and E.Coli which can affect school absenteeism and patient wellbeing.
Our LST radiators are coated with 60 microns thick powder coating as standard but this can also be as thick as 90 microns, giving an even and smooth coating across the entire surface.
Here at Contour, we can supply our LST radiators in a range of colours to ensure that they fit in with the aesthetics of your space exactly. The powder coating process is where we add the colour.
Once the LST radiator has been coated, it has to be cured. This process involves heating the LST radiator in a large oven to get the powder coating to melt to the surface.
This process varies in how long it takes but is typically between 15 and 30 minutes at high temperatures. The result is a sleek, even finish across the surface of the LST radiator.
Contour LST radiators are manufactured to be an exact match for the needs of our customers. We can adapt the sizes, dimensions and colours of the LST radiator to ensure that the heating solution we supply is the most appropriate match for your space in every way.
From CAD drawings to punching, folding and powder coating and curing, we follow the process closely throughout to ensure that we are working to your specifications and deliver a low surface temperature heating solution to you that makes the most of the space in your school, hospital, care home or nursery.