Where do you buy glass?

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Forum topic by mlindegarde posted 02-01-2012 09:52 PM 5233 views 0 times favorited 23 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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49 posts in 3273 days

02-01-2012 09:52 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question resource

I’ve got some project ideas that would call for glass panes but I can’t figure out where you would buy them. Where do you buy your glass for furniture and how do you cut it to size? Stupid question, I know. Unfortunately Google just keeps showing me where I can buy glass plates for food.

23 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5177 posts in 2695 days

#1 posted 02-01-2012 09:58 PM

I have a local glass shop that does everything glass from windshield replacement to new windows to cutting odd glass panes; surprising since I don’t live near a large city. I just had some panes cut for a tombstone divided light door. But the don’t carry odd glass like seeded varieties, so I have ordered that from Van Dykes and received great service. I’m not sure if they do odd shapes, but I’m guessing they would if you sent them a template.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View bondogaposis's profile


5092 posts in 2553 days

#2 posted 02-01-2012 10:01 PM

Yeah, most communities have a glass shop and that is where I would go first. Second would be the hardware store. You just ask for the size you want and they cut it right there.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3376 days

#3 posted 02-01-2012 10:03 PM

Same with Fred. If you Google mirrors, windshields, or custom glass … odds are … you’ll find somebody.

My local place did a REALLY nice job on a piece of beveled mirror, for an oak mirror I built.

-- -- Neil

View DamnYankee's profile


3312 posts in 2764 days

#4 posted 02-01-2012 10:04 PM

Local glass shop.

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View Tennwood's profile


112 posts in 3383 days

#5 posted 02-01-2012 10:10 PM

Like Fred, I go to a local glass shop that can cut it to size right there. I usually bring in the wood frames that the glass is to fit in so they can cut an fit right there. But….They won’t cut glass for doors (like in a cabinet) because it has to be tempered glass. They told me they have to order it to size. It probably depends on the shop and their capabilities, and if they will turn a blind eye.

-- Jim, SE Tennessee, "Don't spare the kindling Dear, we have plenty"

View RONFINCH's profile


143 posts in 3127 days

#6 posted 02-01-2012 10:33 PM

I go to Big Blue – they cut glass there!

View DS's profile


3033 posts in 2623 days

#7 posted 02-01-2012 10:58 PM

Once glass is tempered is can’t be cut or machined in any way. (It would shatter into tiny squares) It is quite the involved process requiring machinery beyond the local mom and pop glass stores. Tempering also expands the glass slightly (more for thicker glass) and machining to correct for the temper is a tricky art form and less science than you’d hope for.

Fortunately for me, there is a large foundry close by my shop and I can order glass directly from there. It takes 3 or 4 days for them to cut, mill and temper the glass, but, because it isn’t retail, the cost is relatively low.

My latest project is an Ebony Bar with two 1/2” thick tempered glass tops (hi/lo) on Stainless Steel standoffs. My cost was about $265.00. The local retail glass store wanted $750.00 for the same tops.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View Nighthawk's profile


556 posts in 2559 days

#8 posted 02-01-2012 11:22 PM

Local glass shop… we here in New Zealand also have second had house parts (kinda like car wrecker) where they sell 2nd hand doors, windows, fire mantels beams etc… sure you have places like that in the states too…

Cutting standard glass is pretty easy, but just be careful and do a few pratice cuts… Just go buy a decent glass cutter… get straight edge… score along the edge and snap it… it will break along your score line.

Another option I have use in the past is plastic… (while not as refined as saying it has glass in doors) most people couldn’t tell… and the good thing is all you wood workinf tools will be able to cut it. ( however on some palastic you do need to dull drill bits… so it scraps the plastic not cut else it doesn’t give a clean hole and can shatter)

Plastic is safer, just as strong and in some cases stronger. The down fall is you can scratch it easier…

-- Rome wasn't built in a day... but I wasn't on that job? ...

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2878 days

#9 posted 02-01-2012 11:30 PM

We have a couple of locally owned glass shops. I have bought picture frames at the dollar store and thrown them away just to have the precut glass. I found I could buy glass from ACE hardware cheaper so I go there if the glass shop seems unreasonable. I did buy a large piece of glass for a project I was working on. It filled the upper part of a door making it like a movies theater ticket window. it had a round hole in it with the half circle cut out on the bottom. It had to be tempered. It cost $125 with a 4 day delivery. I have found that the other glass shop is cheaper so perhaps I should have gone there. You should be able to get it locally though.

View mlindegarde's profile


49 posts in 3273 days

#10 posted 02-01-2012 11:31 PM

Thanks for the quick feedback. Looks like I’ll be on the lookout for a local glass shop. It strikes me as odd that the hardest thing for me has been locating local resources for quality wood, glass, and hardware. There is plenty of how-to information out there on the Internet and in magazines. However, when it comes time to go buy furniture grade Birch plywood, solid hinges, and glass I have the hardest time.

There needs to be some sort of centralized database with this information. Is there one I just don’t know about?

View DS's profile


3033 posts in 2623 days

#11 posted 02-01-2012 11:34 PM

Thomas Register…. That’s what it is—a centralized database of suppliers across the entire nation.
Downside is it’s expensive. I think there’s an online version nowadays.

EDIT: There is usually a copy of the TR at your local library in the business section.

EDIT #2: Ok, I haven’t owned a TR since about 1998… turns out they discontinued the print edition in 2006—so the library isn’t gonna have it. They are now online at

EDIT #3: Ok, it occurred to me that this is the 21st Century and some libraries might have computers in them with subsciptions to TR. (It might be worthwhile to check it out before spending the dough.)

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View Grandpa's profile


3261 posts in 2878 days

#12 posted 02-01-2012 11:43 PM

DS251 is correct. They are also broken out into sections of the country. For instance you can see you quarter of the state or perhaps part of 2 states where people do business. Great resource.

View bobsmyuncle's profile


110 posts in 2893 days

#13 posted 02-01-2012 11:57 PM

Like others, local hardware store or glass shop. I also buy a box of sheets and cut my own when needed.

One thing I’ve learned is to finish your piece and take it in to them and ask for glass to be cut to fit. I would not go in and ask for ten 8 3/8×10 1/4 pieces of glass. Because if they don’t fit, you’re screwed, but if you take the piece in and they cut crooked or mis-measure, they cut you a new piece.

Another thing is to get 1/8” of space all around so there is no problem with out of square, slightly over the line, or wood movement issues.

View 404 - Not Found's profile

404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 3171 days

#14 posted 02-02-2012 01:19 AM

Local glass company. Glass and mirrors aren’t as expensive as you might think.
They have the knowledge and machinery and expertise to do all sorts of things with glass that you might not think you need now, but probably will in the future, like toughening, bevelling, polishing the edges.
If they’re any good, they will be able to advise you on technical issues too – like boring distances from edges, arch shapes etc. You won’t get that in a hardware store.

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2687 posts in 3124 days

#15 posted 02-02-2012 02:30 AM

Lowes here in town will cut to size at no extra charge.

-- No PHD just a DD214 Website>

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