Las Vegas — DaVinci Roofscapes invested in a press and eight-cavity mold at its Lenexa, Kan., manufacturing plant that has opened the door to two new building products: its fourth shake profile for roofing and its first shake for composite siding.
After 20 years in the roofing business, DaVinci is shaking things up at the 170,000-square-foot facility it moved to in 2014 as well as the siding market, where it will compete against wood, fiber cement and vinyl with a product that replicates hand-split cedar shake.
The new products launched Feb. 19-21 at the International Builders' Show in Las Vegas. DaVinci's roofing shake and siding shake should be available nationwide in March.
Michael Cobb, president and chief marketing officer, said the new injection molding machine increases DaVinci's capacity by about 20 percent while the eight-cavity mold provides customers with the new products.
Cobb said it made sense for DaVinci to add siding to the product offering. The company makes its composites from virgin high and low density polyethylene, fire retardants, pigments and UV stabilizers.
"We've taken all our composite roofing manufacturing expertise and created a durable, aesthetically pleasing siding product that will not deteriorate like real wood," Cobb said. "It's a natural progression for our company's capabilities to provide low-maintenance composite siding to the marketplace."
Each tile of DaVinci's hand-split shake siding is 18 inches tall with a 5/8-inch thickness. The tiles come in 8- or 10-inch widths. The 10-inch pieces have a simulated keyway to give the appearance of 4- and 6-inch width shakes placed together, which provides a multiwidth appearance.
DaVinci's ability to mold different size and color composite tiles should catch the attention of builders, Aaron Adams, a regional sales manager, said at IBS. The production crew can vary the color of the tiles from a solid color to multiple colors within each tile or replicate weathered-wood shakes, he added.
"That gives us the variety that no one in this category has," Adams said. "A refinement to the proprietary color process allows for an easy transition of colors during the production process. The color is randomly dispersed and the tiles are made with color throughout each piece so they require no painting."
Cobb said DaVinci's siding has advantages over wood because it does not warp, rot, burn, blacken from mold or need painting; over fiber cement because it does not swell from water absorption, need painting, or require a face mask or respirator when cutting; and over vinyl siding or vinyl shakes because it does not "feel thin or wimpy to touch" and won't be perceived as cheap or low quality.
DaVinci's hand-split shake siding products are undergoing testing and are expected to meet the same testing classifications as with other company's roofing products. The siding product line also is backed by a lifetime limited warranty. When removed, DaVinci products are recyclable.