Glazing Trend: Architectural Bronze

slim framed sliding doors with architectural bronze frames

How to specify architectural bronze glazing and find the right finishing option for your project

Architectural bronze has become a huge trend in glazing, growing in popularity in recent years. From contemporary new builds to home renovations, incorporating architectural bronze glazing can be used to maintain a more traditional design, or to introduce colour to modern and minimal designs.  

There are many ways to achieve an architectural bronze finish, depending on the project type and desired effect. Our technical team of advisors are on hand to advise and assist in the specification process, talking you through the best options to find the right fit and ensure the glazing installation is long wearing and suitable for the environment it is being installed within. Keep reading to discover some of the ways you can create architectural bronze glazing.  

 

slim framed glass pivot doors with architectural bronze finish

True Architectural Bronze  

The majority of steel framed glazing systems have also been tested for use with architectural bronze materials, including patinated brass and burnished brass. As with any natural metal, the colour will change over time when exposed to the elements and there are factors that can speed up the process such as natural oils on hands which cause the colour changing process to speed up. 

An authentic architectural bronze window or door system has high levels of corrosion resistance thanks to the copper components within the metal. The zinc within the metal ensures that the timeless bronze finish has high levels of tensile strength, creating a durable material that can be used to create very slim profiles.  

As part of the renovation of the IQ Glass showroom, we installed a glass pivot door as part of the entrance design. The slim framed pivot door was designed with an architectural bronze handle, which has now changed over time for an authentic and timeless finish. The bronze ironmongery adds a traditional touch to the glass fa├žade design, which is primarily frameless.  

 

Anodised Finish  

Another authentic finish is anodising, which uses a thin layer of aluminium oxide to electrically bond a layer on the surface of the window or door frames. The result is usually a metallic finish which is often desired, but there are some factors to consider before using a bronze anodised finish.

The anodising process is a chemical process which means it is impossible to guarantee a uniform finish or a perfect match between multiple framing profiles or ironmongery elements.

For some projects or architectural styles, this authentic finish is desirable, but for projects that prefer a consistently uniform approach, other finishing options should be considered.  

slim framed sliding doors with architectural bronze frames

Another factor to consider with anodised frames is the location and durability of the glazing installations because the finish essentially becomes part of the aluminium frame once the anodising process has taken place.

This means that anodised profiles can scratch easily if they are not specified with silver as the base metal and any heavy duty imperfections will be visible through the finish. Unlike other finishes, once anodised architectural bronze frames are scratched or damaged they are impossible to retouch or repair.  

Anodising is a useful option for increasing the longevity of glazing solutions in certain environments, which is why all of our marine grade glazing is pre-anodised as standard before being powder coated. 

 

Powder Coating  

architectural bronze glass pivot doors in home renovation

Polyester powder coating is the most common finish for glazing systems and can be used to create architectural bronze finishes in a variety of ways.

For architectural bronze finishes using powder coating, the matt and gloss ratios can be adjusted and adapted to create customised finishes. This was done at our Ravensdon Street project, which used RAL 1036 with a bespoke ratio of matt and gloss to create bronze pivoting doors on the rear elevation of the home. If you opt for a powder coated architectural bronze finish, this often results in shorter lead times due to the finishing option being more readily available.  

Specialist PPC finishes are available to achieve an architectural bronze finish, including a number of powder coating techniques and colours that have been specifically designed to mimic the appearance of true bronze. The vertical sash window at the IQ Glass showroom was specified with Axalta Horizon as a finish, which is a powder coating designed to replicate authentic brass profiles.  

 

architectural bronze profiles at glazing showroom vertical sash window

Specialist/Bespoke Bronze Finishes  

One of the advantages of working with IQ Glass is that due to our years of experience working on complex and bespoke architectural projects, we are comfortable and confident working with a wide range of materials and finishes. This means that if you have specific materials or finishes in mind that are not mentioned, we will work with our trusted suppliers to source and deliver any bespoke requests.  

 

Ironmongery  

When specifying architectural bronze doors or architectural bronze windows the ironmongery is often chosen to match the frames. There are a wide range of ironmongery options to choose from, including decorative and statement handles, some of which are on display in our architectural glazing showroom in Amersham 

architectural bronze glazing in glass pool house

The MIRO internal pivoting doors at the showroom have bespoke bronze handles on each side, showing just some of the statement options that are available to match architectural bronze profiles.  

Any powder coating option is possible and whilst most suppliers work from the K7 RAL colour chart, IQ work with a number of suppliers to ensure we can offer all PPC finishes available.  

 

To speak to the team about specifying architectural bronze for your next project or book a showroom visit to see some of the architectural bronze solutions at the showroom, get in touch with us.

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Rebecca is Head of Marketing at the IQ Group and has worked in glazing specification for many years. She has a broad range of technical knowledge about all our glazing products and offers technical advice and guidance to architects for specification. Her easy to digest technical advice is often quoted in magazines and publications. You might also recognise her as one of the IQ Glass CPD presenters.