Frequently Asked Questions

Fabricmate’s products vary in form, fabric and function. Below is a collection of industry specific words and phrases that we hope will help you!

If you cannot find what you are looking for, please do not hesitate to ask a question with our expert technicians!

Fabricmate brand panels are shipped to you completely assembled. They are comprised of an acoustical and/or tackable, or a tackable & magnetically receptive substrate (Mag-Tack®) surrounded by a high-impact frame and covered with a high quality fabric.

They are available in standard and custom sizes up to 4’ x 8’ and are most often used as tack boards, acoustical panels, or for aesthetic reasons. They include a fabric cover of your choosing from our large selection, or you can order them without fabric and use your own. If you want to use your own fabric, you’ll want to check with us to ensure that it will be compatible our panels and with your intended use. Most fabrics are compatible. For convenience in mounting and to minimize shipping costs, we recommend our Modular Panel System for panel sizes greater than 4’ x 4’.

Pre-made panel sizes are limited to the size of a sheet of substrate material, typically 4’ x 8’. The Modular Panel System is comprised of framed acoustical and/or tackable panel modules. These modules (two end modules and as many field modules as required to achieve the desired panel length) are installed successively across the area to be covered and then finished with a fabric cover.

They are available in standard and custom sizes as high as the width of your chosen fabric (up to 8’ high) and as long as a roll of that fabric. The pre-made modules are installed on-site and then covered using the fabric installation tools provided. Perfect anywhere a long acoustical and/or tackable panel is needed such as in conference rooms, classrooms, hallways, etc.

This system is used when you have large areas to cover, need to conform to intricate architectural details (doorways, windows, soffits, wall protrusions, etc.), or for design considerations.

This is basically a three-step process.

  1. Define the area to be covered as well as the location of intermediate joints or seams with the appropriate track size and profile.
  2. Fill in the defined area with the desired substrate.
  3. Install the fabric cover. On a square foot basis, this is the most cost effective system. This is the full-wall system of choice.

We also offer other products such as Baffles, Clouds, and Privacy Panels, that incorporated the floating-fabric design.

Without question. Our Pre-made Panels are very competitively priced despite the fact that they offer several advantages over any other pre-made panel on the market today. They incorporate a high-impact frame, are available in more sizes, with a greater selection of fabric coverings to choose from and they feature our floating-fabric design.

Our Modular Panel System provides a ready-to-install large panel solution with a seamless fabric cover that is not available from any other manufacturer. This is a very cost effective solution for conference rooms, classrooms, hallways, and many other applications.

Our Site-fabricated System is the full-wall solution of choice for schools and businesses throughout North America. The initial installation costs, while slightly more than paint, are more than compensated for by its superior presentation, design possibilities, functionality (acoustics and tackability), and by significantly reduced maintenance costs. Many of our systems have been in high traffic locations such as school classrooms for more than ten years, have required no maintenance whatsoever, and still look as good as the day they were installed. That’s cost effective!

With Fabricmate System, ½” and 1”. Other thicknesses are available to meet special requirements. Consult our technical support team.

Typically just sound absorption (see NRC in the Glossary). A 1” thick panel will absorb more sound than a ½” panel or system using the same substrate material. Sometimes design considerations will dictate a specific thickness is used. Some sound absorbent materials are tackable, some are not.

Yes, in fact they are much more durable than painted walls, particularly when part of the Fabricmate “floating-fabric” design. They don’t show wear nearly as fast and are much more easily cleaned. They are routinely used in high traffic areas such as, hallways, classrooms, theaters and other public places and last for years. As opposed to paint, they look better when installed, stay looking better much longer, and reduce maintenance costs.

Yes, another advantage of the Fabricmate “floating-fabric” design. No need to buy an entire new panel or system or even remove the panel from the wall. Just remove the existing fabric by pulling it from the track or frame’s jaws and install your new fabric.

Yes. This is one of the most important differences between Fabricmate panels and systems and other pre-made or “wrapped” panels. The floating-fabric design delivers a superior presentation because the fabric is not glued to the substrate. Panels won’t show impact damage and if necessary or desired, the fabric can be easily changed. Adhesives often contain VOCs and can interfere with the substrate’s sound absorption.

This subject applies principally to the Site-fabricated System. First and foremost, the layout must reflect the desired design. The most common layouts are horizontal, vertical, and panelized. That being said, by far the most common, and the most cost effective choice is the “horizontal” layout. This layout is the most readily accepted, has the fewest joints or seams, and achieves the greatest material utilization (and lowest cost). There are several horizontal layouts to choose from including single-panel, 2-panel, 3-panel, and tack board layouts. The final selection is dictated by design considerations, required function, and available fabric widths. They can be run as long as an entire wall (up to the length of a roll of fabric) without a vertical seam. Vertical intermediate joints or seams will be necessary based upon the width of the fabric is reached, typically 54”-66” but new fabrics are up to 16’ wide.

Almost. Fabrics that are very sheer or that have very close cell construction like some vinyl coverings may not hold in the tracks jaws. Other fabrics that can be held but that are very elastic and have distinct linear patterns may not yield an acceptable result. Compatibility of a fabric with an intended use must also be considered. Some fabrics will not accept a pin or tack without leaving a visible hole. Other fabrics have a raised texture and would not be suitable for use with Mag-Tack®. Consult our technical support team with any questions regarding fabrics.

Yes indeed! Unless otherwise requested, all of our Pre-made Panels and Modular Panels Systems are made with ReCore®, “the environmentally responsible substrate”. ReCore® can also be used with our Site-fabricated System—in fact, we recommend it. Almost all of the fabrics we use are made from 100% recycled polyester and those fabrics are themselves recyclable. Our products can help you earn LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) credits, and more importantly, they are beneficial to our environment.

No. All of the fabrics we offer have been tested to meet the requirements of ASTM E 84, Class A. This is a requirement for all commercial buildings and highly recommended in residential applications. These fabrics can safely be used in schools, theaters, offices, residences, or any other interior space. Please contact our technical support team with any questions regarding a particular fabric.

Yes. All are easily installed by professionals and DIYers alike. We provide complete installation instructions for each of our products and our technical support staff is always available to provide any information and assistance you may need. Of course large scale, more complicated installations are usually best addressed by installation professionals.

Minimal. You just need a consistent, rigid surface. Even drywall material is not necessary unless required by building codes.

Almost. You simply need a consistent, rigid surface. This could include drywall, plywood, wooden or steel studs, concrete, CMU, brick, glass, steel, etc. Contact our technical support for mounting recommendations on specific materials.

Yes. One of the advantages of our Site-fabricated System is that the track can be flexed either vertically or horizontally to a significant degree without negatively impacting its function. This means walls that are concave or convex can be accommodated. The track can also be curved in the vertical plane to conform to architectural details or for design considerations. Most importantly, this feature of our Site-fabricated System allows the installer to compensate for “out of square” and “out of plumb” errors on walls created during wall (or other surface) construction. Our Pre-made Panels and our Modular Panel System can also conform to concave and convex surfaces, but to a slightly lesser degree. As these products are pre-made, they cannot be curved in the vertical plane.

Yes. All of our panels and systems are designed to be used on both wall and ceilings. They provide an aesthetically pleasing sound control solution in lobbies, hallways, corridors and particularly in large rooms such as gymnasiums, theaters, multi-purpose rooms, congregation halls, indoor swimming facilities.