All about the Experience
“Elevator interior designer” FabACab aims to keep standing out by providing superior design of modulated panel systems.
FabACab is a Middletown, Indiana, elevator interior design (cab manufacturing) company founded as a sister company of MetalArt Inc. in January 2015. Its 23-year-old sister company is also involved in the elevator industry, as well as the metal-fabrication industry. MetalArt’s decision to expand services beyond its current Midwestern borders led to the creation of FabACab. Its mission is to offer professionally designed elevator interiors manufactured with patented technology, allowing quicker installation with the most solid finished product possible.
The company started not with a paneling system, but with the idea that the end user’s, buyer’s, sales representative’s and technician’s experience would be quick and easy. Fast quotes, fewer design meetings and speedy service were focused upon. Cofounders, President Josh Anderson and Vice President Bobby Haskett, formed their vision for FabACab by asking clients what they looked for in designs, asking elevator-company representatives what they were looking for in a vendor and asking what technicians were looking for in an installation process. They were amazed by what they learned from such simple (yet sometimes tough) questions.
Speaking on the company’s history, Director of Marketing Andy Heiser added:
“FabACab was built from listening to everyone involved in this industry — from technicians, to representatives, to clients, to vendors. To everyone we could reach, we asked, ‘What could be better?’ From that, we learned so much about the industry. We learned what was missing, what was loved and what could be done better. We created our Cab Builder tool and proprietary handrail mounts, and made quality over bottom-line manufacturing decisions, and so much more. We built an elevator interior company around the way it should be done.”
The roots of the company also lead to its patented handrail system that FabACab says “ensures that our hand rails will never come loose.” The company’s online “Cab Builder” allows representatives and their clients to look through more than 50 varied custom designs and build the cab they want. Its online “Accessories Store” is a shop for accessorizing a cab interior with special ceilings and handrails. Finally, FabACab’s panel system (born of extensive research and testing) is installable in half the time it takes to install a conventional system.
When it comes to ceiling construction, FabACab heard a number of complaints from all parties involved. Installers struggle with hanging ceilings, while representatives and clients noticed ceilings are often mounted unevenly. To address the former problem, the company first realized that every cab is different. Even cabs in the same elevator group may have different placements for emergency lighting, electrical systems, ventilation fans, canopy’s seams, I-beam and/or escape-hatch placement. It added hat channels that run the perimeter of the entire island ceiling and, in most cases, a channel down the center of the ceiling. This allows installers the ability to mount the ceiling anywhere along the canopy and gives the ceiling rigidity and strength.
To ensure the ceiling would hang and remain level, even after load weight testing that often puts it at an angle, FabACab developed an adjustable hanging bracket that allows the installer to set the height of each bracket on site. Additionally, the company makes its ceilings entirely of metal, starting with a 1/8-in. aluminum substrate and adhering the desired ceiling finish, typically 18-ga. #4 finished stainless steel. The hat channels are welded to the aluminum substrate, giving the ceiling structural integrity superior to that of what is commonly used, wood. It also allows building owners to refinish lightly damaged ceilings or re-clad heavily damaged ceiling faces.
FabACab prides itself on availability, customization, support and quality. President Josh Anderson explained:
“We are a young company, but we are building on decades of experience in the metal-fabrication industry through the lessons learned and applied at our sister company MetalArt. We are all about giving our customers that face-to-face time up front. I will travel to come see you and meet you in person, then we can utilize video and online systems to be in communication when you need us. We work to extend the good first impression of the lobby in a building into the ride in the elevator.”