Massachusetts Manufacturer Launches Sashlite Line

July 1, 2007

National Vinyl Products recently joined the list of window manufacturers offering a product line that incorporates integrated sash technology from Sashlite Inc. The Chicopee, Mass.-based vinyl window manufacturer recently launched its Contempo line, targeting high-end remodeling dealers with the product. Based on initial response, the company is “expecting great things,” according to Scott Channell, president.

Grid notching equipment at National Vinyl Products for its new Contempo line.

“We decided to go with Sashlite for its performance, quality and aesthetics. Most importantly, we felt that Sashlite would allow us to differentiate ourselves in the competitive New England marketplace,” he continues. The new line includes a double-hung, slider, picture window and basement hopper. Further establishing it in the high end, it is available in white, tan and eight standard painted colors.

Sashlite’s technology eliminates separate IG unit construction and instead incorporates a vinyl sash with an integral spacer that two lites of glass are glazed to directly. The design is said to deliver superior warm-edge performance, as well as enhanced structural properties. Admitting he was “one of its biggest critics” when the technology first launched, Channell notes that he took his time to really look at the process and the product’s performance. “I was happy to let other companies try it out first,” he adds. The technology’s track record in the field, as well as the success of other manufacturers offering Sashlite lines, however, convinced him it would be right for National Vinyl.

“For a company our size, there’s always the question, ‘How do you separate yourself?,’” he continues. “There’s service of course, but we also want to do it with technology and innovations. I believe we’re aligned with the future of window manufacturing.”

Channell credits Northeast Building Products—another Chelsea Building Products fabricator based in Philadelphia—with “shortening the learning curve” for his company in implementing the Sashlite process. “They opened their doors for us and really let us see the operation.” Northeast’s success with the product, as well as the success of other initial Sashlite manufacturers, helped convince Channell to add the new line at his company, he states.

The integrated sash process is very lean, Channell notes, and he predicts this approach will eventually become the standard for the industry. “For now,” he says, “it provides a great niche for a fabricator like us.”

In introducing the Contempo line, National Vinyl has developed a fully integrated marketing program. “It’s a differentiated, value-added product and we want to work with and support dealers who appreciate the value and sell it.” The early response from dealers, he adds, has been good. “The ones that get it are really excited.”