Solid Polycarbonate

Twinfix has been a major UK stockholder of polycarbonate sheet for many years and offer from stock perhaps the two best known brands of polycarbonate, Makrolon and Lexan.

Our solid, glass-clear, polycarbonate is available in a range of thicknesses from 3mm up to 12mm, as well as a 6mm obscure grade for privacy glazing. The clear solid polycarbonate is UV protected on both sides and is a virtually unbreakable alternative to glass.

A new addition to our solid polycarbonate offering is Twinfix GW Polycarbonate™. This Georgian wired effect product is usually 6mm thick and has a very similar appearance to Georgian wired glass, but with all the many benefits of polycarbonate. This too is available with both a glass-clear and an obscure finish. Twinfix GW Polycarbonate™ is not available 'off the shelf' but we can supply it to the size you want within a couple of weeks of your order being placed.

Our service includes cutting to size so you get the panel you want. We can deliver to most areas of the UK or you can collect from us here in Warrington. However, please call us before arriving to collect anything, so we can ensure that it is ready for you.

As a glazing material, polycarbonate sheet is over 200 times stronger than the equivalent thickness of standard float glass. This inherent strength makes polycarbonate virtually unbreakable. Polycarbonate sheet glazing will withstand accidental impacts, providing the highest standards of safety to the public and security to the premises it protects. Importantly, it will also survive determined acts of vandalism, withstanding blows from a sledge hammer without breaking. Conforming to BS6206 for low level safety glazing with the highest pass available means that solid polycarbonate is the ideal glazing material for areas of heavy pedestrian traffic, such as schools and other public buildings.

Properties

  • High impact strength
  • Glass like transparency
  • Wide range of product variations
  • Excellent range of sizes and thicknesses
  • Wide temperature service range
  • Dimensionally stable
  • Easy to fabricate
  • Excellent electrical properties

Applications

  • Anti-vandal glazing
  • Rooflights
  • Walkways
  • Security glazing
  • Barrel vaults
  • Balustrades
  • Transportation
  • Street furniture
  • Machine guards
  • Low level glazing in public places

Availability

The majority of solid polycarbonate sheet variants are available in lengths up to 3050mm and widths up to 2050mm. The most popular grade (UV both sides) can also be supplied up to 6 metres in length. Cut to size is also available as standard on most variants. Like glass, the popular thicknesses range between 3 and 6mm, but thinner and thicker variants are also available.

Colour Choice

Most applications for solid polycarbonate tend to require a transparent clear colour. However, a bronze tint is also available and opal can also be supplied in the thinner thicknesses.

Where privacy glazing is required an obscure, patterned grade is available. There is also an added benefit in using this grade as the patterning on the sheet diffuses the light, sending it all round any room that is glazed with the product.

The latest product to our range is a 6mm solid poplycarbonate that mimics Georgian wired glass, but has all the benefits of polycarbonate. This is available as both a smooth product nd with the obscure finish.

Impact Strength

Polycarbonate is one of the toughest transparent thermoplastic materials available. When extruded into a sheet used for glazing purposes it withstands impacts from such diverse things as stones and sledge hammers without shattering and has been measured at over 200 times the impact resistance of glass.

Weathering

The surfaces on both sides of the grades we stock are coated to protect the sheets against the degrading effects of ultra-violet radiation in natural sunlight.

Handling

Care must be taken when handling and installing polycarbonate sheet in order to prevent damage. Each sheet is protected on both sides with a masking film. This film should remain on until installation. Never use a craft knife to remove the film, as this may damage the surface. Do not leave the masking film on the glazing sheet once installed, as the heat of the sun may bake the film onto the glazed sheet and prove difficult to remove. Polycarbonate sheet glazing should be cleaned with warm, soapy water. You should never use abrasive detergents or proprietary window cleaning products on polycarbonate glazing.

Weight

Solid polycarbonate is less than half the weight of glass. This means significant savings in terms of transportation and handling.

ThicknessPolycarbonate sheetGlass
1mm1.20kg/sqm2.50kg/sqm
3mm3.60kg/sqm7.50kg/sqm
4mm4.80kg/sqm10.00kg/sqm
5mm6.00kg/sqm12.50kg/sqm
6mm7.20kg/sqm15.00kg/sqm
8mm9.60kg/sqm20.00kg/sqm
9.5mm11.40kg/sqm23.80kg/sqm
12mm14.40kg/sqm30.00kg/sqm

Light Transmission

Typical light transmission values for 6mm Makrolon UV solid polycarbonate

Sheet ColourLight Transmission
Clear85%
Bronze50%
Opal28%

Installation

Due to its inherent flexibility solid polycarbonate needs to be installed with a wide enough edge engagement to ensure that it stays securely in place. Our Glazeguard system is ideal for installing solid polycarbonate in vertical applications and for roof glazing you can select from any of our 60mm wide glazing bars, either Structural or Rafter systems.

In addition, we also offer our Multi-Link-Panel fitted with 6mm solid sheet, either the standard variety or the GW Polycarbonate.

Help & Advice

If you have a project in mind or would like help or advice on any of our products or services, please either ring us on 01925 811311, email us at enquiries@twinfix.co.uk or get in touch via the enquiry form on our Contact Us page.

 

Related Downloads

FilenameFile TypeSizeUploaded
Twinfix Bar & Sheet Catalogue November 2015.pdf  Twinfix Bar & Sheet Catalogue November 2015.pdfPDF4.27 MB17/02/2016

Related FAQs

1. What is the minimum pitch for a polycarbonate roof?
Never install polycarbonate flat. Our standard glazing systems require a minimum pitch of 5° to ensure water can run off the roof and to eliminate ‘puddling’. Our Multi-Link-Panel modular system should be installed with a minimum 10° pitch. Contact us if you require clarification.
2. Can you walk on polycarbonate sheet?
Polycarbonate has been tested against UK wind and snow loads and we can supply you with recommended glazing centres for each thickness of polycarbonate. However you should never walk directly on polycarbonate sheet. A crawling board or similar should be placed across at least two structural supports of the roof. We can manufacture aluminium framed polycarbonate panels which have been tested for non-fragility to ACR(M)001:2014 – this does not mean you can walk on the polycarbonate but gives added resistance to accidental falls.
3. What is the fire performance of polycarbonate?
Polycarbonate has good fire behaviour characteristics and receives high ratings in several major European fire performance tests including EN13501. Always check with the Twinfix sales office for current classification, at the time of writing most variants achieve a class1Y when tested against BS476 part 7 surface spread of flame.
4. How does UV affect polycarbonate?
Solar radiation has a particularly harmful effect upon materials that are not protected. Many variants of multiwall polycarbonate have a unique proprietary UV-protected surface on one or both sides, giving excellent resistance to outdoor weathering. This unique protection ensures long-term optical quality under intensive UV exposure.
5. Polycarbonate is virtually unbreakable, so isn't polycarbonate glazing non-fragile?
No, in many canopies that use multi-wall or solid polycarbonate glazing, the glazing is simply clamped into a glazing bar system that just holds these sheets in place. Whilst the sheet itself might not break, a falling object, (and in some cases even a strong wind), can flex the sheet and force it out from between the glazing bars. If someone were to trip on such a roof, they could fall through, endangering themselves and anyone underneath. Remember..... just because it doesn't break doesn't make it non-fragile.