Gerry gives us information about the different types of shower screens that they manufacture in Archer Glass - framed, semi-frameless and frameless shower screens. These shower screens are all Grade A safety glass, meaning they do not break into large shards when damaged. In addition, he gives tips on how to protect shower screens from water and other types of residue by using a nano glass coating.
Wayne Bucklar: My guest today joins me from Brisbane Australia. It’s Gerry Whelan, the CEO of Archer Glass. Gerry welcome to the program.
Gerry Whelan: Good morning Wayne. Thank you.
W: Now Gerry we’ve spoken before about glass and I know your business is architectural glass not automotive glass. And we’ve talked about all sorts of things but today I’d like to get a bit specific and talk to you about bathrooms and shower screens. Now I understand that you manufacture shower screens?
G: We do, yes. Every screen we install is made to measure for that particular spot.
W: And Gerry is this something that I could get you to do if I was looking to replace a bathroom screen?
G: Yes, absolutely. We’ll come out and measure, give you a quote and decide what type of frame do you want, we got a frameless, semi-frameless, or framed. And then we’ll make the shower screen to measure, and then we’ll come back and remove the old screen and dispose of it and then install your new one for you.
W: And how long does that leave my shower out of action Gerry? Or is it a kind of instantaneous, same day thing?
G: Same day. We remove and then install a new one straight away. So probably 15 minutes, half an hour.
W: And if you are renovating your bathroom, I suspect that putting in a new shower screen would make a big difference to its look and feel.
G: Yeah, well it is. And then there’s no inconvenience. We just leave the old one there until the new one’s made and get rid of it at a particular time.
W: Now you did mention framing before and I didn’t get back to it. But you said there was framed, semi-framed, and frameless?
G: Yeah. Framed, it means each panel of glass is fully framed within the screen. And it’s ideal where there is young kids etc. where the edge of the glass is protected and I suppose stronger in a way. But it’s also the cheapest version. And we you have semi-frameless where is just a perimeter frame and then the side edges of each panel are frameless. And that’s 6 millimeter glass we use there and it looks open and clean and you can see all the tilling inside the shower area and makes the bathrooms feel a bit more spacious. And then we’ve got there fully frameless which is just like chrome hinges and fittings between the panels of glass. So there is no framing at all. On those then we use 10 millimeter glass which is a much heavier, much stronger structure really as well, and really it does look apart and makes great, would upgrade the whole bathroom.
W: And when you’re talking I was wondering why the framed ones were less expensive. But I guess as you talked you’ve mentioned that you need heavier glass as you go frameless, I guess the cost is in the glass.
G: Yeah, that’s right. The cost is in the glass. And the semi-frameless is also 6 millimeter glass, toughened with polished edges. Now whereas the fully framed, we can use laminated glass which we cut to size and that just put the frame around it and fit it. But all the three are Grade A safety glass.
W: Yes. I was going to ask you about that. So all shower screens have to be safety glass?
G: Will have to be Grade A safety glass, yes.
W: And we’ve talked before about whether that is toughened or laminated and so on and so forth. But essentially it means that if it does break, it won’t break into large shards that cause lots of injuries.
G: Yes, particularly when you’re in the shower and you’re much more vulnerable if something like that was to happen.
W: That’s true. I haven’t thought about that, now you’ve given me that image that now. I wouldn’t think about that too much.
W: Gerry what about finish on the glass, is it all just clear glass or are there choices?
G: Yeah, there are obscure glass or frosted. Some people like frosted glass for the bathroom to actually screen off the area when they’re in the shower - for privacy like that. And then also we have the nano coating which reduces cleaning on the screen so you can have that applied as well as an option or extra.
W: How does that work?
G: It’s a coating that’s applied to the glass. And that means the soaps can’t stick to the glass and the water just rolls off. So instead of cleaning them, it’s just basically a wipe down.
W: And that’s installed and manufactured?
G: That can be installed by us when before we install the screen. That can be a treatment applied by us before we install the screen. Also we have a “do it yourself” coating the screen, just buy in our shop and apply it yourself to your screen. Particularly if it’s pretty new and hasn’t been damaged yet. And it’s called “EnduroShield” and the treatment is warranted for 3 years. But I can tell you I’ve had mine on with this coating for at least 5 years and we’ve had no problem whatsoever yet.
W: That is something I haven’t heard of and I guess it’s one of the things that’s probably absolutely worth doing if you’re going to be put a new glass, get it treated with the nano shield now and soaps come doesn’t stick, water doesn’t stay on it. And it’s gonna look like new for a long time and save you a lot of cleaning.
G: Yeah, exactly right. It reduces that cleaning way down, so say this it’s just a wipe down. And instead of cleaning, you might use some maybe citrus cleaner or something but certainly nothing costly or anything like that is required.
W: And I don’t think anyone actually loves cleaning the bathroom. So anything that reduces cleaning in a bathroom is well and truly worth doing.
G: Yeah. I think everybody would agree with that statement.
W: (Laugh) So Gerry the choices of glass finish then are frosted or clear. And there is a nano shielding to go on it to reduce cleaning. We can do showers in semi-framed, framed and frameless, and they’re all in safety glass. Have I kind of captured it all?
G: Yes, that’s it in a nutshell. Absolutely. And we have quite a display on our website where people can see the type of screens and examples of what we’re talking about.
W: What is the website Gerry?
W: So if you head off to www.archerglass.com you can check out some images of the showers screens and the style that they’re doing. But if you are looking for a reasonably quick way to update the look of your bathroom, don’t overlook the idea of changing out your shower screens. It’s a same day exercise, you don’t have to move into a hotel to have a shower and it will make a dramatic difference to the look and feel of your bathroom. Gerry it’s been a pleasure talking to you again, thank you for your time.
G: Thank you very much Wayne. Always a pleasure.
W: Gerry Whelan from Archer Glass in Mount Gravatt in Brisbane.
G: Thank you.