glassblog

Monday, December 5, 2016

We are right in the middle of holiday season. Two weeks ago we were thankful for our blessings. Have we already forgotten them? Have we been swept into the hustle of the season only to forget how fortunate we are? 

At the end of every year, we naturally reflect on where we are. We tend to compare ourselves to other people. Sometimes decisions are made that are based upon the emotions of the season without considering the future. Let’s do something different this year. Let’s dream big dreams.

Let’s imagine an amazing future for ourselves, our families and our businesses. Here’s a question that gets me thinking about possibilities:

If time and money were no object, what would you do, where would you go, who would you help, and what type of business would you build? 

Let me caution you. Be careful with whom you share these thoughts. Most people do not think this way. Don’t be surprised that as soon as you start sharing your dreams with others, they respond with:

  1. You can’t do that.
  2. No one has ever done that before.
  3. You’re not smart enough.
  4. You don’t have the money. 

Most people make future decisions based on “analysis”:

  1. What have I done in the past?
  2. What have others done in the past?
  3. What are my current circumstances?

Based on the answers to these 3 questions, a decision is made. I’m suggesting a different approach.

  1. Decide what you want.
  2. Develop 10 possible ways to get it.
  3. Prioritize the 10 possible ways.
  4. Start working #1. If it doesn’t work, go to #2. Repeat until you hit your goal. 

You see, plans change but decisions don’t. Let’s make some decisions and find a way to make them come true. 

Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah.

Bill Evans is president of Evans Glass Co. Write him at bevans@evansglasscompany.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors. 

Monday, December 5, 2016

It’s time to talk Industry MVP, but a few items before I start with the 2016 process. In my last post on this, I screwed up. I forgot a past winner, which was C.R. Laurence in 2014. I’m getting old and after 11 years of weekly posts, I’m not as sharp as I used to be! 

Before I unveil the runners up for this year, I want to recall all of the previous winners and runners up. The reason being is pretty much all of these people and companies are still very active and important in our world. And I am also trying not to repeat anyone, though it’s getting tough as some of the past runners up could be MVP most years. So for the future I may have to rethink. Anyway, let’s look back before we go forward.

2013

Winner: Tracy Rogers

Runners up:

  • Tom Culp
  • Mark Silverberg
  • Ed Zaucha
  • Mic Patterson
  • Oliver Stepe
  • Dr. Helen Sanders
  • Scott Thomsen

2014

Winner: C.R. Laurence

Runners up:

  • John Wheaton
  • Rick Wright
  • Tom O’Malley
  • Bernard Lax

2015

Winner: Jon Kimberlain

Runners up:

  • Garret Henson
  • Walker Glass
  • Dip Tech
  • Kris Vockler

On to 2016. This group of people and companies stepped up, represented their organizations and the industry with class and passion. My judging parameters as always:

  • Overall influence on the industry in 2016 
  • Technology/Innovation
  • Industry Support/Education
  • My opinion and knowledge of them and what they do. In the end, it’s my call and I own it. 

Mike Albert, S Albert Glass

Not only has Mike’s company been a long-time fixture in the glass and glazing world, but also he’s been a leading force at the National Glass Association as a board member and most recently Chairman. The NGA is surging now, and Mike absolutely had a hand in that and his overall care and passion for the industry are always on display.

The team of Thom Zaremba and Urmilla Jokhu-Sowell

I’m going with this duo, though it’s normally a trio with Dr. Tom Culp as the third. But Tom was a runner up in 2013, so he’s on the list already. Simply said, what Thom and Urmilla do for this industry is so crucial and so important I am not sure I can give it enough emphasis. They represent our industry at code levels all over the world and navigate some choppy waters. It’s hard to do the “right” thing when there may be competing levels of “right,’ yet these two do it and do it well and with respect. Without question, they have helped raise the level of respect our industry gets from other industries thanks to their professional and classy manner.

Sapa

The only company to make the list this year. I love that they take an aggressive approach to education with their Architectural Profile Academy and Shapes. Al website. Smart to teach and grow the audience the right way and these things take time and resources, so kudos to them for that. Plus a nod to Mark Spencer of Sapa who is a positive fixture at every event and one that carries the company mission out perfectly.

All listed above are worthy to win this year, but there was one person who rose above to win it and next week on my final post of the year, I’ll reveal who that is.

That’s it for this week. Next week, not only will I have the winner but also a look at a great new website from a classic industry company, annealed glass in the movies, more AIA/Trump press release fall out and much more!

Read on for links and video of the week... 

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications.E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 28, 2016

Every year, hundreds of projects come across my desk and into our firm. We win some and we lose some, but we get to at least assess or review all of them. As I wrap up the year with this blog, here are the trends I am seeing, based on the projects we are working on.

 

1. More Glass

  • Custom unitized projects with an emphasis on glass, daylighting, views, visibility and connection to the outdoors.
  • Lites from 75 to 120 square feet in size in unit walls; often floor-to-ceiling (almost) with very small, heavily insulated spandrel areas.
  • More robust glass that’s insulated and thicker to meet structural and flatness requirements for large sizes, different spacer options, coatings, laminates, patterns.
  • Structural glass walls with and without vertical glass fins.
  • Custom shaped glass such as folded, bent, leaning, not square or rectangular.
  • Structural Silicone Glazed– two and four sided.

2. Stack (expansion) Joints at or directly above the floor line

  • Stack joints aligned with the floor or within 6 inches from top of floor to top of horizontal.
  • “Drop Down” anchors with recessed inserts.

3. Panels, panels, panels

  • Many architects and designers seem to love panels; plate, sheet, ACM, corrugated, perforated, ACM and solid aluminum. Framed, hook and pin, face screwed, glazed and more.
  • Formed, profile-cut fins arranged in undulating patterns to form a more complicated looking geometry.

4. Stone, again?

  • I'm starting to see dimensional stone again in small doses, applied either on a rain screen or in a unit wall. 
  • Dimensional stone is lovely, and provides a great look combined with glass and metal.

5. “Fly-Bys”

  • Cantilevered elements with glass and aluminum framing that protrude outside the weather line anywhere from 3 feet to 10 feet; sometimes self-supportive and sometimes supported back to a clad structure that also protrudes from the building. These aren’t original architecturally. I see them on job after job.
  • There are many design issues to work through with these features. Watch out for the soffit and parapet conditions. They are “hanging out” vertically and horizontally and have to be stabilized in both directions.

6. Design- Assist

Most custom, unitized and even some stick curtain wall systems on highly visible 
facilities or projects of note with unique facades have some form or design-assist or design-
participation. This is GOOD for the industry as it integrates the design professional with the 
glazing subcontractor client and the AEC team. Integration and collaboration create 
understanding, shorten the design time cycle, and get everyone sharing each other’s reality. 
It’s the only way to go.

7. Modeling

The use of 3-D AutoCAD, Revit, Rhino and Inventor is becoming more commonplace. Some of the more complex geometries are most easily solved in a 3-D platform and then rationalized to make it “build-able.”

8. Revit Coordination

The use of Revit in curtain wall and clash detection has increased again. Some owners are requiring jobs to be modeled, plus requiring production drawings to be developed from 
models. Regular BIM coordination meetings are held to coordinate between multiple trades.

9. Façade/Enclosure/Curtain Wall Consultants

Some good, some not so good, but more of them (us). 

The exterior wall defines the look of the building. It’s often complex. It’s dynamic. It protects occupants from the outside environment. I find it a privilege to work in this field and it’s as fresh and interesting now as it was when I started over 30 years ago. As I say to many colleagues, “Thanks for your partnership in the work. Let’s build some great stuff together.”

John Wheaton is the founder & co-owner of Wheaton & Sprague Engineering, Inc., also known as Wheaton Sprague Building Envelope. The firm provides full service design, engineering and consulting services for the curtain wall/building envelope/building enclosure industry, and works at “Creating Structure” for clients. He can be reached at jwheaton@wheatonsprague.com and on Twitter, @JohnLWheaton1. 

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 28, 2016

I'm back at it for the final stretch of the year and the hits keep coming,leading off with a lot coming from Guardian. The main news that hit right before the holiday: a subsidiary of Koch Industries purchased the remaining 55.5 percent of the company to now own it in full. This is a positive piece of news given that Koch stuck their feet in the water a few years ago with the initial purchase and liked it enough to go all in. This bodes well for how our industry is viewed and the potential going forward. And speaking of the future, Guardian announced the addition of a new jumbo coater. That also is big news in that the commitment to continue to grow and support our industry is there. And without a doubt, the trend of jumbo sizes is one that is growing. (I would love to get that stat on average IG size that I mentioned a few weeks ago; it has to be growing!) So congrats to all involved at Guardian; very exciting and positive times there right now for sure.

Elsewhere…

 

  • And staying on the trail of positivity, the latest ABI did bounce back into positive territory. So the two-month down trend has stopped. The results continue to look like 2017 and into 2018 will be solid, but not spectacular. And as far as I am concerned, solid works. 
  • If you want some additional economic insight for the United States and Canada, check this out from Alex Carrick, chief economist of Construct Connection. Good and interesting stuff as always. 
  • This has been out there some, but I finally ran into it. Drones and construction. I’m blown away that it’s the construction world that is the main user of drone technology. This article stated that drones would change the way construction is done. Wow. 
  • Zero Net Energy consumption or the Net Zero Building continues to gain steam. This past week Santa Monica, California adopted an ordinance pushing it. The glass and glazing industry does have wonderful and effective products to support these efforts, so this is something I hope we see growing more and more. Not to mention, it is good for the world in the long run, too!
  • Last this week, a Japanese scientist has carried out clinical trials that show if you eat ice cream for breakfast you are smarter and more effective with your day and work. He had subjects eat ice cream right after they woke up and then tested from there. Sadly I had to give up ice cream a few years ago so I can’t try this, but really amazing to think that this could work. Could it be mix of cold and sugar snapping the brain to action? 

 

Read on for links and video of the week...

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications.E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Ron Crowl of FeneTech Inc. and Angela Dickson of AAMA share their post-show thoughts and perspectives on GlassBuild 2016 for this week's glassblog. Read on to see what each appreciated about the event.

From Ron Crowl's blog:

Tradeshows are a large part of FeneTech's marketing efforts, and consume much of our marketing budget. Therefore, during each show where we exhibit, we have high expectations for the return on our investment. GlassBuild America exceeded those expectations.

Read more...

From Angela Dickson's blog:

When asked what I love most about my job (and there's a lot), I always respond, "our members!" These amazing industry representatives strive to make a positive impact on our industry, and that was never more evident than at GlassBuild America last month. 

Read more...

Bethany Stough is managing editor of Glass Magazine. Contact her at bstough@glass.org. 

Monday, November 14, 2016

When asked what I love most about my job (and there's a lot), I always say "our members!" These amazing industry representatives strive to make a positive impact on our industry, and that was never more evident than at GlassBuild America last month. With a wide spectrum of beautiful receptions, incredible displays and continuing education, I'd like to extend a few shout-outs to just a few of the amazing members, who really made the most of this popular annual event.

Member Celebrations

One of the perks of working for an association is that members invite you to their receptions...and I'm talking beautiful receptions with amazing food, great fun and even better company.

Quanex hosted its reception this year directly on the trade show floor, and it was packed! Our very own Rich Walker said he could hardly move around there were so many people. Now, that's a successful reception!

For those of you who were at the show, you know that Clinton and Trump were there, too. Well, they weren't at the show, but there were in Vegas for their final presidential debate. YKK AP took advantage of the opportunity and hosted its own debate with the candidates. The answers to questions from the audience were hilarious, and the look-alikes were dead on.

During its evening event at the Rooftop Garden in Paris, Deceuninck celebrated the opening of its new facility in Fernley, Nevada, and I got a chance to congratulate Todd Willman on this exciting new chapter.

The award for the coolest table displays at a reception goes to VEKA. They looked like small statues scattered throughout the Omnia at Caesars Palace, but they were actually made of vinyl profiles. Genius!

Safety Education

AAMA had the chance to represent its members via an Express Learning session on window safety, and I was floored by the interest from those who attended. It's certainly not a sexy topic, but it is an important one.

I specifically addressed the use of ASTM F2090-compliant Window Opening Control Devices. Special thanks to both Roto Frank for providing samples and AmesburyTruth for putting together a full-scale mock-up that allowed participants to really understand how WOCDs can be added to a new product design or retrofitted even after a window is installed.

To learn more about the work of the Window Safety Task Force, visit aamanet.org/windowsafety.

Additional Shout-outs

  • NGA did a great job putting together this year's event. Everyone I talked to reported strong booth traffic, and there were also a lot of international companies looking to enter the U.S. market.
  • The DJ at the Peach Party on the last day of the show really needs to spin tunes for every event I attend. He kept the energy up, and I had to refrain myself from a full-on dance routine.
  • It was great to meet some familiar email addresses face-to-face, especially Bethany Stough of Glass Magazine. We've corresponded for years, and after meeting her in person, I'm officially obsessed!

If you shared any great moments with AAMA members at GlassBuild, post them in the comments below. Looking forward to another great show in Atlanta next year!

To see Angela's photos from GlassBuild, visit AAMA's blog.

Angela Dickson is marketing manager for the American Architectural Manufacturers Association. Contact her at adickson@aamanet.org.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 14, 2016

The saying goes, "there is no silver bullet in marketing." As few marketing efforts yield measurable returns, I believe this is true. Even so, every marketing effort FeneTech executes has expectations associated with it. 

Tradeshows are a large part of FeneTech's marketing efforts, and consume much of our marketing budget. Therefore, during each show where we exhibit, we have high expectations for the return on our investment. 

Over the past 20 years FeneTech has exhibited at many tradeshows around the world and always with lofty expectations. We expect to see old friends, make new friends and make sales.

Some shows have fallen way short of our expectations, some have met expectations, and a select few have exceeded our expectations. 

You can put the recent GlassBuild 2016 into the exceeded column. I found this particular show to be larger in attendance, exhibitors and booth traffic than in the near ten years since the recession. Not only was attendance robust, those in attendance walked the floor and opened up their checkbooks. I saw old friends, met new ones and best of all, we made sales. 

While I’m still a believer that there is no silver bullet in marketing, I must admit that GlassBuild 2016 came pretty close.

Ron Crowl is president of FeneTech Inc. Contact him at ron.crowl@fenetech.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 14, 2016

The interesting news this week comes from the AIA and its membership. The AIA put out a formal statement commenting on the recent U.S. election, and there’s been some backlash online from it. With the intensity on both sides of the election, I have a feeling we’re only at the start of this specific adventure. There’s tons of politics here I can get into, but I’m not doing that. I’ll only weigh in from a PR standpoint and my take there is I have no idea why the AIA would make a statement WHEN they did. The timing absolutely made no sense; there was no urgency or call for their opinion at that time, and they were obviously not prepared for the statement to go viral within the community like it has. So lessons here are: 1) you have to know your customer base or your membership and 2) you have to have a sense of timing. And it’s surely looking like in this case the AIA did neither. What happens next in the AIA world will bear some watching.

Elsewhere… 

  • After GlassBuild America I got a call with a great question I could not answer: Do we as an industry know what our average opening size is? And has that opening size changed at all in the last few years or is it expected to change going forward? The angle here is there’s this major push for oversize. Everyone seemingly is addressing it one way or another, so the trend is there. But, I can’t find or figure out what averages are. So if you have some insight on yesterday, today and tomorrow with regards to the average opening size, please drop me a line.
  • The November issue of Glass Magazine is out and once again quite a bit of excellent content to take in. The issue is dedicated to the “Top Metal Companies,” so some interesting profiles both on companies and projects. Also I liked the quick pieces from industry heavyweights Joe Erb of Quanex and Chris Giovannielli of Kawneer. Plus the Q&A with Michael Spellman from IGE is a must read.
  • The ad of the month award was a tough one with many strong candidates. People ask me how I choose this. First thing I do is flip through the magazine without stopping to read. I see if any ad jumps at me to make me stop. I then note the ads that do and then review and decide. And I do try to rotate the honors as some companies could win every month. So this time around the nod goes to DormaKaba. I liked the ad; caught my eye with a simple title. And, I will admit, I had no idea this was an actual company of Dorma and Kaba, so I learned something too!
  • Great resource that I was reminded about via email blast (and on those e mails: if done right, very effective) from Vitro. The “Search Products” tool that breaks down products, performance and aesthetics. Very helpful! 
  • The new Apple headquarter campus is coming along. This week, new drone footage was released and it’s worth the watch. Right now the site is ugly with dirt everywhere, but once they fill that in with the proposed green spaces, the building and environment should be absolutely awesome. 
  • Last this week, just a programming note. No blog next week (Nov. 22), though if news breaks I will post something and also have comments on Twitter. Otherwise I’ll be back in this space for the last week of November. Happy Thanksgiving to my friends in the United States!

Read on for links and video of the week... 

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications.E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

Monday, November 7, 2016

I was a later adopter of Twitter, but now that I use and understand it, I could never be without it.  AAMA uses Twitter more now than ever before to engage with members and others in the industry, as well as to shout out those doing good things in fenestration or to share window, door and skylight news. The association also uses Twitter to live-tweet, post photos and send updates from our events, conferences, or during tradeshows. 

Even if you’re not currently a user, there’s still time to get into the game. And if you’re already on the platform, maybe you’re looking for ways to use it better. Regardless of where you stand with that tiny blue bird, I think you’ll find something in this post that benefits you. I’ve put together a list of Twitter tips and some general advice for getting the most out of the platform.

  1. Schedule posts. The most pushback I hear about Twitter, and social media in general, is that companies don’t have time to post every day. That may be true, but I bet most have time to set aside 15 minutes per week to schedule a week’s worth of tweets. AAMA uses Hootsuite, but Buffer is another great option. You can choose when to send out your tweets, including links and photos.
  2. Keep hashtags short. Companies,or individuals, can use one or a few various event, product or concept hashtags, then encourage participants and customers to use them, too. By keeping AAMA's event-specific hashtags short, we make it easy for those attending to add them to their live updates. Search for #AAMAconf on Twitter to see what I mean.
  3. Think before you tweet. It’s always important to think twice about what you post, regardless of whether you consider your account personally, or professionally, focused. Know your audience!
  4. Follow often; unfollow the unhelpful. Even if you decide to follow someone today, that doesn’t mean you have to do so forever. If you find an account isn’t adding to your positive experience, or that a user posts information you don’t find interesting, feel free to unfollow. No harm, no foul. I go through the people I’m following every now and then and unfollow accounts from which I don’t gain anything.
  5. Follow back at will. Don’t feel guilty about not following back everyone who follows you. Twitter works best when you follow accounts you value, so the experience is mostly what you make it. This is your account! It should include only those you want to follow.
  6. Have a purpose. It’s important to know why you want to be on Twitter. Are you there to promote your company? To network? For professional development? Knowing your goals will help you measure whether or not you’re meeting them, and how to adjust.
  7. Interact. Twitter is a water cooler, not a bulletin board. Be human, be responsive and reply to people on Twitter. They will definitely appreciate it!
  8. Mix it up. Diversify who you follow and you will learn a lot. I enjoy following writers who come from different backgrounds than I do so I can get a better understanding of their life perspectives. In our industry, you might take this approach and follow peripheral accounts to yours. If you’re glass-focused, maybe follow some aluminum-centric companies; see what they are interested in and how your interests may overlap.

Happy tweeting!

Meryl Williams is communications coordinator for AAMA. She produces national and regional newsletters, writes editorial content and helps lead AAMA’s social media outreach, including the Socially Speaking blog. She has seven years of professional communications experience in both journalism and public relations. 

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors. 

Monday, November 7, 2016

The major news from the past week was the deal between J.E. Berkowitz and Consolidated Glass Holdings. This was one of the major rumors that was circulating at GlassBuild, and it came to fruition. It’s a great deal for CGH, with the very high profile of Berkowitz and its long track record of success. This is a game changer for them. Plus I am sure it was a great deal for Arthur Berkowitz and his family, as I can’t imagine he’d agree to anything less than the best. And as for those other rumors? I think a few are very real and will be happening in the near future. So hold on tight; there’s a lot more to go.

Elsewhere…

  • Last week I mentioned the Dodge Outlook results, and I have had some time to dig through those results as well as some other points of information out there. Here are some tidbits…

Residential growth is positive: single-family housing especially is ticking up 7 percent in 2016 and 9 percent is forecast for 2017. In fact, residential had its best year since 2005. Why that matters is when residential starts to tumble, that’s when the warning signs start to show up on the commercial side. So far, the coast is clear.

Surprisingly non-residential building did have an off year in 2016; not sure we felt it in the industry given where we are in the chain, and also the previous bounce backs carrying on from the past years. On this one, there are many industry folks who believe we run a good couple of years behind this metric. So potentially this could mean we’ll have some weak spots in 2017, but the forecast going forward is strong, expected up 6 percent with spending up 8 percent. So if we dip, it may not be sustained.

Last, the most positive data point for our world? A look back. When reviewed, the amount of infrastructure projects started in 2015 were more than any time in history, and the analysis says it will generate spending through 2017 and deep into 2018. 

Obviously these are forecasts and they can and do change. And a certain election in the United States will have an effect, just no clue on what that effect will be!

  • Just a heads up for those of you who deal with submittals for LEED. Note that the LEED v4 is now in effect. No new jobs can be registered under the previous standard of LEED 2009. If the jobs have already been registered, but not started, they can proceed and finish with that previous standard. So you’ll still see it, but otherwise get yourself familiar with LEED v4 as it's now here to stay. Guardian has a great online resource. They do a nice job of explaining the two standards, the changeover and then details. Good stuff.
  • Speaking of good stuff, great blog post from Pete DeGorter last week. Love that he took the time to do it and document with pictures. Nice work there.
  • Ever wonder how the mega sky scraper is built? Really well done and informative piece here. I just love the thought process that goes into it. 
  • It’s that time of year again to have our Industry MVP award. Once again, lots of great candidates out there. So this will not be an easy choice that is for sure. As always, I am open to suggestions so send them my way. What makes the MVP? Someone who works hard for the industry, communicates well, is involved at the trade level, and is always looking to advance our cause. That could be on the technical, education or innovation side. So who will join Tracy Rogers and Jon Kimberlain as winners?  I’ll be listing the runners up on my post the week of 12/11 with the winner honored the week of 12/18 on my last blog of 2016.
  • Last this week, this Friday is Veteran's Day in the United States. Please take a moment to appreciate what the women and men of the military have done (and still do daily) to protect our way of life. They are the true heroes. Thank you.

Read on for links and video of the week... 

Max Perilstein is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications.E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.

The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.

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