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Latest news and updates from James Hardie Systems

Ritek® introduce X-Plus Wall – the latest high-performance, fire safe and Deemed-to-Satisfy permanent formwork system

News > Posted 11th February 2020

After several recent global tragedies involving flammable building cladding products, Australian government and industry bodies have been quick to respond. From independent inquests and ongoing fire safety audits in most States, to changes to the Building Code of Australia (BCA) – comprising of Volume One and Two of the National Construction Code (NCC) , the spotlight is firmly on the building industry.

With an emphasis on building materials that can deliver a faster and more efficient method of construction that are also approved fire safe and compliant, James Hardie Systems developed Ritek® X-Plus™ Wall, a high-performance permanent formwork system for mid to high-rise walls.

“Industry professionals are seeking building solutions that provide a simple, reliable and low risk pathway to compliance by meeting the DTS Solution requirements in the BCA relating to fire performance,” explains Steven Terzian, General Manager of James Hardie Systems. “Ritek X-Plus Wall provides this reassurance.”

The two pathways to achieve façade fire compliance include Performance Solution, and Deemed-to-Satisfy (DTS) as stipulated in the NCC 2019. Ritek X-Plus Wall is deemed non-combustible in accordance with the National Construction Code (NCC) as a fire safe, compliant and Deemed-to-Satisfy (DTS) external wall solution as determined by testing relevant components with the AS1530.1 test.

“The Ritek X-Plus permanent formwork system surpasses traditional product benefits with the highly respected DTS classification – eliminating compliance headaches and potential rectification down the line,” says Terzian. “This ensures peace of mind, ease of use and a cleaner auditing path for builders, developers, specifiers and architects.”

Tested extensively, Ritek X-Plus Wall includes a specialised two-part metal accessory consisting of an anodised aluminium internal spacer and a galvanised steel insert that provides strength, durability, corrosion resistance and fire safety. Ritek X-Plus Wall also includes innovative James Hardie Fibre Reinforced Cement technology for added reassurance of long-term structural stability. Featuring superior thermal efficiency and fire ratings, James Hardie Fibre Reinforced Cement is lightweight and versatile, making it easy to work with and low maintenance. It will not burn, is resistant to termite and permanent water damage and is impact resistant and weatherproof – so it won’t crack, swell or warp like wood.

Ritek X-Plus Wall is the ideal choice for exterior wall applications in all type A&B buildings in all classes. “In an increasingly risk adverse building environment, construction professionals are looking for products that meet building code requirements and have a straight forward façade fire compliance pathway,” says Terzian. “Ritek X-Plus permanent formwork wall system is faster to erect than traditional concrete construction, with the potential to save days per floor on build.”

In addition to saving time and costs on site through quick assembly, as an interior and exterior wall application, Ritek X-Plus is ideal for applications where a premium finish is required. On the inside of the exterior wall, the quality sanded surface finish of Ritek X-Plus is ready for direct setting by finishing trades to a Level Four finish, thus optimising internal floor space and saving time and cost to batten out and plaster line internal walls.

Ritek X-Plus panels are available multiple sizes and are custom made to the architect’s specifications by the James Hardie Systems in-house drafting team. This time-saving method allows for windows and fire doorframes to be pre-installed, and electrical and gas services to be cast in. As well as in-house drafting and scheduling services, a highly-skilled technical services team, on-site project co-ordination assistance and committed customer service and sales support team are available for every project. “Efficiency is key – our products and in-house teams aim to ensure a streamlined process, as well as deliver value through a high-performance, compliant finished wall system” says Terzian.

James Hardie Systems purchases the Ritek® Wall Systems business

News > Posted 17th February 2017

We are excited to announce that James Hardie Systems Pty Ltd a company of James Hardie has acquired the Ritek® Wall Systems business from Building Solutions Pty Ltd. James Hardie Systems will continue to operate the current manufacturing facility and employees are expected to transition to James Hardie Systems, so it is likely that your current contact will remain the same.

James Hardie considers the Ritek® permanent formwork walling system to be a quality durable, finished wall solution. Our goal together with James Hardie Systems is to further enhance our customer experience and to focus on delivering a leading permanent formwork system across the Australian market.

James Hardie has had a long term partnership with Ritek® Wall Systems, as the supplier of quality fibre cement products for the manufacture of the Ritek® permanent formwork walling systems. The Ritek® acquisition is part of James Hardie’s strategy to expand its product offering into the growing medium/high density construction segment.

If you have any questions, please contact your Ritek® or James Hardie Representative or contact us directly if you have any immediate queries.

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The Pros and Cons of Permanent Formwork Systems for Single Dwelling Wall Construction.

News > Posted 19th January 2017

A recently released article by Architecture and Design reports that “whilst permanent formwork is still comparatively new, it has been around long enough to provide sufficient time for the industry to assess its performance against promises from suppliers” they have put the question out there to the industry “does it live up to the hype and is it suited to single dwelling construction?

Extract below from Architecture and Design:

There are others as well which are attracting the attention of some of Australia’s leading architects, some with high insulating properties and others with easier-to-finish substrates. Ritek’s XL Thermal Wall®, which has been used by Reg Clarke Architect and Steele Associates Architects to award winning effect, is one, while Insulated Concrete Forms (ICF) are another altogether.

Unlike PVC versions, Ritek’s systems use fibre cement sheets for the outer layers of the walls which provide a more traditional surface to finish. These sheets are separated by plastic spaces and bonded to an aluminium track which Ritek® guarantees won’t rust. The Ritek’s XL Thermal Wall® version also includes an integrated thermal insulation layer which helps it achieve a healthy R-Value of 4.0.

Ritek Wall Systems Vs Conventional Concrete Wall Panels

News > Posted 16th December 2016

Ritek’s high performance prefabricated structural wall system the Ritek® XL Wall® and Ritek XL Thermal Wall® is quick and easy to install, offers peace of mind with its structural integrity and can exceed acoustic, thermal and fire ratings.

The wall panels are prefabricated as lightweight, load-bearing permanent formwork and subsequently are significantly easier to transport and install than precast concrete wall panels. Once on site, the Ritek panels are easily stood and core filled with concrete.

There are less cranage requirements due to the size and weight of the Ritek® panels and costs savings can be achieved when comparing crane size and associated road closure expenses when installing precast concrete walls.

Ritek’s structural panel systems are ideal for multi-residential developments, townhouses, aged-care, high-rise student accommodation and bespoke housing. Ritek® XL Wall® and Ritek XL Thermal Wall® are specified as exterior wall panels, basement walls, intertenancy walls, stairwell and lift shaft walls just to name a few.

Ritek® offer the unique and innovative Ritek XL Thermal Wall® , prefabricated wall panels with built in insulation to meet NCC/BCA Section J requirements. Once the panel is core filled with concrete, the built in thermal insulation essentially replicates an insulated concrete panel without the labour intensive and costly installation process associated with precast concrete wall panels.

Developers, builders, architects and designers continue to specify Ritek® Wall Systems nationwide and market demand has seen the wall system increasing in popularity at a rapid rate particularly in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Western Australia.