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CANAME Co., Ltd. President
Mr. Masahiro Yoshihara

Titanium tiles are optimal for religious buildings that are cherished for generations

CANAME Co., Ltd.
Mr. Masahiro Yoshihara

  CANAME Co., Ltd.
  A metal roofing manufacturer that specializes in traditional construction
  This company was the first in the industry to develop and release titanium roof tiling
   (using customized TranTixxii). The company has received much attention in the media after
  using these tiles for a major project: Senso-ji Temple in Asakusa.

About the company


As a metal roof manufacturer, we always work from the customer's perspective, offering integrated product services including development, manufacturing, and construction.

Among our range of services, new construction and renovation of temples and shrines in our temple construction division make up over half of our sales. We have worked in over 4,000 projects all over the country.

History of development in titanium roof tiling

From around the year 2000, there has been an increase in demand for weather-resistant roofing materials in the market, due to environmental conditions such as acid rain and salt damage in coastal areas. At this time, we focused on the weather-resistant and lightweight titanium, and began development work in titanium roof tiling that faithfully recreated the characteristics of traditional Japanese roofing.

Titanium has a characteristic where it constantly works to regain its original form (spring-back), so this can result in damage to the material if people are careless when working with it. It was not an easy feat to process this material into complex shapes, even when using a wide variety of molding techniques. However, our belief that "companies exist to respond to consumer needs" pushed us in continuing our research and development.

We decided that it was not possible to apply conventional metal roofing methods with titanium, and finally made the decision to change the method of construction. It took six years of trial-and-error before we had something that was satisfactory. With this, the world's first titanium-molded roofing tile was born.

Our love for traditional construction and focus on titanium

Senso-ji Temple was our first customer for titanium roofing. The temple incorporated titanium for its Hozo-mon Gate in 2007, and the "Titanium CANAME stepped tile roof" received a Minister of Economy, Trade and Industry Award in the Monodzukuri Nippon Grand Award. Following this, titanium roofing was used for the Main Hall in 2010, and for the Five-Storied Pagoda in 2017.

The reason for using titanium roofing in these structures was to ensure the safety of visitors to the temple. Over thirty million visitors come to Asakusa Senso-ji Temple every year. There is a risk of severe injury if roofing tiles fall during an earthquake. People can now visit the temple without such worries, as titanium roofing does not fall in these circumstances.

Furthermore, as titanium is lightweight, this material also improves earthquake resistance in any structure that uses it. These titanium tiles are approximately 20% of the weight of conventional tiles in the Main Hall, and 12.5% in the Hozo-mon Gate, thereby significantly reducing the stress on these structures.

Future outlook

The needs for metal roofing have been increasing by the year, as Japan has seen continuous major earthquakes such as the Great East Japan Earthquake, Kumamoto Earthquake, and North Osaka Earthquake.

We believe that titanium is optimal for religious structures that are to stand for many generations, as titanium needs almost no maintenance. More and more cultural properties buildings have been incorporating titanium into buildings with the aim of long-term preservation.

Furthermore, titanium allows for broader expression in design. As a matter of fact, there are three colors of titanium roof tiles scattered throughout the Senso-ji Temple Main Hall and the Five-Storied Pagoda so as to recreate the varied colors of the smoked roofing tiles. A professional tile maker recently visited Asakusa Senso-ji Temple and wanted to know which structure uses titanium as he stood right in front of a building with titanium tiling. This indicates how faithful these titanium tiles reproduce the characteristics of traditional roof tiling.

Titanium offers many benefits, as it can reproduce the texture of smoked tiles, and it offers elegant green-blue colors and subdued mottle colors to suit any design.

Recently, we have been seeing many more people seeking to improve earthquake resistance in their houses, so we will continue to send out the message about the durability and safety of titanium roof tiling.

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