Choosing fiberglass pultruded sheet piles is a very interesting advantage for designers who can appreciate  a decisive improvement compared to steel performances, thanks to materials like fiberglass.

When we talk about fiberglass pultruded sheet piles is possible to include the corrosion resistance among their advantages. Several international studies have given clear evidence of it: fiberglass sheet piles are characterized by a higher strength to corrosive action of atmospheric agents and a lightness five times lower compared to steel.

Resistance to corrosion and lightness are two factors that have allowed many designers to replace steel sheet piles with fiberglass pultruded sheet piles. Today, things have obviously changed both in Italy and abroad: awareness about sheet piles produced by pultrusion process is widespread and fiberglass sheet piles have already been installed in different construction sites, so that it is possible to have substantial cost savings in the long term thanks to their above specified technical features.

For this reason companies specialized in producing fiberglass pultruded sheet piles have specialized in the production of various solutions, which are resistant to corrosion and characterized by lightness and an inconceivable steel resistance.

In fact there are sheet piles made ad hoc to replace those made of iron and intended to large bearing capacities. Fiberglass pultruded sheet piles, which may be produced by customized colours, are also used to build aesthetics barriers.

In this case, as already specified, it is necessary to combine aesthetic requirements, a reachable result, because it is possible to colour sheet piles with different shades, with the need for long-life materials, a peculiarity strongly linked to corrosion resistance.

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Producing grates in large sizes in the best possible way, it means taking into account the use of materials other than steel. There are certainly many advantages of using steel, but far fewer than those found thanks to the use of fiberglass.

Molded fiberglass gratings with non-slip finish represent a solution which is becoming increasingly central among designers choices. Why? First of all, because fiberglass is a material resistant to the atmospheric agents and to acid and base attacks. This makes the choice of molded fiberglass gratings – perfectly tailor-made – a congenial option, when it comes to produce grates exposed to the outside for the most part of their extension.

Another advantage of this choice on molded fiberglass gratings with non-slip finish concerns the fact that fiberglass, though it is very light in weight, is able to withstand high load capacities that may reach about 50 quintals.

Due to its lower relative density, it is definitely stronger than steel at equal weight. We previously have referred to as moulding process represents the perfect solution for those who would like to have a perfect production according to their needs, with the possibility of customizing the end product and making it economically advantageous from the point of view of immediate costs and sustainable in the long term. Fiberglass, as already specified, is extremely resistant to corrosion and has become synonymous with a longer useful life of products.

Ease of assembly, lightness of the entire structure, long-term maintenance savings: these and many other benefits of molded fiberglass gratings with non-slip finish, sustainable and technically advanced solutions for grates in large sizes that can be produced with a technical perfection, which is unthinkable by steel.

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The lightness of fiberglass pultruded sheet piles has long been known. People facing everyday problematic issues related to job as a designer know perfectly how it is important that efficiency and cost benefits are reconciled.

When you think about the installation of structural components of significant sizes, such as sheet piles, this could become difficult, unless the choice is oriented towards technically innovative solutions like fiberglass pultruded sheet piles.

Fortunately, this option has gained ground against sheet pilesmade of reinforced concrete, PVC and steel in the last few years. What are the main advantages of choosing fiberglass pultruded sheet piles? The main aspect to consider is lightness in these cases.

Indeed, fiberglass sheet piles weigh about five times less than steel. The arithmetic is quite simple: choosing fiberglass sheet piles for their own projects, it means making room for substantial cost savings both for transportation in construction sites and on site handling.

All this without sacrificing anything with regard to quality and resistance. The advantages of pultruded sheet piles are not restricted to lightness, a very important peculiarity.

But it must not be forgotten the fact that the use of fiberglass has become synonymous with anti-corrosion and that sheet piles produced thanks to a pultrusion process are easy to work with also in a construction site, so that steps to be undertaken before installation are much more quickly and efficiently.

Finally, the aesthetic aspect should not be overlooked. Fiberglass pultruded sheet piles – apart from being much lighter than steel – can be produced with different colours. This offers a great advantage to integrate the installation with the surrounding environment.

It is also possible to customize fiberglass pultruded sheet piles, producing them with the aim of replacing those made of iron or PVC, according to the needs.



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Today pultruded fiberglass sills represent an innovative and cost-effective solution for private buildings and not only. The reasons which have determined their merited success are several and also involve the thermal insulation, a typical property of composite materials.

This is an aspect which should not be overlooked within comfortable built environments, but also as far as the value of the property is concerned, where there are windows and doors with pultruded fiberglass sills, a choice that contributes to obtain CasaClima certifications: this is a guarantee to environmental sustainability of buildings.

The pultruded fiberglass sills allow to appreciate a significantly higher thermal insulation than aluminium, a metal with which we produce profiles that have greater physical dimensions and need more treatments to optimize the lifespan of windows and doors.

If you also consider that pultruded sills do not require any maintenance and do not need a double and triple chamber to obtain an optimal thermal insulation, you’ll quickly understand that if you choose them a number of advantages are offered from a practical point of view, but also from the aesthetic one: two fundamental aspects for the end user.

Thanks to pultruded fiberglass sills is possible to obtain an excellent conciliation between the energy saving, living comfort, lifespan of the product and final aesthetics.

In this respect it is recalled that the importance of thermal insulation, referred to as the central criterion for different realities where pultruded sills are installed in different contexts, offers a really interesting picture of the situation.

All this is a sign of changed times in relation to the awareness of the value of sustainable constructions, an excellence in this sector that has still a lot to say about to those who want to find out the advantages thanks to products, such as pultruded fiberglass sills.


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The production of windows and doors is very important when designing a house. Aesthetics and usability should be put in the foreground and fulfil their aim is necessary to find the right solutions from a technical point of view, such as for example the pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish.

The use of pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish is particularly suitable for sliding windows and doors of large sizes. Thanks to composite materials produced by the pultrusion process is possible to provide a very interesting and even smoother aesthetic aspect compared to that of aluminium which requires a double or triple chamber.

The advantage of pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish is not limited to this aspect. We also remember the need for a little maintenance, which however does not happen with aluminium.

The pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish represent a congenial solution, above all in living environments with windows exposed to the atmospheric agents. This means that, for example, pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish can be a very good alternative for sliding windows and doors facing the garden to open them without criticality risks in case of rain or snow.

Therefore, choosing pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish constitutes an advantageous alternative first of all from the usability point of view , very important for indoor environments made on a human scale and able to ensure maximum comfort.

Secondly, it is possible to save time and money thanks to low maintenance requirements. This is essential for living space management.

Choosing pultruded fiberglass sills with non-slip finish, the value of a dwelling depends greatly on details, such as sills for windows and doors, and it can become even more sustainable – these are solutions that provide thermal insulation – and aesthetically valuable.

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Pultruded fiberglass sills represent a most viable solution for civil construction and not only. By now, energy savings serve as an essential reference point for all sectors, the reason why choosing pultruded fiberglass sills confers additional advantage, it also involves living comfort, as well as the efficiency of industrial buildings.

Pultruded fiberglass sills are an excellent solution in both cases, first of all, because they are resistant to atmospheric agents. The comparison with metal elements leave no doubt: fiberglass sills are resistant to greater numbers of atmospheric agents.

Just think about the fact that fiberglass is a material both resistant to acids and bases, but also to high temperatures. In this way pultruded sills are even more congenial in the context of industrial applications.

It is extremely important to remember that pultruded fiberglass sills are resistant to corrosion processes which are typical of stray currents and have an effect on keeping alive aluminium sills. As far as data on aging are concerned, studies have been conducted in fiberglass sills for more than thirty years.

The results have revealed that aging is considered minimum for sills made of pultruded fiberglass.

Another outstanding feature for pultruded fiberglass sills concerns the fact that no maintenance is required. By virtue of an excellent resistance to atmospheric agents it can be said with certainty that the use of pultruded fiberglass sills for industrial applications and others do not compel to carry out external and internal periodic painting operations.

The peculiarity of reduced weight provides a whole range of benefits associated with their use, which is still more performing thanks to a greater ease that can be found during handling operations.

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Pultruded materials present remarkable features. Even though Saimex Srl is already operating under certified conditions, it was decided to further test the capacity of their product. Therefore, flexural and pull tests were commissioned to the Technical University of Milan and performed by a technology bearing the company’s logo: Deck System, a special deck in composite material, which is light and extremely versatile. Its applications range from pedestrian bridge to pedestrian paths.

Flexural test

It was performed on sampled panels Deck System HD supplied by Saimex Srl. The single elements had the following sizes: 501.9 mm x 1,800 mm x 40 mm (Figure 2).

The promotion campaign has planned to perform three flexural load-controlled tests in a four-point static scheme and a clear distance between the supports of 1,500 mm (Figure 3). The purpose of this test is to verify if the elements are shifted towards the mid-span using the working load.

Test no. 1:

–   maximum deflection limit per working load Pe = 3.10 kN kept for 10 minutes: 7 mm;

–   maximum load applied: Pu = 20 kN


  • no breakage or failure due to Pu;
  • minimum residual deformation of post-discharge (u = 0.940 mm).

Test no. 2:

–   maximum deflection limit per working load Pe = 3.10 kN kept for 10 minutes: 7 mm;

–   maximum load applied: Pu = 25 kN


  • no breakage or failure due to Pu;
  • minimum residual deformation of post-discharge (u = 1.759 mm).

Test no. 3:

–   maximum deflection limit per working load Pe = 3.10 kN kept for 10 minutes: 7 mm;

–   maximum load applied: Pu = 25 kN


  • no breakage or failure due to Pu;
  • minimum residual deformation of post-discharge (u = 1.790 mm).

The maximum arrows were reached at mid-span for a maximum load applied respectively in all the three tests and are, as follows:


Test no. fmid-span [mm]
1 5,221
2 5,015
3 5,562

Table 1: maximum mid-span deflection of the samples

Therefore the tests give evidence to the considerable ability of Pultruded composite materials produced by Saimex Srl, which not only confirm, but also overcome by far the expectations of the Technical University of Milan and of the company and the values prescribed by the current regulations relating to composite materials (UNI EN 13706).


[Coming up the second part of ‘Mechanical testing of pultruded composite materials’]


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[To be continued…]

The overall mechanical behavior shows elastic-brittle features until reaching an ultimate strength and, therefore, a sudden collapse without further deformative contributions.
Schermata 2015-05-25 alle 11.58.01

Figure 1 – A comparative stress-strain graph (

Features and advantages:

  1. lightness;
  2. high mechanical resistance;
  3. thermal insulation/thermal break;
  4. fire-resistant;
  5. recommended maximum operating temperature 60°÷90° (using high-performance resins);
  6. maximum temperature range – 40°C ÷ 180°C;
  7. corrosion resistance;
  8. maintenance-free;
  9. radiolucent;
  10. profiles based on customer’s drawings.

If the temperature range is low, the pultruded material doesn’t show any decay of mechanical performance; on the contrary it is possible observe an increase in the strength parameters.
The material leaves a wide margin of designing in relation to its thermal and electrical properties; the longitudinal extension in the direction of fibers is limited, whereas the same doesn’t happen along the two transverse directions. The material takes on a similar behaviour, even when the thermal conductivity is concerned with small changes depending on the fiber used. The response to electromagnetic stresses is on the whole good, although it is rather moderate against the carbon fiber composite materials.
Hereunder you find a comparative table of the key features of Pultruded Materials and of the major competitive materials:

Properties Pultruded Material Steel Aluminium PVC
Density [g/cm3] 1.8 7.8 2.8 1.4
Tensile strength [MPa] 350 – 400 370 – 500 200 – 400 40 – 60
Pull elongation [%] 1.5 – 2.0 13 – 35 5 – 35 10 – 80
Flexural strength [MPa] 400 – 450 330 – 500 200 – 400 70 – 100
Elastic modulus [103 MPa] 25 – 30 210 70 2.8 – 3.3
Flexural modulus

[103 MPa]15 – 20210702.8 – 3.3Impact resistance [MPa/m2]20040020085 – 95Thermal conductivity [W/m°C]0.25 – 0.35100 – 230100 – 2300.15 – 0.25Coefficient of thermal expansion [106 MPa/m°C]5 – 2010 – 1420 – 2550-100Dielectric capacity [KV/mm]5 – 15–40 – 50Volume resistivity [wcm]1010 – 10140.2 – 0.80.028> 1016

Table 1 – comparative table of mechanical features of materials under consideration (

[Coming up ‘Tests performed at the Technical University of Milan’]

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Fibers usually  used for structural elements in FRP profiles are made of long continuous fiber glass. It is noted that fibers having a tensile strength show the same elasto-brittle behavior, without any impact on work hardening and softening sections. On the contrary, if they are compressed, the response is inadequate against the previous one. It exhibits a homogeneous and symmetric behavior (isotropic) compared to steel.

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[to be continued ‘production methods’]


SMC (Sheet Molding Compound)

a molding composition, is much more similar to automated and continuous processes. It is characterized by medium-high production rates, a stable section and precise and codified tolerances. It originates from a resin impregnated mat (prepregs) formed of short free-fall fibers. The composite is placed inside an aluminium mold under forming press. In this way it undergoes a process of polymerization (‘curing’) that changes the physicality of the material. Therefore a controlled and repetitive process is generated, by which it is always possible to obtain the same result. Then the mold is closed and sealed under pressure and air is drawn in during the curing. It is destined for the production of medium sized elements.


BMC (Bulk Molding Compound)

is similar to the previous process, in which the composite is used in the form of ‘prepreg paste mass’; it can be processed using processing methods, such as, moulding, transfer or direct injection inside the mold. This technique is also destined for the production of small-medium sized elements.



a system for the continuous pull extrusion of profiles with a stable section and straight axis, with subsequent curing in the heated closed die. The use of long fibers provides resistance to the product and mechanical responses similar to those which are typical for steel, except for the isotropy of material (the Pultruded Profile is highly orthotropic). Therefore the production is steady and automated; the dies used are made of hardened steel and ensure high production rates, thanks to their very high resistance. At the end of the process the product is cut to the desired length. Examples: IPE profiles, squared profiles, round profiles and profiles with complex shapes.

[Coming up ‘Behaviour of the GFRP composite material’]

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