Here at Arch Street Glass, we like to think of ourselves as innovators. Revolutionaries. Beacons of hope to the glass industry and the world as a whole! …Too much?
While we might not be inspiring nations, we do take very seriously our responsibility to ourselves and our stakeholders to continuously push forward our knowledge and technology use within our work.
One of the best examples of where we implement this goal is in our approach to wet-glazing projects. While we absolutely use silicone, and while it does of course have its place in glazing projects, it also presents certain frustrating challenges.
It has a long cure time, which means that it’s just waiting to get bumped in the field while drying. It’s complicated to make it look perfect for the same reason – everyone knows construction sites are not exactly renowned for their pristine conditions, and it’s easy for the wet silicone to pick up dust. Wet silicone also off-gasses while curing, and, once dry, can yellow over time. Add to that the fact that necessarily applying by hand in the field means each joint is going to be slightly different, and it’s no wonder that we went in search of actionable alternatives.
So when you have a project full of glass, where silicone joints would traditionally be used at every location when two pieces of glass meet, what do you do? Sigh and resign yourself to an ugly and difficult [and smelly] process? Not if we have anything to do with it! As a standard, Arch Street uses only polycarbonate channels, or polycarbs, between glass joints.
Besides sounding like something you would want to avoid in a diet, what does a polycarb do? Essentially, polycarbs provide us a way to avoid using silicone between pieces of glass by replacing it with a sturdy piece of clear plastic material that does the same thing – but better! Benefits of polycarbs include zero off-gassing, no yellowing, no variation in aesthetic between joints, and ease of installation, which saves on both time and cost.
Arch Street uses special polycarbs that have an extended lip to better capture the glass panes and a line of construction tape on each side to hold the glass in place. We even have options for three-way glass connections to better install and seal return conditions.
The use of polycarbonate channels in our work allows for a clean, solid, perfect joint between the glass in our sidelites every time – no silicone required.
If you want to learn more about this or any other way that Arch Street is revolutionizing the work we do, don’t hesitate to reach out to us! We love to chat about glass.
Curious about glass joints? Passionate about polycarbs? Want to talk wet-glazing? Let us assist on your next project! Contact us.