Structural window bonding
The Swisspor Group company Swisswindows is number two in the Swiss market for windows and, alongside plastic frames, also produces wooden and wood/aluminum window frames at its own plant. After a development period of less than six months, Swisswindows has unveiled its new Classico window, bonded with Sikasil WT-485. The response of customers to the product’s design, stability and heat-insulating properties has been overwhelming. Sika and a PVC frame manufacturer were involved in the development from the start and have contributed significantly to the product’s success.
In developing Classico, the designers set out to optimize heat efficiency, thermal insulation and energy gains. The company was determined to develop a window that will still be up-to-date in ten years — thus setting a very high bar indeed. Energy conservation has long been a major concern in many countries, but the focus is not only on conservation, but also on energy gains, or capturing as much solar energy as possible. To achieve this, the frame fraction must be minimized.
Security, Sound Control and Design
In addition to its technical merits, bonding also enhances the visual appeal of windows. Conventional plastic frames often appear bulky and awkward and, as the wrong choice of replacement can rob a building of its character, architects are often reluctant to specify plastic products.
Thermal insulation, sound control and safety requirements, compounded by ceiling-high triple glazing, are also making conventional window panes increasingly heavy. In structural window bonding, it is not the frame that carries the glass but the glass that carries the frame. This makes very slender and stiff designs possible. The freedom to design a proprietary system that capitalizes on all the advantages of bonding, instead of relying on standard sections, has proved an enormous advantage.
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