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Can Strengthened Glass be Machined?


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heat strengtheningHeat Strengthening/Tempering Process

Glass that has been tempered or heat strengthened cannot be machined. Any fabrication done prior to the heat or tempering process must be smooth as well as chip and crack free. Any holes, notches, etc. should be located on the fabricated glass part so as to avoid breakage during the strengthening process.


Chemical Strengthening


Unlike heat toughened glass, chemically strengthened soda lime glass may be cut after strengthening, but loses its added strength within the region of approximately 20 mm of the cut. Similarly, when the surface of chemically strengthened glass is deeply scratched, this area loses its additional strength.


High Ion-Exchange (HIE™) Chemically Strengthened Thin Glass CAN NOT be post fabricated. That includes:


  • Asahi Dragontrail™
  • Corning® Gorilla® Glass
  • SCHOTT Xensation™


This glass can only be strengthened as a final step. It may be coated and screen printed, but not machined.



chem strengtheningChemical Strengthening Process


  1. Strengthened glass loses over 50% of its strength if successfully cut, so it would no longer be considered HIE™ chemically strengthened glass.
  2. HIE™ glass is under high levels of compressive stress making it extraordinarily difficult to machine.

    Abrisa Technologies is a recognized global supplier of high quality, fabricated glass components, optical thin film coatings, and custom glass solutions for a wide variety of industries. From our US based Abrisa Industrial Glass fabrication facility in Santa Paula, CA and our ZC&R Coatings for Optics division in Torrance, CA we serve diverse industries such as microelectronics and displays, semiconductor, military, automotive, aerospace, medical, biomedical and scientific R&D. We provide custom specialty flat glass and coating products for applications such as: flat panel display, touch and gesture recognition; visible to IR imaging and surveillance; entertainment, indoor and outdoor lighting; advanced instrumentation; and photonics.


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