Float Glass Industries - Case Study


Float Glass Industries are one of the UK’s largest, independent stockists of glass with a wide range of products available. They are at the forefront of glass supply nationwide, manufacturing toughened, processed and high performance insulated glass units as well as being the UK’s largest independent volume glass distributor.


Float Glass Industries were keen to invest in the new technology of Saint-Gobain Glass (SGG) Easy Pro glass but found out they needed a new deletion wheel in order to process it. Aware of the case, we visited the company in early 2017 and conducted tests with our Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete PRO.
Results of our tests were excellent and after a few machine adjustments, including a slight increase in pressure, we managed to achieve a perfect result on the Easy Pro coating. We didn't just limit the test to the new glass product, we also tested the Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete PRO on all other coated glass types and managed to at least double the current speed of edge deletion. You can see the results below:
Results of edge deletion tests using Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete PRO
Results of the trial
Grind speed
We were able to at least double grind speed on all glass types. As this process is usually the bottleneck of most glass processing factories, this is a great result for Float Glass Industries. What's more, cutting tables are expensive so it's vital that their use is optimised as much as possible to increase throughput.
Edge deletion quality
Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete PRO achieved a much superior finish on all coated glass types. All surface coating was removed and there was no sign of bounce. The sharp silicon carbide grain combined with the soft compressive nature of the wheel enables it to cut through all coatings fast and efficiently leaving a smooth, consistent finish.
Wheel life
The major factor of wheel life in this application is the dressing cycle. Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete Pro requires less dressing due to its open porous structure, which means it benefits from increased lifetime. 
Float Glass Industries have now begun ordering this wheel from SGA and are now optimising all their programs for other glass varieties to exploit the benefits of our new wheel. Trials were done on one of the three lines at Float GIass Industries, and they have now expanded the use of this wheel to the other two lines.
Customer comments
Ryan Jackson, Supply Cutting Manager, Float Glass Industries, commented, "I estimate the wheel life to be around two to three times more than our previous wheel. [The edge deletion quality is] much better and more consistent. Makes me feel relaxed as I’m confident the glass is not going to be rejected for edge deletion quality. Even if the wheel ran at the same grinding speed as the old one we’d use it anyway due to the surface finish. I’m a big fan of them."
Mark Wadsworth, IG/Production Supply Manager, Float Glass Industries, added, "[Grind speed] is work in progress, we will be looking at all other programmes to try and get our lines deleting faster. Our initial set-up is 10% faster than our current speed and we build from there. I’m getting better yield from my cutting tables and this area is my bottleneck. We were thinking we would have to invest in another cutting table to support the new line, but now we may not have to. All in all it a win-win."

Float Glass Industries team

New Norton Rapid Finish Edge Delete PRO
Fast grinding for all machine types 50% faster deletion vs. competitors - decrease cycle time
New sharp silicon carbide grain Can delete the hardest multi-layer glass coatings in one pass
Faster deletion produces less heat - less chance of glass breakage
Ability to delete the latest generation of high performance technical glass Certified for Saint-Gobain Glass 'EasyPro'
Soft grade of wheel Allows more wheel to contact grind area giving unrivalled deletion quality
Wheel does not bounce - reduced 'stripping'
Open porous structure Anti-loading gives reduced need for dressing for longer wheel life
Reinforced core Increased M.O.S and no risk of machine spindle damage 
Can be used wet or dry Cutting oil does not affect performance
Not affected by grind pressures Can be used safely up to 3 bars
SGA Specification
Part Number
200 24 76.2 P4MO1 NOR 80 66261114076
200 20 76.2 P4MO1 NOR 80 66261125662
200 12 76.2 P4MO1 NOR 80 66261130390
200 10 76.2 P4MO1 NOR 80 6626113352
Standard wheel sizes are available from stock and other sizes are available as Made To Order.
Please contact your Norton sales representative for further information.
Paul Gray
Paul Gray
Application Engineer, Saint-Gobain Abrasives