Bulletproof Fiberglass Panels: Ballistic Security that Adapts to your Needs

Bulletproof fiberglass panels offer employees ballistic protection in government buildings, police stations, guard houses, convenience stores, and many more scenarios. Also known as opaque armor, these rigid, woven panels delaminate (or separate) when a bullet strikes them, flattening the projectile as it is caught between the woven layers and dissipating the kinetic energy of the bullet. Made of reinforced structural polyester laminate and designed to withstand extreme impact, these panels play an important role in any physical security barrier system.

Versatile Design

Bullet Guard’s fiberglass panels are designed to defeat bullet, blast, and forced entry impacts. Our high-strength, non-ricochet architectural armor is composed of multi-ply bullet and blast-resistant fiberglass laminates that are tested according to UL-752 and ASTM E 119 standards. As protective barriers, our bullet-resistant wall and cabinet armor provides security against perceived and real threats of ballistic assault, offering peace of mind to workers and employers alike, even in the most stressful of working environments.

Offering a more versatile solution than traditional bullet-resistant building materials such as plate steel, concrete, or cinder blocks, our architectural armor is compatible with a wide range of materials, including wood and gypsum. The flexible fiberglass panels are lightweight and are easily cut, drilled, sanded, painted, and textured, customizing them to the intended location, with the ability to be glued with adhesives to any type of wall covering.

Industry Applications

With their universal appeal, our bulletproof fiberglass panels are suited to the varying needs of a myriad of industries, easily adapting them to fit into walls, furniture, counters, and doors. Because each situation has its own unique security requirements, we offer multiple panel types capable of withstanding a variety of impact velocities and ammunition. Industry applications include:

  • Commercial
  • Financial
  • Government
  • Grid Security
  • Healthcare
  • Education

Renovation or New Construction

Fiberglass panels can be used to renovate and upgrade an existing space or incorporated into a brand new construction project.

Facility owners have a few options when renovating. One is to remove the existing drywall and mount the new bulletproof fiberglass panels to the studs, and layer new drywall on top. It is difficult to nail or drill into bulletproof fiberglass, so having an outer layer of drywall will make it easier to attach trim, molding, etc. You may also mount bulletproof fiberglass over the existing drywall and either add another layer of drywall or paint the fiberglass itself.

When upgrading an existing counter or security desk, you can mount pre-cut panels to the interior of the desk. Panels can also be secured to the outside and painted over or veneered to match the rest of the building.

New construction is fairly straightforward. Simply mount the panels directly to the studs and cover them with a layer of drywall.

Protection You Can Count On

Our security experts can work with you to determine the appropriate level of protection and panel placement for your ballistic project, based on your industry, application, and the duration of security desired. For more information on our bulletproof fiberglass panel range, visit our product page for specifications and available protection levels or contact us to request a quote from our experts today.

Bullet-Resistant Enclosures: What They Are and How to Use Them

Bullet-resistant enclosures protect frontline personnel such as security guards or intake nurses in Emergency Rooms. They take the form of kiosks, safety enclosures, modular barriers, teller lines, security booths, guard booths, and other protected stations. These enclosures can be interior (security booths) or exterior (guard booths), providing a feeling of safety no matter the location. Essentially, a bullet-resistant enclosure creates a smaller, protected area in the midst of a larger unprotected space.

Initial Considerations

When it comes to designing and installing an enclosure into a security project, there are several elements to consider.

  • Visibility and avoiding interrupting lines of sight or creating blind spots for booth occupants.
  • Functional features to help users to complete everyday tasks.
  • Size and style, while also taking into account the number of users operating within the enclosure.
  • Any additional unique risk factors, including the most appropriate level of bullet resistance. For example, government applications usually require a higher UL level, while Level 3 or 4 may be appropriate for an ER.

Security upgrades may sometimes be initiated due to a previous incident, causing safety to take precedence over day-to-day operations. Thankfully, there are features that assist in ensuring functionality without compromising security like ballistic doors, voice ports, deal trays, and package passers.

Specific Projects and Applications

Bullet-resistant enclosures can be utilized in a wide range of scenarios, from government guard booths to hospital security desks and bank teller lines. Here are a few examples of projects Bullet Guard has assisted with:

Private interview booth in a hospital ER. We have installed a custom private interview booth in an emergency room in San Jose, CA that allows patients some privacy with a curved sit-down design. We are among the very few companies that could design and build such a custom, unique enclosure.

Credit union teller lines. For a project in a credit union, we provided arched voice ports and butted designs in teller lines for a bank and a vertical offset design and arched voice ports. This design allows for more air circulation behind the bullet-resistant barrier and for natural sound transmission. Both locations have Bullet Guard Architectural Armor under the counter and in the hoods above.

Guard booths for government applications. We installed a custom security kiosk for the federal government. It is a corner configuration with a butted design and closeable round voice ports. This allowed the employee to minimize the noise in the lobby by closing the voice ports when not speaking with someone outside the booth. The voice ports open easily when a customer approaches.

In addition to the privacy benefits of healthcare interview booths, current OSHA guidelines specifically recommend bullet-resistant barriers in large hospitals. The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) also recommends hospitals install deep service counters and bullet-resistant enclosures in reception areas, some triage areas, and nurses’ stations.

Bullet Guard: Your Source For Custom Enclosures

When planning ballistic security projects, no two environments will have the same needs—a finely developed system will incorporate a variety of elements that seamlessly work together. Bullet Guard can help create a custom system perfect for the space and the application, providing an atmosphere of safety you can trust. For more information, visit our custom bullet-resistant enclosures product page or contact us to request a quote today.

Bulletproof Doors: Where to Begin

Bulletproof doors are essential for maintaining physical and building safety. You’ll find them in government buildings, banks, and police stations—anywhere that security is a priority—serving as a physical barrier as well as a visual deterrent to would-be attackers. Used in conjunction with bulletproof windows, bulletproof doors provide both effective ballistic protection and complete peace of mind for building workers and visitors.

Applicable Industries

You can’t have a building without doors of some kind, and with those access points comes the potential of vulnerability and opportunity for those with ill intent. Because of their practicality and universal applications, bulletproof doors are a common inclusion of any security project, with implementations such as:

Banks and Financial Buildings: Bulletproof doors and windows are paramount for financial institutions such as banks. They secure the buildings and provide an extra line of defense against activities like thefts and attacks on the employees.

Government Buildings: Bullet-resistant doors protect government buildings against threats of invasion. Moreover, these buildings often house sensitive documents and information that cannot be leaked publicly. Having ballistic protection provides an excellent measure of security to these places.

Schools, Colleges, and Universities: Schools can often become vulnerable to rogue attackers. Bulletproof doors ensure the safety of students as well as the teachers and staff members of the schools.

Convenience Stores and Gas Stations: Most convenience stores and gas stations are fitted with bulletproof or bullet-resistant doors to offer protection to customers while they are shopping. In addition, the doors also protect businesses from possible theft and looting, especially when they are located in remote areas.

Religious and Spiritual Centers: Security is essential for religious centers, where people gather together in large groups. Bullet-resistant doors are an ideal way to provide security to these buildings.

Technical Specifications

To meet our customers’ varied needs, we offer a variety of bullet-resistant doors.

  • Solid core doors are finished with plastic laminate and paint or stain grade veneer.
  • All clear doors are made from UL-752 acrylic or polycarbonate in levels 1 to 3.
  • Full lite and half light doors with aluminum stiles and rail protection in UL levels 1 to 8.
  • Hollow metal doors and frames can be manufactured in UL levels 1 to 8. These doors are available with view windows, narrow-lite doors, half-lite doors, and a double-door configuration.

Frames for bullet-resistant doors are available in aluminum, slip in steel, and steel wrap around, all packed with the required ballistic fiberglass.

Bulletproof Doors from Bullet Guard

Here at Bullet Guard, we’re experts in bulletproof doors, with the knowledge and experience to assist you with both custom and quick ship catalog styles in a variety of sizes and protection levels to suit your project’s needs. For more information on our product line, you can browse our bulletproof doors catalog or contact us to request a quote today.

Getting Started with Bullet-Resistant Windows

In today’s ever increasing climate of workplace violence,, bullet-resistant windows are more often than ever a key component of facility security plans. Offering higher levels of protection, yet with the clarity of a traditional glass pane, bullet-resistant windows are available in glass-clad polycarbonate, solid acrylic, or polycarbonate laminate make-ups, depending on the level of protection desired.

Applicable Industries

Because of the clarity and level of protection offered by bulletproof glass, bullet-resistant windows are truly versatile, with the potential to be used in a wide range of industries. Common implementations include:

Stadiums and Arenas: The large crowds and high level of money exchange makes stadiums, arenas, and other public venues high-risk areas. To reduce risk, these facilities often use bulletproof glass to protect box office employees.

Banks and Credit Unions: Financial institutions typically feature large lobbies, high traffic, and frequent cash exchange that makes them a prime target for robberies. Even with dedicated security staff, banks and credit unions are often constructed with bulletproof windows, partitions, and enclosures to ensure worker safety.

Convenience Stores: Similar to stadiums and hospitality facilities, convenience stores experience high levels of traffic at all hours. Bulletproof glass and partitions help to protect employees from potential gun violence and robberies.

Schools and Universities: Although we like to consider schools a safe place for students and faculty alike, increased violence at schools and universities has prompted many districts to enact protective measures, including bulletproof windows and security enclosures for student, teacher, and visitor screening.

Interior/Exterior Considerations

As you’re planning a security project, it’s important to think about how you’ll be incorporating bullet-resistant windows, as they have both interior and exterior applications. Will you be installing bulletproof glass in an area facing a dark, deserted, or otherwise vulnerable outdoor area? Or will you be installing ballistic glass in a well-lit indoor room within a secure facility? Factors such as required protection levels, UV exposure, extreme temperatures, and other environmental variables can affect the long-term clarity and physical integrity of the material. These and many other factors go into making the correct choice for ballistic glazing (glass) and underline the need to consult with the ballistic experts at Bullet Guard prior to ordering just any product off an online store.

Technical Specifications

Bullet-resistant windows are available in a variety of protection levels, manufactured to withstand projectiles of different ratings and velocities. Levels 1-3 are used for lighter, small arms weapons up to a .44 magnum, where the aim is to safeguard employees in most typical situations that typically involve handguns. Levels 4-8 protect against projectiles from higher velocity rifles up to 7.62mm, and are typically reserved for high risk, military, and certain government facilities.

Our quick ship transaction windows are available in two standard sizes – 24” by 36” and 30” by 36”. Depending on the product desired, our bullet-resistant windows range in UL-752 protection levels 1-8, featuring horizontal, circular, arched, and other voice port options. Standard windows are available with many additional options such as stainless steel recessed deal trays, plastic laminate or stainless steel countertops. We also offer custom transaction windows in sizes of up to 8’ by 5’, incorporating different types of aluminum, slip steel, or telescoping steel frame systems manufactured at our facility in order to meet your specific needs.

Bullet-Resistant Windows from Bullet Guard

Our team of experienced professionals have been serving our clients for over 40 years, providing custom built ballistic solutions to meet their safety needs. If your security project could benefit from bullet-resistant windows, you can browse our quick ship products or contact us to request a quote today.

Bullet Guard Acquired by Industry Leader Total Security Solutions

After 40+ years in business, Bullet Guard announces that we were wholly acquired by Total Security Solutions (TSS), based out of Fowlerville, Michigan, in November of 2021.

While now part of the TSS family, Bullet Guard will continue operations in our current location and with the experienced staff that our customers have come to depend on over the years. This new relationship will allow Bullet Guard access to growth capital, extensive supply chains, advanced technology, and the expanded operational capacity that comes with being part of the TSS team.

Impressed by our commitment to quality and customer service, Total Security Solutions CEO Jim Richards shared, “As a company, they’re very similar to us, although at a smaller scale. But with more than 40 years of experience in bulletproof glass, they are really well-positioned to service the Western half of the country. That made them very attractive to us.”

Recent years have seen spikes in the murder rate in the U.S., with firearms involved in an increasing share of homicides.This has disproportionately impacted the Western half of the United States. Pew Research found that 2020’s year-over-year murder rate increase was the largest since at least 1905 (and possibly ever, according to the CDC). Washington, Oregon, Nevada, California, and Arizona all saw increases of 16% to 45%. In Montana, murder rates nearly doubled, rising 84%.

Such increases bring an increased interest in securing facilities against armed attackers. TSS recognizes the substantial relationships we’ve built with municipal, financial, and government entities along the West Coast, and observed that Bullet Guard would be able to extend our reach by upgrading some of our current procedures.

Expanding Our Offerings by Optimizing Procedures

While acknowledging our pre-existing automation, TSS saw opportunities to upgrade the processes already in place. In late March of 2022, TSS began the process of modernizing operations here at Bullet Guard. Building on the exceptional service we already offer our customers, TSS seeks to enhance that service by bringing in everything they know about making bulletproof barrier systems to extremely tight tolerances.

This will also mean expanding our offerings to better suit other potential customers, like hospitals and schools. But these improvements aren’t limited to installing new CNC routers and water jet cutters. Jim Richards is working with our management team, integrating Bullet Guard into the Total Security Solutions EOS (or Entrepreneurial Operating System™). EOS is a comprehensive set of business concepts and tools that make it much easier for an organization—no matter how large or small—to move together toward their goals.

“About ten years ago, we shifted our mindset,” Jim explains. “As a company, we shifted our focus. We stopped thinking just about ‘stopping bullets’ or ‘stopping robberies,’ and expanded our view. We began to understand that this was bigger than robberies. It was about finding the best way to protect an organization’s most valuable asset: their people. You do that by making those people’s lives easier every day, not just on their worst day. Designing systems that look good and work well, installing them with as little disruption as possible, increasing their peace of mind on a daily basis—all of that is part of what it means to protect people.”

Exciting Changes, Consistent Service

One thing that won’t change is our devotion to quality work and excellent customer service, the same standards that you’ve come to know from us over the past 40+ years. Our dedicated employees will always be here, helping you make the right choices for your security needs.

Bandit Barriers: Giving You the Advantage

With a rising focus on building security and employee safety, it should come as no surprise that there’s an increase in demand for bullet-resistant barriers. Bandit barriers, in particular, are barriers that physically separate the area in front of a counter to provide a secure space for protecting employees and other valuables. When utilized at a bank or convenience store, for example, a bandit barrier prevents would-be criminals from reaching behind the counter and protects those behind the barrier from active shooters. The physical presence of these barriers is often enough to deter crime, making this a desirable security feature that all commercial contractors should be familiar with.

Applications

Rather than being limited to areas of high crime, these barriers are also sought out for university and government projects, thanks to Homeland Security grants which can help to offset the costs. Frequently used as a transaction window or teller window, bandit barriers are found in a variety of industries, including:

  • Financial institutions (banks, credit unions)
  • Government facilities (local, state, and federal)
  • Healthcare (pharmacies, emergency rooms)
  • Higher education
  • Correctional facilities
  • Police departments
  • Retail (jewelry stores, convenience stores, fuel centers, etc)

Advantages

The advantages for contractors offering bandit barriers are clear:

  • Demand is rising
  • Little competition among installers
  • Design can be challenging, but installation is easy
  • Adds a profit center without adding expenses

Taking time to connect with a bulletproof company and drawing on their expertise means adding an impressive profit center to your business without any risk: all the components and materials can be purchased prefabricated, with the design cost absorbed by the end-user.

Technical Specifications and Accessories

We offer custom systems in a variety of protection levels, ranging from UL levels 1-8. Depending on the system selected, you’ll find the following options:

Level 1: Uncoated Acrylic, Coated Acrylic, Laminated Polycarbonate, Glass Clad Polycarbonate

Level 2: Uncoated Acrylic, Coated Acrylic, Laminated Polycarbonate, Glass Clad Polycarbonate

Level 3: Laminated Polycarbonate, Glass Clad Polycarbonate

Levels 4, 5, 6, 7, & 8: Glass Clad Polycarbonate

Each system can be customized to fit the existing space, with baffle and arch window systems being especially popular with banks. Using acrylic, these systems allow for excellent light transmission and broad, clear sight lines, creating a physical barrier without sacrificing the customer experience. When combined with various accessories, these systems ensure that day-to-day tasks are uninterrupted.

Accessory options include:

  • Voice ports for clear communication
  • Deal trays for passing money or documents
  • Package passers for the hand-off of larger items

Bullet-Resistant Bandit Barriers From Bullet Guard

With over 40 years of industry experience, we know how to build a system that truly feels secure, and our experienced team is ready to custom build the best bandit barrier solution for your project. To learn more about how we can meet your specific needs, view our Bandit Barrier Catalog or contact us to get started with a quote.

History & Evolution of Bulletproof Glass

Countless militaries, government agencies, banks, and other businesses use bulletproof glass in their efforts to safeguard staff and property. This protective material isn’t the result of a single invention; with origins in the 17th century, it has evolved over time as the resulting integration of various glass manufacturing methods. Learn more about the history of bulletproof glass and how technology has advanced.

Prince Rupert’s Drops

The bulletproof glass timeline begins in the mid-1600s. Named after Prince Rupert of the Rhine, Prince Rupert’s Drops were the first iteration of fortified glass. People found that a rapid hardening effect occurred when dropping molten glass into cool water, resulting in teardrop-shaped bits of glass. They observed that the rounded end was significantly strong, with the capability of withstanding impact. However, the tail end was immensely fragile and any pressure on that end would cause the entire piece to shatter.

The drops, while lacking useful applications themselves, did inspire further investigation into how glass could become stronger, and in 1935, Rudolph A. Seiden received a tempered glass patent. As the first patent of its kind, this advancement in tempered glass served as an initial step in ultimately developing bulletproof glass for high-impact applications.

When Was Bulletproof Glass Invented?

French chemist Edouard Benedictus accidentally discovered the concept of bulletproof glass, also known as laminated or safety glass, in 1903. While performing experiments in England, Benedictus dropped a glass vessel containing a solution of liquid nitrate. Instead of shattering, the beaker merely cracked.

Benedictus noticed that the solution had created a layer of plastic within the flask that prevented the glass from shattering, and that discovery brought about further research into what would become bulletproof glass. In 1909, Edouard Benedictus filed a patent in France for laminated safety glass, and in 1914, he did the same in the U.S.

Bulletproof Glass in WWI & WWII

In the World Wars, the military used fortified glass for its transparency and protective properties. Though it wasn’t fully bulletproof, manufacturers utilized laminated safety glass in World War I for plane windshields, as well as eye coverings in the form of aviation glasses and gas mask eyehole covers. By the time WWII ended, thicker laminated safety glass was developed with higher durability for rugged applications in warzone transport vehicles.

Other Notable Events

  • Bulletproof glass in the White House. Franklin D. Roosevelt installed bulletproof glass in 1942 after the bombing of Pearl Harbor to provide added protection for himself and his aides in the Oval Office.
  • Bulletproof glass for the Mona Lisa. After criminals damaged the Mona Lisa in 1956, the Louvre decided to use bulletproof glass to protect the painting. It has safeguarded the Mona Lisa ever since, both inside the Louvre and when it is on loan to other galleries. This decision proved beneficial in 1974 and again in 2009 when other attackers tried to harm the painting.
  • Bulletproof glass and the Pope. In 1981 when Pope John Paul II headed the Catholic church, the Vatican outfitted the Popemobile with bulletproof glass following an assassination attempt.
  • Patenting bulletproof glass. Benedictus’ early 20th-century patents were for safety glass. The first U.S. patent exclusively for bulletproof glass was officially granted in 1982.

Bulletproof Glass & Products From Bullet Guard Corporation

Glass has evolved over the years from Prince Rupert’s Drops, tempered glass, and laminated safety glass to today’s highly advanced bulletproof varieties in eight different grades that can withstand gunfire and increasingly severe impacts. At Bullet Guard, we design, manufacture, and install standard and custom bullet-resistant and bulletproof products, including bulletproof windows, doors, enclosures, transaction systems, and fiberglass panels (FRPs).

For over 40 years, we have created our USA-made products from materials backed by UL-752 for reliable durability to best meet the safety needs of our clients. Contact us today to learn more about our fabrication capabilities or to request a quote.

Laminated Glass vs. Tempered Glass

Laminated and tempered glass provides excellent protection against intrusions, forced entry, and general breakage. They are types of safety glass, which manufacturers specially toughen or treat so the glass is less likely to break or to splinter into dangerous shards when cracking does occur. While the two types of glass have different attributes, such as bullet resistance in laminated glass, they both have applications in doors, windows, and other barrier formats to protect the interior of a car or a commercial or residential building. It is important to know the differences between laminated glass and tempered glass for choosing the right safety glass for your needs.

Laminated Glass

Manufacturers create laminated safety glass by bonding layers of glass on either side of a layer of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) or another strong resin. For example, laminated glass with a 0.250-inch thickness is actually two 0.125-inch layers of glass on either side of a thin plastic layer. The resin lamination binds with the glass through the application of pressure and heat, and this gives the glass extra reinforcement against physical force or even bullets.

Advantages of Laminated Glass
Some of the key benefits of choosing laminated glass include:

  • Bullet resistance. Manufacturers can engineer laminated glass to be bullet-resistant. Due to the composition of this glass and its layered construction, it won’t shatter when a bullet hits it, nor will the glass fall out of its frame.
  • Shatter resistance. Since the glass bonds to a layer of resin, it stays in place, even when broken. There’s minimal risk of shards or sharp edges.
  • Versatility. With modifications, the glass can have different characteristics based on the types of resin manufacturers use and the number of glass and resin layers.
  • Additional protective characteristics. Laminated glass also reduces sound and can prevent UV light from reaching the interior of a vehicle or building.

Disadvantages of Laminated Glass
While laminated glass offers excellent protection, it can take more time to produce and is generally more expensive than tempered glass.

Tempered Glass

Tempered glass, on the other hand, is standard glass that manufacturers have toughened through heat, pressure, and chemical processes. This makes the glass stronger and better able to resist internal stress. Manufacturers will shape the glass and make any cuts or notches to it all prior to inserting it into a tempering oven as, once this step happens, the glass component will be unalterable.

Advantages of Tempered Glass
Some of the key benefits of tempered glass include:

  • Strength. The tempering process makes the glass stronger and less likely to break than laminated.
  • Cost-effectiveness. Tempered glass is more affordable to produce than laminated, making it an excellent fit for many general constructions

Disadvantages of Tempered Glass
There are some drawbacks of tempered glass compared to laminated glass. After the tempering process is complete, manufacturers cannot alter the glass or it would lead to product damage. Also, while tempered glass is quite strong, when breaking does occur, the glass will shatter and fall apart rather than stay in one general piece.

Should You Choose Laminated or Tempered Glass?

Both laminated glass and tempered glass create safer cars and buildings because of their added strength and resilience. However, when deciding on tempered versus laminated glass, the two offer different strengths and varying costs for different circumstances. For example, tempered glass provides interior safety so occupants or drivers don’t have to worry about glass-related damage or injuries. However, laminated glass offers the best protection against forced entry or bullets.

Some of the considerations to keep in mind as you’re choosing the right fit for your project include:

  • Breakage. Tempered glass will shatter and fall to the ground if hit with enough force. Laminated glass can break, but it will stay as a single sheet between the laminated layers.
  • Strength. Tempered glass is stronger than laminated glass.
  • Production. While manufacturers can shape and modify laminated glass after production, tempered glass is a final product once the tempering process is complete.
  • Additional benefits. Laminated glass has additional advantageous characteristics, like blocking UV light and muffling sound.

Bulletproof Glass & Products From Bullet Guard

At Bullet Guard Corporation, we specialize in creating innovative, reliable bulletproof and bullet-resistant windows, doors, panels, and barriers. Our customized safety glass construction will meet your security needs in applications from banks and courtrooms to pharmacies and ticket counters. We offer complete design, fabrication, and installation services, and our expert team is here to assist you throughout the process.

Contact us today to learn more about our products and services, or request a quote to start your order.

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