are government standards (ANSIZ97.1) for what
constitutes Safety Glass. To be approved
as a manufacture of safety glass several sample pieces of the
material is run through a gauntlet of tests.
Most of them consist of having a secure sample
of glass impacted with a leather bag filled
with lead shot. The tests are run using different
weighted bags. Under some conditions the glass
must not break. Then there are conditions
where the glass can break, but the bag can't
go through the sample, and no pieces of glass
larger than a certain size can fall out. The
test is increased until the bag goes through
the the sample, but no piece of glass larger
than the permitted size can be released from
the sample. All of these tests are geared
to try to prevent severe injures. Glass is
glass and when it breaks it is easy to get
cuts. With safely glass you may get cut, but
you have less of a chance of loss of life
ship the glass with corner protectors rapped
in plastic rap. When unpacking your kit remove
the plastic rap, but keep the corner protectors
on the glass.
the corner protectors on the glass at all times!
is what happens when tempered glass breaks.
Hundreds of small chunks of glass
are several types of safety glass. Tempered
glass is basically stronger than regular glass,
and when it breaks it shatters into little
pieces of glass. This the preferred glass
for shower doors. Laminated glass takes a different
approach to meeting the safety standards.
This glass is usually two pieces of normal
glass laminated together with a gummy jell.
This is the safety glass used in car windshields.
In a car accident they don't want your head
to go through the glass, and they don't want
you to be peppered with glass shards. There
is also Wire Glass which was used in showers
for a short time before tempered glass became
prevalent. It is still used as a type of safety
glass where their are fire codes involved.
make tempered glass you start with standard
glass and heat it up until it is soft and
pliable, about 1200 degrees, and then quench
it with cold air. The outside skin of glass
cools first and solidifies. As the inside
core area starts to cool it tries to contract
or shrink in size but it can't because the
outside skin has already become ridged. This
causes internal stress to build up in the
glass. If a piece of tempered glass is broken,
it releases this trapped stress and instantly
shatters into small pieces. Once made a piece
of tempered glass can't be modified. The outside surface is regular glass so you can
still get minor chips and scratches in the
outside surfaces and and on the edges, but you can't
cut or drill it without the glass breaking
into small pieces.
manufacture of the tempered glass must put
an identifying mark on each piece of glass
which comes out of their furnace. The makers
of the tempered glass don't want to take away
from the beauty of the glass, so the marks
can be hard to see. We try to have this identification
mark placed in one of the bottom corners of
each piece of glass. You can verify that
the glass has been tempered by finding the
mark. If you have your installation inspected
by the building department the inspector will
look for these marks.
for Handling Tempered Glass
explained above the outside skin of tempered
glass is standard glass. The edges and corners
are where the glass is the most vulnerable.
Here are four golden rules for working with
leave the corner protectors on the glass.
walk the glass from corner to corner just
because you have the corner protectors
stand the glass directly on cement, tile,
metal, or on the bottom of the tub.
shower glass should be at room temperature.
Bring the glass into the house the day
before you are planning your install.
Suction Cups to aid in lifting and moving
We now have several
different styles of low cost suction cups
available on our store. My favorite is the
two cup model SUC2CUP.
If you have several panels of glass to install the$
20.00 for a set of suction cups will be the best spent
money of the whole project.