Antico Elements Blog

Imagination Plus Creativity Equals Home Improvement

Posted on October 29, 2013

The key to a great product is a creative imagination. Many tools and products in the home improvement industry have come from creative ideas that refuse to be set aside. Engineers with a good imagination can help create products that anyone can use, not only because of the price range but also for the ability of the product to adapt to many projects and create the exact look sought.

Versatility is the main role that any product in the construction industry must maintain. The most successful tools and products in the home improvement market are the ones that can do anything and go anywhere.

What does this means for business? Flexibility equals profitability. Any product that can make people’s lives easier and save them money is guaranteed to be a success.

The Rising Sun Effect

Many products in the home improvement industry have a great run and then fizzle out and stop generating profit. The best way to evaluate the product is by observing its endurance in the field. Many products come out into the market and have a “Rising Sun” effect. This effect can be attributed to the hype of a new product in the market because the demand soars high for a couple of weeks then bottoms out once people realize the product does not stand up over time.

Trade Show Exhibit

Trade Show Exhibit

The unique success of polyurethane imitation stone or brick panels is due to the winning recipe for a great product in the home improvement industry. Statistics prove that they stand up well over time when they are applied correctly.

The droves of happy customers from construction professionals to homeowners reveal the great qualities these products have. This product has been around for close to ten years. As the capabilities keep growing so does our product line because we offer many architectural elements along side the panels.

We strive for the highest quality product in order to embrace the philosophy that customers deserve a high quality product at a low price.

Polyurethane architectural elements also make a great home improvement asset because of the many ways it can be applied. This is a product that comes from a creative imagination which gives the customer a versatile product that last long.

Brick Isn’t All That Its Cracked Up To Be

Posted on October 24, 2013

Over the years people have seen many problems arise from using brick masonry. Now there is a simple solution.

This article will talk about the different reasons why brick doesn’t stand up to the test of time and climate. The main reason people still use brick is because of traditional usage and the psychological familiarity. Unfortunately, using brick is the most inefficient method there is because of its time consuming process and the lack of structural integrity. They have been incorporated within many modern designs but they still have too many drawbacks.

Bad Brick SeamLow Quality ProductUsing brick may look great but it requires a lot of complicated steps before installation and maintenance. The main problem with using brick is the drainage of moisture. Without proper drainage throughout the right outlets the life of the brick will decrease, requiring an expensive repair process.

Pictures of a broken chimney come to mind when observing the disadvantages of brick. There are dozens of brick chimneys that have not survived the test of time due to simple problems that arise with brick. There are many issues in climates where freezing may occur because freezing of water can cause the moisture trapped within the area of the brick to expand and start cracking the brick. The best way to avoid this is by using brick veneer panels.

Another problem that arises is the heat expansion of the bricks. If the builder hasn’t accounted for heat expansion then a major problem could arise in the future summers to come. Heat can cause the bricks to expand beyond a point that would cause them to crack and fall out of place.

It happens commonly, if they have not been aligned with the correct formula. Saving time and money is always important in any construction job but never at the cost of the project or else the client will have to pay twice. The most important thing that hasn't been recognized in the construction industry is the fact that without using the best materials projects will be over budget and over time. Crews could save countless hours by using the panels.

Real Feedback Equals Real Results

Posted on October 17, 2013

The home improvement industry is constantly changing and finding good products is getting harder every day which is why using consumers' feedback is important. The best way to find out about new products is getting feedback from customers themselves. Learning about real experiences help paint a better picture of the pros and cons in using natural stone. Unlike consumers who have used traditional masonry people who have purchased fake stone panels have all fallen in love with the professional look and easy installation process.

Using trial and error is not the most efficient means of production so people use different forums like Houzz.com to find out information on the projects they want to tackle before they get started. Doing your homework can increase the efficiency of the project and make sure they come out looking like this living room below.

Many home improvement projects include using stone facing for skirting or foundation cladding. Projects that use stone may appear inexpensive at first but once we take real people’s experiences and extrapolate the real cost after construction then we can make an educated decision.

Educating the masses and helping others is the main reason why people need to do their homework before starting a project. Taking a look at the real costs and methods involved in the project can help people save money and time.

Stone cladding takes a long time to finish. For example, to cover 48 square feet with thin river rock natural stone pieces took two people three days to finish. With faux stone panels it could have easily taken under three hours. It would have only required about five river rock panels which you can find here.

Here is an excerpt from their discussion, “We were very pleased. He and his father are great and actually did the entire kitchen from pictures I drew. This stone work job cost roughly $1,300. A bargain!” According to them this was a bargain when it could have cost them $834 including shipping if they used faux stone panels. Plus it would have only taken three hours to complete the project with one person.

Another example of the long time it takes to complete a stone facing project is an instance where a man wanted to cover the foundation of his house. Some of the sides he was covering amounted to 300 square feet and some were only 28 square feet.

Imagine if you will trying to mortar a piece of stone above your head that weighs easily a couple of pounds which could easily fall and kill you with one blow with one wrong step or the mortar didn't hold it. I don’t know about you but that seems a little ridiculous to take that risk just to make your house look better. Take a look at this picture and imagine if one of those stone pieces came off the grout line and fell on one of the guys with no helmet. Do you think a trip to the hospital would make a difference?

The house below represents the instance of the man trying to cover the foundation in natural stone. He took two summers working from June to November to finish the whole project. The project required him to mix eighty bags by hand. For those of us who have already mixed bags of mortar by hand your wrist is probably already aching just at the thought of it, but for those readers who haven’t had the pleasure try it and see how your arm feels after a couple bags.

Faux Sheet Installation

In conclusion, most of our readers now realize that there has to be a better and faster way to get the same results. Thankfully, there is a better way that only requires the ability to lift light panels of imitation stone. Faux stone or imitation stone panel installation only takes a fraction of the time it takes for traditional stone installation and isn't dangerous at all.

 

 

Stone Veneer Facing Made Fast

Posted on October 10, 2013

Stone facing is a long and complex process. This article describes many steps involved in conventional masonry while shedding light on the advantages of imitation stone panels. These steps could otherwise be avoided using fake stone panels which provide a better look at a fraction of the price. Also, there are different unseen expenses that are overlooked in the initial proposal for the project.

The crew needed for the project is another factor that can add a large expense, especially if the project runs into delays due to bad weather which doesn't effect faux stone panel installation. Stone facing can be broken down into a couple of steps which highlight the disadvantages of using this process. Observe the picture below to get an idea of the various steps involved.

Learn The Process And Choose For Yourself

The first step requires choosing a method for the securing the base mortar coat. Once you have chosen the surface then get the vertical substrate ready which means laying down the base mortar coat adding more time to the project.

The substrate or underlying wall where the stone is being placed has to meet certain requirements before being set.It must be strong enough to hold the weight of the stone cladding so a wooden frame won’t hold up. It also needs to have a waterproof barrier which is extremely important. Usually, cinder block or steel substrates are needed to give support to the masonry veneer.

Masonry veneer means stone facing that has no load bearing components but still requires a lot of preparation work before installing. Even though it has no load bearing effect the masonry still needs to have a drainage cavity for projects that may encounter moisture. The drainage cavity allows for moisture to be disposed of properly so the interior wall isn't destroyed by moisture deterioration.

Masonry projects cost as much to maintain as they cost to build according to, masoncontractors (OCTOBER 25, 2010 9:30 AM CDT). This maintenance is usually due one of the many factors that can go wrong in masonry. Then the masonry crew must build a flashing system at the base of the veneer. The flashing system is designed to prevent moisture from deteriorating the joints and mortar in the wall.

Moisture is the main factor that really hurts most masonry projects and requires more labor because creating the flashing system is an expensive and necessary process. Masonry cladding also requires lateral support in order to reinforce the stone facing. All of these steps and more must be considered in any masonry project because time is money and the more time a project takes the more money it costs to finish.

The Logical Choice

Stone close-up

Stone close-up

After all of these steps there are still many aspects and factors that require more in depth review which will be discussed in future articles. With the basic overview above we can easily see the long and expensive process it takes to build using the natural stone facing process. Imitation stone panels could easily create the same or better result in a fraction of the time it takes to place natural stone. Check out some of the panels here.

Faux Sheets And Paneling Art

Posted on October 4, 2013

Faux Stone Panels and Art

Art is a reflection of human nature. It shows us the ideas and emotions of the artist or designer which also reflects the characteristics of their generation. Each color and each presentation is aimed at evoking an emotional response. Art expresses the unique perceptions of the artist. The goal and the process of artistic design is all about using creative methods to create beautiful or dark styles that the artist wants to represent in their work.

Brick Display Booth At Trade Shows

Brick Display Booth At Trade Shows

Emotional responses are controlled by the method and medium the artist chooses to use. This is why choosing new and exciting mediums is very important when it comes to making a great impression with a fresh perspective.

Designers have to understand how to manipulate emotion and function to create an effective style. Good designers can recreate the different themes or styles that the clients require. Great designers know how to create their own brand by using new and effective ways of making each project speak volumes.

Quickly installed faux wall stone panels in sand.

Quickly installed faux wall stone panels in sand.

New Medium Helps Designers make a winning Impression

A new medium for designers has been popping up in different trade shows and exhibitions across the world. This medium is known as the imitation stone or brick panels which have become increasingly popular due to the advances in technology and realistic look they portray. Designers have fallen in love with this product. The convenience of the panels have also attracted many homeowners to the market because it is geared for the do it yourself-er. They are not only realistic but easy to install so the designers save money and time because they don’t have to worry about dealing with masons.

Trade Show Exhibit

Trade Show Exhibit

Using a new method to build unique styles helps the designer make a winning impression among their colleagues and clients. Faux stone and brick panels do away with all the disadvantages of using the traditional elements of construction. Therefore, the next generation of designers has already embraced this product because of the flexibility it offers them.

 

 

How To Create Faux Stone Paneling Corners

Posted on October 2, 2013

Choosing faux stone panels to remodel the home is a great idea. Along the way you will find that it is the fastest and easiest part of any renovation process. While setting up the project area nine times out of ten there will be inside and outside corners. Stone panels were designed for convenience and flexibility so corners do not pose a problem because there are several methods to produce professional and realistic stone corners.

Outside Corner

Our Convenient Interlocking Outside Corners

Creating a flowing pattern around the corners can be done with three different methods. The first method is by using the interlocking corners. These corners come with interlocking teeth that can be joined to any other panel of the same color and texture.

The First Method

The interlocking corners are three feet high and provide a realistic outside corner piece to match your project. They can easily be cut and butted up to another corner if the need arises. They can easily be stacked on top of one another in order to reach the required height. The interlocking corners represent the fastest way to build your corners so they look great.

The Second Method

The second method consists of using the inside and outside corners. They are beautiful four foot high brackets made in a ninety degree angle that allows the other panels to butt up directly to the other panels to guarantee a professional finish.

Although, they may be the same color scheme they are not the same pattern as the interlocking corners. They come in a stacked stone design which creates a nice finish for the corner enabling customers to use inside and outside corners. The incorrect way to build corners is represented in the second picture.

Low Quality Product

The Third Method

The third method is the most time consuming and detailed. You must create a mitered corner by cutting a panel in half. Cut the panels with a 45 degree angle using a miter saw or table saw set on a 45 degree angle. After adhering the panel on the corner simply smooth over the edges. Then use textured caulk to seal in the edge. After using the textured caulk grab the touch up kit with the same color scheme and paint over the corner to match it with the pattern you are using. This process requires a lot more work and time which is why we always recommend the other two options first.

Using the recommended method always gives the best result and the quickest completion time. The goal of this product is to reduce the time spent on any project. Visualize your project finished and completed within a couple of hours instead of days.