Pryda Australia has developed Pryda Lintel, a lightweight steel angle that replaces traditional timber and composite window heads.
The L-shaped angle was introduced to reduce the weight of the window frame, making it easier to transport and stand up on site and reducing the likelihood of injury.
“Traditionally, window heads were made of F17 or, in more recent times, LVL beams,” Pryda Southern Region Sales Manager Kevin LaBrooy said.
“However, the new Pryda Lintel is termite proof, about 60 per lighter than traditional timber and economically competitive with other lintels.”
In fact, it is so light that most wall frames can be easily lifted into position by one worker and, unlike timber lintels, does not creep over time avoiding cracking of cornices and the possibility of expensive rectification.
Trends of increasing window heights and smaller eves on houses have made it difficult to use deeper timber sizes.
“Pryda Lintel can be made shallower than timber lintels to fit into these reduced window head spaces without any problems,” he said.
“Years ago, metal Z-shaped lintels were developed but they could not be used with weatherboards and blue board type products as the Z-shape protruded and interfered with the fixing methods, so they didn’t take off."
The L-shaped Pryda Lintel overcomes this problem and, in addition to its lightness and strength, is supported by engineering software that can print a full set of engineering computations and producer statements.
With coloured stickers that denote size and thickness, it also is easily identifiable for building inspectors. Kevin LaBrooy said for spans up to 3.4m the new Pryda Lintel could be used to reinforce existing undersized lintels.
“And for easy replacement or movement, Pryda Lintel can simply be unscrewed and shifted to the new position,” he said.
Pryda Lintel also provides additional tie down assistance due to the way it fixes all the plates and studs together in the frame.
Kevin LaBrooy said Pryda Lintel already had proved accepted with many of Pryda’s fabricators and builders like Simonds Homes were now employing it in many of their latest projects.
“It has been particularly useful in regional areas like Shepparton and Echuca which have huge termite problems,” he said.
Pryda Lintel also has been well-known in Tasmania, with the majority of Hobart’s prefabricated wall frame market supplied by Pryda fabricator Becks Span Truss Systems.
“Since using Pryda Lintel we have completed over 500 jobs and not had one issue with product performance,” says Scott Ryland, Southern Tasmania Manager, Becks Span Truss Systems.