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FAQ's

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What is "swaging"?  
Using our patented machines, we are able to shape both rectangular and square, heavy-gauge steel tubing in such a way as to significantly reduce cost and assembly time. But swaging is more than just a molding, bending or shaping process - it's our way of putting hours worth of energy into that steel tube so that you don't have to. We take the inherent potential of every component and give it the power to work. By the time you lift a hammer, you'll discover that half the job is already done. At that point, a seemingly random component becomes a loafing shed, an RV or boat shelter, and a fully enclosed building. The steel tube is now a breezeway cover, a garage and a horse barn. All as strong and as durable as the single component itself. That's swaging.
Click here to see a "Swaging Video" for further explanation
 
What do you mean by "Slip-Fit" connections - and how does this make assembly easier?  
VersaTube's unique "Slip-Fit" connections simplify the construction process dramatically. It goes back to "swaging" and our patented assembly technique - which allows one steel frame component to easily slip into another steel component, i.e. a rafter section into a peak or a side post. With such a builder-friendly design and complete step-by-step assembly instructions, carports can be put together in hours. And garages can be assembled in a weekend.  
What are the most significant features of the VersaTube® Building System?  
The most prominent feature of the VersaTube system is the patented "swaging" manufacturing technique that produces "Slip-Fit" connections for an easier and faster assembly. This allows for the system to be designed using framing components that are manageable in size for easy handling and compact packaging.

Another key feature is the mandrel bends side posts and peaks. By supporting the tube with a steel mandrel during the bending process, the side posts and peaks are able to maintain maximum tube strength and display greater product appearance. Conversely, the alternative bending employed in other manufacturers' steel tube systems oftentimes significantly weakens the tube and detracts from the look of the structure.

Many other features and benefits of the VersaTube system are discussed in more detail throughout this site.
 
What materials are used to make the VersaTube framing system? Is it strong and durable? Rust resistant?  
The majority of frame components are made of 2" x 3" in-line galvanized steel tubing. All bent components are made with 14-gauge tubing, while the straight components use high-strength 15-gauge tubing. Components that utilize 2" x 2" square material are made with 15-gauge tubing.

The proof is in the frame. Most steel frames require components to be bent-to-fit, thereby compromising strength. Through our "swaging" and smooth mandrel bending processes, we effectively shape and bend heavy-gauge, rectangular steel tubing without sacrificing an ounce of strength or performance.

The premium in-line galvanized steel tubing achieves a salt spray test of 840 hours due to the presence of a final lacquer or polymer coating applied over the protective zinc. By comparison, normal G-90 galvanized steel has a salt spray performance of approximately 400 hours. This equates to significant rust protection for the framing of the structure.
 
How does the cost of your garages compare to those of post-frame or other pre-engineered metal buildings (i.e. red iron)?  
In general, the cost of a finished structure framed with the VersaTube® Building System is very competitive with costs for an equivalent-sized post-frame package. While the material costs may be higher for the all-steel VersaTube framing, the savings from installation labor and required equipment usually more than make up the difference. Most red iron packages cost more than either post-frame or VersaTube frame structures, due to the higher job site costs related to heavy equipment needed to construct such buildings.  
What is the difference between frame kits and frame components?  
Frame kits refer to a bundle or pallet of packaged components designed to provide the framing for all or a portion of a particular structure.

Components refer to the individual items in the kits, as well as the individual items that are added to kits to increase structure size or to add a framing option, i.e. side entry door frame, window frame, etc.

Many independent VersaTube dealers stock or warehouse the individual frame components to allow the flexibility of customizing a frame kit for several structure sizes. Some retail partners stock or warehouse basic frame kits for a specific selection of sizes. Most retail partners and VersaTube dealer builders employ "Special Order Sales" to order the complete package from VersaTube - with direct-to-store delivery of the frame package from VersaTube and many times the roofing, siding and trim from the sheet metal supplier.
 
What is the available on-center spacing of the frame trusses? And, are there any height restrictions for your buildings?  
Garages OC Spacing  
  12' W or 20' W - 5' standard with 4' available
24' W or 30' W - 4' standard

 
  Carports OC Spacing  
  4', 4.5' or 5' available
4.5' standard for units sold through retail partners

 
  The VersaTube framing system is currently engineered to a maximum 12' sidewall height measured from ground to eave. Depending on local code requirements, it may be possible to anchor the frame structure on top of a concrete footing or concrete stem wall as a means to raise the height of the building. Check with your local permitting authority and contact VersaTube's Engineering Department with any questions.  
How are the frames anchored to the ground? And, when do structures require truss braces?  
There are two standard anchoring types. VersaTube offers a 30" rebar anchor that is intended for use when a structure is mounted directly to dirt or gravel surface. It is recommended that concrete piers be poured in a posthole at the outside corners and at the center of the structure when the rebar anchors are used. When the frame structure is mounted to a concrete pad, footing or stem wall, then traditional concrete wedge anchor bolts should be used. Additional anchoring configurations may also be necessary to achieve increased wind load requirements for some areas, i.e. Florida and coastal regions.
 
     
  Generally, structures greater than 20' wide require truss bracing. However, in areas with increased ground snow load and wind load requirements and units with 12'H sidewalls, some 18' and 20' wide structures may require truss braces or collar tie brackets. Truss braces need to be installed only on the inside truss sections, not on the first or the last truss. The use of truss braces reduces the potential interior ground-to-peak clearance and must be considered for vehicles and equipment requiring additional headroom.  
What are the interior clearance heights for standard VersaTube carports and garages?  
  Listed heights reflect the sidewall height measured from the ground to the eave on the exterior of the structure. Peak section components deliver a 3:12 roof pitch. For standard carport and garage widths, ADD the following to the sidewall height to determine the interior ground-to-peak clearance:  
     
  Carports  
  12’W Add 1’3” (1’6” minus the 3” width of the peak and rafter steel frame tube)
14’W Add 1’6”
18’W Add 2’0” (Without truss bracing)
20’W Add 2’3” (Without truss bracing)
 
     
  Garages  
  12’W Add 1’3”  
     
  Some 18’W and 20’W carports and ALL 20’W, 24’W and 30’W VersaTube garages require truss bracing on the interior truss sections to meet loading requirements. Therefore, the actual interior ground-to-truss brace clearance for these units would be approximately the same as the exterior ground-to-eave sidewall height.  
What are the engineering loads for the VersaTube system? Who do I contact for a stamped engineering calculations and/or drawing package for permitting purposes?  
  Most of the VersaTube® Building System structures are designed for 40 PSF (pounds per square foot) ground snow loads and 90 MPH wind loads. Additional loading can be achieved through various means, such as closer on-center spacing (increases ground snow load) or additional anchoring support (increases wind load).  
     
  General engineering drawings and information are available from VersaTube for use with permitting when necessary. If certified "wet" stamped engineering calculations and/or drawings are required by your county, use an Engineering Package Order Form for ordering the required documents from VersaTube. Or, if you purchased your structure from a VersaTube dealer, contact the dealer to request your engineering package. The cost of a licensed engineer's "wet" stamp varies depending on the building specifics & complexity and state location.  
     
What is the warranty for VersaTube® Building System products?  
  VersaTube provides their customers with a Product Pledge of Materials Satisfaction.  
     
  VersaTube partners with national sheet metal suppliers to provide painted steel roofing, siding and trim as part of a complete garage, building, carport or loafing shed package. Our sheet metal suppliers provide a 20-year limited warranty on their painted steel product. Any claims must be submitted directly to the supplier for consideration.  
 
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