The structure combines the virtues of both timber and aluminium, creating a roof of enormous strength, delicate beauty and longevity. It is formed with a strong aluminium skeletal framework which allows us to achieve exceptional strength and greater spans. We are able to provide a superior, structurally stable roofing system without compromising the integrity of the design.
Powder-coating ensures the longevity and low maintenance of the roof exterior which can be further decorated with any style of finials and ridge cresting, all designed in-house.
Our conservatories are erected worldwide and consequently are subject to a wide variety of weather conditions and dramatic temperature changes. It is therefore essential that only the very best materials are selected and utilised within your conservatory. Our commitment to quality control ensures that all timber is well seasoned and moisture content checked prior to use. All timber at Vale is stored in controlled environments ensuring suitability for purpose.
We stock many different timbers such as Douglas Fir, Sapele, Accoya, engineered timbers and Oak, and can use any of these should a client have a particular preference. However, we firmly believe that the correct timber for a particular application should be the first consideration and therefore different timbers are incorporated within our structures.
Our first preference for the manufacture of painted frames, windows and doors is vertical grain - Douglas Fir. This is one of the hardest, strongest and most durable timbers available. Vertical grain Douglas Fir is more expensive than many hardwoods but its superiority is worth the investment. Douglas Fir is extremely stable, it seasons well, dries evenly and remains straight and true with negligible checking or distortion. It also has the characteristic of having excellent longevity, even in its natural state.
At Vale we also subject our cut timbers to pressure treatment which impregnates the timber with an organic solvent and gives additional protection against rot and fungal attack. This is an essential process which ensures longevity of your timber. This is carried out in-house under strict quality control procedures.
All joinery is constructed in the traditional proven way with mortice & tenon joints. Where the design of a conservatory incorporates a traditional timber window detail, this is created with a traditional true-divided light construction, achieved with a 26mm glazing style housing individual double glazed units.
Vale remains committed to an environmentally responsible policy. The majority of our timber is purchased from sustainable sources and in addition, Vale has a Chain of Custody policy and is audited annually under the FSC & PEFC scheme.
Vale differs from most companies by having an in-house Patternmaking Department which we regularly call on due to the bespoke nature of our work. Their expertise is essential in providing the specialist detail required for many of our projects, incorporating mouldings and features to echo the period and architectural characteristics of the property. This in turn also allows us to offer all customers a wider choice of detail for their project and Vale now has an extensive range of over 700 patterns, built up from years of specialist projects and development.
Castings can be produced in a variety of materials but we generally work with aluminium which is then goes through our in-house powdercoating plant where we can ensure a high standard of finish. All items are put through a 5 stage pre-treatment process, then electrostatically polyester powdercoated and then finally baked, resulting in an extremely tough durable finish.
The Patternmaking Department will also be involved in hand carving timber bargeboards, columns and emblems to complement a specific detail on the property or client’s requirement.
Our clients expect their conservatories to be insulated and energy efficient and at Vale, we ensure that the highest quality of glass and insulation is used for optimum performance. Certain glass units are outsourced although most are produced in our own Glass Shop to ensure the highest standard of manufacture and quality control. We are able to manufacture to any specification, with any type of glass, cavity size and gas.
The glass generally used in the roof is 6/16/6.4mm laminated, soft coat Low E with Argon gas filled cavity. This offers superb thermal efficiency and like a car windscreen, is the most secure in the event of a breakage. Side units are generally 4/12/4mm soft coat Low E glass with an Argon filled cavity and toughened units where required by Building Regulations. Variations can be discussed if you have a particular preference. There are many types of glass and products on the market that we would NOT recommend and will be happy to elaborate if required.
Records are kept indefinitely of most glass measurements so replacement units can be supplied without undue delay in the event of a breakage.
Many of our conservatories incorporate box gutters at the house abutment which is formed in aluminium and is usually plaster-boarded to the underside although alternatives are available. These gutters are designed so that they can be walked in for periodic cleaning and access to upstairs windows.
Vale are one of the few companies to design orangeries with a True Inset Box Gutter which is hidden behind the parapet to diminish the height of the roof. The benefits of this construction are that the elegant proportions of the structure can be maintained, as well as concealing the unsightly upstand and rafter ends of the flat roof method.
The insulated secret gutter is designed as an integral part of the roof structure, fabricated from aluminium and supported by a structural aluminium chassis. Rainwater will dispense into outlets within the gutter line or decorative hoppers.
It is essential in any conservatory that adequate ventilation is designed into the structure. This coupled with good side ventilation will generate through draft and good air movement within the room.
Traditional roof vents are the most common method, either manually operated or by electrical motors fitted with a thermostat and rain sensors and a wall mounted control. All cabling to the vents is concealed within the roof during the installation process.
Doors are usually outward opening and fitted with suited 5 lever mortice locks and locking shoot bolts. Doors are hung on projection hinges with decorative finials to provide a wide range of opening angles.
Many conservatories incorporate folding doors which runs on tracks within the head and the sill for rigidity and stability. The door is fitted with a concealed European style locking mechanism with additional sliding shoot bolts.
Due to the weight of our joinery and glass, windows are generally top hung. As an alternative, we frequently fit traditional balanced sliding sashes fitted with lead weights hung on waxed cotton sash cord and run on brass pulleys – see specialist joinery.