IGMA Seminar Focuses on Best Practices, Codes

December 19th, 2011 by DWM Magazine

The Insulating Glass Manufacturers Alliance (IGMA) of Ottawa, Ontario, hosted an educational seminar, Performance and Innovations in Insulating Glass Units (IGU), December 7-8, in Vancouver. The seminar was one of the best in the IGMA educational series in terms of content and participation, says Mike Burk, product sales specialist, Quanex Building Products, Houston, Texas, and a speaker at the seminar.

“It was a remix of the Preventing IG Failure educational seminar,” says Margaret Webb, executive director of IGMA. That seminar was held since 2004, every couple of years, and saw 25-50 attendees, she says. This seminar had 54 attendees.

The attendees came from all across North America and coast to coast, Webb says. “They were IG fabricators, building envelope consultants and window manufacturers. They all hung in there and stayed right through it and were asking questions through the last session.”

The seminar was “vitalizing, informative and exciting,” says Enbar Balilty, vice president/general manager of High Performance Glazing Inc. in Concord, Ontario. “I’ve attained a lot of useful information regarding best practices in approach to manufacturing quality control IG units and the major causes of failure and prevention. It was a pleasure to meet with people in the industry who were knowledgeable and willing to share information. There was great interaction with presenters, which allowed us to ask questions during presentations. The first-hand knowledge was one of the key things I appreciated most. … I would highly recommend this to everyone in the industry, because just when you think you know it all — there is something new.”

The first day of the seminar offered best practices, the dos and don’ts of spacers, desiccants, sealants, coated glass, and how to do things better, Webb says. “The second day was more strategic in nature and saw discussions on glass breakage, how to select the best energy performance glass, handling glass, glass safety — glass can be dangerous to handle, and our people get used to being around it so much — VIG glazing guidelines, and forensic investigation in case of failure. Lunch time sessions included two presentations on code updates and dynamic glazing.” Jeff Baker president of WestLab Canada in West London, Ontario, made the code update presentation, and Helen Sanders, vice president of Technical Business Development at Sage, Faribault, Minn., made the presentation on dynamic glazing. The code presentation focused mostly on Canadian codes, the national building code and glass standards. “In Canada, glass standards are all time-dated,” Webb says. “Helen’s presentation covered electrochromic glass, passive and active, products and installations, and what’s actually out there.”

The panel presentation, Glass Performance for Energy Efficient Fenestration, was the highlight of the seminar, Burk says. “The panel responded to many current and pertinent questions asked by the attendees,” he says. “The Handling Glass Safety presentation appears to have hit home with the attendees. A number of them have contacted me since the presentation regarding PPE [personal protective equipment] and safety concerns at their manufacturing facility.”

Bill Briese, R&D/engineering manager at GED Integrated Solutions in Twinsburg, Ohio, Tracy Rogers, technical director of Edgetech in Cambridge, Ohio, Jeff Haberer, technical services engineer at Cardinal Corp. in St. Louis Park, Minn., John Greenzweig, window industry technical manager at H.B. Fuller Co. in St. Paul, Minn., Chris Barry, director of technical services, building products, Pilkington North America in Toledo, Ohio, and Bill Lingnell, president of Lingnell Consulting Services in Rockwall, Texas, were other speakers.

“We recorded the sessions, and they will be available through the IGMA online educational center, which will launch in January 2012,” Webb says.

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