<VV> Windscreens

Hugo Miller hugo at aruncoaches.co.uk
Fri Jun 5 02:25:51 EDT 2020

That is oe of the few areas in which US vehicle engineering is ahead of 
the UK - way ahead.I have had a fair bit of experience with windscreens 
shattering in England. A friend of mine, when we were teenagers, went 
through the windscreen when the car in which he was a passenger hit a 
tree. He was scarred for life. You used to see people with facial 
scarring from time to time, and you knew exactly what had happened to 
them. The cars we drove back then never had seatbelts of course.
I've even had it happen to me in a coach (as in tour-bus) of mine. It 
has a two-piece windscreen (left and right) and I was driving along 
minding my own business on an empty road when out of the blue, the 
passenger side windscreen shattered, and that is a big heavy screen, and 
much thicker than a car windscreen. The heavy glass shrapnel took chunks 
out of the aluminium handrail by the steps, and the modesty screen in 
front of the front seat. But incredibly it left the boy sitting in the 
front seat untouched. They were a party of Hassidic ultra-orthodox Jews 
from North London, so I suppose they had special protection from above! 
That coach was built in 1972, so we were still using toughened/tempered 
glas at least up till then.
Apart from that, the other problem is that if a small stone hits the 
screen and shatters it leaving it in one piece, all of a sudden you 
can't see where you're going. At one point they introduced a 'clear 
zone' in front of the driver for that reason.
Interestingly, my Morris Minor (= British VW Beetle) in Florida has a 
laminated screen, whereas British ones have toughened glass screens. You 
would think the manufacturers would fit laminated screens to all their 
output, not just the export models.
I have disposed of a laminated screen from a coach once, by chopping it 
up into squares with an axe. You get little blue flashes of light when 
you do that for some reason. Which reminds me - I have a cracked FC 
screen to get rid of - where did I put that axe?

On 2020-06-05 03:49, FrankDuVal via VirtualVairs wrote:
> Since sometime in the 20's, all American windshields have been
> laminated. To this day.
> Tempered is what we call the tough stuff that is not laminated. Used
> for most side glass since 1960 or so.
> Tempered not allowed as windshield as no one wants small pieces of
> glass flying in their face at 60 MPH from a rock chip, which we get
> all the time here.
> You can shatter laminated glass, just fold into thirds. :-D That's
> how I disposed of them in my body shop for years, fit in a 90 gallon
> Super Can used by the trash service. Or with your head, but that is a
> very bad way. Done it once, not again......
> A year or so ago I had something on the interstate shatter a 6 inch
> diameter area of my windshield right in the lower middle and I never
> saw it coming.  Quite upsetting.
> Frank DuVal
> On 6/4/2020 5:15 PM, Hugo Miller via VirtualVairs wrote:
>> Very enterprising of you. Good job you didn't break it when fitting 
>> after all that effort.
>> But why did the original one 'shatter'? Was it toughened glass? 
>> Toughened glass was used in the UK for windshields until at least the 
>> late seventies. But I thought all American cars used laminated 
>> screens? Or did you mean 'cracked' rather than 'shattered'?
>> On 2020-06-04 20:50, Brian via VirtualVairs wrote:
>>> I have owned my 1965 course a convertible since 1979.  While
>>> stationed in Germany in the early 80s I discovered a leak on the
>>> passenger side under the windshield.  Needless to say the 
>>> windshield
>>> shattered as I took it out.  There was not a hole on the passenger
>>> side in the channel under the windshield just an indentation from 
>>> the
>>> stamping machine so naturally water collected their and rusted
>>> through.  With some assistance from German friends, I repaired the
>>> rusted out section.  Now the challenge was a windshield.  The only 
>>> one
>>> I could locate in all of Europe was in Sweden.  The parts house and
>>> all that would ship it.  They wanted me to drive the Sweden to pick 
>>> it
>>> up.  I was just about to do that when I had a great idea.  I would
>>> order it from Clark's Corvair and have it sent to me through the 
>>> Army
>>> post office system.  Well that didn't work either because Clark's
>>> wouldn't package it to meet the standards the army post office 
>>> wanted
>>> for something that size.  The trip to Sweden was look
>>>  ing like it was on until another great idea hit.  I knew that in a
>>> month I would be making a trip back to Cape Canaveral Florida with
>>> some of my guys to fire our Pershing missiles out into the Atlantic
>>> Ocean.  The missile launchers-- be mamas-- would be flown over by 
>>> the
>>> U.S. Air Force.  I realized that once we shot the missiles I'd have
>>> these big empty missile launchers.  So I contacted a friend who 
>>> worked
>>> for the missile contractor in Orlando Florida and asked him it was
>>> okay if I had a windshield shipped from Clark's to him.  He said it
>>> was absolutely no problem.  So I ordered the windshield from 
>>> Clark's
>>> had it shipped to my buddy George who I knew would be at the 
>>> missile
>>> firings.  He brought the windshield with them out to Cape 
>>> Canaveral.
>>> After the missiles splashdown in the Atlantic Ocean we strapped the
>>> windshield to one of the missile launchers loaded it on a Air Force
>>> plane and away it went to Germany.  As soon as I got home I 
>>> retrieved
>>> the windshield and installed.  It is
>>>  still there today.  Now all you guys who were thinking that I 
>>> abuse
>>> the system well maybe I did.  But that windshield didn't weigh a
>>> fraction of what the gigantic vessels that.  All my soldiers got a 
>>> big
>>> kick out of it and gathered to watch me install the windshield. I 
>>> got
>>> it in just in time to take the Corvair Monte Carlo for the Formula 
>>> One
>>> race.
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