Glass constructions for balustrades
In its early years the construction of glass balustrades was characterized by steel or stainless steel posts constituting the actual railing system. For the balustrade filling the glass panes were inserted between the posts by point holders. The glass balustrade preventing from falling was prefixed along the slab edge or the stairs.
State-of-the-art all-glass railings however no longer depend on these stainless steel posts. The glass panes can directly be inserted and fixed linearly to the floor profile by means of a specially developed method. The base profiles themselves can be inserted into the flooring conveying the impression that the glass panes freely jut out from the floor. With this type of construction, belonging to category B of the German DIN 18008, the rail load of the balustrade must be statically transferred from the glass panes. The type of glass to be used depends on the static calculation (single-pane safety glass, laminated safety glass). This also applies to the thickness of the glass which is based on the calculation concerning the rail load.
AbP for all-glass railing System MetallArt (only applies to Germany)
General test certificate of the German building authorities
Since 2014/15 building constructions made of glass are subject to DIN 18008 and must comply with the relevant regulations concerning construction and structural design. This norm replaces the previous regulations of the TRAV (technical rules for the use of fall-protection glazing). DIN 18008 is divided into 5 parts. The relevant regulations for glass railings/all-glass railings are stipulated in part 4 “Additional specifications for fall protection glazing”. They are valid for balcony glazing and all-glass railings for stairs.
There is an increasing trend to manufacture the individual panes of glass railings and balustrades as large as technically possible.
With our MetallArt system we have the possibility to exceed the standards regarding the dimensions stipulated in DIN 18008 and consequently meet the special requirements of our customers. Due to our specially developed system for all-glass railings in combination with the granted AbP (approval by a general test certificate of the German building authorities) we are able to significantly exceed the dimensions of the indiviual glass panes regarding lenght and width. The AbP applies to all straight, curved and ascending glass railings for balconies, galleries or stairs.The MetallArt railing system finds use for lateral assembly (single-edged slab) as well as for floor assembly (directly onto the floor).
Beside the frames made of steel or stainless steel the product range was extended. We are able to offer 3 additional aluminium frames ensuring various design options:
- floor profile made of stainless steel- ground or polished
- floor profile made of steel – primed, zinc-coated or painted
- floor profile made of aluminium – powder-coated or anodised
AbP for glass railings with filigree stainless steel handrail (onyl applies to Germany)
According to DIN 18008 glass panes clamped below need to be protected by a continuous handrail. A filigree U-channel made of stainless steel meets this regulation. There is a high relevance in modern architecture for solutions waiving any additional elements for glass balustrades. Pure glass is the motto. However, as DIN 18008 requires the edge protection we corresponded to this guideline with the filigree U-channel handrail protecting the panes.
To obtain the General test certificate of the German building authorities (AbP) we cooperated closely with a testing laboratory approved by the German Institute for Structural Engineering (DIBt). So-called pendulum impact tests proving the shock resistance as well as comprehensive structural calculations considering different situations of load bearing and assembly were undertaken.
Laminated Safety Glass (VSG) for glass railings
Laminated safety glass is composited with 2 glass panes stuck together with an PVB film by lamination technology. When laminating there is a clear, elastic and tear-resistant film inserted between 2 panes. The thermal treatment in the autoclave results in a durable bond between the glass panes and the film. In case of glass breakage the panes are hold together by the PVB film. The laminated saftey glass panes can be made of single-pane saftey glass (ESG) or a combination of single-pane safety glass and floating glass panes.
All-glass railings for stairs
Functional glasses for stair railings
Steel stairs designed with box-type stringers are ideally suited for glass railings as the glass panes can be directly inserted in the stair stringers. The stringers consequently constitute the base profile for the accomodation of the glass panes. This applies both for straight as well as for curved balustrades. A significant advantage of the MetallArt railing system is the use of the same system profile for the ceiling frame and for the staircase. Especially where the stair construction meets the ceiling frame an homogeneous and uniform appearance can thus be obtained due to this solution.
In case of cantilevered stairs or folded stairs the glass panes can be fixed directly at the treads by stainless steel point holders.
Matured assembly technology
Custom-developed assembly method
To meet the high standards for working with glass we developed a special assembly method for the MetallArt glass railing system on the basis of our longstanding experience. With a casting compound corresponding with the German inspection standards the glass panes can be cast in the system profile free of constraint forces and, subsequently, sealed (with EPDM rubber or silicone). For the excact alignment there is no need anymore for the glass panes to be wedged by complex clamping.
Pendulum impact test for ZiE (individual approval)
In addition to the general binding regulations for glass railings specified in DIN 18008, it is possible to apply for a General Test Certificate issued by the German Building Authorities (AbP) or for a General Approval by the German Building Authorities (AbZ). These permissions are compulsory for glass railings deviating from DIN 18008. To meet special needs in particular cases it is furthermore possible to apply for an approval on an individual basis (ZiE). Therefore, a so-called pendulum impact test under conditions identical in construction has to be performed by an institute approved by the DIBt (German Institute fo structural engineering).