In business – and specifically marketing – we spend much time talking about what we can do for a client. From time-to-time, we are asked to speak about our longevity and show how we have “staying power” in the glass market. This topic thrills me to talk about. For some, it may be shaky ground but for us, we’ve been in the architectural glass industry for almost thirty years. In that time, we have a ton to talk about. This post is a quick summary of that presentation. At our center, we are a global paint and coating company that services markets such as automotive (See CeramiGlass™), architectural glass (See OPACI-COAT-300®), and the appliance glass (See CeramiGlass™, again). Those aren’t the only markets. We have created coatings for polycarbonates, specifically motorcycle windscreens, organic coatings for metals and glass, as well as coatings for wood that protects windows and doors from harsh sun exposure.
We like to say, “We are not only using chemistry, we create it.” We may have started as a company that mixed resins and pigments, but today, we create polymers and chemistry.
The bulk of what we manufacture is done at our headquarters facility in Vancouver, Washington. Yet, over the years we have created manufacturing capabilities in both Slovenia and Spain to help service a greater reach.
In the last 30 years, we have created an intense internal standard setting structure that has allowed us to create a top-notch certification program for our fabricators, allowed us to work quick and be detailed in automotive parts approval processes (PPAP), and stick by our internal value of being LEAN and always continuously improve.
In the recent request to speak on our longevity, we were asked to showcase some of our larger projects. This is where it gets really cool. We have a ton of projects over the fifty-story mark, and they are all over the globe. For this, we just focused on a few in the Toronto, Paris and Dubai markets. There are some really fantastic and high profile projects we have been used on and one really wouldn’t know it. You can check them out in the portfolio below. For good measure, there are a few sixteen-story buildings we did in our backyard, of Portland. This is only scratching the surface of what has been done with our products, all over the globe.
One of the aspects we are best known for is color. With a wide color base, automotive grade pigments, tight color tolerances, and tight quality controls, we are unrivaled when it comes to color. We keep a tight color tolerance on both color matches and batches. If you are of a technical bend, we keep that tolerance to 0.20 of a DE. DE is just a unit of color difference. 0.20 is a very tight number when you consider house paint has a tolerance of 3.0-5.0 of a DE. In the glass world, most frits have a color tolerance of anywhere from 5.0-10.0 of a DE. That is huge! This is why we go unrivaled.
The reasons we can do this are because our OPACI-COAT-300® product is put on the glass after the tempering process. The high heat in the tempering ovens that also cure ceramic frit will cause the frit to be a different color than when it was applied cold to the glass. It takes a ton of trial and error to get the color right, as well as fairly tight tolerances on ovens. Our CeramiGlass™ product is applied and cured just as frit is but our color tolerances are very similar to the OPACI-COAT-300® product. We can do this by rigorously testing new pigments for color shift and picking only the most weatherable as well as the pigments that just don’t shift in high heat.
Everything coming into ICD, whether for evaluation or use in product lines, is subjected to long hours in QUV and UV weather testing. Including harsh environment testing to mimic massive failure of curtain wall systems, things like water entrapment and UV combination testing.
Finally, back to creating chemistry. ICD has evolved into a research and development company. From a full range of weather and exposure testing tools to expertise in silicone and polymer synthesis, we have the capability to create far more than we pick to develop and sell.