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Understanding the Benefits of MF Ceilings

Understanding the Benefits of MF Ceilings

What is Metal Frame Ceiling?

An Metal Frame (MF) Ceiling entails a suspended ceiling system constructed from 3600mm metal components. The fundamental system comprises the following elements:

  • MF7 Primary Support Channel
  • MF5 Furring Channel
  • MF6 Perimeter Edge Trim
  • MF9 Hold Down Clips
  • MF17 Hanger Angle

These components combine to form a suspended metal framework onto which plasterboard can be affixed. While the MF system is engineered to support the weight of single plasterboards and multi-layer performance boards, it's imperative to consult with professionals when employing double layers or heavy boards to ensure the system's safety.

Advantages of Using an MF Ceiling

MF ceilings are prevalent in various building structures owing to their popularity as an option to create a fresh, clean ceiling without necessitating the removal of an existing, worn-out system. The suspended nature of the MF system enables it to be installed over the existing structure, thus reducing both labour time and the expenses associated with disposing of old timber and plasterboard. This dual advantage makes it a cost-effective solution while also contributing positively to environmental concerns.

Applications of MF Ceilings

Concealing Old Ceilings - The MF system effectively conceals deteriorated or unattractive ceilings by suspending over the existing structure and covering it with new plasterboard.

Service Accessibility - Creating a void between the original ceiling and the new MF system facilitates the installation of piping, ventilation, and cabling, with the provision of access panels in the plasterboard for easy maintenance.

Thermal Insulation - The accessible void in MF ceilings allows for the installation of insulation rolls above the plasterboard, aiding in heat retention and preventing condensation buildup.

Acoustic Improvement - MF ceilings can be equipped with acoustic insulation rolls or other soundproofing products to prevent sound transmission and reverberation, enhancing overall acoustic comfort.

Fire Protection - MF ceilings, when combined with appropriate insulation and plasterboards, offer commendable fire performance, meeting or surpassing standard fire resistance ratings such as 30-minute and 60-minute certifications for areas requiring heightened fire protection.

Installation Process of an MF Ceiling

The installation of a metal framework ceiling is relatively straightforward. Many tradespeople are now opting for MF systems over traditional timber ceilings due to the labour-saving advantages offered by the former. Unlike timber-supported ceilings that require cutting and often encounter issues such as bows and knots, MF systems' metal components can be easily cut to size using snips, streamlining the installation process.

Fixing MF Perimeter Channel
MF Ceiling Installation steps

MF Perimeter Channels should be secured to the walls at the required heights, at maximum 600mm centres and 50mm from the ends of channels. The top of the MF Perimeter Channels should align with the underside of the MF Primary Support Channel. The MF Perimeter Channels forming the perimeter and the Primary Support Channel do not need to be mechanically fixed together.

Fixing the Angle Section to the joist to form hanger
MF Ceiling Installation Steps

Fix Soffit Cleats to the structural soffit with suitable fixings. Fix the Angle Section to the Soffit Cleat, using an MF Nut and Bolt.

Fixing the Angle Section to MF Primary Support Channel
MF Ceiling Installation steps

The Angle Section should be fixed to the Primary Support Channels with two 13mm Wafer Head Jackpoint Screws. The Primary Support Channels should lie on the upper flange of the Perimeter Channel.

Connect the Primary Support Channel to MF Ceiling Channel with MF Connecting Clips
MF Ceiling Installation Steps

Connect the MF Ceiling Channel to the MF Primary Support Channels by means of MF Connecting Clips. These clips fit over the MF Primary Support Channels and snap-fix over the MF Ceiling Channels.

Adjusting the MF Ceiling Channel
MF Ceiling Installation Steps

The MF Ceiling Channels should be positioned at 450mm centres within the perimeter channels to coincide with the abutments of the boards.

Fixing Plasterboard to MF Ceiling Channels
MF Ceiling Installation Steps

All boards should be offered up to the ceiling grid with the decorative face of the boards outwards and secured with drywall screws at maximum 230mm centres. Fixing centres should be reduced to 150mm at ends and perimeter. Boards should be mounted at 90° to the direction of the ceiling channels.

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