If you want to expand your home improvement business to include window installation, then you may need to start transporting glass sheets to clients. Glass transport is best completed with the use of a glass rack, and these racks can be installed on the side of either a van or a truck. While you may not think that a rack is necessary, they do have some specific features that make them ideal for carrying glass.
If you have ever seen a professional shipping pieces of glass, then you may understand that glass is held in a vertical position as it is moved from one location to another. If you look closely at the racks that are used to transport the glass, then you will notice that the bottom rack ledge is wider than the top one. In many cases, it may be a foot wider or even more. The top ledge is much thinner and the forces the glass to sit at a slight angle. Angles are not usually wider than 12 or 15 degrees. This makes it easier for the glass to be held and transported without adding several feet to the width of your vehicle.
The slight angle of the glass also assists with keeping the glass secure and in place with the help of gravity. If it happens to rain while the glass is a in transport, the angling forced water to run along the top of the glass. This prevents fluid from working between the glass pieces. If beads of water work their way between the glass pieces, a few things can happen. The water creates a suctioning effect where the glass pieces become stuck together. In some cases, the water can etch the glass due to the presence of minerals.
To further prevent water movement, some racks will have a top shield. Splash panels are sometimes included along the bottom edge too to prevent water from splashing up from the road and hitting the glass.
You probably know that glass has a unique structure. It is obviously not a liquid, but it is not a solid either. This unique structure and its brittle nature are what make the edges of glass so sharp. For this reason, glass edges are likely to slice through soft materials. To help keep glass in place properly, hard rubber materials line the bottom and top edges of the rack. Basically, the ledges are covered with a thick layer of the rubber, and you will need to investigate the rubber often and replace it as it ages.
Small rubber buttons, grommets, and sometimes coated rails also help to hold glass pieces in place. If you anticipate the need to transport single, large, and expensive pieces of glass, then you can also look for racks fitted with suction cups. These cups are smaller versions of the ones that you use to move glass pieces from on location to another.
The rack suctions cups use vacuum pressure to hold the glass in place. There are a few options you can choose when it comes to affixed cups on your rack. You can have smaller cups installed that seal with the assistance of a level that moves air away from the cup surface to seal it. You can also have the more heavy duty varieties installed that use a small pump or tube to create the vacuum seal against the glass.
The weight of the glass you intend on transporting will determine the type of cups that you should be looking at. Speak with your glass rack specialist about the best cups, tracks, racks, and other features and accessories before a rack is installed on your van.