Acrilex Inc. has expanded its Clear Impressions line of acrylic sheet with eight new looks to give architects, designers and others the ability to provide the appearance of tempered glass.
The new products are finding uses in restaurants, office partitions and store fixtures, according to Dan Rustin, Acrilex market manager and director of new product development.
Rustin said patterned glass has gained in popularity in recent years for its aesthetic qualities. However, it is available in a limited number of patterns, and glass is more difficult than acrylic to install, he said.
On applications such as a curved curtain wall, glass needs specialized equipment to be installed, while acrylic sheet can be cold formed to a 41-inch radius, he said.
Jersey City, N.J.-based Acrilex started out with a brushed pattern, and has added varieties. Now it has 18.
``It's been fantastic. Architects love it it gives them designs that they didn't have before,'' Rustin said in a phone interview.
The cost of the acrylic sheet is less than glass, and plastic offers greater versatility, he said. Rustin added that impact-resistant acrylic presents less danger in uses where glass might be broken, and it is 64 percent lighter than glass.
Each Clear Impressions pattern carries a name that, for the designers, presents a mood. The newest textures include brushed, woven silk, Mesozoic, Precambrian, box miniflute, waffle iron, techno and morning dew.
The sheets come in standard sizes of 4 by 6 feet and in thicknesses from one-eighth to one-half inch.
Acrilex got its start 35 years ago as a sheet manufacturer. It now makes custom-colored acrylics, distributes various plastics and provides fabricated plastic components for point-of-purchase displays and other products.
In Jersey City, Acrilex employs about 50 in an 80,000-square-foot facility. The company also has offices in Horsham, Pa.; Hicksville, N.Y.: and Los Angeles.