From the Fabricator: Surprising Code Watch
June 23, 2020
We had a double blast of code dives this week with webinars from the National Glass Association and from Glass Canada. All in all, very detailed and helpful items were discussed, but I wanted to pull out a few to take a deeper dive. Both webinars did sound at least a minor alarm about the next area of concern for the commercial glass world when it comes to codes; that would be the spandrel area. It was just a matter of time before focus came to that part of the building, and it’s here now. This is something that bears watching. A few companies have tried to come up with big ideas for that space―phase change materials, BIPV, organics, etc.―but so far nothing has stuck. But if the codes keep advancing something will have to be in the lead spot. What will that be, and who’s going to take the lead? Now note, no way the traditional spandrel is going away anytime soon, but there is now a target on it.
The other big takeaway was the interest in VIG. This came across as intense, and with it the misconceptions were vast. When the Glass Canada webinar was over the questions on VIG dominated the Q&A, which really perked up my interest. I have seen what Michael Spellman and VIG Technologies have going on, along with some others out there, and it’s taken a product that has been in the “hope” space for so long into reality. Now, with task groups working on durability and other standards being developed the playing field will now have some lines on it, which is only good for the product and our industry. Why? Because there’s going to be some code and retrofit plays that will be lined up perfectly for a product that fits the VIG profile. We need a product like it to fill the hole for sure.
The other angle to cover is that natural light and occupant comfort are more than just marketing buzz. They are being taken into account in the code cycle, which is huge for our industry.
End of the day, the whole code world is fascinating to me and I’m really curious on what comes next. I was actually stunned on how far behind I was on details like ASHRAE 90.1, so these webinars were crucial for me. Obviously if you are not keeping up on everything code related, make sure you sign up for the July Glass Conference to stay in the loop. You will thank me later…
- Later this week the latest Architectural Billings Index will be released. I am expecting it to be up slightly from last month on the index and possibly a bit down on the new project inquiries. Very curious though to see it and dig in.
- The starts in May had a little uptick I see. Not anywhere where we want but hey plus is plus right?
- Excellent article shared by the folks at Virginia Glass Products (via LinkedIn feed) on the future of the office and what may or may not truly be happening. I liked the insight here though may not agree with all.
- Guardian Glass has been making some serious news lately; first, an upgrade to their “Select” program with enhancements that will help put our industries best foot forward on supply. I like the approach, as we always need to be at our best. Then, the news that they rebranded their warm edge spacer product was a big one too. That is more a play on the residential side but, again, it’s a good move to keep raising the energy efficiency bar and that is what I am all about. Nice work to the team there on continuing to evolve and grow!
- Last this week; sad news again to report as I got word of the passing of Joe Krusienski also known as “Joe K.” Joe was awesome. I had the supreme honor of working with Joe for several years at Arch Aluminum. Joe was friendly, energetic, and passionate about the glass world and one of the best co-workers ever. He loved the glass business; he spent almost 50 years in it! He was always upbeat, and he was always there for you. You needed something, you called Joe K and he got it done, and along the way he also told you a great story about his family or his past, or a great (sometimes corny) joke, or a job he was in the middle of. And each time, it was worth every second. He’s another one of those guys that everyone loved, and all week I heard from so many lamenting the passing of this great man. He touched a lot of lives, that is for sure. Joe battled a ton of health issues in the last several years but still was determined to work and help out when he could. He simply could not stand possibly letting a friend or co-worker down. My heart and condolences go out to all of his family, friends, and co-workers from the past at PPG and Arch and from his current workplace, Aldora. Such a great man and huge loss for our industry and world.