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Please Stop by in Irvine Next Week

Just wanted to invite you to Glass Expo West in Irvine CA next week. I am looking forward to seeing you there. Here’s a free pass that glass shops (non suppliers) can use. Or download it from http://www.glassexpos.com/docs/GEW3freePassUSG.pdf Hope to see you there.


Do you know what Hyalophobia is? It’s also known as Hyelophobia or Nelophobia. In all my years in this business I never heard of it, until a Jeopardy answer (or question depending on your point) of “What is Nelophobia?” clued me a few weeks ago. Hyalophobia is an insidious disease and can be deadly, especially when it affects architects. And based on what I’m seeing we could be on the cusp of a pandemic if the glass industry doesn’t come to attention quickly. Hyalophobia is a fear of glass. (Nelophobia is more akin to fear of glass breakage and injury from glass, by the way.) It is synonymous with Hyelophobia… Read More »

Strategic Move

Spend a bit of time with Joe Puishys, and it’s quickly apparent he is quite a strategist. And, while the latest move by the 58-year-old president of Apogee Enterprises may leave some asking why, the acquisition of EFCO from Pella Corp. makes sense to me on a number of levels. First, it expands Apogee’s offerings to include some markets it underserves. Even where the products from EFCO and Apogee companies Tubelite and Wausau overlap, they do so in different corners of the market, if you will. Apogee’s companies have been known more for higher-end, more highly customized products, while EFCO has been known for more standardized ones. The sales in… Read More »

Heart Songs

Next week is the annual AIA Conference in Orlando, Fla., so for the April issue of USGlass magazine, we’ve focused it on the intersection of glass and architecture—sometimes it results in a chaotic collision and, other times, a cacophony of innovative design. The glass and glazing community loves to grouse about architects—heck, we’ve even written articles about all their faults and foibles—but here’s a secret about architects we never share. I am breaking the glass industry code to tell you, but here goes: the glass industry secretly loves architects. Here are the top five reasons why: 1- For what they create with glass. We love architects for their ability to… Read More »

Shhh Blog

This is going to be the shortest blog ever written. There’s a reason for that.

5 Bad Things about More Work

The contract glazing business is very busy right now; both projects and backlogs are up. But, as with most things, for every upside, there is a downside. Here’s a short list of five not-so-good things that usually come when contract glazing companies’ business is up and contract glaziers are busy. They are the five “Bad Ls” of a healthy contract glazing market: Lengthy Leads: When business is good, lead times get longer. And, as the glass used in such projects is more performance-driven and less commodity-based, the number of manufacturers that supply it dwindles. So we are faced with an increased demand but no ability to provide increased supply. While… Read More »

Liability Creep

I admit it right up front: liability creep is my own shorthand for a phenomenon that afflicts the glass industry with frequency like no other. It’s expensive, ever-expanding and dangerous. Liability creep is downright creepy. Let me explain. Over the years, I’ve reported on a never-ending series of lawsuits and settlements that slowly but consistently expanded the liability of contract glaziers into areas you would never expect. Contract glaziers work for general contractors (GCs). And years ago, when agreements were signed they detailed what the contract glazier would do and what the general contractor would pay. The move to more detailed performance specifications has led to increased liability for the… Read More »

A Riddle

I want to throw a riddle at you today—one that has perplexed me for years. See if you can solve it, as I’ve been trying to for most of my adult life and all of my adult career. Riddle me this: When is the price increase not a price increase? Answer: When it’s a price increase in the glass industry. Our industry does pretty much anything it can to avoid owning a true price increase. It imposes mileage surcharges, fuel and gas surcharges, utility and load surcharges, additional overtime charges and a whole variety of other charges, but it rarely calls them price increases. My favorite technique ties price changes to some… Read More »

A Glaring Omission

It’s been a silent killer really, ignored for far too long by the glass industry. It’s been discounted—a glaring omission really. Based on what I am hearing 2017 will be its year. Just as we have become educated about energy performance characteristics, followed by the development of energy ratings, then learned about acoustical qualities followed by the development of acoustical ratings, I predict we are going to learn a lot this year about glare. That’s right, glare. A few months ago, I attended a whole symposium session during Façade Tectonics devoted exclusively to glare and the science around it.  And I have to say it was fascinating. Glass, for example,… Read More »

How the Pie Slices

Nick St. Denis, USGlass magazine’s research editor, just completed two major studies—one of the contract glazing industry and the other of the manufacturer/fabricator segment. While summary results of both with be available during the upcoming GANA Building Envelop Contractors (BEC) Conference, Nick has been kind enough to delve into the contract glazier research in two areas that are of intense interest to me. They most likely will be to you, too. Here are my conclusions in those areas, based on a review of the data: Gargantuan Growth: The size of the contract glazing market has increased tremendously over the last five years. In fact, it’s nearly doubled. And as we… Read More »

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