Volume 8, Issue 7 - July/August 2007


Summer Days 
AAMA Gets to Work at National Summer Meeting in California
by Sarah Batcheler

The American Architectural Manufacturers Association (AAMA) made significant strides in its educational courses at its annual summer meeting in Huntington Beach, Calif., last month. The five classroom courses, from the Aluminum Material Council, Door Council, Fiberglass Material Council, Glass Material Council and another one relating to blast/AAMA 510 certification, all can earn AAMA learning units.

According to Janice Charletta, AAMA’s marketing manager, there’s been a lot of interest in converting the classroom courses to online versions.

The association also will be releasing its Tool Kit, an interactive compact disc explaining AAMA certification.

“It’s a critical component of the campaign,” said Charletta.

Studying the Market Study 
The Market Research Committee previewed a joint market study by AAMA and the Window and Door Manufacturers Association (WDMA), which was conducted by Ducker Research. The committee currently is discussing what is to be included in the study. Members of the committee will be prioritizing what questions in the study they deem most important to determine how the study will come out.

Nick Limb from Ducker presented information on how the data is collected and organized. He said Ducker has increased the number of participants from the residential window side, and “it seems that the residential side has the biggest questions and noise,” the representative said, adding that he’s confident that Ducker’s numbers are solid. AAMA invested more than $200,000 in the study—which comes out every two years and is scheduled to be published next year.

Preventing Child Falls
A discussion of how to reduce the likelihood of children falling from windows was introduced to the Hardware Committee.

“AAMA’s code technology committee has been charged with this,” said Julie Ruth, the association’s code consultant. The codes working group has addressed the topic, Ruth reported, and is looking to expand the task group and bring in the hardware manufacturers.

“This is going to happen,” said Doug Johnson of Truth Hardware. “It is about how we address this and become part of the solution.”

The Code Technology Committee plans to draft a proposal in August, with the hope that the criteria to be established will be included in the 2009 edition.

"We’ve [AAMA has] requested and asked to provide input,” said Ruth. “The fear is that the testing device used to test the latch might naturally extend to be used to test the window.”

Task Groups Hard at Work
The Flashing Task Group reviewed comments and changes from the ballot of the draft AAMA Voluntary Specifications for Self-Adhering Flashing for Installation of Exterior Wall Fenestration Products. They looked at the ballot results and made many editorial changes.

The Water Cap Research Task Group, chaired by Steve Fronek of Wausau, modified its scope to “evaluate and recommend for the U.S. ASTM E331 static and ASTM cyclical water test pressure caps cited in AAMA/WDMA/CSA 101/I.S. 2/A440-XX for all performance grades, and issue recommendations for all necessary changes to AAMA.”

Trends of the Hardware Industry
A special presentation about hardware industry trends was made by Jerry Heppes, the chief executive officer of the Door Hardware Institute (DHI), a foundation for the advancement of life safety and security.

“We’re finding there’s a lot of interest in the role we play in creating life safety and security, but we’ve got a lot of work to do to be a contributor,” said Heppes. He talked about the progress that DHI has made in creating safer schools–which he said is a huge change in the attitude of the industry. His foundation has been working on research, conducting briefings to the public, fostering recognition programs, etc.

Concerning National Codes
The codes and regulatory affairs committee was briefed on national and regulatory code changes by Ruth.

“We’re half-way between two editions of the code,” said Ruth, adding that the next edition is due in 2009. “[At the] final action hearings, AAMA had a success rate of 69.9 percent.”

“There’s not a whole lot that happened this time,” she said. “The big thing on the energy side is taking the performance cap out of the International Residential Code (IRC).”

The AAMA provision for the 7.75-inch threshold on non-required doors in the IRC was retained, Ruth reported.

AAMA also formed a Green Building Group. The new task group’s mission is to monitor developing a green building standard and to make recommendations of where the association should involve itself.

Southeast Region
AAMA’s southeast region looked at feedback from the hurricane driven rain test procedures.

Scott Warner of Architectural Testing Inc. identified two important parts to the procedures. First, having a test protocol that’s a valid representation, and secondly, product development and enhancements to products.

“We’re trying to make sure that the test can be run on products,” Warner said.

Looking Ahead
AAMA’s next meeting, its Southeast Region Fall Meeting, will be held August 14-16 in St. Augustine, Fla., at the Renaissance Resort at World Golf Village. 

Sarah Batcheler is the assistant editor of DWM.


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