Commercial and Residential Glass Installer and Manufacturer Resource

Details You Should Tell Your Custom Tempered Glass Manufacturer

Jan 21, 2024 8:00:00 AM / by Greg Martell

tempered glass manufacturer

From creating an elegant custom shower enclosure to fitting seamlessly into an odd-shaped space, you can cut tempered glass into almost any shape your project demands. 

When using shaped glass in a project, the last thing you want is to receive a piece that’s too big, too small, or just doesn’t fit. Small errors in measurements, thickness, or placement of specific cutouts can make a custom tempered glass pane unusable.  

It’s critical to provide your custom tempered glass manufacturer with all the correct information, ensuring no difference between the product you intend to order and the one you install.

(Resource: Want to know more about tempering? Read our guide!)

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Why Use Custom Tempered Glass?

Tempered glass is a popular choice as a shaped glass because of its 4 main characteristics:

  1. Strength: Tempered glass is one of the strongest glass types available — it’s 4-5x stronger than annealed glass.
  2. Durability: Tempered glass is also more resistant to scratches, chips, and cracks compared to other forms of glass, making it ideal for high-traffic areas.
  3. Safety: When tempered glass breaks, it shatters into pebble-like pieces rather than jagged shards. While these pieces can still cause harm, they limit the risk of deep cuts and other serious injuries. 
  4. Heat resistance: Tempered glass sheets can withstand higher temperatures for longer periods without breaking.

Tempered Glass Details To Share With Your Glass Manufacturer

Getting the correctly shaped piece of tempered glass for your project requires attention to detail — that starts and ends with its specifications. 

Here’s what you’ll need to provide to your commercial glass company:

Glass Type

Determining the type of glass — be it low-iron or patterned glass — for your project is your first step. For almost every project, there’s an ideal glass type. Knowing which one you need helps the glass manufacturer point out any potential hiccups or issues that could arise during production. This is also important for ensuring consistency in your project design and aesthetics.

Be sure to consider the purpose of your project and the environment it will be in, as well as any aesthetic preferences you may have.


Specifying the exact dimensions of your custom tempered glass is crucial. Even small measurement mistakes can result in unusable pieces, delays, or costly adjustments. Be sure to provide precise measurements, including length, height, width, and any angles. If your project involves fitting the glass into a specific space, be sure to account for any necessary gaps or allowances.

Detailed Renderings

Shaping tempered glass is intricate and one can only do it once per pane. Giving shape to a piece of tempered glass starts before tempering a pane of glass. 

Glass manufacturers need as much detail as possible about your project and the custom-shaped pane of tempered glass. Without it, you run the risk of receiving a misshapen finished piece, which means: 

  • Project delays
  • Increased expenses 

Detailed renderings provide a visual representation of the final product, with all the specifications needed to create your shaped tempered glass pieces — eliminating multiple phone calls for additional information and delays. 

Tempered glass fabrication renderings should include:

  • Precise measurements, including glass thickness
  • Exact locations of cutouts, holes, or notches
  • Manufacturer specs on hardware to be attached

Provide renderings in a legible format so those creating your shaped tempered glass piece can easily discern all information. 

When measurements can’t be created, such as for free-form shapes, send your fabricator a full-size pattern.


Edgework occurs before a glass pane is superheated and quickly cooled for tempering. 

While glass edging removes sharp, jagged edges where cuts were made, it also adds a touch of sophistication to a finished piece. 

Popular edgework styles include:

  • Flat edge
  • Pencil edge
  • Beveled edge
  • O.G. edge
  • Bullnose edge
  • Triple pencil edge 

Polishing is an additional finishing option for shaped tempered glass that enhances a pane’s reflectivity. V-Grooving can also be incorporated to enhance the appearance of the piece. Learn more with our guide. Download here:

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How Long Does It Take to Create Shaped Tempered Glass?

With the necessary information, glass fabricators quickly get to work creating your custom-shaped tempered glass.

Production time can vary based on the complexity of work and work already scheduled for other customers. It’s best to talk with the tempered glass manufacturer about current lead times to shape and temper a piece of glass.

Want to learn more about partnering with a commercial glass company? 

Download our Guide to Partnering with a Commercial Glass Company! 

Guide to partnering with a commercial glass company


(Editor's note: This post was originally published in July 2020 and was recently updated.)

Topics: Custom Glass, Tempered Glass

Written by Greg Martell