The 5 Biggest Glass Shoe Blunders

panelgrip glass railing systemGlass Shoe — also known as Glass Railing Base Shoe or Glass Shoe Moulding — is the primary structural element of a glass railing system. When properly installed and specified, a glass base shoe will hold the structural glass in place allowing a great view yet providing a safe guard.

The glass is set into the glass base shoe using either a wet or dry glaze product.

Wet glaze was the traditional method of installation for decades but dry glaze installation is now the primary means of setting glass for glass railings.

Here are the 5 Biggest Glass Shoe Blunders

  1. PanelGrip & LegatoNot mounting the glass base shoe properly
    1. A glass railing is only as strong as its attachment to the substrate. The substrate must be structural and chose the fasteners accordingly.
  2. Not using laminated glass
    1. As of the 2015 building code, laminated tempered glass is required in all glass railing applications — unless there is no walking path below the railing.
  3. Neglecting to plumb the glass base shoe as it’s being installed.
    1. With wet glaze systems, the glass can be plumbed prior to pouring in the wet glaze medium. However, with a dry glaze system, the glass will follow the angle of the glass base shoe. Make sure the glass shoe is plumb at the start of the process.
  4. Assuming the glass shoe meets the load requirement
    1. Glass railing must meet load requirements of 50 lbs/ft uniform load or 200 lbs. concentrated load. Further, it needs to meet that load with a safety factor of four. Not all glass shoe is created equal. Request test data from your supplier to confirm it meets the requirement.
  5. Using Portland based cement when wet setting laminated glass.
    1. The lime in Portland cement will attack PVB interlayers causing them to delaminate.

Download our newest Glass Railing brochure.

Need help with avoiding the glass shoe blunders? Contact Wagner.


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