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Cast Iron Grates

Contractor Builds Stairs out of Cast Iron Grating

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Check out this beautiful south Hollywood stairwell constructed by Agave Designs, a creative construction company based in Los Angeles, California that primarily works with design firms.

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After speaking with the project designers, project manager Chris Walters and his boss constructed this South Hollywood nightclub stairwell using leather belts and 6” wide cast iron grates to create an industrial look.

Walters said the designers told him to incorporate a grating system lit from behind into the stairwell, which needed to evoke an industrial atmosphere.

“Cast iron just seemed to us the easiest way,” he said.

Walters ordered a sample cast iron grate from Trench Drain Systems to see whether his vision for the project could be accomplished. Everybody loved the finished product.

Satisfied that iron grating would work, he ordered more and began to assemble the project. He cut the 24” grates and welded the pieces together to make each stair backing plate wide enough to stretch across the 37” wide stairwell.

The next step was to make each grate an even surface and to create the ambient lighting effect. Walters built snug box molds, coated the insides with Vaseline and set the trench grates inside.

He mixed up epoxy, a thick and sticky liquid, and poured it over the grates to create a hard, amber-colored plastic.

For the stairwell walls, Walters approached a tiny store in the L.A. fashion district and asked for 900 belts. He used the belts to create the leather wall tiles that cross-hatch the stairs.

“We’re not your typical construction company,” he said with a chuckle.

Designers often look to Agave Designs for creative input on projects because they see items for their aesthetic qualities rather than their intended purpose.

“If they’re stuck on something they ask us,” he said.

Leave a comment below and tell me:  What’s the craziest thing you’ve seen cast iron grating used for?

Trench Drain Systems is happy to have brought you this article! If you have a question about cast iron trench grates or decorative grating upgrades for your pre-existing trench drainage system, please email me. You can also call one of our drain specialists at 610-638-1221 to discuss your application.

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