How To Aggressively Reinforce A Window
We try to encourage designs that are not only beautiful, but practical as well. Occasionally a client wants something that challenges us and we need to add additional reinforcing to strengthen the window.
This window only had 3 lines which continued across the panel from one side to the other. So I determined that I would have to build it with two pieces of copper stripping instead of just one.
It was difficult to get two pieces of copper between the glass. You can see in this photo that there are two strips going in each direction.
You can see that this design is very simple. You can also see that if we were to put reinforcing across the lines that don't extend across the panel they would create stress points where the glass might tend to break.
Here at the edge you can see both pieces of copper. When I solder these pieces, the copper strips cause the solder to wick down into the channel. So with the strips in place, the lead line is stronger because the copper resists bending back and forth and the additional solder provides additional anchoring to the other strip and the copper foil that surrounds the glass.
I can now turn the panel over by following the directions on handling glass that I spelled out in another article.
Here the panel is complete and ready for installation. I gave the client a board that was the same size as the glass, so that the panel would have additional support as it was shipped home. Once the window was installed, it was much stronger since it is supported all the way around. I still worry that the design is very weak, but I feel better knowing that I've added as much extra support as possible.
And here it is installed. Now that it's in place and well supported, there's nothing to worry about. The glass is secure in the framework and is reinforced so that the pressure of cleaning the glass won't do damage to it.