What is "Thick" Glass?
Historically the most common architectural use for glass has been for plain residential or commercial windows, in which case the thickness rarely exceeds 3/8", except for the very largest windows. More recently any glass over 1" thick that is custom made for tabletops, countertops, flooring, stair treads, etc. has come to be known as "thick glass".
Over the years our company has produced thousands of unique thick glass kitchen countertops and glass top kitchen islands, often incorporating ColorFuse glass for a seemingly infinite variety of colors, patterns, shapes, and textures. We view every new project as an opportunity to create something distinctive and exciting.
If you are looking for something truly unique for your home or office, the beauty and functionality of a custom made thermoformed glass countertop is guaranteed to offer many advantages over other common countertop materials. Our in-house factory gives us the ability to fully customize your project to your needs, making any glass countertop a unique and attractive choice.
To carry out our mission of producing eye catching, one-of-a-kind products built to your specs and your tastes, our in house design team often collaborates with kitchen designers, interior designers, and architects to produce something truly unique that meets and even exceeds your expectations.
What About Recycled Glass?
If you do much research for terms like "glass kitchen countertops" (and believe us when we say we have researched the heck out of that term!), you will no doubt find many results for kitchen countertops made out of recycled glass.
However, in most cases this means chunks of broken glass chips suspended in a composite base, giving the finished product a random, patternless look not unlike a tile mosaic. Similar products include recycled stone chipped composite countertops, which share many of the same drawbacks when compared to clear solid glass.
GDS™ Solid Glass
Recycled Composite Glass
Any Level of Transparency
Made From Natural Silica
Opaque Composite Base
Man Made Materials
Unlike broken glass countertops, our custom made solid glass countertops are produced from solid kiln fired glass manufactured right here in our Carlsbad factory. Because we are in complete control of the glass manufacturing process from start to finish, we have total command of the looks and construction of the finished product, no matter what kind of look you are after.
So even though the search terms may be similar, the products most certainly are not. As you can see, our solid glass countertops are the clear winner in almost every way!
What Surfaces Can I Use Glass For?
Our kiln fired glass products can incorporate various combinations of slump glass, etched (sandblasted) glass, ColorFuse™ technology, PermaCoat, MetalliCoat, and LED backlighting for a unique and durable finish, delivering strength and easy cleanup properties in a wide variety of applications such as:
- Thick glass kitchen countertops, with or without matching backsplash
- Backlit kitchen counter tops using LED lights
- Colored glass kitchen islands with ColorFuse™ technology, PermaCoat, or MetalliCoat finish
- Glass topped kitchen serving counters with a variety of edge details, textures, and patterns
But isn't glass FRAGILE?
It’s a common misconception that a glass bar or countertop will be fragile and easily broken. Back when glass was first used in windows and mirrors, it was inherently fragile due to the relatively crude processes available at the time. However, with modern advancements in manufacturing, the truth is that granite and glass have very similar properties, and that in most cases thick glass has far surpassed natural stone materials in durability.
To go further with this, in most cases a custom glass countertop is actually stronger than granite or stone, as it is a much denser and more structurally consistent material. The same goes for marble countertops and quartz countertops. Imagine a slab of granite, marble, or quartz stone at a quarter (¼”) inch thick. It would break with significantly less force than ¼” glass, due to the pores, veins, and imperfections in the stone.
On the other hand, a glass bar top, tabletop or countertop at 1″– 3″ thick is quite a substantial piece of material, and its structural consistency cannot be matched by stone. Countertops with 3/4″ or less thickness can also be tempered to further harden the surface, creating a safer, stronger piece.
How DURABLE is glass?
Believe it or not, clear solid glass is much more durable than granites and synthetic countertops. It is a harder, denser material that scratches and chips less. Textures and colors in the glass make small scratches nearly invisible, if they should occur. There is also NO change in appearance or durability over time!
We sometimes get asked about solid black glass countertops, and this is one thing we do not recommend for the simple reason that it is incredibly difficult to keep clean, and small scratches show up quite readily. For this reason we recommend lighter colors or a completely translucent appearance, with or without some texture or pattern to prevent the inevitable patina (which any material will develop over time) from detracting from the overall look.
What About Edge Contours?
Because each piece of our custom thick glass is produced right here in our factory, we have complete control over the edge contours that will suit your particular application the best. This can include seamed edges, polished edges, and miterning edges, and in a number of unique looks and patterns, including bullnose, half bullnose, chipped polished, chipped frost. Click here for images of the various contours and textures available.
What Kinds of Looks Can You Create?
Some of the more popular looks and themes we have created over the years include:
- "Ice glass", with a glacial polish which simulates the look of a glacier or frozen lake
- Frosted glass with a slightly opaque look in a variety of colors
- Ornate glass with scrollwork, hieroglyph patterns, or other traditional old world styles
- Mid century modern designs with simple, clean lines
- Brash ultra-modern looks with bright colors and/or patterns
Although we do recommend using hotplates for safety, hot cookware can generally be placed directly on its surface. A little common sense goes a long way!
Cutting on glass
Cutting on glass is possible, although we recommend using cutting boards to save and maintain longevity of your cutlery. Glass is actually a much more sanitary surface than most wood or plastic cutting boards!
Hygiene & Cleaning
Glass is a non-porous material, making it the most hygienic material available for countertops. This is also why glass is stain proof. Fingerprints and watermarks are also nearly invisible when the glass includes textures and/or colors. It is recommended to towel dry any wet areas to eliminate watermarks and streaking. The surface can be cleaned with a sponge (do not use abrasive side) or towel. Window cleaner and paper towels are preferred for optimum shine. Certain cleaners have been known to have chemicals that cause a haze and are not recommended to be used.
Give us a call today with your ideas and we will help make them a reality!