Contemporary pre-finished engineered timber is tough, and the distressed finishes which are currently so popular are ideal for disguising minor levels of wear, but if your scheme calls for a traditional-looking timber plank, the options are more limited. High footfall retailers frequently face this dilemma, since the high CRI lighting required to render colours faithfully also highlights every mark. Marks and Spencer is a prime example: wanting to use wood to portray quality and warmth in the clothing and changing room areas of their new stores in Brussels and Hong Kong, yet being supremely aware of the practicalities. The solution was Xtreme: up to 60% harder than oak, it’s the perfect plank for exceptional levels of traffic.
Whilst emulating a traditional solid wood plank in both dimensions and finish, Xtreme provides the stability, speed and ease of installation of a pre-finished engineered plank. But air and sap is removed from the oak lamella, leaving an open cell structure which is filled with pigmented liquid acrylic. Once dry, the result is a wear layer which is as hard as rock.
But toughness is just one criteria for flooring in public places; slip ratings are perhaps even more critical. Again Xtreme is exceptional, particularly for a lacquered product, achieving ’low’ in both wet and dry conditions. And at just 12.7mm thick it is also more suited to abutting stone and ceramic tiles than a thicker plank.
Havwoods’ Xtreme is available in 4 colours from stock.