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Historic Structural Glass

Early Manufacture & Use

Historic Installation

Exterior Installation

Interior Installation

Reasons for Damage

Maintenance & Repair

Repair of Cement Joints

Reinstall Glass Panels

Removal of Glass

Replacement of Glass



The preservation of pigmented structural glass remains more a materials issue than a detailing problem. The glass panels were and are extremely susceptible to breakage due to accident or vandalism. In addition, many of the historic installation materials such as the mastic adhesive and joint cement did not possess a long lifespan. Periodic maintenance, inspection, careful repair, and selective replacement--in like kind--are essential for the longevity of any historic pigmented structural glass veneer.

 Even though the architectural glass industry has continued to expand its production of different types of glazing, the imaginative innovations of Carrara Glass, Sani Oxyx, and Vitrolite in the early part of this century have not been surpassed. New technology, combined with human artistry, produced exteriors and interiors alive with color and dimension. Glittering movie palaces, sparkling restaurants, and streamlined storefronts as well as the more mundane kitchens, restrooms, and laboratories exemplified the extensive variety and potential of pigmented structural glass.

Carrara Glass, Sani Onyx, and Vitrolite were integrally linked to the architecture and interior design of the 1930s and 1940s and helped to define what was "modern." Thus, every effort should be made to preserve this significant historic material in both the innovative buildings of the Art Deco, Streamline, and Modern styles as well as the "modernization" of earlier structures.



maintenance and repairrepair of jointsremoval of glassreinstall glassreplacement of glasssubstitute materialsconclusionabout structural glass