Flat glass processing
Once cut the glass sheet is going to be processed to carry out the final product. The main part of the glass which will be modified will be the edges with 3 main objectives
1/the secure way to remove its sharp character and avoid injury to users.
2/to reach its final dimensions.
3/To improve greatly aesthetics of this part.
These operations will normally be carried out on industrial machines whose characteristics will depend on the final product.
1/the straight line edging machine
This is the basic machine for glaziers. Its function is to carry out a polishing on the straight portions of the glass edge. There are two main types of straight line edging machines:
The cup wheels straight line edging machine to carry out only a type of edge, flat edge with arris.
The peripheral wheels straight line edging machine to perform all types of edges.
The edging is carried out by wheels which are mounted on spindles connected to motors. The number of wheels will depend on the desired finishing and the productivity.
For example a straight line edging machine with 8 diamond wheels on 10 mm glass thickness can operate at a speed of about 2 meters per minute to carry out a perfect bright polished edge.
We should rather speak of straight line bevelling machine.
The drawing above shows a bevel. The bevelling wheels will work on one side of the glass to remove from the board and with a small angle (usually 5 or 6 ) a small amount of glass.
Mechanically speaking, the bevelling machines are very sophisticated machines for the required accuracy for a perfect bevel is very large (one is at the micron). This is why very few manufacturers offer really reliable machines.
3/Shape edging and bevelling machine.
It is a machine that will allow to achieve edge and bevel on shape (and straight depending the dexterity of the operator). But it is no longer a fully automatic machines.
4/The CNC machine.
This machine arrives on the market only twenty years ago and has revolutionized the processing of glass. This type of machine can make all kinds (almost) working techniques with quality and productivity. The more important company proposing such machines is Intermac.
5/The drilling machine
As its name suggests it is used to drill the glass. By the specificity of material to work drills are mainly used with two coaxial spindles.
6/Other flat glass processing machines.
Some use grinding wheels and diamond tools, such as double edger, notching machine , CNC vertical lines (both centers shaping , drilling two heads, notching ... ) .... More on why we do not go deeper because they are too far from the subject of this site, wheels and tools for flat glass processing ( sand blasting machines, lines for insulating glass, washing machines, digital printers ... )