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Supply Chain Update - Nails from China



Supply Chain Update - Nails from China
March 03, 2020


Dear Valued Customer;

COIL ROOFING NAILS: There is a lot of panic going on related to the COVID-19 (Corona Virus) and how it will affect Chinese nail shipments in addition to other products you may purchase that are produced there. We are getting calls from all over the US, “plants are shut down”, “nothing is being made”, “there is a severe shortage”, etc. None of this is accurate. You have to remember, a lot of the people in this business are just brokers, and they have no physical presence in China, have never been to a plant and honestly are not good for the business. These companies basically buy and sell material on the internet.

Here is the real story. We talk to our people every night. We have a full-time manager who has worked for CMI for 15 years.   We have five approved production facilities, and of those, we control two 100%. All plants are operational. They have been making product for about 10 days now. During this start up period, plants are running at about 30% capacity but are also experiencing some labor related hurdles that they are working through. Migrant workers that make up half of the labor pool are not back to work yet but have been trickling back in.

Our first new shipments after the extended Lunar New Year shutdown went out this past week. The plants feel that every week will get better, and by the 3rd week of March, they will be at 75% capacity, which is plenty to meet demand.

We have booked a significant amount of material so the system is somewhat flooded. We think that some of the brokers will not be able to get material, and if they do, they will have no control over when it ships; the brokers get pushed to the bottom of the pile. They have no physical presence on the ground, have never been to a plant, have no active quality control program, and don’t even have a product specification. Now is the time to deal with the leaders in the field, of which CMI is clearly first and ‘Best in Class’. No one ships more roofing nail containers from more countries of origin than CMI. In 2019, CMI sold enough nails to roof 1.5+ million houses.  We are best at on-time delivery, best QC in the industry, and do ongoing QC testing that is unparalleled.

If ocean freight space is tight, our containers will move. There have been over 1.75 million containers worth of freight shipments that have been cancelled so far in 2020 from China to the US; this includes over 70 ‘blank sailings’.

Right now, we have about one third of our April capacity available. This material would be for June arrivals. We know you may have a substantial amount of material on order and we don’t know if that is adequate or not, but we are just making you aware of the current status so you can make informed decisions for your business.

PLASTIC CAP ROOFING NAILS: This is another story, and not a good one up to this point. The plastic cap plants have not reopened, but we are expecting them to do so soon. There is a severe backlog in plastic caps, and if they were to re-open next week, it would take the plants 5 to 6 weeks to work through their order files. New orders could possibly ship in July, or even later if those plants don’t start-up soon. This however does not affect collated plastic caps, which are not made in China, but in Taiwan and Korea. CMI is excited to share with you our new partnership with ButtonKap, the pioneers of collated cap systems and are Best in Class:

  • Cost of ButtonKaps and nails is 20% less (side by side comparison versus the other brand).
  • Ability to use your own coil roofing nails, any size - don’t run out of nails or caps by having to buy combo-packs that are sold as a package deal.
  • Use a single pneumatic nail gun for both the ButtonKap System and standard coil nailing - one gun, and not two, makes it easier for contractors.
  • Ask about our conversion program - get started quickly.
  • Lower cost, better products - call for details on both the ButtonKap System and standard coil nailing products.


CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION - REFERENCE INFORMATION: The CDC has published detailed guidance about the virus and how to address minimizing the risk of contracting it and containing its transmission to others. This is very important in both our home and business environments to minimize those risks of being affected and affecting others. For additional info on the COVID-19.  Click here for the official CDC Website

Thanks for your support. Please don’t hesitate to contact us with questions you may have.

Continental Materials, Inc. (CMI) is a national supplier of roofing system component materials and known for BUR (built-up roofing) asphalt with “No Smell”™ odor eliminating technology and its WeatherSeal™ protective packaging, All-Weather™ asphalt felts and coated organic rolls, CMI All-Weather™ modified bitumen rolls, SureGrip™ construction fasteners and roofing nails, Continental’s eco-friendly high density fiberboard roof insulation board and a premium line of SecureGrip™ synthetic roof underlayment products that are sold and used widely throughout the country. CMI has provided value added products and superior service to the roofing industry since 1958.

For more information on CMI products, call (215) 884-4930, visit or contact your local CMI Sales Representative.