Introduction

Ever since establishment in 1992 Sapphire has believed in the benefits of offsite manufacture whether working on small balustrade projects to larger balcony projects. This passionate belief has ignited many innovative ideas and sets Sapphire at the forefront of offsite manufactured solutions for high quality balustrades and balconies. As pioneers of this concept for residential projects we have made significant investment in production skills, precision machinery and patent-protected systems which streamline offsite processes and optimise quality.

Sapphire’s dedicated investment in offsite production techniques has enabled us to achieve a lower cost base, better aesthetics and faster production times for our clients. Utilising this proven expertise we pre-fabricate complete balconies with preassembled balustrades and decking in our dedicated quality-assured production facilities in Winchester. Balcony units are delivered fully assembled ready for fixing to the building façade – minimising time, cost and risk on site.

Benefits

Offsite production of balcony units brings many benefits for developers and contractors:-

Reduces time: delivering fully assembled balcony units saves installation time on site.

Increases quality assurance: manufacturing and assembling balcony units in factory production line conditions ensures a high degree of quality control which is almost impossible to achieve on site.

Reduces costs: using offsite manufactured balconies manufactured in a dedicated plant many time and cost saving efficiencies are enabled. This method of balcony install can also reduce the duration of scaffolding on site resulting in a direct cost saving to the contractor.

Reduces risk: on site health and safety issues associated with hot works, for example, when installing traditional balconies are reduced, as is the risk of errors and potentially costly project delays due to bad weather.

Minimises storage: pre-fabricating and pre-assembling as much as possible in the factory reduces the requirement for secure storage on site – a further benefit particularly ideal for projects in city centres like London where site space can often be extremely limited.

Technical

To complement our offsite manufactured balustrade systems, we have developed unique offsite balcony systems which combine the benefits of pre-fabricated units with fast installation using innovative connectors. Our pioneering concept is based on the manufacture of ‘semi-modular’. (using standard components and methodology whilst manufacturing to exact project dimensions etc). This enables us to maximise the efficiencies associated with producing standard, repeatable units, whilst still allowing design variations to be made to each module as required.

Sapphire has invested in state-of-the-art production facilities, equipped with advanced, automated systems and computerised production tools. Our skilled fabricators are trained in the latest offsite manufacturing techniques to optimise the efficiency of modern factory processes. By manufacturing and assembling complete balcony units at the Winchester facilities we conduct numerous quality checks and so ensure consistent quality throughout the production process. Machinery like the automatic polishing machine is an example of offsite manufacture using high-tech production equipment which would be impractical or impossible to deploy on site.