Specs & Details


 

General

The founder of Flux Studios grew up on a small island 12 miles off the coast of Maine. It was only fitting that his first job as a teenager was in a boatyard, caretaking for fishing and pleasure boats. Many of the boats were subjected to the harsh New England weather; often times after years of commercial fishing use. It was amazing that many of the teak decks could be restored with a simple good cleaning, looking beautiful and virtually new again. The natural variation, depth, durability and beauty in those wooden decks was the inspiration for Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics.

Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics are imported from our overseas partners and finished and netted exclusively in Chicago, USA.


 

Designs

All the finishing and netting of Fortis Arbor tiles is done in our Chicago studio. Each square foot is netted per order, this allows us to net virtually any pattern using our 1x1 inch and 1x2 inch mosaic intervals and the woods shown below. This includes custom gradients and blends tailored to any job specification.

1x1 inch mosaic interval 1x1 inch mosaic interval
1x2 inch mosaic interval 1x2 inch mosaic interval
Circle Inset 1x1 inch Circle Inset 1x1 inch
Circle Inset 1x2 inch Circle Inset 1x2 inch
Oval Inset 1x2 inch Oval Inset 1x2 inch
Rectangle Inset 1x2 inch Rectangle Inset 1x2 inch
Square Inset 1x1 inch Square Inset 1x1 inch
Square Inset 1x2 inch Square Inset 1x2 inch

View our photo gallery to see additional tile patterns, or view our product brochure.


 

(Colors) Wood Types

By partnering with a small furniture company we reclaim our rosewood and teak from sustainably harvested and plantation grown lumber too small to be used in fine furniture making. All our tiles have a living finish that is easily maintained and enhances the wood's natural beauty. Each tile is cut and finished by hand, so every installation is unique.

Our wood tiles are handcrafted from solid bamboo, teak and rosewood. These three woods were chosen not only for their pleasing color range, but also for their strength and durability.

Fortis Rosewood Rosewood: Rosewood is a common western name for what is called Fa-lee by the Chinese and Pradu or Praduak in Thailand. It gets its western name from its incredibly vibrant red color, which is similar but richer in color than cherry and mahogany. Our rosewood ranges in tone from deep red to chocolate brown. Rosewood is used extensively for outdoor carved sculpture because of its density, rot resistance and natural beauty.
Fortis Teak Teak: Ancient civilizations in the East prized teakwood as one of their most valuable resources. Teak's ability to withstand rust when combined with metal, as well as its resistance to rot, have made it the superior wood for shipbuilding. It has been used in some capacity for this purpose since before the middle ages. Often teak flooring from old ships was recycled into park benches for European cities. Today, there are some teak benches in English towns that are centuries old.
Fortis Bamboo Bamboo: Actually considered a grass plant and not wood, bamboo has been used by the Japanese for thousands of years for everything from simple tools to home building. It is only recently that the technology to turn bamboo into a veneer board of incredible stability and hardness has been realized.

Click here to view all wood types/colors.


 

Grout

Fortis Arbor wood mosaic tiles are made of real wood. Once installed they will continue to expand and contract with humidity and temperature changes. For a successful installation you must use Fortis Arbor grout.

We spent years of research developing Fortis Arbor grout. We are the pioneers of wood tiles and only our grout allows for easy installation and maximum performance.

When you place an order for Fortis Arbor tiles a grout and sealer package will arrive with the tiles ready for installation. Except for the readily available adhesive, our grout & sealer package includes everything needed for a successful installation of our tiles.


 

Environmental

Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics are ideal for sustainable building projects. The key environmental aspects of the line are outlined below based on common questions concerning tile manufacturing and its impact on the environment:

Can the use of Fortis Arbor Wood Tile Mosaics contribute to a building attaining LEED certification as a green building? Yes, Although there are categories that fall outside the area which Fortis Arbor wood tiles can contribute, the overall effort in the green building can be helped by the installation of Fortis Arbor wood tiles and may contribute to LEED points in the following categories;

LEED category: Materials and Resources Credit 4.1: Recycled Content 10%

Intent: Increase demand for building products that have incorporated recycled content materials, thereby reducing the impacts resulting from the extraction of new materials.

Requirements: Use materials with recycled content such that the sum of post-consumer recycled content plus one-half of the pre-consumer content constitutes as at least 10% (based on cost) of the total value of the materials in the project.

A high percentage of Fortis Arbor teak tiles and a slightly lower percentage of rosewood tiles are made of post industrial waste from furniture manufacturing. Wood that is too small to make furniture is cut into tile format sizes. Fortis Arbor bamboo tiles do not qualify for this category.

LEED category: Indoor Environmental Quality Credit 4:1: Low Emitting Materials: Adhesives and Sealants

Intent: Reduce the quantity of indoor air contaminants that are odorous, irritating and/or harmful to the comfort and well-being of installers and occupants

Requirements: VOC emissions from adhesives and sealants must not exceed the VOC and chemical components limits of Green Seal's standard GS-11 requirements

Fortis Arbor is set with Bostik's Best urethane Adhesive which is a VOC compliant adhesive. Fortis Arbor is sealed during the manufacturing process with SafeCoat systems Lock in Wood Sealer which is cured during the manufacturing process and has very low VOC.

LEED category: Indoor Environmental Quality Credit 4:2: Low Emitting Materials: Paints and Coatings

Intent: Reduce the quantity of indoor air contaminants that are odorous, irritating and/or harmful to the comfort and well-being of installers and occupants

Requirements: VOC emissions from adhesives and sealants must not exceed the VOC and chemical components limits of Green Seal's standard GS-11 requirements

Fortis Arbor tiles require a final sealer after grouting and installation. They can be sealed with SafeCoat systems Polyureseal BP which has very low odor, and very low VOC. (Be sure and request Safecoat sealers in your grout and sealer package when ordering Fortis Arbor tiles.)

LEED category: Materials and Resources Credit 6:0: Rapidly Renewable Materials

Intent: Reduce the use and depletion of finite raw, and long-cycle renewable materials by replacing them with rapidly renewable materials.

Requirements: Materials used must be derived from plants that are harvested within a ten-year cycle or shorter.

Fortis Arbor bamboo tiles are rapidly renewable. Fortis Arbor Teak and Rosewood tiles do not qualify for this category.

LEED category: Materials and Resources Credit 5:1 20% manufactured regionally Credit 5:2 50% manufactured regionally

Intent: Increase demand for building materials and products that are extracted and manufactured within the region, thereby supporting the regional economy and reducing the environmental impacts resulting from transportation

Requirements: Use a minimum of 20%/50% of building materials and products that are *manufactured regionally within 500 miles.

Fortis Arbor wood mosaics are finished and netted by hand in Chicago, Illinois USA. Use zip code 60613 to determine regional radius.

*Manufacturing refers to the final assembly of components into the building product that is furnished and installed by the tradesmen. For example, if the hardware comes from Dallas, TX, the lumber from Vancouver, British Columbia and the joist is assembled in Kent, Washington; then the location of the final assembly is Kent, Washington.

Note: The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System represents the U.S. Green Building Council's (USGB's) effort to provide a national standard for what constitutes a "green building". USGBC or LEED does not certify building products but rather provides a standard by which a building can be rated and certified as green.

Is the waste water filtered and reused in manufacturing? Yes, Our teak and rosewood tiles are finished using a process that involves water. The waste water created by this process is filtered and reused.

Are broken and rejected tiles recycled into new tile or put to use in some way? No, Fortis Arbor tiles are not breakable and there are very few rejected tiles: less than 1%. Rejected tiles are usually caused from a nail hole or dovetail joint in one of the tiles - a memory of it's former life in the furniture shop. (The reject tiles makes a nice mulch for our garden.)

Is your packaging made of recycled materials? Yes, some of our packing materials are recycled: All the paperwork is printed on 30% post consumer recycled content. Our paper mesh backing is made up of 65% post consumer recycled content. Also, since our tiles are approximately 75% lighter than traditional tile & stone and are not fragile, they use less packing material and require less energy and expense to ship.

Are recycled materials part of the content of your tile? What percentage? Yes, a high percentage of the teak and a slightly lower percentage of the rosewood used to make Fortis Arbor wood tile mosaics are reclaimed from furniture manufacturing. Pieces of wood that are too small to be used for furniture are used to make our tiles.

Is your tile made of sustainable or rapidly renewable material? Yes, 100% of Fortis Arbor tiles are made from sustainable materials; Our bamboo tiles are made from the rapidly renewable bamboo plant. Our teak tiles are made from sustainable plantation grown teak. Our rosewood tiles are made from sustainably harvested rosewood.

Are you manufacturing using energy saving methods? Fortis Arbor wood tiles may require less energy to manufacture than equivalent imported ceramic or stone tiles.

Is your product made of post-consumer waste? No, they are made from post-industrial waste. (see above)

Do you use regional materials? Our bamboo tiles are harvested and cut in China then finished and netted in Chicago, IL. Both our teak and rosewood tiles are harvested and cut in Thailand then finished and netted in Chicago, IL. All the insets tiles are cut in Chicago, IL.

In manufacturing, do you reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions? Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics are not mined or fired in their manufacture and therefore may produce less greenhouse gasses than ceramic, porcelain, glass or metal tiles.

Shipping, and the electricity to power our saws and lights do contribute to some greenhouse gas emissions. Our facility is located in Chicago, Illinois where unfortunately, coal burning constitutes approximately 8% of the power supplied to our facility by Commonwealth Edison. (If you live in Illinois, contact your government representatives to push for clean electric alternatives. We live in the "Windy City", yet zoning regulations prohibit the installation of wind turbines on our building.)

Do you hold any third party environmental certification? We hope that the green aspects of our tiles are evident in the materials and processes used to create them. We believe that the use of Fortis Arbor tiles would contribute to developing high-performance, sustainable buildings.That said, Fortis Arbor does not currently hold product certification from any third parties. (If third party certification was needed for a specific building project we would at that time weigh the costs and expenses of achieving that certification.)


 

Installation

Installing Fortis Arbor tiles is very much like installing any conventional tile and stone:

• Ensure a suitable substrate
• Adhere the tiles to the substrate
• Grout the installation
• Clean and seal the installation

Important differences are:

• DO NOT install Fortis Arbor tiles in abnormally humid conditions relative to normal occupied building temperature and humidity conditions. See Delivery and Storage page 7 of our use & care/installation booklet
• DO NOT use thinset morter. Use only moisture cured urethane adhesive. See Setting page 7 of our use & care/installation booklet
• DO NOT use conventional grout. Use only Fortis Arbor Grout. See Grouting page 8 of our use & care/installation booklet
• DO NOT use excessive amounts of water during grout clean up. See Grouting page 9 of our use & care/installation booklet
• DO NOT seal with conventional tile and stone sealer. Use only Fortis Arbor Sealer/Clear Coat. See Sealing page 10 of our use & care/installation booklet

For a PDF file of Fortis Arbor Grout installation instructions please click here.


 

Use & Care

Care

Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics are easily cleaned using any mild, non-acidic and non-abrasive cleanser. We recommend using a mild soap and water. If the surface of the tiles becomes worn or dull from time or neglect, they can be lightly sanded and refinished with a coat of Fortis Arbor Sealer/Clear Coat.

Do not use acid based cleaning products, cleaning products containing ammonia or abrasive cleaning products on Fortis Arbor tiles.

Preventing Scratches and Stains Stains can be prevented by maintaining a protective finish on the wood surface and by consistent cleaning. Scratches may be removed by sanding and refinishing the tiles with a coat of Fortis Arbor Sealer/Clear Coat. Fortis Arbor mosaics provide a very forgiving surface. Marks from wear and use that may otherwise ruin or permanently mar many other wood surfaces are not a problem for our mosaics tiles. (That said, as with all wood surfaces, if our tiles are scraped with a sharp, hard object, they can be damaged.)

Use

Fortis Arbor Wood Mosaics can be used in virtually any interior application with limited water exposure. They can be used on walls, ceilings, back splashes, countertops, fireplace surrounds, bathroom, kitchen and high traffic floors. Fortis Arbor tiles are not intended for use in areas subject to water saturation or extreme humidity fluctuations. These areas include outdoor applications, pools and fountains, steam rooms, saunas and shower stalls.

Floors Fortis Arbor mosaics are a durable and beautiful choice for flooring. They provide a richness and depth that is unrivaled by standard flooring options. They are easily maintained and, if scuffed or dulled over time, they may be easily returned to their original luster and beauty by a light sanding and additional coat of Fortis Arbor Sealer/Clear Coat. Although our tiles are suitable for bathroom floors, pooling water on floors should be wiped up immediately. We recommend padding the bottom of furniture to prevent damage to Fortis Arbor mosaics used on floors.

Countertops Our mosaic wood tiles are a unique and beautiful choice for countertop applications. Pooling water and spills should be wiped up immediately.

Fireplace and Cooktop Clearance Our tiles are made from real wood and are combustible. Please refer to your appliance or fireplace manufacturer for recommended clearances.

Click here to download a PDF version of our Use & Care/Installation Booklet.