Fans of the American TV comedy series M.A.S.H. will be well aware that all of the team’s operations at the 4077th were carried out under canvas in fairly cramped conditions, but when one of Plastic Surgeon’s Finishers was recently called upon to carry out work on a tent in the Home Counties, the scale of the job came as something of a surprise.
Eastern Region Operation’s Manager, Colin Tommins explains: “This job concerned a very large Bedouin tent which has been created in the grounds of a stylish residence in the Buckinghamshire countryside. The scale is huge with the tent having its own kitchen, Jacuzzi and plasma television that rises up out of the floor; and the folding door glass door we had been asked to look at is 40 metres long.”
Plastic Surgeon was in fact called in by Dorma UK Limited, a past client, and a renowned supplier of commercial doors and door operating systems. While in the past, contracts for the cosmetic repair specialist have normally come about because of damage done on site to Dorma installations by vehicles or other trade contractors, in the case of the Bedouin tent the owner and his interior design wanted the metal fittings to be finished in black rather than the silver as first delivered.
There were numerous individual ‘patch’ fittings, that hold the glass panels in place, to be resprayed, but the biggest challenge was the door track itself.
Colin Tommins describes the repair process saying: “We had to lightly abrade the original silver anodized finish on all the metal fittings to provide a key, and then spray them very carefully in black. Three coats: two dry and one wet to get the right appearance. And because the track is so long, it had to be masked off in one metre long lengths, allowed to dry and then masked again for the sections in between to be finished.
“Our Finisher, Paul, also had to be extremely careful about avoiding overspray and protecting the work area because the door opening is surrounded by camel hair, curtaining and other fabrics. It took ten days in all to complete but both the door company and the end client are very pleased with the results.”
Despite the unusual nature of this challenge, it exemplifies the value of Plastic Surgeon’s unique nationwide cosmetic repair service, which enables many different types of building component to be made good, repainted or restored in-situ. This avoids the additional cost and disruption of dismantling installations for work back in the factory, as well as the unsustainable resort of complete replacement.