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Saturday, May 18, 2019

Kellerco;... Your Company for Polishing Pads

Kellerco was started about a couple years ago by Dave Keller who is now retired from Universal Photonics.   UP specializes in the sale of all kinds of high tech polishing powders and polishing tools.  Dave worked as the technical sales rep for UP from NH.  He serviced many companies here in New England but also traveled the world.  In so doing he met many different companies that worked with many different surfaces.  Most of which were very high tech including silicon wafer manufacturers used in electronics and optics.  He had the opportunity to learn a great deal about business and the science of surface polishing.  For the past five or six years I have had the luxury of meeting with him once in awhile at a local McDonalds, and over a coffee and an apple pie we have talked about all of this and especially the science of particle physics, advanced surface engineering, and world travel.

If you cannot see this video from your phone you might have to go directly to the YouTube site.

Neither one of us really ever had a plan.  But finally just the other day one came together.  After briefly explaining the science and business of glass restoration one more time, I invited Dave to work with us to locate the very best pads for glass restoration.  Especially a one step pad for removing hard water deposits from window glass.  The pad really does make the difference in how efficient the polishing process is.  Using the right pad will reduce the amount of time it takes to clear the glass and it will improve the quality of the finished product.  When you are attempting to engineer the best glass surface you do want to use the very best products.  That includes ALL of the tools.  The best polishing/grinding motors, the best polishing/grinding papers/compounds/slurries, and the best polishing pads.  When we do discover that pad it will be made known to you through the Glass Smart social media.  Then you will be able to order it directly from Kellerco.

All of my webinars will continue to come to you by means of the new Glass Smart Product Development YouTube Channel.  They will be very short between two to ten minutes.  This new Channel will also include interviews with many people in product development including chemists and material scientists.  I will also be interviewing specialists in our industry.  Along with some very interesting new products.  Some of which are already out there on the market.  These you will be able to order direct from the companies selling them.  Other products which I will be developing will be made known through the channel and there will be a means made available for you to acquire samples of these to try them out.

I am hoping that you find the new Glass Smart YouTube Channel very interesting, entertaining, and especially informative.

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

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Wednesday, May 15, 2019

The Business of Product Development

There are so many people who believe that owning a product is like possessing a pot of gold.  Which couldn't be the farthest thing from the truth.  It is like saying all you have to do is buy a couple hundred bux in window cleaning equipment and you instantly have a thriving business.  There is just as much effort, possibly even more in generating a product development and sales business.

Subscribe to the Glass Smart Product Development Channel

Over the years I have been in association with some people that have done very well with product development and sales.  And have learned a great deal.  The first thing of course is creating a product.  You should never build a product first and then look for a market.  Rather look at your market and ask what does it want;...badly.  Than develop that product.  It will have to be competitive with other products that are similar.  Or it will have to be in its own category to catch a higher price.  You will want to develop chemical products so they will last at least six months on the shelf.  Chemical products are difficult too because of the expense of the ingredients.  Almost always you will have to buy at the very least 55 gallon drums of your liquids and an entire pallet of boxes of dry ingredients.  If there are ingredients that only make up 2 percent and you have to buy at least one drum you will have to sit on it for a long time.  This is part of the structure already established in the chemical industry.  And they will not budge.  They just don't care. Because it is all about profits.  These companys are required to buy entire truckloads of 55 gallon drums at a time.  So they don't want to drain single drums into five gallon or one gallon containers.  Further it you do find a way to buy a fifty pound box of powder or a five gallon pail of a liquid ingredient, you could easily end up paying five times the price per pound or per ounce.  Which would dramatically disrupt your pricing structure if you were attempting to compete with a similar existing product.  This is even true when building tools such as water fed poles or squeegees.  If you are outsourcing the manufacturing process you will need to seriously consider that expense.  Which is the reason why people move to China.  It isn't even a question.  It is necessary to be competitive. The materials are less expensive and so is the labor.

You must consider what the sum of all your expenses are to build your product.  Whether it is a new type of squeegee or a new window cleaning soap.  Everything must be figured in.  Even the label that goes on the bottles.  Or the cardboard that holds the squeegee.  Then you will need to multiply that cost by 4.5 to 6 to get the end retail price.  If you intend to sell enough, and not have to deal with sending them out yourself, you will need a distribution network.  At least one good distributor.  Lets say you have a product that will retail for a dollar.  You will then have to sell it to the distributor for fifty cents.  So if it cost you twenty cents to produce you will be making about 30 cents per unit.  Less what it cost to ship to your distributor of course.  Which is the reason why manufacturers like five hundred dollar orders.  It minimizes the cost of shipping per unit item and increases the profit margin.

There are many expenses which you would not think of at first.  Including business insurance.  It is called product liability.  And is based on how much product is sold during the year.  When you are first starting out you must guess how much this will be.  You will not want to pay too much so will have to get insurance for as little as possible.  The best way to get the best deal is shop around.  Or ask someone you know that is in a similar business.

Following this model is not a bad idea.  In fact it is a very smart thing to do.  Learning from other peoples mistakes.  Take for example the work that distributors do.  You might think all they do is buy a product then turn around and sell it for twice the price.  What do they actually do?  Well one time I tried to sell products direct to the end consumer.  You would not believe the problems you will have with USPS, UPS, Fed X, and every one else.  Packages show up ripped into, empty, or not at all.  The expense of shipping especially internationally can be totally prohibitive!  The cost is so great that no one would pay it.  Distributors have to deal with all of this every day.  It becomes a business of solving shipping problems.  Along with many other problems that you just cannot imagine.  Believe me distributors earn their money.  I would NOT want their job.  So the model says use distributors.  They are your best friends.  

I am looking to do things different.  Although I am not looking to develop products in the conventional way.  I am rather looking for products or ingredients that have already been developed.  Then develop different tests to locate the most effective for specific problems.  This technology and these tests I am going to show on my YouTube Channel.  Then if someone would like to try out any of these products or ingredients themselves I will supply them at a small fee.  All of my seminars/webinars/interviews will be posted on the Glass Smart YouTube Channel.  Here I can post very short one to five minute videos.  These will be much easier to produce instead of webinars that would be around 45 minutes.  Seminars too would require a lot of travel and would be very limiting.  But the YouTube Videos will go around the planet.  There will be no limit to what I can accomplish with the computer.  Also I can locate special ingredients and powders that can be purchased in much smaller quantities at prices equal to or less than commercial products.  There are literally well over a hundred different products right now that I would like to bring out.  But if I had to do it the conventional way it would take forever.  This will be like a virtual flood.

Think of this for just a moment.  Why do you get excited over a new product?  Simply because you are looking for it to help you to do the job in less time or at a lower cost.  It might even make it possible for you to offer a service that someone else cannot.  Because they just don't have the tools.  Either way the end result will be greater profits.  This is what I am proposing to do here.  Are you interested in following me down?  If so then subscribe to this blog, and subscribe to the new YouTube Channel.

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

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Friday, May 10, 2019

Pilkingtons Hard and Soft Coats, Part One

The Soft Coats are becoming harder these days.  But they are still not hard enough for manufacturers to expose them to the atmosphere.  Either inside or outside of a building.  So you will only find them on the second or third surface of an insulating glass unit.  Unless someone makes a very big mistake!  If they do you will notice after only three months the surface turning a different color and getting rather spotty.  At the very most they only have a storage life of three months.  Sales people warn the IG unit manufacturers to seal them up as quickly as possible.  What I am saying here is you should never have to deal with soft coats;...ever.

Hard Low E Coats are quite another matter.  The Soft Coats have a great number of different metal alloys layered to form the coating.  Hard Coats also have a number of different layers too.  The formula of which can also change every few years so don't think this makes SO much of a difference.  The outermost layer of Pilkingtons Energy Advantage for example is tin oxide.  So whatever chemicals react with tin oxide will degrade the surface of Energy Advantage.  That is if you happen to be in direct contact with it.  Because hard coats such as Energy Advantage can be applied to a surface in between the two plates of an IG unit.  It doesn't have to be like a soft coat.  But it certainly can be.  It can also be applied to the outside where you would come into contact with it.  So that would be number one or number four.  In fact in order to attain the greatest "energy advantage" in cold weather climates this hard coat can be applied to the number 2 and number 4 surfaces at the same time.

There are many other coatings out there which I will be looking at over time.  But right here and now we are going to look at Pilkingtons Energy Advantage.  I just picked up a couple of one by one foot squares of glass with this hard coat.  My question is if you are working on a building that you discover has silicone caulk, concrete, paint, stucco, or something else on the Energy Advantage Hard Coat, exactly what can be used to remove it safely?  This is non-routine window cleaning.  Further we are not working on glass but rather a tin oxide surface.  Which is VERY clear so it is very difficult to see.  There are electronic tools that will tell you in a moment if a window has any low e coatings and what surface they are on.  But just by using your senses you will notice right away that an Energy Advantage surface is quite rough to the dry touch.  When you move your dry thumb across it you will hear a sound.  Glass however will not make any sound.  This "roughness" is the reason why you should NEVER use a razor blade.  Not even if you have what you think is adequate lubrication.  In this video from the Glass Smart Product Development YouTube Channel I will show you exactly what I mean by "sound".  Pilkingtons Energy Advantage Low E Hard Coat is NOT of course the only Hard Coat that has this roughness about it.  But this is a sure way to determine that you are most likely in contact with a metal coating, not glass.  There is an electronic device you can purchase that will tell you instantly if the window has a low e coating and exactly which side it is on.  But here is the video.  Please go to this YouTube Channel and subscribe.  There will be many more short videos to follow.  Also if you are on your phone you might have to go directly to the Glass Smart YouTube Channel to see this video.  That address is

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

To receive these posts directly in your inbox when they are written just type your address in the box at the top right, "Follow by Email".  If you are reading this from a phone you will need to go to the Glass Smart Blog and convert to the web version.

Wednesday, May 8, 2019

Exposing the Evil Genius of Glass Smart

Now I certainly do not claim to be a genius and am definitely not evil.  But I have been following a different path.  One that has led me to many very interesting discoveries that hopefully will promote some very positive changes in the window cleaning world.  I have been working on "alternate technologies" since 1980.  But only recently have I become very involved in writing for the WCR Forum, writing my own blog, with the help of Jeff Brimble and Kevin Cogan started the Glass Smart FB Group, written several articles for the AWC, and now very recently I have created the Glass Smart Product Development YouTube Channel.  This latest development will accomplish many things that were not possible with only the printed word.  So let me first introduce myself;....

This video will show if you go to the Glass Smart Blog

Everyone else has been talking out of their cars so I decided to do the same.  However.  That is only the beginning.  I promise you.  I will also be doing some things for you that you will find very interesting.  I will be demonstrating some brand new products that are not being sold by any manufacturer/distributor in our industry.  An example is the J Seal product.  It will be discussed further in my Webinars.  This is one product I discovered when looking at the chemistry of hydrophobic sealants.  

This video will show if you go to the Glass Smart Blog

I will also be developing videos that you will be able to show to prospective customers which will help to secure that contract.  Also I will be doing video interviews with some very interesting people in our industry.  Some of whom have been very much involved in the business of product development.  What they have to say will be very enlightening to many.  We also have people in our community who are what I call window cleaning savants.  These people make up my personal mastermind.  Most if not all are on the Glass Smart FB Group.  I want to video interview all of these.  So get ready for some very engaging interviews.  

If you have anything that you would like to contribute please just send me a quick email.

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

To receive these posts directly into your inbox as they are written please just type your address in the box at the top right, "Follow by Email".

Monday, April 29, 2019

A Most Explosive Event

We absolutely cannot leave our companies in the hands of product manufacturers!  Neither can we trust that window glass surfaces are all the same.  Further we cannot trust that contractors and others will take care not to splatter glass with paint, stucco, concrete, silicone caulk, or silane sealant runoff.  We have to trust in our own thinking and experience.  That is the focus of being Glass Smart!

Whenever we take on a new job we are almost always faced with what we now are calling "non-routine window cleaning".  Routine is when you soap it up and take it off with a squeegee.  No blades, no chems, no abrasives.  Those days are all but gone.  Further glass surfaces pop and fizz.  They are very prone to scratching.  The Glass Committee is working very hard to figure out the reasons for this problem.  But it likely isn't going to go away.  In the meantime we have to deal with it.  So when the job is non-routine and the surface is problematic, exactly how do we deal with it?  This is the focus of the first Seminar at the Quality Inn in Fishkill NY on June 21st 2019.  The cost is 59 dollars USD.  There will be demonstrations, videos to discuss (I now have a Glass Smart YT Channel; will notice the picture link at the top left here), and free give away samples of products.  The following is a quick expose of the content to be discussed.

Mechanical tools both motorized and hand held.  There are three basic motorized tools.  What types of pads are available for these and which is most effective at clearing glass?  What about handheld tools?  Can they be just as effective and what are the advantages?

There are steel wool, brass wool, synthetic wool, felt, urethane, and even what I am calling a slow release pad.  Which of these is most effective?  Also which is the safest or the most likely to leave scratches?

How does one determine the best super-abrasive powder?  No matter whether the choice is a cerium, zirconium, silica, aluminum, or even a diamond?

Plastic compositionals have a place too since they are typically softer than glass surfaces.  What can they be used for?  How does one make compounds whether these are based on mineral abrasives or plastic?

What of the different organic solvents out there?  Which are the most effective but the most safe?  For both the environment and our health?

Acids can be rather effective at removing hard water spots from glass.  But the wrong ones can etch glass destroying it.  Alkalies can also have very negative effects.  How do we know whaich chemicals are safe to use and which are not?

As mentioned we are facing an epidemic of what in my personal opinion are defective surfaces.  Some surfaces are perfectly smooth and will not scratch with a razor blade or other mechanical means.  But so many surfaces these days are very likely to scratch.  So how do we identify what I call "scratch sensitive surfaces"?  Are they rough, and or do they "hiss and pop"?

Low E and Anti-Reflective first surface coatings can be very difficult to identify these days.  Exactly how does one do this?  Also what can we use on them when they are covered with mineral deposits, paint, wood stain, or other debris?  Is it ever safe to use a metal blade on such a coated surface?  

There are many products coming out now that offer protection.  We have various hydrophobic sealants, peal off plastic films, and other products.  Some can be rolled on or painted then pulled off later.  These are the strippables.  Some plastic films are applied at the factory.  All we have to do is pull them off when we get to the job and afterward just do a routine window cleaning.  Sometimes these factory applied plastic films leave about 3/8ths of an inch of glass all around the edge of the window.  If this collects paint then that part of the job becomes non-routine.

Many products mentioned during the Fishkill Seminar will be available as free samples.  I am hoping that you take them home and try them out.  Please email me with any questions that you have.  I will do my best to answer them.  Although there will be a Q and A after each part.

If you would like to attend just send an email to me at

Written by Henry Grover Jr.
If you would like to recieve these posts in your inbox as they written just type your address in the box at the top right, "Follow by Email".

Friday, April 26, 2019

The Practical Use of Cerium Oxide

The Practical Use of Cerium Oxide

Cerium Oxide is a superabrasive powder used for polishing glass.  It works by physical abrasion.  It also chemically reacts with the elements in the glass.  So it is a chemo-mechano polishing powder.  Which is different from many other polishing powders such as silicon carbide, microcrystaline silica, or diamond.  It has been used as a glass polish for many years.  Especially in polishing plate glass (before float glass was developed), crystal glass, mirrors, and optics.  Even though our application is similar in that we are also polishing flat glass, there is one major difference that few in the window cleaning industry have recognized.  That is we are usually removing hard water deposits or mineral stains.  Such mineral deposits interfere with the typical physics of the polishing process.  Marc Tanner my polishing guru first brought this to my attention.  Which means quite simply that the end results absolutely cannot be predicted.  Every restoration job is different.  It is also undeniable that the surface type will determine how easy it will be to remove the stain with a cerium oxide or any other polishing product.  Dark tinted glass is the most difficult surface to clear/repair.  Transparent glass is much easier.  The low e coats are the most easy to clear.  

What is the difference between suspended cerium and regular cerium?  The short answer is nothing.  Cerium oxide comes in either a plastic bag or a plastic bottle or pail.  It comes as a totally dry powder.  Suspended cerium is this same powder mixed in water with a special thickening chemical added.  It is called a suspending agent and keeps the microscopic particles of the cerium powder evenly suspended in the water.  If a suspending agent/thickener were not added to the water the cerium oxide would settle to the bottom of the water forming a thick mud that is very difficult to bring back into a homogeneous suspension.  You wouldn't be able to just shake it.  There are many different suspending agents but only two different types of suspensions.  The first is permanent.  The cerium will stay suspended for over a year.  The second might only work for a half hour.  Although in this case it is very easy just by shaking the container to bring the cerium back into suspension.  It will not form a thick mud on the bottom.  Then there is everything in between these two.  If you need a suspension to last for the entire day or several hours instead of thirty minutes you will have to add more of the thickener.  Again remember that the performance of the cerium does not depend on the suspension.  Suspensions are mostly for convenience of use.

Now it is also true that the cerium to water ratio will also determine how much of the thickener you must add to attain the suspension you want.  You can add 5 part cerium to 1 part water, or 1 part cerium to 5 parts water;...and everything in between.  This would be the first step you should take.  You will want a suspension/slurry with the least amount of cerium, but still one that will clear the glass effectively in the least amount of time.  Only trial and error will reveal this to you. The chemist I consult with explained that he likes a ratio of 1 to 1. Kind of middle of the road.  Once you have determined what ratio works best, you will need to add enough of your suspending agent to keep the cerium oxide suspended for the exact amount of time you will be using it.  There are specialty chemists who can help you with this.  It also is a good thing to keep a handheld battery operated pH meter around to check the pH of the solution. You will want a pH of 7 to 8.  So a little on the alkaline side.  Which can be attained by adding a little baking soda then checking with your meter.  This also serves to minimize the problem of electrostatic agglomeration.  This happens when the particles get electrically stuck together forming much larger particles that can easily scratch.

What is the best cerium oxide to use?   You will want a cerium with  an average particle size of 2 to 3 microns.  I say average because no cerium powder has a precise particle size.  All cerium powders have what is called a Particle Size Distribution curve or a PSD.  To explain.  A cerium that is rated as a two micron will have some particles that are only a half micron.  It will also have particles that are one micron as we approach the two micron average.  If your product has a very tight PSD then 98% or higher will be 2 microns.  It will also have a very small percent of the particles up to 8 or 10 microns.  This is called the tail end of the PSD curve.  The tail is most important because it is always the larger particles that scratch.  Yes it is true that all scratches begin with a PIF or Point Indent Fracture.  Whether the particle that scratches is very small or very large.  But the larger the particle the easier it is to see the scratch.  So by choosing a somewhat smaller average particle size we minimize these larger particles in the tail and hence reduce the odds of leaving more scratches in the finished surface.  By the way the tail is much more of a concern than electrostatic agglomeration which is generated more by the pH of the suspension.  It is also true that the contamination of the cerium powder by other minerals is not as much of a problem as the tail.  So people will talk about the pure white ceriums being the best while the yellows or orange ceriums are of a lesser quality.  This is therefore not necessarily true.  Once again the proof is in the tail which is defined by the PSD.  Which you should be able to ask for in a tech sheet of the product.  The tech sheet should also give you the percentage of the individual minerals in the product.  Such as how much iron oxide or magnesium carbonate is in the cerium product.  Iron oxide is the ingredient that gives the product its yellow or orange color.  The bottom line here is to go with a 2 to 3 micron cerium and a very high purity such as a 99.9%.  Then ask for the tech data sheet and look at the tail of the PSD along with the percentages of the minerals and metal oxides.

Not to be underestimated is the ability of certain acids to give you the cutting edge at removing mineral deposits that are based not so much on silicate chemistry.  Organic acids such as citric or sulfamic do have the ability to chemically change the non-silicate minerals such as calcium and magnesium into soluble deposits.  Once they have been converted they become much easier to remove by polishing with a cerium slurry.

There is another product that works with just water.  The pad is loaded with a fine cerium and a touch of diamond.  It works with pure soapy water.  First you apply the water to a dirt free surface (but not stain free).  Then you start polishing.  The polishing particles are slowly released into the soapy water creating a slurry as you polish.  There are variations of this type of product which have been created by other companies.  They can be purchased and used with most commercial stain removal equipment available.

Another way to go is to first make up a rather thick glycerin compound (not a water slurry).  This can be made at a four to one ration.  Four parts cerium to one part glycerin by volume.  You can use a motorized egg beater to slowly make your compound.  Then use a felt polishing pad on a rotary polisher.  Wet a clean window with soapy water.  Apply around six to eight drops of compound to the felt pad.  Then just go to the glass and polish.  This process will help to control how much cerium you use by counting the drops you put on the pad.  Since cerium is a very expensive product (although the price has come down in recent years) it is all about control.  No matter whether you are using a slurry, compound, or a slow release pad.

Specific names of cerium products will be given in the Glass Smart Webinars.  Samples will be available at the Fishkill Seminars.  And videos of what I have explained here will shortly be available on my new YouTube Channel.  Discussions will follow I am sure on the Glass Smart FB Group and other groups.

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Written by Henry Grover Jr.

Monday, April 8, 2019

Defusing The Three Lies of Water Fed Pole Work!

This short article is only a taste of what will be discussed at the very first Glass Smart Webinar.  The focus of this Webinar will be how to effectively and efficiently convert hydrophobic glass surfaces to hydrophylic (water loving) EVERY TIME!  There will be demonstrations and all the products mentioned will be identified and sourced so you will be able to obtain them.  The cost of the Webinar is ten dollars USD by PayPal.  To attend just send an email to

There are several lies that surround WFP window cleaning.  The very first one that I would like to defuse here is that a TDS meter will tell you the "total" dissolved solids (TDS) of any water source.  Actually it will only tell you about the dissolved minerals which conduct an electrical current.  Water must have minerals or salts to conduct electricity.  Silica is a mineral that does not conduct electricity.  So a TDS meter that works by measuring the conductivity of water will not give an accurate measurement of the silica content.  This is why water that has a TDS reading of zero can leave spots.  

The second lie that has been going around is that glass can be hydrophobic or hydrophylic.  The plain truth is that all glass is very hydrophylic.  Window surfaces that "bead water" and hence appear to be hydrophobic, do this only because of hydrocarbon pollution.  Once this has been effectively and completely removed from the glass its true hydrophylic nature is revealed.  Every time.  There are different ways to get this effect.  Bronze wool will do it.  Cerium oxide will do it.  Diamond compounds will do it.  Even microcrystalline silica compounds will do it.  What I am looking for however is a technology that will "deep clean" glass surfaces most effectively and in the least amount of time.  Compounds will do it as I have mentioned, but they take at least a half minute per square foot.  They also make a bit of a mess.  It would be much better to have something like bronze wool that would work with just water and a pole.

A third lie is that it is not possible to clean windows with a WFP and high TDS water without getting spots.  The idea is that Di or RO pure water is needed to attain a spot free window.  But this is simply not true.  I know this because I have done it!  There have been many others who have done it too.  The key involves attaining what I call the hydrophylic effect.  This is accomplished by adding a superwetting surfactant to the rinse water, or converting the surface to a water loving surface.  The latter can be done by either deep cleaning or using a chemical that leaves a hydrophylic coating.  Hydrophylic windows "drain" the rinse water so there are no drops left behind which evaporate leaving spots.  Simply put "no drops no spots".

I will be working with Jordie Palanzi of The Window Cleanse to help expose these lies.  Our goal is to revolutionize the technology of Water Fed Pole window cleaning.  

Written by Henry Grover Jr. 

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Saturday, March 16, 2019

Functional Additives and Non-Routine Window Cleaning

Hydrophobic, oleophobic, and hydrophylic surface properties can all be attained with specific chemical additives for your cleaning solution.  All of these go easily into water and will blend with most of the window cleaning soaps out there.  They are functional in that they will react directly with the free oxygen atoms of the glass surface.  Testing is required for application techniques and longevity however.  Certain additives will only last for a very short time.  They must also be applied to an "activated" surface.  In other words the surface must be either physically polished and or chemically cleaned to expose as many of the reaction sites as possible.  If not the additive/chemical will not bond to the glass and comes off very quickly.  Most times it will not bond at all.

Image result for hydrophilic silanes      Image result for hydrophilic silanes

Image result for hydrophilic silanes    Image result for hydrophilic silanes

This is a technology.  Not just a product.  It is like the tools that we use.  You can hand anyone a squeegee,  but will they be able to use it?  That is why as I continue to develop these tools/chemical additives to change the water loving/hating properties of glass surfaces, I need to produce a series of hands on seminars for training purposes.  These seminars will become available first on the east coast and then move out.  They will focus on non-routine window cleaning.  But this will include changing surfaces with functional additives.  For example can defective surfaces which are very scratch sensitive be altered?  Can they be made scratch resistant?  The answer is absolutely.  Both Mark Tanner and myself have done just this.  WE HAVE ALREADY DONE IT.  Now we just have to market it.  This is also something that the seminars will reveal.  How to do it and how to market it.  Here is a little bit of the science behind it.

Jordie of  "The Window Cleanse" will be helping me to create videos demonstrating this technology.  They will be very educational and entertaining.  I know you will enjoy watching!

If you want to have the edge over other cleaning companies you absolutely MUST step into the future.  This is NOT the same industry that we had 20 to 40 years ago.  It is very different.  We are engineering precision surfaces because glass is coming out defective.  I do know the glass industry does not see it this way.  Simply because they do not have to clean it.  But when the cleaning becomes non-routine we must go to alternative cleaning techniques which can be exceptionally special if the surfaces are defective.  I do have to applaud GANA however because they have recognized this and have been working with the IWCA by helping to write at least two bulletins.  Which essentially state that when general contractors or anyone else allows debris to get on windows which cannot be removed with a squeegee and an applicator, then the glass is destroyed.

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

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Thursday, March 14, 2019

Products For Non-Routine Window Cleaning

Whenever an applicator and a squeegee are not enough to do the job, it becomes non-routine window cleaning.  It will require a waiver for protection.  Concrete, concrete sealant, paint, wood stain, stucco, silicone caulk, mineral deposits, and aluminum screen stain do not come off with a brush and soapy water.  So what will take them off?  But do it safely without doing harm to the glass, yourself, or the environment?  This problem is compounded when the glass surface is defective.  Meaning when you lightly drag a metal razor across a soapy window you can hear that familiar sound of hissing and popping.  So what might have been an effective answer to the problem before is not now.  A razor for example just cannot be used.  Possibly even steel or bronze wool.  I have even used plastic razors and ended up with scratches!

So if we eliminate razors and metal wool what do we have left?  Simply put chemicals and abrasive powders.  The chemicals include organic solvents, acids, and alkalies.  

Image result for chemistry Image result for abrasive powders

Image result for organic solvents

Regarding solvents we need to find those which are not extremely dangerous to your health or the environment.  We don't want those which are explosive.  Nor do we want those which have a rather high evaporation rate such as acetone.  Smell is important too.  We can't use a product that smells really bad inside.  The purpose of a solvent of course is to either dissolve what we are trying to remove or soften it so that it can be more easily "chewed off" with the correct abrasive powder.  Regarding acids we need one that is effective but will not attack the glass, or the aluminum framework of the window.  It would be good too not to choose one that is harmful to our health.  Next when choosing an alkalie the same thing applies.  Some alkalies will harm glass surfaces, especially if the window has a coating.  Next we come to abrasive powders.  This is very complicated.  First off we need to look at the hardness of the particles.  Anything with a hardness approaching, equal to, or in excess of glass can scratch.  It is best when choosing particles larger than three microns to find those that are softer than glass.  Especially if they are very much in excess of this size.  The shape of the particles will also make a difference.  Round particles have very little effect on what you are trying to remove.  Those with a sharp angular shape are much more effective.  The material makeup is important too if we intend to mix them with a liquid such as water or an organic solvent.  If the material is a type of wood or other organic compositional,  the particle might absorb the liquid and become soft.  If too soft it will not dig into what we are trying to remove.

There are literally hundreds of different combinations of abrasive and superabrasive powders along with organic solvents, acids, and alkalies.  I will be showing you some of these combinations at the Glass Smart Seminar in Fishkill.  The products can usually be purchased from chemical suppliers.  As for the abrasives they also have specialty suppliers.  For example optical grade microcrystalline silicas with an average particle size of three to four carry a rather heavy liability because they can be easily breathed in when working with them.  They are known to cause cancer in dry powder form.  For this reason they are usually sold by only a few different manufacturers.  It is also suggested that the powders be mixed with water or some other liquid.  Which is why I have chosen glycerin.  Recently it has dropped substantially in price.  From fifty bux a gallon down to as little as thirteen.

The purpose of this first seminar is to explain exactly what non-routine window cleaning is, and to reveal some different products for this type of work.  In a perfect world I am sure we could prevent these problems.  While we might have some success in doing this we will still end up having to deal with them.  So for that reason this matter must be addressed.  Of course there is nothing wrong with just walking away from certain jobs that are just too problematic and loaded with liabilities.  That might be the most wise course!

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

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Sunday, March 10, 2019

Glass Smart New Product Educational Seminars

Today in the window cleaning industry we are facing a rather unique problem.  The quality of the surface of window glass has been seriously challenged.  Anyone that has come into the business here in the northeastern part of the United States knows this problem intimately.  Simply because we know what the old glass was like.  It is still that way and we clean it every day.  On occasion we even have to perform non-routine cleaning of the old glass.  Which carries virtually no dangers.  The surface is super smooth (unless we are working on the exterior of some storm windows which have been weathered by many years).  But when we are faced with brand new glass straight from the manufacturing plant;...we have to use extreme caution.  If we are performing routine window cleaning we can consider ourselves fairly safe.  Just a soft applicator, soapy water, and a squeegee will do no harm.  Even if the quality of the surface is defective.  I know that is a bad word.  But it does fit from our perspective.  Glass must be cleaned.  When it is covered with concrete, wood stain, hard water deposits, paint, stucco, or who knows what;...such debris must be removed.  Non-routine practices used to remove such from glass when the surface is of excelling quality (not defective) are usually safe.  But when the surface is indeed scratch sensitive for different reasons, then non-routine window cleaning moves to an entirely different level.  What makes this  even more complicated is the fact that most of the time you cannot know the difference between defective and not defective when the windows are covered by paint, wood stain, hard water spots, or concrete.  So every non-routine window cleaning job MUST be approached as if it had defective/scratch sensitive surfaces.

This is the primary focus of this new series of educational seminars that I am beginning.  They will begin in Fishkill, New York and will focus on both the tools and the technology to deal with non-routine window cleaning.  The tools will include specialty abrasives, chemical products, and mechanical equipment both motorized and hand held.  Each seminar will include a discourse with Q & A following.  The seminar will be spiced with different video presentations.  Then following will be demonstrations of the new tools.  I am going to see about getting as many free samples to you as possible from the manufacturers.  Also I will have on hand all chemical and abrasive products mentioned in the seminar for you to see.  Further all information on the tools will be available for you to have.  Such will explain what these products are, with an SDS, who is selling or manufacturing all products, and the best way to get them.  All of this information will be available at every Seminar.

I am planning the first Glass Smart Seminar for June 21st, of 2019 at the Quality Inn (directly behind the 84 Diner on route 52) in Fishkill, New York.  The cost will be 59 USD per person.  We are going to try to limit the number to 40 because the room has a maximum limit of 50 unless there are tables.  Because of this we are asking for an advance confirmation.

Written by Henry Grover Jr.

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Saturday, March 9, 2019

84 Diner GS Meet in Fishkill NY

This is the very first meet.  We had a very nice little group of seven.  Talked about old times, old tools, new technology, and the changes that have happened with the industry.  We also talked a lot about the extreme dangers of using the wrong acid based products for stain removal.  Certain acid based products have even been used for WFP work to change glass from hydrophobic to hydrophylic on contact.  It was brought to my attention that this is a very "unsafe" thing to do because the damage such acids can do can happen instantly.  Focusing on new products I introduced three new ones which are not available for window cleaners yet. That being a special soap for trad work, a hard water stain remover, and a versatile soft abrasive very fine powder for working on nonroutine problems. Many things were discussed.  There were demonstrations too.

The next GS Meet will be a professional seminar including a two part discourse, Q & A, video presentations, and demonstrations.  It will last four hours.  The location being the Quality Inn in Fishkill NY.  Directly behind the I84 Diner.  The focus of this Meet will be "New Products for Non-Routine Window Cleaning".  There will be free give away products from manufacturers also.  The attendance limit is 40 so you must let me know in advance.  I am planning for June 21st the first day of summer from 2 to 6.

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Written by Henry Grover Jr.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

The Superior Design of Nanovations NG1010

You can easily see from the illustration above that Nanovations NG1010 is designed to react directly with the surface chemistry of glass.  The chemical reaction this product uses forms what is called a Self Assembled Monolayer. That last word means only one molecule thick.  There are several very obvious advantages to this kind of chemistry and the NG1010.

Here are several videos of Mark Tanner of Skys the Limit Window Cleaning applying and explaining the very obvious benefits of Nanovations NG1010.  Please copy/paste these into your Facebook Groups.  Lets put an end to hard water spotting problems for all time!

This next video is a demonstration of a six month side by side test of Nanovations Product on a car windshield.  Very impressive!

First of all dirt has much less surface area to react with.  The monolayer is designed to form a barrier also by not sticking to the dirt.

Second there is very little product needed to treat the window.  This minimizes the cost per square foot which comes to less than three cents per square foot.

Third less time is needed to apply since the product does not create an obvious film that must be removed to get full clarity.  NG1010 goes on very fast and very clear.  It is one of the most clear hydrophobic products I have yet to test.

Fourth I have had several window cleaners around the country test it to see how well it stands up to hard water spots.  It has shown excellent results.  When applied correctly any new spots wipe off with great ease.

Fifth it does a great job at repelling water.  So it is has exceptional hydrophobic properties.

Sixth it lasts a long time on the glass standing up to UVC radiation from the Sun.  So you don't have to reapply frequently.  You will have to test to see exactly how long it will last for you on your building.

Seventh I have tested it for scratch resistance and it worked very well.  Whenever any window is polished so that water sheets over the entire surface showing no drops at all, it becomes very sensitive to scratching.  But when such a surface is treated with NG1010 that surface becomes scratch resistant.  So much so that I was actually able to drag a sharp glass point across the NG1010 monolayer without any sign of scratch.  This is not to say that it can't be scratched.  But that it will convert a scratch sensitive surface to a scratch resistant one. Which is rather impressive and VERY necessary when a window has been restored by polishing.  Restored windows are also very easy to stain.  Newly formed hard water spots will stick to a newly polished surface.  NG1010 stops this from happening.

The following pictures belong to Nanovations USA.  I am showing them here because they contain information that will be helpful.  Not because I have any agreement with this company for sales.