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Getting into Screen Fabrication? print this page

Getting into Screen Fabrication?

Setting up a screening operation in your shop can be very easy. With the right supplies screen fabrication and repair can be a constant source of revenue and a great way to keep customers coming into your shop. So what do you need to set up a screening operation? Surprisingly very little for basic repairs and fabrication, and as your business grows you can add more equipment as needed. The following paragraphs will outline materials used in the fabrication and repair of window and door screens.

Obviously you'll need screen wire. Screen wire is made by weaving strands of material, such as aluminum, fiberglass or steel into a fabric with a specific mesh size. A screen wire's mesh size refers to the number of vertical and horizontal strands of material per square inch. This mesh size, plus the diameter of the strands, will determine the amount of light and ventilation passing through the screen. Depending on the application, you and your customer will be the best judges as to determining what type of screen wire is right for your job. Listed below are the several types of wire available from CRL with a brief description of their benefits.

Aluminum Screen Wire Made from .011 inch (.3 millimeter) diameter aluminum strands woven into an 18 x 16 mesh, this wire is tough, durable, and impervious to rust or mildew. It is easy to install and is suitable for most door and window screens. This screen wire is available in a bright gray, glossy black or charcoal to accommodate a myriad of design demands.

Fiberglass Screen Wire An 18 x 16 mesh with .011 inch (.3 millimeter) diameter strands of fiberglass, which, though lightweight, is tough enough to hold up in a variety of conditions. Its flexibility makes it easy to work with and install. This economical screen wire is suitable for most door and window applications and is available in gray and charcoal.

Micro-Weave Fiberglass Screen.This 20 x 20 mesh fiberglass screen has a .013 (.33 millimeter) diameter strand which provides maximum insect control with the increased strength similar to the heavy-duty screen wire. This screen wire is very popular in rural areas where very tiny flying insects referred to as "No-See-Ums" are found. Available in Charcoal.

Clear Advantage Fiberglass Screen Wire.This 20 x 20 ultra fine mesh fiberglass screen has a .008 inch (.2 millimeter) strand diameter. This new finer screen strand offers increased visibility while at the same time providing the maximum insect control. This screen is nearly undetectable when viewed from a distance. Available in Charcoal.

Heavy-Duty Fiberglass Screen Wire Thicker, .013 inch (.33 millimeter) diameter fiberglass strands woven into an 18 X 14 mesh make this an ideal screening material for large areas, such as outdoor patios and screen houses. This sturdy material is available in charcoal.

Solar Guard Screen Wire This wire has a 54 x 18 mesh weave with .011 inch (.3 millimeter) diameter strands of heavy-duty fiberglass. This unique weave is designed to block out over 70% of the sun's heat and harsh glare. The vinyl coated fiberglass will not rust, mildew or rot. It is available in bronze, charcoal, and gray.

Note: Due to the 54 X 18 mesh, ventilation is reduced slightly in comparision with the 18 X 16 mesh of fiberglass wire.

Even-Weave Solar Screen Wire.Even-Weave solar guard screen wire is the latest generation of exterior shading products. This screen wire is made from pvc coated polyester and has the same durability characteristics as Pet Resistant screen wire. The uniform 17 x 14 mesh weave blocks 80% of the suns solar radiated heat, and is more visually pleasing to look through then the Solar Guard Screen Wire. Available in black, brown, and stucco colors.

Paw-Proof Screen Wire Ultra-strong, .025 inch (.65 millimeter) strands of vinyl coated polyester are woven into a 16 x 11 mesh wire fabric that will resist damage from dog and cat claws. Allowing superb visibility and ventilation, it is excellent wire for screen doors. It is available only in black.

Bronze Screen Wire.The CRL Bronze Screen Wire has an 18 x 14 mesh and is woven from a .011 inch (.3 millimeter) diameter, 90% copper and 10% zinc strand. This extremely durable screen wire oxidizes to a rich bronze color similar to an old penny. Five widths available.

Galvanized Screen Wire Woven into an 18 X 14 mesh using tough .009 inch (.23 millimeter) diameter, electro-galvanized, steel strands, this is the original product manufactured for window and door screens. This wire affords strength and durability while allowing for light transmission and ventilation. It is available only in gray.

Helpful Hint:

If you are using metal screen wire, trim off the corners of the wire at a 45-degree angle, with the center of your cut right at the corner of the spline channel of the frame. This will prevent buckling at the corners when you push the wire and spline into the channel. Always begin rolling metal screen wire by first creasing the wire into the spline groove using the larger diameter convex roller on your roller tool. Also, always use steel rollers when rolling metal screen.

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  • Some items to consider
    1) Aluminum Window Screens
    2) Extruded Screen Frame
    3) Retractable Screen Doors

    While you may occasionally run into a wood framed screen, the overwhelming majority of today's screens use aluminum frame. Even wooden screen doors are made with an attached aluminum framed screen. Aluminum screen frame is either roll-formed or extruded, and comes in many different widths, profiles and colors. Each profile designed for a specific application.

    Box Type Roll-Formed Screen Frame The majority of aluminum screen frame is roll-formed creating a box to accept an insert corner and a channel to accept the screen wire and retaining spline. Roll-formed screen frame is slightly cambered, or in other words, has a slight curve, to add tension to the screen wire. The most common widths for roll-formed screen frame are 1/4, 5/16, 3/8 and 7/16 inch (6.4, 7.9, 9.5 and 11.1 millimeter) with a 3/4 inch (19.1 millimeter) standard height. Frame with 1 and 1-1/4 inch (25.4 and 31.8 millimeter) height is available in a 7/16 inch (11.1 millimeter) width. The depth of the jamb stop on exterior and interior applications or your choice on surface mount screens will determine the width of screen frame you use.

    Box Type Extruded Screen Frame This type of frame can be used when extra strength and rigidity are required. If you need to make a larger screen and don't wish to use spreader bars for support, this is the frame to use.

    Lip Frame As the name implies, this box type roll-formed screen frame has a lip extending from the bottom of the box portion of the frame. This extra piece of frame allows for installation of screens when no backing or jamb stop is available. Two frame sizes available.

    Standoff Frame An extra leg, which extends at a right angle from the box of the frame, allows for screen installation in windows where additional clearance for wickets or raised center mullions.

    Splicing "H" Bar When a large opening or enclosure needs to be screened, H-shaped channel can be used to splice two box type screens together. It is an extruded 7/16 inch (11 millimeter) aluminum channel, which gives it the strength and rigidity needed when splicing larger multi panels together.

    Angle Stop When no jamb stop is available, roll-formed 1/2 by 1/2 inch (12.7 millimeter) aluminum angle can be used as a back stop for flush screens.

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