Cover Image
close this bookBasics of Concrete Roofing Elements (SKAT)
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentWhat is MCR and FCR?
View the documentUsing MCR and FCR elements
View the documentProducing MCR and FCR elements
View the documentMCR and FCR for organizations
View the documentMCR and FCR for private entrepreneurs
View the documentHow to start MCR and FCR
View the documentMarketing
View the documentManagement
View the documentProfessional training
View the documentRaw materials
View the documentWorkshop and site
View the documentEquipment
View the documentRoof design
View the documentTiles, sheets and semi-sheets
View the documentWhat does it cost?
View the documentAddresses
View the documentLiterature
View the documentThe roofing advisory service (RAS) at SKAT

Using MCR and FCR elements

Where a need exists

MCR and FCR are suitable in all places where a need for a low-cost locally-produced roofing material exists. In this case concrete roofing may be a viable alternative to the traditional roofing materials. MCR and FCR Elements may be used by anybody who knows how to handle and apply similar roofing materials like clay tiles or asbestos cement sheets.

Lack of traditional materials

During the last few years, traditional roofing materials have increasingly lost their importance. Grass and thatch roofs have a short lifespan and the raw material is getting scarce. Burnt clay tiles require much energy input in production and a heavy timber substructure on the house; in many countries wood is becoming scarce.

Disadvantages of new materials

The existing industrial alternatives as for example Asbestos Cement or Galvanized Iron are the most widespread of nontraditional roofing products. They have some disadvantages, since their production requires a high initial investment and there is no known way of scaling down manufacture to decentralized small-scale production.

Roofing Materials/Characteristics

Industrial Roofing

Fibre Concrete Roofing

Production Unit

Big Industry

Small Industry

Production Process

High Tech

Intermediate Technology

Capital Input



Labor Input




Difficult to obtain

Easily available

Raw materials

Not always available

Usually available locally





Location of production

Usually abroad


Characteristics of Industrial Roofing Materials and MCR/FCR

For a typical Third World Country with dept problems and high unemployment rates, MCR/FCR offers mainly two advantages: it creates jobs and uses, to a great extent, locally available raw materials.

The market

Experience has shown that the MCR or FCR tile is usually competitive with all industrial roofing materials except in some cases with Galvanized Iron Sheets.

For the rich and the poor

MCR and FCR Elements are designed to meet high quality standards in strength, shape and color. Therefore they are used on upper middle class villas as well as on low-cost houses. Tiles meet the need for efficient protection of a building, but they can also be rather decorative.

Limits of application

Experience in many countries has shown that the main limitations to the production and application of this product are:

· Insufficient standard of craftsmanship in manufacture and installation.
· Improper curing or lack of curing.
· Deficient roof structures.
· Lack of good production and business management.
· Extreme weather conditions like hailstorms and hurricanes.
· Vandalism, certain ball games and fruit trees dropping heavy fruits.
· Deficient raw materials.
· Deficient tools and equipment.
· Uncertain social prestige.
· Public does not trust the new material.

It has to be noted however that the same limits apply to other materials to a varying degree, particulary in the case of hurricanes.