Better fencing for Betafence SA

July 2009 Perimeter Security, Alarms & Intruder Detection

Perimeter security specialist, Betafence South Africa has relocated to new bespoke premises in Berg River Park, Paarl. After months of preparation the company finally relocated from its old premises in Blackheath to the new larger facility.

The move was necessary as the existing premises in Blackheath, Cape Town had become too small due to expansions and the investment of a R14 million PVC coating line. Paarl was the ideal location as it had enough electricity supply to meet the demands of the manufacturing plant as well as the PVC line.

Along with the new premises, the company is announcing the commissioning of the new PVC coating line. Trial runs on products have been successfully completed and production is now in full swing. “Everyone is very happy with the quality of the coating, even people from Belgium,” says Gene Wegener, plant manager for Betafence SA. Locally adapted Nylofor products and posts, Securifor 3D, Securifor as well as the 358 fencing systems are now being manufactured and PVC coated in South Africa.

The new flagship product Nylofor 3M-G, which was specifically designed as a local perimeter security solution for golf courses and estates in South Africa, has already been supplied to three prestigious projects namely: Durban Country Club in KwaZulu-Natal; Green Point Stadium in Cape Town and to Villa Valriche – an exclusive lifestyle development in Mauritius.

“What makes this product unique from the other Nylofor products, whilst still maintaining all the inherent advantages, is that the aperture size is just small enough to prevent golf balls from getting through and offers a solution to prevent golf-ball damage to property and vehicles,” explains Michael James, commercial manager for Betafence SA. “Another exciting feature is that panels have been PVC coated in the exciting new Anthracite RAL7021 colour which is taking the market by storm as it blends in so well with the current architectural trend of using glass and aluminium in design.”

Michael James
Michael James

Other product ranges are currently under research and soon the company hopes to launch a range of PVC coated swing and sliding gates, another first in the South African market.

Technology and innovation

After extensive research and surveys the only coating technologies that are available in SA, apart from the automotive coating motor manufacturers, was just not to the required standard or robust enough to withstand the harsh South African environmental elements – so Betafence decided to bring the technology to SA. The task team then took the research one step further and conducted tests into which coating would be more suited to the aggressive South African environment. “Both PVC and polyester coatings are durable, however PVC coating showed higher resistance towards harsh environmental factors and we therefore decided to implement PVC coating technology without negating the polyester supplied products,” concludes Wegener.

It took two and half years of research and development to adapt the available PVC coating technology to accommodate fence panels – the first of its kind in the world.

“Not only is it the first of its kind it is also the largest coating line in the world and can accommodate 6 m wide panels, twice the width of other standard machines in Europe,” explains Wegener.

The machine, which was designed in Italy, is able to PVC coat 2,5 tons per hour. The total dimensions of the line are 70 m long x 7 m high x 10 m wide making it the largest PVC coating machine in the world. The unique feature is that it is able to hold and coat whole panels – whereas current technology only allows small volumes at a time – this is a completely automated and high tech facility for PVC coating and is not limited to fencing only but can accommodate anything made of steel that needs to be coated.

The advantages of PVC over polyester lie mainly in the preparation of the product prior to coating and the quality of the adhesion of the coating to the product. Polyester coating requires labour intensive preparation of the products prior to coating and as it is a chemical process, is difficult to control. PVC coating, on the other hand, is a physical process and therefore requires very little preparation of the product other than cleaning which makes it easier to control and implement. This relates into cost efficiency on the final product.

It is a bold and exciting transfer of technology which has related into up-skilling and employment creation for the local Paarl community and clearly indicates the confidence of investors in South Africa. Importantly, it is giving the local market something it has not had before – choice. The future is PVC coated.

For more information contact Nicky Taylor, Betafence SA, +27 (0)21 868 7300,

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