[DWM]’s Annual Guide to New Products

August 19th, 2021 by Nathan Hobbs

By now it’s clear: COVID-19 brought many things to a halt, but not product development and innovations. From a brand-new take on block-and-tackle to beefier pocket door hardware and motor-driven mortise locks—hardware is rolling on. With hurricane season officially in swing, door and window manufacturers have beefed up their options for keeping people and homes safe. After more than a year without in-person trade shows, never has [DWM]’s Guide been more important.

Just One Question

In this year’s guide, [DWM]’s editors added a little twist we’re calling: “Yes, but.” In the interest of readers, we asked one key question left lingering by manufacturers, then included answers from company officials to fill our readers in.


Lowering the Threshold

With demand growing for FritsJurgens’ pivot hinge systems, officials say next on their list was a heavy-duty drop seal solution: the Athmer automatic door bottom for pivot doors. Designed to provide zero-threshold designs in exterior pivot entry doors up to 2 meters wide, the Athmer model features an adjustable roller actuator which can negotiate frames as a pivot door closes. The Athmer SchallEx 15/30 WS Pivot features parallel actuation (no drag) and is able to deploy into a head jamb.

But can the system fi t 2-1/4-inch doors?
“Utilizing the new FritsJurgens flush floor plates, you can run the Athmer seal alongside the closer body and still get it all in a 2-1/4-inch pivot door,” a company representative tells [DWM].

The Next Generation

Officials for Endura say the company’s new PanoLock is designed for those who are looking for the security and performance of a multipoint lock but are frustrated by a lack of hardware options. Dubbed the “next generation of multipoint locks,” the product is made with security and flexibility in mind, offering three individual locking points that activate with the turn of a key, pulling the door panel into alignment each time the door is locked. The product is designed to be compatible with most off-the-shelf hardware, providing homeowners with the freedom to change locks as often as they change their styles.

But will the product work with any type of actuator?
“Whether knob, lever or thumbpress—it works with PanoLock,” officials tell [DWM]

Bringing Home a Favorite

Officials for Quanex say it was increased homeowner demand in the East that led the company to add its popular inset handle option to the 1350 series of patio screen doors. Starting in late summer, customers will be able to order the 1350 model with an inset handle and can choose from locking and non-locking options to improve door sightlines and aesthetics. Configurations include standard color options and various mesh options, such as BetterVue and UltraVue for increased airflow and optical clarity.

But what about security?
“These options also provide added safety and security, both of which are a must for homeowners,” the company assures.

Totally Flush

Ferco Architectural Hardware Inc. presents the new Fenix Evo casement lock. Touted as “the thinnest on the market,” the company’s newest lock is low profile, features screwless installation and is designed to be 100% flush with profiles. The product is set to launch with new Fenix casement operators, is made of SS-304 and is AAMA certified.

Totally Inflexible

Solid-core and oversized doors can stress pocket door hardware, leading to flexing and dragging. With components that officials say are “structurally robust,” CS Cavity Slider is designed to pocket doors up to 500 lbs. in weight, while preventing those and other issues. The product includes an aluminum frame that doesn’t flex and is designed to accommodate 1-3/8-inch and 1-3/4-inch-thick doors up to 4-0 by 8-0 in size. Hardware can also be cut down to size on site. The product is supplied as a kit, including clip in place trim fasteners and quick-release count plates, to allow for easy
access for service. A soft-close option is also available.

But for dealers who crossover between segments, can the CS Cavity Slider be used in both residential and commercial applications?
“It can,” says Laurie McCowan, vice president of sales and marketing. “Residentially, its aluminum structure provides increased rigidity for builders versus traditional alternatives. Commercially, it meets Type 1 construction code without any combustible material. In both scenarios, it can accommodate a 1-3/4-inch door in a 3-1/2-inch residential [framing] or 3-5/8-inch commercial studs.

Slim but Easy to Grip

Pella’s Easy Slide Operator for casement and awning style windows is slim and sleek, to provide a modern aesthetic, but it’s also made for ease of use. Designed as an alternate to traditional cranks, the product features a user-friendly grip, which makes opening and closing windows “as simple as turning off and on a dimmer light switch,” company officials say. The hardware’s discreet look is also designed not to interfere with window treatments and other décor.

But is its slim design suited to everyone— including aging populations?

“The Easy-Slide Operator truly was designed as a solution for all people, regardless of age and physical ability,” says Nicolle Picray, public relations and brand communications manager. “It makes opening and closing windows easier than ever before.

A Brand New Take

Officials for AmesburyTruth say its new Pinnacle balance is the first true redesign of a block and tackle system in many years. “We feel like it is going to be game changing for the industry,” says Donna Cockrell, sales and marketing coordinator. Designed for use in hung windows, the new design offers a new approach to sash weight management that, according to company information, is “both universal in fit and function, while offering unmatched reliability and performance.” A universal mounting clip allows for installation into existing specifications, while still fitting in most standard window profiles.

But what’s in it for product designers and manufacturers?
“Pinnacle’s innovative design provides simplified installation, increased performance, enables SKU simplification, and the opportunity for more space for window manufacturers to enhance the window design or reduce window costs,” says Michelle Nissen, vice president of product management.

An Easier Option

For door and window dealers that cross over into commercial jobs, Inox debuted a new option for commercial-grade motor-driven mortise locks that provides security in high-traffic areas, while adding features that make them easier to install. Officials say the PD97PT is the first electrified, motorized lock of its type—with power transfer that’s outside of the lock-case, where it can be installed through the door frame itself. The result is a faster and easier installation, when compared to other types of locks. The PD97 and PD97PT are also the only sliding door locks that can be integrated as part of a touchless opening system, according to company information. Both are compatible with most existing access control systems, including keypads, handwave actuators and biometric readers.

But where did the idea come from?
“We listened to our clients, particularly installers, who found electrified locks that require running power wires through doors or hinges to be time consuming and challenging to install,” says Qianyan Cheng, Inox co-founder and vice president of product development. “Eliminating the connection of power through the door from the lock to an electronic power transfer unit
dramatically reduces installation time and trouble.


Enhanced Speed and Throughput

GED’s new CleanCut 1700 Series includes the 1700 model (for cutting) and 1700-D model (for cutting and deletion). The series boasts enhanced  speed, updated technical features and increased throughput, all while maintaining the options that officials say manufacturers want when selecting a glass production system. Features include programmable cutting and deletion force with electro-pneumatic actuation, a new stationary belt-drive system, true servo drive in the company’s patented deletion head and a regeneration brake system. The system also includes a cutting fluid reservoir that’s designed to be easily accessible and a HEPA vacuum filter.

But what about software integration?
“Seamless integration with GED software eliminates the need for additional setup, meaning less data maintenance with new stock introduction,” company officials say.

A One-Person Job

The COVID-19 pandemic is subsiding, but the need for doing more with fewer people continues. Wakefield Equipment’s K-51DV Flipping Table and Conveyor is designed to enable one person to handle large doors and windows. The machine’s ergonomic features also help to ensure safety. The unit is custom-built to manufacturers exact needs and specifications.

Durable Notching

McKeegan Equipment and Supply Co.’s Colonial Muntin Notcher provides clean, accurate notching while accommodating upper and lower sash size off-sets and a single, adjustable stop block. The unit is air powered, including a double acting cylinder, while providing easy muntin change overs. Options include a radius notcher die, heavy duty cylinder, foot pedal operation and a digital readout gauge.

Safety and Speed

With or without a pandemic, officials for Erdman Automation say their company continues to aim for making high output operations safe with as few employees as possible. The company introduced a newer feature for its Erdman Dura or Super Spacer High Speed IG Line that incorporates a robot for unloading. The robot makes operating safer for employees by unloading
directly into a prepared sash or a staging rack, reducing the chance of injury when handling and unloading larger, heavy insulating glass units. Meanwhile, the company’s One Man  Robotic IG Cell (OMRC) for insulating glass is designed to require just one operator, with a cycle time of approximately 45 seconds per 2-ft. by 3-ft. unit without grids (approximately a minute with).

But what led to OMRC’s development?
“While safety and ergonomics for operators has always been our top priority in developing equipment, the COVID-19 outbreak has inspired us to think outside the box … This IG line will allow for maximum social distancing, safety and IG output with only one operator,” says Jessica Metz, marketing manager.


Quick and Easy Check

EDTM’s Glass-Chek Elite measures window thickness and identifies the presence and location of low-E coatings. The unit not only identifies laminated glass in windows, but it also measures the thickness of the laminate inner-layer. A graphical display shows the window drawn approximately to scale and assigns numbers to each piece of glass and glass surface, to make identifying coated surfaces a snap. It also indicates low-E coating types, identifying hard and soft coats.

But who benefits most from the product?
“This is extremely beneficial for glass companies that use multiple types of low-E coatings for their windows,” says Kristi Anderson, the company’s marketing manager.

Hurricane and Impact

More to Choose From

Officials at Marvin announced this year that, following acquisition of the Fla.-based company SIW, SIW impact-resistant products are now officially Marvin Signature Coastline.

Marvin Signature Coastline doors and windows are designed to combine premium aesthetics with design flexibility and advanced coastal performance, meeting the most stringent hurricane impact code requirements, while providing the benefit of expansive coastal views. The line joins other impact-rated products in the Marvin Ultimate and Elevate lines to create a broader portfolio under Marvin Coastal Solutions. Products are available at Marvin Coastline dealers throughout Florida.

But will they be available in other states?
“Marvin is looking to expand the Coastline product line into other Southeast U.S. coastal markets in the upcoming years,” says Mark Swift, director, Marvin Coastline.

Sized Up for Strength

Amerivu revealed a new line of impact-resistant products, including single-hung, single slider and fixed windows. Available in third-quarter 2021 and manufactured by Seaway Mfg. Corp., all units have been successfully tested to PG50 for Large Missile D and Wind Zone 3 requirements. The product includes sloped sills, interlocking tilt latches, four color options and a broad range of sizes offer design flexibility for any project. The cove frame profile brings an uncommon detail to both single- and multi-family projects.

But will there be more than three style options?
“Seaway will be introducing another version of this window next year,” says Jana G. Goodrich, president and CEO.

Glass and Related

Safe and Easy Operation

ODL’s latest innovation in door glass is all about safety, officials say. The company’s Blink Entry Doorglass brings blinds between glass and two layers of tempered safety glass to hinged entry doors and sidelights—with no dangling cords for homeowners with pets and kids to worry about.

Blinds can be raised, lowered and tilted the entire length of door glass using an EasyGlide operator, stacking blinds into a small space at the top to minimize viewing obstructions. Three glass frames and multiple standard widths and lengths are available, with severe weather impact units available in select colors and sizes. All visible components are color-matched for a coordinated look.

But speaking of kids, how easy are they to operate?
“We’ve made operation of Blink Entry Doorglass supremely easy and comfortable,” assures Townes Parsley, senior vice president of sales and marketing.

Small but Mighty

Packing is a small but important factor in glass installation, ensuring that windows operate as designed by helping to guarantee that glazing is installed securely, properly and without force. Roto’s new Glas-Tec glazing packers are designed for all types of standard glazing applications, while fulfilling their functions out of sight.

In addition to positioning, width, length, stability, compatibility and material hardness also play major roles, officials suggest. For this reason, it’s tough to get by with just one packer material or size, as various frame designs and support conditions require individual solutions, they add. Glas-Tec packers are compatible with most types of sealants and are designed to provide support throughout the life of the glass.

But how easy are they to place?
“Roto’s Glas-Tec packers are highly durable and easy to install, providing the proper distribution of weight between the glazing and sash interface,” officials say.


Time for an Upgrade

Earlier this year, FeneTech released FeneVision Ultimate v.15.3. Among the enhancements included in the new release are advanced purchasing and inventory control functionalities, officials say, which “revolutionize the user experience.” New features include the ability to create a vendor scorecard report, define inventory bins as non-nettable, designate ABC and XYZ inventory classifications, view inventory demand by either the day or month, and many more.


Styled for Decades

It’s one thing to produce a problem-solving, rot-resistant frame, but G-M Wood Products’ new Dura-Tech FX50 does it in style. The premium door frame is lifetime warrantied, offering an install-ready, high-performance system. The product line features a rot-resistant substrate, cladded in a combination of PVC and acrylic films that ensure decades of low-maintenance and durable style, with no color-fading or heat buildup. Colors include Graphite, Sand, Bronze and Onyx.

Doors and Windows

Matching Up With Commercial

Officials for Deceuninck North America say the company’s new 579 Series windows prove that PVC competes in the commercial sector. The new series offers enhanced thermal performance for commercial projects, specifically for remodeling, replacement and new midrise construction. The contemporary, modern windows are available in a wide color palette, including bronze, black, white and more.

But can the product match up with older buildings?
“Simulated divided lites may be used to replace old aluminum windows on commercial structures, while maintaining the existing aesthetic,” a company representative tells [DWM].

Something Old and New

With its Craftsman Series, Plastpro created a new line of entry doors that offer the classic Shaker and Craftsman designs. Available in fir, officials say the company added a direct-glazed shaker door to the series late last year, in response to so many requests for a direct-glazed Craftsman-style option. Options include ovolo profiles, simple Shaker profiles and sleek direct-glazed options.

But are all of the doors in Plastpro’s collection new?
“Not all the doors in this series are brand new this year, but our Direct Glazed Shaker Door is,” says Charlotte Preston, marketing coordinator.

Expanding Views

As the name implies, Weather Shield’s new Vue Collection employs all-aluminum frames for windows and patio doors, in order to provide narrow profiles and large spans of glass for added views. The idea extends the company’s mantra from recent years for blending indoor and outdoor spaces, says Chris Schield, vice president of product marketing. The collection’s innovative frame is designed to seamlessly connect doors and windows,” he says.

But is the product’s slim aesthetic also flexible in its design?
“We set out to create an offering that’s highly customizable with features and options well matched to the custom home market,” Schield says.

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.

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