Float Glass

Float glass or regular glass (often referred to as plate or flat glass) is manufactured using a ‘melt’ process.  Silica sand, lime, potash and soda are melted in a furnace and floated onto a layer of molten tin. During the cooling process the glass is annealed  in order to relieve internal stresses and reduce brittleness.

Float glass provides the material for other forms of processed glass, such as tinted, laminated glass and tempered glass.

Charlottesville Glass and Mirror offers an extensive range in annealed (standard) float glass in stock. Whatever your need is – protecting a fine wooden table top, framing that favorite picture, repairing a broken window pane or any other glass application you may have, give us a call. We are here to serve you.


We stock clear annealed glass from 3/32″ to 1/2″. If you require thicker or tinted glass we can order it for you.

The common use for each thickness is shown below:

3/32″- single strength (SS); for windows & picture frames.
1/8″ – double strength (DS); for windows & picture frames.
3/16″- for windows, small table tops .
1/4″ – for table tops, shelving.
3/8″ – heavy glass; for table tops, shelving.
1/2″ – heavy glass; for table tops, shelving.
3/4″ – heavy glass; for table tops, shelving.


When glass is cut and has no edgework it is referred to as, clean cut.  Clean cut glass is used whenever the glass is installed in a frame and sharp edges are not exposed.

1) Swiped – This is the simplest type of edge work whereby the sharp edges are removed with a sanding block, safe to handle, not decorative.

2) Seamed -This finish is achieved when clean cut, sharp edges are wet sanded or ground at approximately 45 degrees to produce an arriss (small bevel) the face of the edge is not touched. A seamed edge has a more finished appearance.

3) Polished – There are two types of polished edges; the Flat polish and the pencil polish (a rounded edge). The flat polish is the most common. On shapes (circles or ovals) you may want to consider the pencil polish since it has a rounded edge that gives it a soft look.

The most common edge is a simple flat polish. The edges of the glass are polished to a smooth clear polish. We polish the edges of glass from 1/8 inch thickness and up. With our eight spindle diamond polisher, we are the only local company capable of producing water-clear polished edgework. Don’t settle for a cloudy belt sanded or hand ground edge, when you can have a beautiful crystal clear edge.

4) Beveled Edge

If you want a more formal look, then consider a bevel or specialty edge. A bevel has the edges ground and polished at an angle creating a prism effect. Our beveling equipment can handle glass from 1/4″ to 1/2″ thick. We are capable of producing bevel sizes as narrow as 1/4″and as wide as 1 1/4″ on both straight-line pieces and curved pieces. We do all our beveling in house, with a few exceptions anything we don’t do in house can be special ordered. Our sales staff are fully trained and capable of  advising you as to your best options.



We do much more than polished edges and bevels. If you need a hole, a notch, a clipped corner, a radius corner, sandblasting, plate grooves or ground-in finger-pulls; come see us. We will fabricate whatever you need, or order it.

Visit our showroom in Charlottesville to see our edgework on display and talk to a salesperson. We are here to serve you.

Several sheets of stacked float glass
Details of float glass edgework options
Guide for table top float glass sizes