Founded in 1999, DaVinci Roofscapes (Lenexa, KS – davinciroofscapes.com) is a pioneer in the development and commercialization of composite polymer roofing. The first DaVinci roofing product was installed in 2001; today, their line of polymer slate and shake roof tiles can be found on buildings across the USA and internationally – from Canada to the Caribbean to China.
The proprietary materials compounded by DaVinci are the secret to their product success. The environmental challenges the materials must meet are daunting: the roofing products are embedded with state-of-the-art UV stabilizers and are designed to resist curling, cracking and fading, mold, algae, fungus and insects.
In addition, they are designed to resist water absorption, which eliminates freeze-thaw issues. With such critical performance requirements, these materials need excellent compounding machinery and equipment; because of this, DaVinci turned to ENTEK for its extrusion needs.
Up and Running
DaVinci first approached ENTEK when the company needed assistance with its non-ENTEK twin-screw extruders. “They were having some production issues with their existing machines, and we helped them with advice and new replacement wear parts to help them improve their processing,” said Linda Campbell, ENTEK Regional Sales Manager.
Because of the expertise ENTEK showed in helping solve some of DaVinci’s processing issues, the company purchased a new ENTEK 73mm twin-screw extruder to support their growing business. The results have been impressive. “The ENTEK 73mm twin-screw extruder is a workhorse,” said Johnny Lopez, Compounding Manager at DaVinci. “It outperforms our other larger twin-screw extruders.” In addition to the excellent output, the ENTEK extruder and auxiliaries have helped DaVinci ensure optimum product quality.
When analyzing their production process, ENTEK identified a way to improve quality control and recommended that DaVinci incorporate underwater cutting technology for the material being compounded. A Gala pelletizer was added to the production line, and this dramatically improved product consistency.
“You never want to waste material, but when you’re compounding highly filled and customized materials like DaVinci uses, it becomes more important than ever to maximize efficiency,” said Linda Campbell. “We helped them improve their process, and they worked hard on their end to not only improve their quality but also to increase processing rates.”
Growth for the Future
Based on the success they’ve achieved, DaVinci continues to grow. The company is considering expanding its production by adding an additional extrusion line, and when they do, ENTEK will be the first supplier they call. “We are very pleased with the market growth we’ve seen for our composite roofing products, and we are happy to partner with ENTEK for our extrusion needs,” said Bryan Ward, President of DaVinci Roofscapes. “They are a big part of our success and we look forward to a mutually beneficial relationship in the years ahead.”