Ahead of the curve?
Balconette’s Curvaglide system is designed for the curved facades that are becoming popular in the luxury housing market.
The range also benefits from Balconette’s new in-house development of soft low-e coating, which brings energy efficiency levels for curved glass up to leading levels for flat glass.
Enhanced tracks and rolling mechanisms mean previous width limits have been expanded, with installations of up to 19m already completed. Customisable options mean the doors can be overlapped in a variety of different configurations.
“Curved patio doors are a high-end, exclusive product,” Balconette’s CEO Effi Wolff said. “Bifold patio doors have become commonplace, but curved building facades are rare, and demand something special. The system is aimed at architects designing high-end new builds and luxury extensions.
“We engineered a new support structure and rolling mechanisms to handle these extreme widths. For properties lucky enough to feature curving walls, the new Curvaglide doors are the perfect complement. Owners get to feel as if they are in the landscape, not just looking at it.”
Both the curved glass and matched frames are made to measure in-house by Balconette. The sliding mechanism uses two or three tracks, allowing customised configurations of fixed and sliding doors. The smallest configuration uses just two panes, both sliding to reveal a 50% opening. For larger installations, up to four doors can be slideable.
“All our curved glass doors come with 28mm double-glazing with low-e glass and toughened safety glass on both sides,” Effi said. “Comparing this with a standard pane of glass, our double-glazing units stop at least half the heat transferring through the glass itself. The curvature also provides a lower heat transference.”
The Curvaglide system uses Guardian SN51/28 glass, with a centre pane U-value of 1.0W/mK.
“Manufacture of curved glass is significantly more challenging than flat glass, particularly in the application of low-e coatings,” Effi said. “We don’t know of anyone else in the UK who is able to offer curved glass with the extra efficiency of a low-e soft coating.”
The system has already been used in the refurbishment of Tate St. Ives, where the curved glass facade now overlooks the beach.