At Glass and Stainless, we believe that the possibilities of toughened glass panels (made to measure) are practically endless. Toughened glass is an incredibly versatile material that can give you real peace of mind thanks to its impressive safety credentials. Suitable for both indoor and outdoor use, it can be cut into a wide variety of shapes and sizes in order to meet your unique vision.
What is toughened glass?
Also known as tempered glass, toughened glass is one of the most popular and common types of safety glass. Approximately 4 to 5 times stronger than standard annealed glass, it is widely used in situations where the glass is likely to be subject to pressure, both physical and heat. This strength is the result of the rapid heating and cooling that the glass is subjected to in a process called quenching.
A panel of annealed glass is placed on a roller table and is then heated to roughly 650 degrees. At that temperature, the glass begins to soften. Once the glass has reached this more pliable state, it must be removed from the heat and cooled rapidly. The outside layers will cool and harden more quickly the unexposed inner layers, which remain piping hot. This temperature difference within the glass is what introduces the all-important stress that holds all the layers together, giving them additional strength.
If the toughened glass is broken, the stress between the layers of glass has a massive impact on how it shatters. Whereas annealed glass breaks into large, jagged and dangerous shards, toughened glass will produce smaller and rounder pieces. These are far less likely to injure anyone within the nearby vicinity. Fair warning, the sudden release of all this stress when the glass shatters can cause a loud bang.
Why are toughened glass panels made to measure?
With toughened glass panels, it is crucial that the glass is cut exactly to your requirements prior to the quenching process. Unlike with annealed glass, it cannot be drilled or cut once formed. As the stress is evenly distributed within the glass, any change to one section of it will reverberate across the whole panel and cause it to shatter.
For this reason, we will ask you for the exact specification of your glass prior to beginning our work. When measuring up for your toughened glass panels, it is important that you remember that there is a difference between the visible glass size and the actual glass size. All too often, people will measure the former and then discover that their toughened glass panel is too small. If the glass you are measuring is supported by any sort of frame, it is likely that the glass extends beyond that which you can see. For a more accurate measurement, we would recommend that you measure the height and width of the entire glass panel and frame together, and then subtract 5 mm from your figures.
Possible Uses Of Toughened Glass Panels (Made To Measure)
As we’ve already said, there is a wide range of ways in which toughened glass panels can be put to effective use. Here a just couple of ideas to get you thinking:
- Frameless Glass Shower Doors- Used pretty much every single day, your average glass shower door can come under a lot of stress. You certainly don’t want it to shatter in a dangerous manner when you are in such close proximity and with your body in its most vulnerable state. If you would prefer to have greater privacy in your shower, you could choose to add a frosted effect to the toughened glass.
- Glass Balustrade- If you’re living in the UK, your glass balustrade must use a form of safety glass by law. Toughened glass is able to withstand the pressure of someone leaning or pressing up against it. It is also impressively weather resistant and simple to clean, should you wish to use it outside.
- Skylights- The heat resistant qualities of made to measure toughened glass panels mean that they’re ideal for use in skylights. Just like building and car windows, a skylight is exposed to a range of temperatures. From the heat of a midsummer’s day to the freezing cold of a midwinter night, toughened glass will remain strong and in place.
Glass and Stainless can guide you on whether or not toughened glass panels made to measure are the most suitable material for your project. Contact us today to discuss your requirements.