Frameless and semi-frameless glass balustrades bring a beautiful sleek aesthetic to an outdoor deck area. You can choose more or less framing and also customise the glazing.
Semi-Frameless Or Frameless Models
Whether you go for a semi-framed or frameless model depends on how open you want the glass to look. In a semi-framed design, the glass panels fit within posts which secure the sides. They might also sit within a channel mounted on the decking as well for a more substantial effect. If you live in a windy area, this might be an excellent way to provide extra support to prevent swaying. With such a design, the repeated posts create visible structural elements along the fence; the hardware being more evident than in a frameless model. In a frameless design, channels or brackets might be all that you need to secure the glass to the deck for sleeker and more seamless look.
Toughened Safety Glass
Most balustrades use toughened safety glass. A special tempering treatment makes this about four or five times stronger than ordinary glass. This glass also breaks in a relatively harmless way which lessens the chance of injuries even if it does fracture. Instead of splitting into sharp shards, tempered glass crumbles into blunt pebbles. If your deck is more than a meter high, regulations might need you to install laminated-toughened glass, which consists of two sheets of toughened glass bonded with a resin-type interlayer for a doubly strong barrier.
Glazing Options For Glass Balustrades
Glass balustrades provide several options for you to customise the glazing. You can tint the panels a range of colours: blue, green, bronze or grey. Metal oxides added to the glass mixture during manufacture produce the various tones. This allows you to merge the barrier with your home environment by repeating a nearby colour from the garden or architecture. A tint can block glare as well, lessening the effect of a bright hot sun. (These balustrades also helpfully block the wind.)
Instead of tinting the glass, you could go in the other direction by installing low iron glass. Standard glass, including the toughened variety, shows a faint green tinge due to its iron content. Reducing the iron during manufacturing produces a crystal-clear effect. An alternate possibility is a frosted glass which is typically the result of acid etching or sandblasting techniques. These panels also block sun glare and provide a stronger barrier that is less translucent.