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Glass Block Bath Designs Austin

Posted byDavid L. Traut, CAPS on Tue, Dec 28, 2010 @ 11:12 AM

     In the early 1800's, solid glass blocks were used as single units to light both ship's bowels and cellars in Europe.  In the early 1900's, second generation hollow glass blown  blocks resembled hexagonal open ended bottles.  They had condensation problems and were produced individually by artisans making them too expensive for general use.  In the 1930's machine production produced more uniform shapes that were easier to work into mortar.  The new units offered advantages in both thermal and noise isolation. Today's modern glass blocks for use in glass block bath designs Austin are still produced in this same way  taking two molded glass halves with a hollow interior and melting the parts to fuse them together.  A vacuum is formed in the block's interior to prevent condensation.  This evacuated "dead air" space provides for the block's thermal and sound reducing qualities.

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     Using a fascinating building component composed of glass that is both fragile and sturdy with superior eye appeal allows for endless creativity and advantages.  Sound reduction as mentioned above along with thermal qualities for energy minded construction techniques are evident due to their air tight nature.  Both security and privacy is achieved by their light transmitting capabilities enhancing any bathroom transformation. This factor alone explains why glass blocks were first used in both commercial and industrial applications.

      Fine bathroom upgrades can benefit from glass block shower designs used in wall surrounds, support walls beneath whirlpool tubs, exterior shower windows, and low screening walls for privacy around spas.  Glass blocks can also benefit fine kitchen upgrades in many ways.  They can be used in islands, as supports for peninsula eating bars, or between your wall and base cabinets to provide natural light for the countertop work surface. Other uses of glass blocks are around the entry door as transoms or sidelights, in guard rails at balconies, room partitions, or sharing light from an adjacent window lit room.  Light shafts can give natural light to areas without having an outside window within the elevation.

Glass Block Designs

     The light diffusing capability of glass blocks allows for back lighting projects using minimal amounts of artificial sources.  The glass blocks amplify a small amount of provided light to enhance a given area.  Artificial light sources include rope lights, incandescent bulbs, or fluorescent fixtures.  Furthermore using colored bulbs can provide any desired mood lighting creating chromotherapy results.  The glass block raw edges defining the entrance to an area can either be covered in an accenting tile and glass tile caps are now available.

      Modern glass blocks are available in many patterns, both transparent and opaque, as well as a variety of colors.  The  different sizes available allow for tremendous design opportunities while special shapes provide for curves, forty fives, and ninety degree angles.  Solid glass bricks are now available to be enhanced bu LED lighting.  Designs are limited only by one's imagination.

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