Time to change old habits and leave wood blocks off the roof.
By Heidi J. Ellsworth, RCS Partner.
I had the pleasure of visiting with Bill Machemer of GreenLink Engineering this month. It is always amazing to me, how many cool people, products and companies are in roofing. I asked Bill to share with us what is happening with this new company, GreenLink Engineering.
RCS – Bill, tell us a little bit about you.
Bill – I have been in commercial roofing for over 45 years, working for a variety of manufacturers. My specialty is commercial low-slope roofing. My career has focused on industrial roofing and exterior building envelope maintenance industries. Working with GreenLink Engineering in sales and technical is very rewarding as we grow this new business together.
RCS – Tell us a little about Green Link Engineering.
Bill – GREEN LINK Engineering is a creative, agile group open to new ideas that will result in stronger, longer-lasting, more energy-efficient structures. They seek dialogue with contractors, architects, materials engineers, product designers and project managers that can lead to new approaches for meeting the challenges of the 21st century. GREEN LINK is an innovative engineering company that develops and produces polymeric architectural products for the construction industry including specialized markets such as controlled environments. GREEN LINK is committed to processes and products that cause no harm to the environment or human life.
RCS – What is Green Link focused on?
Bill – We are focused on roof pipe support but we are definitely an engineering company so we continue to look for rooftop solutions. Our key product is our KnuckleHead rooftop support systems. By using our variety roof top pipe supports we are helping protect the building owner’s roof investment. We are helping contractors move beyond the wood block. The KnuckleHead product line is the final step of bringing the entire roof installation up to professional standards. We offer five different heads which include the lite pipe, heavy pipe, strut support, solar frame support, and paver support. This diverse product line can support any size, weight, number, or shape of pipes and duct work.
RCS – What are you hearing from roofing contractors about KnuckleHead?
Bill – We are seeing a lot of interest from HVAC contractors and roofing contractors. Roofing contractors like our special engineering capabilities for unique situations. We custom made KnuckleHeads for a non-typical standing seam metal roof that already had the wood blocks replaced twice. The KnuckleHead pipe supports now sit on a urethane saddle on top of the ribs, holding the pipes above the deck. There is a lot of interest from contractors of all types due to the adjustability of each type of KnuckleHead, along with extensions is additional height is needed.
RCS – What is your biggest hurdle?
Bill – Change; it takes a while to break the old habits of using wood. It’s like when the low slope commercial roofing industry transitioned from hot BUR to single-ply systems. It just takes time. But as people use the KnuckleHeads they are seeing how well they work and how inexpensive it is compared to the cost of the roofing system. It just does not make sense to use wood that is going to rot, or reuse old blocks that can puncture the roof.
Bill – KnuckleHeads really enhance the appearance of the roof. It is great to be working with a product that is changing the overall quality of the roof. Considering lifecycle costs, they are much less expensive, and they are made of fiberglass reinforced nylon plastic that is impervious to UV and freeze thaw cycles. It is time to change old habits and leave wood blocks off the roof. I really enjoy being part of the overall change and seeing great, clean and high-performance roofs that utilize our roof pipe support.