News to know
IGMA and AAMA hold meetings together
Globalization is moving faster than we realize, but the U.S. economy remains one of the most vibrant in the world, said Stuart Varney, a financial journalist with Fox News Network at the American Architectural Manufacturers Association and the Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance meetings June 10-13 in Huntingdon, Calif.
IGMA’s glazing guidelines working group discussed edge clearance and setting block recommendations for commercial IG units.
Bill Lingnell, IGMA’s technical consultant, demonstrated how he tested various methods for closing capillary tubes.
The two organizations are having their summer meetings together this week, with each group conducting association business on their own and hosting joint social events and guest speakers together.
Two other major trends businesses will have to address in the coming years, Varney suggested, were changing demographics and a shift in the U.S. political culture away from wealth creation to wealth redistribution.
Discussing changing demographics, the television commentator said low fertility rates in most developing countries means that populations will be aging dramatically. In some European countries, more than half the population will be older than 65. Looking at the shift in the political culture of the U.S., Varney said higher taxes and greater regulation of business is all but inevitable.
New guide documents
IGMA kicked off its sessions with new glazing guidelines covering both commercial and residential applications. Discussions focused on recommended glazing clearances and setting block heights for commercial IG units.
IGMA technical consultant Bill Lingnell reviewed his preliminary research on the effectiveness of standard methods for closing capillary tubes in the field. Using a small pump and a glass of water, he demonstrated how he tested both crimping of the tubes and applying a dollop of silicone to the end of the tube. He suggested that both methods work if done properly. The key is crimping and sealing correctly, and a combination of both offers the highest assurance that the tube will be closed, he said.
IGMA also is considering a guideline or recommendations for avoiding thermal stress cracks in glass. Lingnell presented his initial draft, which provided an explanation on how thermal stresses are created by temperature differentials across the glass. He went through the list of factors that can potentially cause different temperatures at the edge of glass than the lite as a whole. A number of attendees suggested other potential sources for temperature differentials on glass, including growing trees or plants, new adjacent buildings and protective shutters developed for impact markets.
Also discussed during the first day of the IGMA meeting was its study on the gas permeability of sheet materials. The group is now getting ready for the second phase, developing a method for evaluating the gas permeability of edge seal assemblies, and it reviewed a request for proposal IGMA plans to send out to various test organizations.
In AAMA’s early committee sessions, two issues emerged creating diverging opinions among the residential and architectural product manufacturers. One came up in AAMA’s group that offers input into the joint window and door standard the organization produces with the Window & Door Manufacturers Association and the Canadian Standards Association.
The standard currently allows residential class windows to be rated at high design pressures typically associated with commercial and architectural products. Those products, however, also must undergo additional testing to carry their ratings. Those on the architectural product side suggest this gives the residential window manufacturers an unfair advantage because they do not have to meet the additional requirements but can still sell their products in commercial applications.
When asked whether AAMA should propose any change in the standard, a straw poll showed residential and architectural product manufacturers voted down “party lines” on the issue.
That same trend emerged on the issue of whether AAMA should back a change in international codes to allow the use of one of its thermal performance test methods, AAMA 507, to be used as an alternative to National Fenestration Rating Council methods.
With NFRC still working on its method for rating commercial fenestration, architectural product manufacturers argued that they currently don’t have a method—accepted by the codes—to rate the thermal performance of their products, and AAMA should back the method.
Residential manufacturers, on the other hand, expressed concern that they rely on AAMA’s current relationship with NFRC, and AAMA should be cautious in taking steps that might jeopardize that relationship.
Click here to read more about this issue from the June 5 edition of e-glass weekly.
Changes in AAMA Certification Program
AAMA has spent much of the past year reviewing its certification program to enhance it and make it more cost-effective for licensees. AAMA’s technical director, John Lewis, unveiled a proposed fee structure. The overall strategy, he explained, is to move the AAMA certification program from “label-based fees” to “service-based fees.”
The new plan calls for an annual cap of $60,000 on label fees for individual licensees or manufacturers that certify products. After the cap is hit, fees are reduced by half, he said. Changes in the cost to have product lines included AAMA’s certified product directory, he said.
Lewis said the fee structure will have to bring in the same revenue. Lower fees paid by window and door manufacturers will likely lead to higher fees for companies to get verified components listed, as well as higher fees to become an AAMA accredited lab.
Bill Deushle, director of engineering and quality operations for Traco of Cranberry Township, Pa., spoke on structural changes to the AAMA certification program. Several new levels and options are being added to the “legacy” program, he said. One option would be a “premier quality control program” that would incorporate production line testing, he said. Other options under development would meet architectural product manufacturer needs for either product line or project specific product certification.
Both the AAMA and IGMA meetings continue through tomorrow. Look for more coverage next week in e-glass weekly.
—By John Swanson, editor and associate publisher, Window&Door