One of the most important, yet most neglected, issues in the manufacture and installation of frames is the choice and integration of hinges. Hinges are components that play specific and multiple role both in the structure and the functionality of a frame. Hinges join the frame sheet with the section on the jambs, adjust and allow movement, define the opening, ensures stability at each stop point – from tilting to full opening and lock – and when locked, ensure maximum performance of the features and properties, from thermal insulation, sound insulation and watertightness, to anti-burglary protection.
This latter feature, is perhaps the simplest in practice. Surely, you have many times encountered the term “ant-burglary frame”, but what does it really mean? In essence, when talking about anti-burglary protection, we refer to a certification obtained after demanding tests, carried out by recognised institutes. During these inspections, the frame should be successfully subjected to a series of tests – with the corresponding strength rating – whether it is an attempted mechanical violation with some sort of lever or sharp object or a structural violation attempt with throwing objects and exerting pressure on the frame structure.
Although profile strength is the main point of concern for these tests, what had always been a soft spot – especially in frame applications with tilting options – was the strength of the hinge to structural pressures and high functionality requirements. At this point, another important issue is set: When referring to frame functionality, you should also include specific additional functions, such as safety and energy efficiency of the frame.
The hinge as a crucial point
Let’s find out more on the matter. The hinge is the point that essentially joins a frame with its point of installation. It makes the frame operational, allowing it to perform the predefined movements, while it also ensures installation quality and stability. A vulnerable hinge could invalidate several of the advantages of the frame itself, and not just in terms of endurance. On the contrary, a heavy-duty hinge in a quality frame ensures its performance.
This is where things get more complicated. Choosing the right hinge should not be made solely by calculating the total end weight of each sheet (to put it simply, without analyzing zero torque formulas). If the final application weighs ν kilograms, the seemingly sufficient 2ν, or even 3ν, will never be enough. Obviously it could be typically functional, withstanding significant pressures, but it could not guarantee all the functional applications of the frame.
Resistance of 150kg per window sheet
Thermoplastiki is the only company to apply 150kg-strength hinges even in tilt and turn windows, and this practically translates into many things. Most importantly, the hinge is now relieved from the objective accusation of vulnerability, as its increased strength can hold a much higher pressure load. The frame will remain in place even under heavy pressure, preventing a collapse.
Additionally, the application of a strong hinge allows full handling of the frame system, covering all the requirements. Weight is no longer a pressing factor in choosing the appropriate glass pane in terms of thickness, density of materials, as well as in terms of the number and type of panes. The application of triple glass pane, or even a demanding triplex glass pane structure, is no longer a concern for Thermoplastiki as a manufacturer, as there is no question about whether they could be practically supported by and integrated in the final system, at least in terms of final weight.
Moreover, as regards the constructional and functional features of the frame, using a strong 150kg hinge, prevents any potential loss of implemented insulation. The stability of the sheet allows its complete fitting to the rest of the frame, preventing possible changes under extreme conditions that could occur (in addition to the proper performance of the locking mechanism). In this way, a tilt and turn frame could easily withstand even wind blows of 11 Beaufort without losing any of its properties or suffering any structural distortion.
All of the above features could not be guaranteed by the use of a conventional hinge. On the contrary, it ensures that when applying, for example, a GU, Unijet-Eurojet, with a maximum weight of 150 kg, in a composite frame uPVC Kömmerling 88 Plus, any type and combination of triple glass panes can be installed, providing maximum stability and guaranteed features , such as thermal insulation: Uf = 0.92 W/m²K in the basic version; Sound insulation up to Rw=48 dB according to DIN EN ISO 140-3; Burglar resistance up to RC2 according to DIN V ENV 1627; Air permeability according to DIN EN 12207, class: 4· water permeability in accordance with DIN EN 12208, class: 9Α· wind pressure resistance in accordance with DIN EN 12210, class: C5 / B5· and mechanical strength in accordance with DIN EN 13115, class: 4. Enjoy all the above features without worrying that under certain circumstances, a simple hinge will cause failure and inappropriate application of features and properties.
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