Ceiling systems from the American company Armstrong are most often found in modern office interiors. However, due to the unique technical characteristics, they are suitable for the decoration of a variety of rooms.
Initially, Armstrong suspended ceiling was created just for finishing offices. But soon a presentable appearance, combined with ease of installation and low cost made this type of ceiling structures extremely popular.
Armstrong type ceiling system description
Armstrong type ceiling is a modular suspension system, which consists of a supporting frame and facing panels. This device allows you to solve several problems at once, including hiding the defects of the room and various types of communications.
The use of suspension systems for finishing is not always the most suitable option. However, the Armstrong system does not carry much additional load for the ceiling, since all its elements are made of lightweight alloys (mainly aluminum).
The basis of the suspended ceiling is a metal frame of several types of profiles. As fasteners for fixing profiles in a suspended state, special needles are used. With their help, it is easy to change the installation height of the frame and ensure that all parts of the ceiling are in the same horizontal plane.
For the finishing of the metal frame used tiles. The most popular square tile size is 60 × 60 cm, but there is also a rectangular (double) variety 60 × 120 cm.
Armstrong ceiling types
There are several classes of Armstrong suspension systems, depending on the type of construction and additional characteristics.
"Baikal", "Oasis" and "Tetra" are the most inexpensive varieties of this series, in which mineral-fiber finishing plates are used for finishing profiles. The moisture-proof Armstrong ceilings are considered to be of the highest quality, but the level of moisture resistance of the Economy-line class is only 70%, which makes it impossible to use them for rooms with high humidity.
Class "Prima" - the most reliable ceilings
Suspended ceilings "Prima" have improved technical characteristics. First of all, it is a high level of protection against moisture (up to 95%), fire resistance, and thickness up to 15 mm, which provides a special durability of the coating. The warranty on such a ceiling up to 10 years. In the series "Prima" 6 varieties of tiles, which differ in color and relief.
Acoustic Ceiling - Ultima Series
A distinctive feature of this class is increased noise insulation (sound absorption coefficient of the acoustic ceiling is 0.2-0.5). This ceiling is able to suppress external noise volume up to 35 dB. Protection against extraneous sounds is achieved due to the thickness of the plates of 22 mm, which, in addition to protection against noise, ensures the reliability of the design and moisture resistance of 95%.
Armstrong designer ceilings allow you to embody a variety of interior design ideas. Plates for such ceilings can be made of polycarbonate, wood, steel, glass, etc. For heavy glass plates or stained ceilings, fixing systems with increased strength are used that can withstand heavy loads.
The panels can have different colors (including black), a single-color coating or pattern, a matte or glossy surface, texture, perforation and embossing. One of the popular options is Armstrong's mirrored ceiling.
It is important to bear in mind that Armstrong's ceiling does not allow creating a curved surface, which may limit the possibility of implementing some design solutions.
Armstrong ceiling installation
The standard set of accessories includes the following elements:
- wall profiles;
- load strips;
- longitudinal and transverse profiles;
- suspension system;
- parts for fasteners;
- decorative plates.
First, the ceiling installation height is determined. It is desirable that by the beginning of work on the installation of the ceiling the floor in the room has already been repaired - this will help to measure the corners correctly. Begin work from the smallest angle.
Then measure the segment, equal to the distance between the base ceiling and the suspended structure. Usually this gap is not less than 15 cm. But if there are hidden communications (for example, it can be a ventilation network) under the Armstrong ceiling, the distance is measured from the bottom edge of the communication.
Next, a horizontal contour is planned, along which wall profiles will be installed. This is best done using a laser level. And in order to draw a straight line on the markup, it is recommended to use a paint cord.
The next stage - marking the ceiling itself for mounting hangers and profiles. To do this, mark out a few points:
- the center of the room (determined when applying diagonals from opposite corners);
- through the resulting point across the ceiling is a line;
- parallel to this line, straight lines are laid every 1.2 m - these are the lines along which the profiles will be mounted;
- Approximately every meter marks the points where the suspensions are installed (markup should also be started from the center of the room).
Installation of suspensions and profiles
Installation begins with the installation of the wall profile applied to the contour on the wall. The profile is fastened with screws, which are connected to the wall through plastic dowels (they are installed in advance).
Then suspensions (spokes) are attached to points marked on the ceiling. The method of attachment is the same: on the screws through the dowels. To simplify the installation process, it is recommended to turn the hooks on the ends of the needles to one side.
Now you can proceed directly to the assembly of the frame. Armstrong flow device is quite simple: it is a frame made of aluminum profiles that are attached to the suspensions through the finished holes. The edges of the profiles are based on the wall profiles.
To facilitate the task, you can install 3-4 profile guides, between which the transverse parts will be mounted. Both types of profiles are fastened to each other by a locking connection. The distance between the crossbars should be 0.6 m.
To install lamps under the Armstrong ceilings, it is necessary to reinforce each; place additional suspension and cross member.
The lock is a slot system. In order to properly fasten the elements, the lock must be inserted into the left slot, in which it is easily fixed. Mounted frame is a crate with cells of 0.6-0.6 m.
The final stage of installation
A hinged ceiling installation is completed by cladding. Armstrong ceiling panels are often light and fairly brandy, so it is advisable to install them with gloves. In addition, the installation is recommended in a room with a humidity of not more than 70%.
Facing begins from the center of the room and passes simply and quickly. The tile is inserted into the cell diagonally, edge up, then spread horizontally and lowered onto the frame. If the ceiling tiles have a pattern or relief, then you just need to follow the pattern matching. It may be found that the tiles along the edges of the framework do not fit in the cells as a whole, but they can easily be cut and given the desired size.
The installation of lamps on the Armstrong suspended ceiling is carried out in the same way as the laying of plates. The recommended number of fixtures for rooms with a standard ceiling height is one for 6 meters.
Advantages and disadvantages of Armstrong ceilings
The main advantage that Armstrong-type suspended ceilings provide is the ability to place various communications under the ceiling panels. The mobility of the harness always gives access to them for routine inspection or repair.
Among other advantages:
- aesthetics and the ability to hide any defects in the ceiling;
- ease of installation and replacement of elements, lack of special care;
- low cost of materials and installation of a suspended ceiling;
- high heat-insulating and sound-repellent properties;
- several ordinary facing plates can be replaced with panels in the form of lamps.
In addition, Armstrong's modular ceilings are recognized as environmentally friendly and completely safe to use, which allows them to be used for medical facilities, kindergartens, schools, etc. All materials for the manufacture of suspended ceilings are fire resistant.
As for the shortcomings, then, first of all, we can note the effect of the suspension system on the ceiling height. All types of suspended ceilings Armstrong steal 20-25 cm from the height of the room. It is this circumstance that stops many from installing suspended systems in residential buildings.
Armstrong's metal ceiling is poorly suited for rooms where temperature fluctuations often occur and humidity is high. And finally, cladding panels that are used for ceilings of this type are often not strong enough, they crack and do not withstand accidental mechanical impact.
The device of a false ceiling Armstrong is quite simple, and all stages of installation are carefully thought out and simplified to the maximum. Therefore, Armstrong-type suspended ceilings allow for quick repairs even in rooms with a large area.