Development, production and worldwide distribution of machines and equipment used to install elastic floor coverings are some of Leister's core competencies. The battery-powered GROOVER 500-LP joint milling machine and the UNIFLOOR E and UNIFLOOR 500 automatic floor welding machines have inspired Swiss, floor installers Werner, Mischa and Sascha Morf. At the time of this interview, they were working on school building renovations in Zurich. You can read more about them in this blog post, as we were allowed to look over their shoulder at work.
In 2013, the canton of Zurich adopted a school space strategy for secondary and vocational school buildings. As part of this school space strategy, numerous schools in the city of Zurich are due for redevelopment. A solution was needed so that school students could be taught undisturbed despite the redevelopment. This is where Blumer-Lehmann AG, one of the leading Swiss lumber construction companies, came in. In collaboration with internationally renowned architectural firms, Blumer-Lehmann designs and builds free-form wood buildings all over the world. Modular construction and temporary construction are also among the company's specialties, with temporary construction being in high demand for school building redevelopments as of late.
To make a long story short: Blumer Lehmann builds school buildings on behalf of the Office of Structural Engineering of the City of Zurich and these are covered with resilient and durable flooring.
The Morf family of floor installers includes Werner and his sons Sascha and Mischa, who were commissioned by Blumer-Lehmann to lay these floor coverings.
The Morfs rely on the quality that comes with Leister's battery-powered GROOVER 500-LP milling machine, TRIAC AT heat gun and the UNIFLOOR E automatic floor welding machine.
Leister product manager Silvan Horand took the opportunity to bring the new UNIFLOOR 500 to the construction site (Not entirely without ulterior motives). We were curious to hear what the Morf brothers thought of the UNIFLOOR 500.
Three story, school building in Zurich Höngg
For those who have no idea how this works: A plastic welding rod is heated with hot air and inserted directly into the joint by the automatic welding machine. After that, the floor is sealed and can withstand the stresses of school use. What's more, a linoleum floor like this is simple to maintain and especially easy to clean.
The battery-powered GROOVER 500 joint milling machine inspired Sascha Morf
When Sascha Morf milled the joint with the battery-powered GROOVER 500-LP joint milling machine, it happened so fast that our cameraman Urs Zimmermann had to hurry to keep up. As soon as the last joint was milled in the back classroom on the second floor, Sascha grabbed the GROOVER 500-LP, carried it straight to the next classroom and continued. It's super-fast compared to a milling machine powered by electricity since he didn't lose any time having to reconnect the power cord. Sascha appreciated the mobility that GROOVER 500-LP offers, "Nowadays, you don't have electricity everywhere on the construction site and have to make do with makeshift solutions. With the GROOVER 500-LP, I'm independent," he said happily.
He also heavily-emphasized his appreciation for the additional benefits that GROOVER 500-LP offers, "The GROOVER 500-LP is easier to handle, even more precise in use, and I am much more flexible, independent and faster thanks to its battery operation."
Floor welding with the UNIFLOOR 500
Joint sealing (floor welding) takes place after joint milling is completed. So far, Sascha and Mischa have welded the joints with their UNIFLOOR E from Leister.
Once the button is pressed, the machine preheats and the hot air blower moves down automatically, the UNIFLOOR 500 moves forward and welds the joint with the welding rod. Sascha can standby and monitor the welding process since the tool does all the work itself. When it reaches the opposite wall, the UNIFLOOR 500 stops and the hot air blower automatically removes itself from the welding joint.
Sascha was excited to be able to keep the UNIFLOOR 500 for testing purposes since this job site still had five classrooms that required floor installations. The process involves the linoleum getting glued on, rolled, milled with the GROOVER 500-LP and then welded with the UNIFLOOR 500.
Time was running out since summer vacation was almost over and students would be ready to attend the school again. For the Morfs, it's straight on from there.
Sascha says, "We can't complain. When we're done here, there are other school buildings in Zurich waiting for us this year where we can install floors. They look the same as this one, so we know our way around, and with the Leister flooring equipment, we're on the safe side."
Over 60 years of successful flooring installations
Werner founded the successful family business 60 years ago, he tells me in response to my question. I looked at him, did the math and imagined a first grader on the construction site. 60 years? Can that be right? He seemed to have read my mind and said with a laugh, "Yes, it's 60 years, I'm 78 now." Point made: Installing floors keeps you fit and young.
Werner still enjoys his job. While his sons continued to work in Höngg, he already started laying the linoleum floors in the next school building.
By the way, you won't find the Morf family business on the Internet. The name Morf stands for quality and reliability and has been known in professional circles for years.
Thanks for the great cooperation
A big thank you to Werner, Mischa and Sascha Morf for the great cooperation. Taking photos, shooting videos and collecting feedback on new products is not usually part of the floor installation process. Especially not when time is short. We appreciate it very much and wish you lots of continued success.
Author: Silke Landtwing, Corporate Communication Manager, Leister Switzerland