Building a Future for Distributors and Dealers of Building Products

March 2006                                Volume 45,  Issue 2

Builder's Block

A Walk of a Show

IBS Sets Attendance and Exhibit Space Records

All who attended the 2006 International Builders’ Show (IBS) in Orlando in January know that it’s a mammoth show. With exhibit space alone estimated (not including walkways) to be more than 40 footballs fields, SHELTER staff figured out that if you simply walked from one end of the convention to the other, you walked approximately 2.2 miles. 

With more than 105,000 housing professionals gathered in Orlando, NAHB staff say that the 2006 IBS was the most successful and well-attended annual convention in the history of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). 

The four-day expo began January 11 with Grand Opening Ceremonies headlined by former Secretary of State Colin Powell.

Attendees Speak Out about IBS

Attendees were primarily positive about this year’s IBS.

Julie Chalpan, a public relations representative for several manufacturers at the show and president of Focus Unlimited PR, says, “IBS was a great experience as always. I thought the traffic was pretty steady, the feedback was good, and I found that the outside traffic (at the show homes) was terrific ... It’s hard running back and forth from the West Hall to the South Hall, but Orlando was smart in building its addition to the convention center and it’s as smooth as it can be. The show has gotten so large that it’s hard to see it all or even a fraction of it in any great depth.”

“This year’s Builders’ Show was outstanding. The booth traffic was heavier than we anticipated, but most importantly, the quality of the people stopping by our booth was top-notch,” says Kim Drew, public relations representative for the Southern Pine Council. “Southern Pine Council is a long-time member of NAHB, and we’ve watched the show grow from modest beginnings to the real granddaddy of them all. This show continues to be a great lead-generator for us.”

Ric Goodyear works for Dixie Lumber, a building supply company based in Easley, S.C. He was a first-time attendee to the Builders’ Show and “thought it was great.” Goodyear was searching for lumber and other general homebuilding products.

Dr. Frank A. Viggiano Jr. has been a professor for 36 years and teaches residential design at Indiana University of Pennsylvania in Indiana, Pa. He has been attending the Builders’ Show for 20 years.

He said that he was looking for anything “cutting edge” and also for energy-saving products. He said the products that really “wowed” him were GE’s new Profile Dishwasher with Smart Dispense, Whirlpool’s see-through top-load washer, and SYNLAWN (synthetic turf).

“It was a good show with many new technologies introduced. It seems that Orlando has had problems in the last two years in managing the traffic.
 International Drive cannot handle the volume,” Viggiano says.

He suggests the show go back to Las Vegas.

Viggiano and others will have to wait until 2008 for the Builders’ Show to be held in Las Vegas. The 2007 International Builders’ Show will be held in Orlando again in the Orange County Convention Center, but it will be held a little later next year. February 7-10, a Wednesday through Saturday, are the dates for next year’s show. 

Some Hot Products

The show had a number of educational seminars from moisture management to managing a family business. And, of course, there are the most innovative products in the homebuilding industry which were on display. Here’s a look at what some exhibitors were showcasing at this year’s show:


Beaded Siding with Solid Core™ Backing

CraneBoard® Double 6 1/2-inch beaded panels from Columbus, Ohio-based Crane Performance Siding offers a natural brushed finish. CraneBoard’s panel face and head replicate the detail and look of hand-milled beaded cedar planks found on Southern colonial homes.

Benefits of the siding include low maintenance and quick and easy installation. It’s wide, straight plank helps to smooth and straighten walls while hiding imperfections. With its Solid Core™ backing, the panel does not hug the wall like typical vinyl beaded panels that curve and distort highlighting nails and wallboard imperfections. The panels interlock to keep seams tight and for a natural appearance.

Available in 12-foot lengths, the premium siding offers up to 300 percent more impact resistance than typical beaded vinyl siding and deadens sound by up to 45 percent, according to the company.


UltraSTEEL™ Increases Safety

Pittsburgh, Pa.-based Dietrich Metal Framing, a Worthington Industries company, has unveiled its Dietrich UltraSTEEL™ metal framing products using the patented technology of Hadley Industries plc. 

UltraSTEEL is a method of altering the characteristics of the base strip steel to provide higher strength material. Additional benefits include superior fire performance and enhanced acoustical performance.

The company says the product can also improve the speed and quality of the building process by allowing faster and better fastening of both the framing products and wallboard. Its rigidity and smooth edges enhances safety and makes handling easy.


Matching Doors and Windows from Avonni

Avonni Windows and Doors, based in North Wilkesboro, N.C., offers new products including high-end, patio doors, entry door systems and aluminum-clad windows, specially matched by colors and styles to coordinate all of the door and window openings in a home.

The new product are available in selected Southeastern states. Through its website,, Avonni provides a Design Center section that allows visitors to create and quickly visualize the coordinated look they are seeking for the home, according to a company release. 

Dealers ordering Avonni doors and windows also may utilize online capabilities through an online order-entry system. WindowVation is accessible through the Avonni website.


FrameGuard™ XP Coating Protects Against Mold

Arch Wood Protection of Smyrna, Ga., has developed a new coating, FrameGuard™ XP, to provide effective resistance to mold and other pests. The chemicals in the coating are formulated for application on wood to be installed in interior locations and to provide effective resistance to mold, termites and fungal decay. 

The coating is applied by spray or dip at a manufacturing plant, lumber mill or distribution yard where the quality of coverage can be more precisely controlled than at a jobsite. The solution is a water-based, proprietary combination of patented and EPA-registered components that provide broad protection against mold and wood-destroying organisms that can cause deterioration, discoloration and odor.


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