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Home | Spray Foam Industry | Into The Wild

Into The Wild

The headquarters of Bass Pro shops expand their “Wonders of Wildlife” Museum and Aquarium to become home to arctic animals with the help of spray foam

By: Jourdan Porter

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Supplying all of your needs for outdoor adventures such as hunting, fishing, boating, camping, and more since 1971, Bass Pro Shops never ceases to evoke excitement when setting foot into one of the 94 stores that extend across the country. Featuring taxidermy-dressed walls and an indoor water exhibit that showcases fish species that are indigenous to the area of each of the stores’ location, the massive outdoor-themed experience is one-of-a-kind.

Recently, Bass Pro Shops’ headquarters, known as “The Granddaddy of All Outdoor Stores,” located in Springfield, Missouri has added to their “Wonders of Wildlife” National Museum and Aquarium. Expanding from seven intricate aquariums to an eighth exhibit, the new display will feature creatures who live in snow, rather than in the water or warm environments, soon to be known as “The Penguin Exhibit.”

Due to the arctic conditions inside the display, Butler Rosenbury and Partners, the architect and engineer for Johnny Morris, owner of Bass Pro, decided to have spray polyurethane foam (SPF) insulation applied inside the exhibit to encapsulate the required temperatures of 40 degrees and protect the exhibit from condensation due to warmer environment of the museum outside of the display. As SPF is a barrier for air and water penetration, and obtains a high yielding R-value, the interior contractors, PCI, brought in InsulUSA (IUSA), part of the G5 Enterprises Inc., to insulate the newly built structure.

“SPF was ideal for the performance needs of the penguin exhibit due to the seamless installtion, high R factors, and low perm rating for moisture and temperature control that it provides,” confirms Steve Riemer, project manager for IUSA.

Not only did the IUSA crew insulate the penguin exhibit, but they were also brought in to apply the SPF to the flooring of the NASCAR display and Bronze Buck exhibits located nearby.

Before the application process could begin, the IUSA team, consisting of three to four men at a time, had to cover existing exhibits and merchandise including aquariums, wildlife displays, boats, and stairs that surrounded the structure. In order to prevent fumes from exhausting into the entire store, the crew had many small ventilators running throughout the work site to reduce the fumes. With 16,000 square feet to spray, including the walls, floor, and roof deck of the three exhibits, the IUSA crew went straight to work.

The IUSA crew installed 17 sets of Icynene ProSeal LE foam throughout the entirety of the eight-week project. The team began by spraying 4.5 inches of foam with a Graco E-30 Reactor underneath the flooring of the NASCAR and Bronze Buck exhibits in order to eliminate air flow between the flooring. Shortly after, the team applied 22 mils of DC315 thermal barrier coating to the foam.

The IUSA crew applied foam to encapsulate the arctic conditions of 40 degrees for the penguin’s habitat.

The IUSA crew applied foam to encapsulate the arctic conditions of 40 degrees for the penguin’s habitat.

Moving onto the penguin exhibit, the IUSA crew utilized a Graco H-30 proportioner to spray 3.5 inches of foam to the walls, 5.5 inches to the floor, and 2 inches to DensGlass fiberglass sheathing that were installed as the ceiling backer of the display prior to insulation application. Full-face masks, suits, and gloves were worn by the crew at all times during the job. To ensure further safety, harnesses were used when the sprayers were on lifts and scaffolds in order to prevent a fall.

“InsulUSA is proud to be a part of the ‘Wonders of Wildlife’ museum, as it is billed as the largest wildlife museum in the world. With our expertise in foam, ability to work under time constraints, and having our headquarters in Missouri, the project allowed our team to perform at our highest abilities in our own backyard,” explains Riemer.

“The Granddaddy of All Outdoor Stores” recently opened the penguin exhibit in December for millions of families, sportsmen and women, and outdoor enthusiasts to enjoy throughout the year.

For more information on InsulUSA, go to www.insulusa.com, and for more information on The Wonders of Wildlife Museum, go to www.wondersofwildlife.org.

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