Clear panels on a transport shelters are widely used for several reasons such as appearance, for patrons in the shelter to see the bus coming, so bus drivers know someone is waiting at the stop and for public safety. There are 4 common choices for clear panels on a bus shelter. Here are the pros and cons.
Laminated glass is the preferred choice for CAM shelters. Laminated glass is hard wearing, which is why it is used for car windshields, and is economical. We have found that laminated glass deters vandalism as it does not shatter when broken which is often disappointing for a vandal. If the glass does crack the laminated middle layer helps prevent crack propagation and holds the outer panes together preventing the glass from falling out of place and onto the ground. This protects patrons and passers from shards of glass and lowers the requirement of expensive council emergency clean up works. Also, since the pane remains in place, the shelter remains fully weatherproof and usable while waiting for the pane to be replaced.
Toughened glass is made by tempering annealed glass and is harder to break than laminated glass. However when it does break the whole pane completely shatters and falls to the ground. Our experience is that vandals are more likely to make multiple breakages with toughened than they are with laminated as the breakages are more impressive. Due to the complete shattering of the panes toughened glass needs to be cleaned up with urgency when broken to keep the public safe. The panes tend to be more expensive than laminated glass and need to be replaced immediately to keep the shelter weather proof.
CAM has developed panel that is similar to polycarbonate, very tough, essentially smash resistant, with superior UV and chemical resistance. These panels are as clear as glass, look great and a perfectly suited to areas where impacts against the panes are likely such as sports shelters. Although they resist shattering and breakages they are prone to etching, as all glass and plastics are. Graffiti film offers a sacrificial layer to solve this issue.
Perforated panels are solid metal sheet panels that are hole punched. This creates a see though panel, offering some weather protection, but more importantly virtually unbreakable. The holes act as a graffiti deterrent as spray paint is ineffective as most of the paint travels through the panel and tagging with a marker pen is made difficult, defeating the tagger.
CAM's proprietary installation system allows all glass and toughglass panels to be installed without holes or piercings that could compromise panel strength. CAM shelters are designed with consistent sized panels which has reduced maintenance costs significantly for Councils.
CAM has been testing a number of graffiti films to combat scratching or etching (tagging) of glass panels. Clear graffiti films have been very successful in covering the scratches to restore the glass and acting as a sacrificial layer for future damage. The downside has been that although they are very scratch resistant they are not fully 100% scratch proof.
Clear Graffiti Film - CAM now offers a graffiti film service for supply and application of clear graffiti film at affordable rates. Here are the advantages of clear graffiti film.
- Hides scratches - the adhesive on graffiti film is designed to sink into the etching on the damaged glass, hiding 80 to 90% of the damage. It really works and is cheaper then replacing the glass.
- Sacrificial layer -Applied to new glass, the clear film acts as a sacrificial layer so if damaged, it can be removed and the glass will be as good as new. The film is strong enough to resist scratches getting through to the glass underneath.
- Glass Shatter Protection - Graffiti film doubles as a shatter protection so if smashed, the glass has an extra layer to hold it together, often deterring repeated breakage.
Call Us for a quote for any type of shelter or application.
Printed Graffiti Film - Printed graffiti film is a new product for CAM that is having fantastic results in fighting graffiti and vandalism in some of the hardest hit areas. By printing a photo or artwork on the film and applying it to the glass panels of bus shelters, we have seen dramatic drop in vandalism as well as a positive community response to the visual appearance of shelters. Using local images of landmarks or bush scenes has been especially successful with little or no damage occurring on previously high maintenance shelters.
Printed graffiti film has the same attributes as the clear version above and installed in the same method. Printing directly to the film is a new technology, only recently available. This means there is only one layer required instead of using a printed clear vinyl and applying a second layer over the top for protection. The second layer is always an option for very long term applications.
Since we are largely involved in the maintenance of shelters we are well aware of the issues around cleaning graffiti effectively off framework. All CAM shelters are constructed from high tensile structural powder coated aluminium. For a small addition in powdercoating cost, a graffiti coating can be applied during the powder coating process to make graffiti removal much easier. With the extra coating, graffiti is removed by simply wiping clean with a citrus based cleaner.