Volume 39, Issue 6, June  2004

A Look Back at Glassbuild America 2004
Part II

by Ellen Giard Chilcoat and Brigid O’Leary

Editor’s Note: The following is the continuation of the GlassBuild America recap, which began in the May 2004 issue. The article in its entirety can be found online at www.usglassmag.com.

Machinery Scene
One of the biggest draws of GlassBuild America is the opportunity to see the latest in machinery and equipment. Many machinery companies use this annual event to introduce and demonstrate their new lines. This section of the floor has often been filled with people. This year, however, traffic in the equipment section seemed light. 
Ralph Bayer, managing director of Bayer Technologies of Germany, exhibited at the show for the first time.
“It’s been calm,” he said. 

However, for Bayer, despite the low turnout, the show was still profitable, as the company sold two bending machines.

“There have been quite a few interested customers,” Bayer said. “Some [of the people we spoke to] were already bending with other companies’ machines and now they are thinking of changing to ours because they’ve been able to see it here.”

Though it didn’t bring any equipment to the show, Glasstech of Perrysburg, Ohio, introduced its ERH2-C3 high-speed tempering line for low-E glass. The system utilizes hot-air convection nozzles above and below the glass surface to heat both sides of low-E equally for short cycle times and an increase in production.

“There’s been lots of interest by glass companies specifically focused on the optical quality of glass,” said Jay Molter, director of marketing. The new line also features Vesuvius McDanel rollers and the newly developed, dust-resistant cast refractory liners.

Joseph Machine Co. was on hand with its ZMS 45,90,45 zero scrap miter. Though the company is still putting the finishing touches on the program used to run the machine, it was still on display and running demos as needed. The machine has three blades, each capable of working independent of one another to cut two 45-degree angles or a 90-degree angle at one time, without creating the scrap associated with moving, changing and making multiple cuts on a piece of glass.

Italian-based Lovati exhibited its Zenedge and BEM machines. The Zenedge grinds and polishes the edge on shaped glass with internal and external curves, straightline sides, mitred corners, holes, pin and screw inserts and millings. The BEM is designed to process and handle any shape and any type of glass, though it is said to be particularly suitable for low-E glass.

To keep the glass and the shop clean, a company needs clean water, and Salem Distributing Co. Inc., brought the Clean 20 to entice companies wanting to control water economy. According to Salem, the Clean 20 separates glass dust from water—dirty water is pumped from the machines and has a flocculent added. The flocculent binds the glass particles together and the particles are collected in the cone of the reactor vessel. Clean 20 has programmable intervals to set the valve to open either pneumatically or manually, and the slurry drops into a porous bag underneath. The liquid from the slurry drips into the tank below, and most of the time the water is added to the system again.

With less traffic than anticipated, many of the exhibitors were able to meet their neighbors. Among those there was A Metalworks Corp., from Staten Island, N.Y., and Aluminum Curtainwall Systems Inc., of Kamloops, British Columbia, both showing sunshades—which, they reminded attendees, reduce cooling loads and glare as well as enhance design. In the same vicinity was Tran Fabrication, a glass and material handling equipment company from Mississauga, Ontario, showing its extrusion carts, skids and racks.

YKK AP provided information on its YVS 400 TU hung windows. The windows are designed to tilt in for easy cleaning of the exterior glass surfaces from inside the building without removing the sash.

Windows, Hardware and More
Speaking of windows, Aluflam Architectural Fire-Rated Solutions exhibited its newly launched, fire-rated aluminum/glass windows and doors, a technique that the company says is new to the U.S. market, though it is available in Europe already. The information distributed by Aluflam at the show stated that the fire-rated aluminum systems use clear safety glazing (no wired glass) exclusively and are UL tested to meet North American fire safety standards. Aluflam systems are available in the United States through Vetrotech Saint-Gobain, who has partnered with Aluflam to distribute the systems. Vetrotech, however, had its own booth at Glassbuild and distributed information about its fire-resistant safety glass, as well.

Windows wouldn’t be complete without hardware, right? Well, don’t worry, there was plenty of window hardware at GlassBuild, too. Of particular interest was Securitstyle’s parallel commercial hinges, which allow the window to move directly out from the wall, rather than tilting or sliding up and down. As the Gloucestershire, England-based company states, the vents are fitted with a parallel hinge that enables the facade to have smooth sight lines and also retain its reflective qualities. It also provides all-round natural ventilation by allowing air flow around the window perimeter.

Not everyone wants to cover their glass … some builders prefer to use glass that can be ordered in a particular color straight off the production line. Visteon exhibited at the show offering customers its Versalux architectural glass, available in blue, green, gray and bronze. According to Visteon marketing literature, Versalux reduces heat gain and UV light transmission when compared to uncoated, clear glass.

A new item on the floor was “magic screen glass,” offered by a handful of companies. One of those companies was Dream Multi Display in conjunction with distributor Daewoo International. The screens have interlayers of PVB film, ITO film and PA-LC/spacer. The PA-LC is made of liquid crystal polymers. Upon activating the power on the screen, the polymers’ electrical charge causes them to move in such a way that it allows light to pass straight through the glass. When power is turned off, the polymers’ charge returns them to an inert state and a random scatter, reflecting light off the liquid polymers inside, and creating a translucent effect that obscures sight of whatever may be behind the screen. 

The last stop on our tour is ITW Reddi-Pac, the Glenview, Ill.-based company that appealed to the perpetual need of packaging in the industry. Offering its Glass-Pac system, Reddi-Pac created a glass packaging operation that works by framing the glass using pre-formed U-shaped sections of laminated paperboard, then adding steel strapping under what Reddi-Pack calls high tension. The company states that the frame provides inherent shock absorption and rigidity. The advantages, Reddi-Pack says, are safer assembly for lack of nails or staples, reduced inventory and predictable packaging for improved manufacturing efficiency.

GlassBuild America is scheduled to take place September 13-15, 2005 in Atlanta. 

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