Exit Hardware On Glass Doors?

I have come across this door that a customer would like to secure with Card Reader. This is a required emergency exit and the preference would be to provide an electric strike with hardware to allow free egress. Has anyone come across this type of hardware scenario?

RCI does make a 3360 Cushion LOK that can be fitted to Glass Doors like this but my issue with the lock is there is no mechanism for free Egress from one side. This device is similar to utilizing a Maglock with activation required entering or leaving. Is anyone familiar to other hardware similar to this but only requiring activation when entering and some mechasism allowing free egress when exiting?

Any assistance or advice would be appreciated.


Is the issue finding the right hardware to mount on glass doors? I think so, but I wasn't sure from your post.

Is the opening frameless glass? Like butt-ajoined or Herculite?

Is there existing panic hardware/exit devices hung on the door?

Additional Shots of door hardware

Sorry I thought I had attached the photos, they just didn't upload first time.

Anyways see attched photos.

I perform this exercise every three months or so. I have seen nothing UL rated an AHJ will accept in the US. I did see one from a Russian company a few months ago that I thought was pretty neat, but he has no plans to market it here in the US. Sorry dude. Unless this is planned from the build-out, there are no answers I know of.

That door is a nightmare!!! :(

So much glass, so many patchblocks, but literally zero options for traditional electrified locks.

Do you know if there are any hardware options to retrofit the door leverset to an exit paddle? I cannot easily see what type of door hardware is already installed, but maybe you can retrofit free egress mechanically and use the RCI cushion-lok? I'd also call CR Laurence to see if they have an option here.

For all, this is a classic issue with electronic access. We cover it in our Glass Doors and Access Control note, that also includes one of my favorite youtube clips of all time that bluntly shows off why maglocks are a terrible choice in the application:

I'm confused a little.

Isn't it legal to have a motion activated sensor that unlocks on the secure side instead of a crash bar, as long as the door fails-safe on fire or power loss?

Sorry if it's a stupid question, I may be misunderstanding the requirement.

You're talking about RTE: Request to Exit devices.

The short answer is that free egress must be maintained for emergency exits. This can be done mechanically (via exit devices) or through common pushbuttons or PIR sensors.

IBC / NFPA does not require PIRs. They do require pushbuttons. The option to use multiple forms of RTE varies per occupancy code, but in general, the PIR RTE is for convieniece, not a code requirement.

As far as the OP's case, he made the statement "Is anyone familiar to other hardware similar to this but only requiring activation when entering and some mechasism allowing free egress when exiting?"

In this situation, Maglocks with Pushbuttons and/or PIR RTE are not an option, because OP needs to allow free egress always without pushing release button. Beyond that, mounting a maglock to glass is not easy, nor very dependable.

Even if he used a PIR with a strike of some type, the door hardware needs to be modified with exit devices.

If that is not an option, there is the issue of hiding wires to/from the sensors and the locks on a pane of glass. Interfacing with multiple RTE devices can make the opening look messy if cable aren't hidden, and someone who pays for a glass opening will certainly be sensitive to the appearance of wires.

So yes, using a 'motion activated sensor' is 'legal', but not fully compliant with code.

What he said.

Thanks for the explanation.

You said that:

...because OP needs to allow free egress always without pushing release button.

This is what I'm missing. So in the case of a Mag-Lock for instance, wouldn't the Rex-motion alone allow the free egress, or are you saying the button always has to be pressed as well?

The REX alone is not sufficent. Even if it works to release the door everytime when situations are 'normal', the pushbutton still needs to be installed so circumstances like smoke obscuring the sensor or it going wonky don't trap people inside.

I understand the button must always be installed.

I asked if it had to be pressed to provide free egress or if the Rex-motion would be sufficient to provide free egress in normal situations.

So is there still a code violation with the following and/or does it not meet the OP's requirement?

1. Glass door with electric door strike.

2. Rex-Motion allowing egress during normal operation.

3. Push button RTE on the secure side of the door.

No, what you describe would be code compliant, unless the AHJ was just cranky.

You just have to wire all that mess to a device hung/glued to a glass opening. Like I mentioned earlier even if you can hang it, exposed wiring is often a showstopper with a glass door.

FWIW & IMHO, the structural failure of the panel was most likely due to

  1. A defect in the tempered glass introduced in the annealing process.
  2. Drilling or sanding of the outside perimeter.

You can sometimes 'get away' with working the outside mm or so because it's actually not tempered, though it's still risky because you never know if you've fatally weakened it until...Pop!

As violent as it looks, I doubt a swinging MagLock alone would cause loss of integrity to a well-tempered and un-machined commercial door panel.

If there was a defect, perhaps it was fortunate the MagLock fell when it did. MagLock:0 Glass Door: -1

That is not stupid question at all. In general, it is legal, but is entirely at the discretion of the AHJ. The door unlocking upon activation of a fire alarm is a separate issue. It must. Your best course of action is to ask your local AHJ what he wants. He will be the one that approves the work.

For the most part I have seen your description approved, but certainly not always. Not by a long shot. I have also seen local codes that require a smoke detector wired in to the system on one side of the door, and I have seen local codes that require a smoke on both sides.

In addition to the REX motion, generally speaking, you must also install a REQ device, a button, that will manually unlock the door if pushed. It directly interrupts lock power at the button.

Pretty vague I know, but so are the codes. Access codes vary greatly sometimes.

I would suggest that you check out the CR Laurence product line. They make numerous products specifically for tempered glass doors such as these, including the Blumcraft series of exit devices which can be electrified internally or used with a header mounted electric strike.

Hopefully, some combination of product can be made to fit the cutouts on your door, otherwise you are probably looking at door replacement. I think that all holes in the glass have to be made in the glass before the tempering process - trying to cut or drill the door afterwards can make it shatter.

So, this is maybe a crazy idea, but it just might work. Since the door already is modified to accept a cylindrical lockset, what if they replace what's there with a wireless set? Something like the Allegion NDE is fairly unobtrusive (though I don't recall if they work with third party ACS or not).

At worst, you could modify the backing plate/trim of what's there to support a larger lockset, something like the Schlage AD400 or a Sargent Aperio set.

Ethan,

the Allegion Engage is stand-alone only so far. The integrated OEM versions will come by the 4th quarter of 2015, from what i've been told.

We already received some sample hardware of the NDE and it wouldn't fit on that glass door, unfortunately.

IMHO, OP isn't concerned about the fitting of the strike to the door, rather he needs someway to interface with the strike to allow free egress:

RCI does make a 3360 Cushion LOK that can be fitted to Glass Doors like this but my issue with the lock is there is no mechanism for free Egress from one side.

Are these other strikes being mentioned conceptually somehow different than the RCI, or are they just less messy? I'm asking because I don't know.

The 3360 is designed for double glass doors. Normal strikes are mounted in/on the frame. OP's door has no frame.

Salto makes some nice glass door hardware that's compatible with a bunch of access control systems through their OEM brand called Salto Sallis. I don't know if it would fit correctly onto your glass door but I have seen many of these installed and they work extremely well - the advantage being that the REX, Reader, lock, door position sensor, etc are all built-in to the same wireless and battery powered lock.

The wireless Sallis router is integrated with some access control systems (ICT (that we distribute), Genetec, Brivo, Honeywell and more: I found these from a quick 2 minute web search).

this is the hardware: http://www.saltosystems.com/en/product-range/product/73/xs4-escutcheons/

- look under the Glass Door heading

I can't see the header but since there is no framing on the top of the door there isn't a lot of options. We have used epoxy and glued the armature to the glass and hung the mag lock off header with a bracket. Install a REX motion and a pneumatic push to exit button within 5 feet of the door. Use a power supply with a fire alarm interface and you are done.

The one thing the customer is not willing to consider because of overall associated costs is maglocks (with permit costs, engineered stamp drawings for permits, addition of Fire Alarm Pull stations, tie-in to Fire Alarm System, Override Keyswitch, all associated cabling in conduit, etc.) Because this would be first maglock in this building costs can easily start at $10K and go up from there.

So what we were looking at was trying to source some kind of patch fittings similar to the RCI CushionLOK but with egress hardware on the inside to allow free egress.

Our AHJ would treat any king of electrified lock that is dependant on REXs (buttons or motion) for egress the same as a Maglock (release activated by a circuit) which is why the RCI CushionLOK is not an option for this application.

Anyways, I thank everyone for their valuable input.

I just got another one of these today. The only issue with mine is the frame at the top slips down onto the door to within 3/4". So I have a 3" frame at the top, but the door goes nearly to the top of the frame. Not enough room for the bolt. I would rather their be nothing. I can feel this coming now. Try and drill close for the bolt and shatter the glass.