Fiberglass grating products are easily cut with standard power tools, using masonry or diamond embedded blades. While worm gear-driven circular saws are preferred for straight cuts, standard tools can be used for most cutting, including angle grinders fitted with diamond embedded or masonry blades and jig saws for curved cuts. Even a hand saw can be used if necessary. Always use sawhorses or platforms for supporting panels while cutting so to avoid flexing or shifting during cutting.
When FRP grating panels are cut at an angle to provide a change in direction of a boardwalk, adjacent panels should always be cut at the same angle so the load bars match up when panels are joined. Follow Archatrak’s guidelines on how to install fiberglass (FRP) grating panels.
Observe common safety precautions when using cutting tools. Always wear gloves when handling FRP grating panels.
Wear approved safety glasses or goggles to protect your eyes and a P2 Dust mask when cutting to reduce inhalation of dust Use a dust extraction system if available.
Dust from cutting FRP products can cause skin irritation. Wear gloves and protective clothing to reduce dust from coming into contact with skin. If cutting products causes difficulty in breathing or excessive skin irritation, stop immediately and consult a physician.
Avoid splitting any of the grid bars.
Cut from the smooth side (bottom) of a grit-top panel using even, steady pressure. Excessive pressure may cause heat build-up and/or ragged edges.
Sand all cut edges using open-grit sandpaper on a high-speed sanding wheel for best results and light, even pressure to prevent wavy, uneven surfaces.
All cut edges should be ground smooth and given a light coating of UV stable, 2 part resin or a UV stable urethane spray coating. This is primarily to prevent corrosive liquids from contacting exposed glass fibers.
Use appropriate fasteners to attach panels to bearers with max. span of 48", with a minimum of four clips per panel. Avoid inserting clips closer than 1 ½" from any edges.
Depending on the application, use C clips every 2’-3’ to secure adjacent panels to eliminate any tripping hazard.
Hold down screws inserted directly into the panels should normally only be used with the MiniMesh gratings since they may split the bars and result in a loose and unsafe installation. For MiniMesh installation, firstly drill a countersink with a diamond cone bit and use stainless steel screws or bolts with a 1/2″ diam.(min) head and a 6-lobe (Torx or equiv.) drive to secure the panels to the bearers.
Fiberglass grating fasteners are available in a variety of styles and sizes for all types of gratings. Clips can be used to secure gratings to the supporting structure or fasten adjacent panels. Clips are made of stainless steel 304, 306 or 316L for maximum corrosion resistance. Clips are sold as a set consisting of clip, bolt, nut and washers. The most common types of clips are:
M clip – for attaching gratings to supports using two adjacent bearing bars
C clip – for joining adjacent panels
J clip – for attaching gratings to the support frame in moderate loading applications only
Steel beam connector – for attaching grates to steel ‘I’ beams