Is there a true competitor or alternative to the new Origin Aluminium Window?
Origin have claimed several industry firsts with the Twin Flush Window. What other products are available if a homeowner is looking to compare the Origin window with a similar product?
Comparing the Origin window to AluK, Smarts or SAPA.
It’s important to mention AluK, Smart Systems and SAPA Building Systems. These three systems companies by far dominate what is available in terms of aluminium windows in the UK. In design terms, what these three good systems companies offer in their aluminium window ranges does not enable a true like for like comparison. The main reason is window aesthetics.
With the Origin window offering the twin flush arrangement – a flush sash on both the inside and outside of the window, the other main systems do not offer a similar product. Therefore it is unfair to compare the design of this window against the others.
The other systems companies though do offer more by way of frame options. All of these systems will give you a choice of frame, vent and bead choices. On offer are flat, ovolo or chamfered features to their aluminium profiles.
All systems cater for the replacement of old windows as well as windows for new build constructions. The other systems companies also offer steel replacement windows that Origin do not if we were to accurately replicate the sight lines of old metal windows.
So for aesthetic reasons as well as those mentioned above we would say there is no direct comparison. The profile choices available are different.
Other features of the Origin Twin Flush Window.
Where the Origin window does provide some advantages over the mainstream systems is already well known from their bifolding doors.
- Origin offer a 20 year guarantee
- Origin offer lead times of one week
- The Origin window can be provided with colour matched handles to their windows.
However there is one product that we can compare against the Origin Aluminium window. This is the MB86 aluminium window available from Aluprof Systems. We can only compare these two systems against three elements that both offer. These are the flush sash casement, the Aerogel Technology and the slim aluminium window.
Who are Aluprof Systems?
Aluprof have their UK Headquarters in Altrincham Cheshire. They are a Polish company and one of the leading European system suppliers with a long history in providing great products for construction. Like many international systems companies they have an excellent portfolio of products from windows, doors, curtain walling, facade systems and much more.
The range of aluminium products available from Aluprof are exceptionally well designed. In addition they meet or exceed very high industry standards for thermal performance, security and weather resistance. Mainly regarded as a commercial system, Aluprof do actually have a fantastic range of residential door and window systems. Aluprof windows and doors are widely installed in domestic properties as part of commercial work.
The flush sash casement.
The first generation Origin window was unique in the marketplace in being able to offer the first flush sash aluminium casement window. The second generation Twin Flush window by Origin took this concept a stage further by bringing the twin flush to the inside of the window as well.
The first question to window professionals is how can a window with no visible rebate or upstand have such impressive weather ratings? Close examination of the window reveals clever design and impressive engineering. A 5mm rebate around the perimeter of the window frame as well as very sophisticated gasket technology is what makes this possible.
Having seen the window close up, we see no issues at all with a window having no visible rebates for the opening sashes to close against. Added to this is the weather tests that the Origin window has passed.
Origin we believe were the first to offer a flush sash casement window. Aluprof Systems also offer a concealed sash option to their MB–86 US version marketing it as “The Invisible Window Sash”.
The Aluprof MB–86US
The Aluprof MB–86US is a fully versatile system that can create both windows doors, large glazed screens as well as other types of glass structures. It has good aesthetics, excellent weather performance and energy efficiency.
As part of the overall Aluprof MB–86 product offering is the US version that offers a flush sash option. This is to the external face of the window only. On the inside, the window vent has an extended leg that sits against the inside of the outer frame like a rebate or upstand.
With the Aluprof window the external aesthetics are all identical on windows that have a vent next to a fixed light giving a consistent look to the outside of the window. The Origin window when provided with a dummy sash achieves the same effect.
Whilst the Aluprof aluminium window does not offer the flush sash option on the inside, what it does offer is a complete suite of products. The MB–86 system is available in other opening options such as tilt and turn windows. This is something that Origin does not offer.
Additionally the Aluprof windows and doors can be made much larger than the Origin window as can their doors. This is not really a huge consideration given that most domestic products don’t call for very large windows. However as Aluprof products are used commercially as well the provision of large screens, windows and doors would be designed into the system.
Windows with Aerogel Technology.
The Origin Twin Flush window can be upgraded with Aerogel. This is a material that has very low thermal conductivity. Origin say that when their twin flush window has the Aerogel upgrade insulation can be increased by up to 67%.
Additionally Origin say that Aerogel does not degrade from moisture or ageing and can enhance the overall thermal efficiency of the window significantly. It can provide a very impressive A++21 Energy Rating.
Origin say that they have exclusive use of Aerogel. The specifics of any exclusivity arrangement need to be clarified however Aluprof Systems also offer their MB–86 window with Aerogel. Aluprof claim a U Value of 0.57Wm2K for their MB–86 Aero window. So presently, if a consumer wishes to take advantage of aerogel technology and is aware of its benefits presently there are only two windows with Aerogel available.
The slim aluminium window.
The new Origin aluminium window features very slim lines when installed in a new build application. When used with a standard outer frame and vent, the sight lines of the Origin aluminium twin flush window are 50mm from the outside of the outer frame to the edge of the glass.
Aluprof offer their MB Slimline. This offers a fixed and opening light dimension of only 32.5mm. In practical terms neither of these windows may suit the replacement of old windows where existing plaster lines and reveals need to be considered. In both cases the companies offer frame extenders to overcome this, however this negates the slim feature of the products as standard if they’re to be made thicker by frame extenders.
However as far as slim sight lines are concerned using standard outer frames, the Aluprof window is slimmer. But for balance, its important to also say that AluK, Smarts and SAPA do offer outer frame and vent combinations that have similar dimensions from the outer frame to the glass line.
Obtaining Origin and Aluprof Windows.
Origin are the only manufacturer of their windows. This is unlike the other systems, including Aluprof who provide bar length material and accessories to their network of fabricators and/or installers. The Origin windows are widely available from their approved installers. Obtaining the Aluprof product is somewhat more difficult.
Look on the Origin website and it is very easy to be put in touch with an installer of their products. If a window company is also interested in becoming an Origin Dealer and selling their windows and doors this is also a straightforward process.
For Aluprof no details of suppliers are given. A simple call to the Aluprof is the simplest solution to finding a local supplier and installer. We are presently awaiting information from Aluprof on how the trade or the homeowner can find out more about their products, specifically where a homeowner wants to purchase a ready-made window.
What we do know is that Aluprof windows have been installed in many prestige developments in the UK in a domestic setting. These installations are typically carried out by expert companies such as Walsin, Aluminium & Glass Facades Ltd, Frostree Ltd and Northwest Rooftech to name a few.
The Origin Aluminium Window remains unique.
Apart from Aluprof also providing Aerogel, a slim window and a flush casement externally, it would appear that there is no direct like for like comparison to the Origin Twin Flush Window.
With the flush casement on both sides, the lead times, guarantees and other features of the Origin window as there is presently nothing to directly compare it against.
If you would like more information about either the Origin or the Aluprof MB86 window, please contact us.
(Aluprof Images courtesy of www.aluprof.eu)