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Old 17th July 2013, 21:30   #1
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Default The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Hello Guys,

Wanted to post this topic from long so started searching the forum to avoid a repeat but could not find any thread, so starting this new one.

I have seen many cars which sport a black border on the rear wind shield. My question and point of doubt is:

1) What is the use of this border (Aesthetically and Functionality wise)?

2) Why are there variations in it's size when seen in cars from different segments (Hatches, Sedans, UV and SUV etc)?

On what basis does the manufacturer design this border for a car and why not keep it at a minimum level so as to enhance rearward visibility.

I am uploading pictures of the various cars which sport the various sizes of the Black Border on its wind shield.

Hatchbacks

Maruti Alto K10
Name:  alto_k10_08.jpg
Views: 2372
Size:  103.6 KB

Maruti A-Star
Name:  AStar.jpg
Views: 1997
Size:  176.2 KB

Chevrolet Beat
Name:  chevy_beat_12.jpg
Views: 2043
Size:  115.9 KB

Chevrolet Sail
Name:  chevysailuva04.jpg
Views: 2016
Size:  90.4 KB

Fiat Punto
Name:  Fiat_Grande_Punto_.jpg
Views: 2080
Size:  89.3 KB

Ford Figo
Name:  ford_figo_05.jpg
Views: 2106
Size:  108.3 KB

Honda Brio
Name:  hondabrio05.jpg
Views: 2092
Size:  94.7 KB

Hyundai Eon
Name:  hyundaieon06.jpg
Views: 2382
Size:  125.7 KB

Hyundai i10
Name:  hyundaii1002.jpg
Views: 1922
Size:  103.9 KB

Hyundai i20
Name:  hyundaii2017.jpg
Views: 1972
Size:  69.5 KB

Mahindra Reva
Name:  mahindrarevae2o05.jpg
Views: 1963
Size:  110.4 KB

Maruti Alto 800
Name:  Marutialto80004.jpg
Views: 2400
Size:  137.1 KB

Maruti Swift
Name:  marutiswift15.jpg
Views: 2023
Size:  125.6 KB

Nissan Micra
Name:  nissanmicrafacelift03.jpg
Views: 1930
Size:  190.3 KB

Maruti Ritz
Name:  Ritz.jpg
Views: 1970
Size:  215.4 KB

Tata Nano
Name:  tatanano201205.jpg
Views: 1863
Size:  72.5 KB

VW Polo
Name:  vw_polo_09.jpg
Views: 1874
Size:  50.0 KB

Maruti WagonR
Name:  WagonR.jpg
Views: 1945
Size:  73.2 KB

Sedans

Ford Fiesta
Name:  ford_fiesta New.jpg
Views: 1841
Size:  124.4 KB

Honda Amaze
Name:  hondaamazesedan04.jpg
Views: 1872
Size:  167.6 KB

Hyundai Elantra
Name:  hyundaielantra06.jpg
Views: 1890
Size:  106.8 KB

Fiat Linea
Name:  lineatjet02.jpg
Views: 1852
Size:  130.3 KB

Maruti Swift Dzire
Name:  marutidzire07.jpg
Views: 2562
Size:  79.5 KB

Renault Scala
Name:  renaultscala03.jpg
Views: 1909
Size:  155.9 KB

Tata Indigo Manza
Name:  tata_manza_11.jpg
Views: 1783
Size:  65.9 KB

Note: Source of Images are from the Official Test & Review threads of the cars. Thank you!

Awaiting response from the gurus and all on this issue. Hope my doubt is not a silly one and want to get this cleared.

Thanks,

Anurag.

Last edited by a4anurag : 17th July 2013 at 23:30. Reason: Adding Images
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Old 17th July 2013, 22:17   #2
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

UV's/SUV's

Audi Q3
Name:  audiq321.jpg
Views: 1734
Size:  102.0 KB

Chevrolet Enjoy
Name:  chevyenjoy03.jpg
Views: 1855
Size:  104.9 KB

Ford Ecosport
Name:  Ecosport.jpg
Views: 1900
Size:  88.9 KB

Ford Endeavour
The rear windshield's black border - What for?-endeavour.jpg

Honda CR-V
Name:  hondacrv09.jpg
Views: 1752
Size:  208.0 KB

Mahindra Quanto
Name:  mahindraquanto05.jpg
Views: 1785
Size:  203.9 KB

Mahindra XUV 5OO
Name:  mahindraxuv5oo06.jpg
Views: 2011
Size:  113.3 KB

Maruti Ertiga
Name:  marutiertiga.jpg
Views: 1781
Size:  112.9 KB

Nissan Evalia
Name:  nissanevalia04.jpg
Views: 1718
Size:  91.9 KB

Renault Duster
Name:  renaultduster03.jpg
Views: 2560
Size:  142.1 KB

Tata Safari Storme
Name:  Safari Storme.jpg
Views: 1847
Size:  102.7 KB

Skoda Yeti
Name:  skodayeti03.jpg
Views: 1671
Size:  88.5 KB

Tata Aria
Name:  tataaria10.jpg
Views: 1737
Size:  136.2 KB

Toyota Fortuner
Name:  toyota_fortuner_india_exterior_DSC03413.jpg
Views: 1768
Size:  134.0 KB

Observations:

1) The hatchbacks have a medium thick border on it is rear wind shield

2) The sedans sport the least thickness of the border and

3) The UV/SUV sport a thick border as compared to the rest.

What could be the reason for this?

Cheers,
Anurag
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:03   #3
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Note from Mod : Thread moved to technical thread.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:09   #4
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Check the inside of the windhshield - the black border that you see from outside, acutally hides the frame of the door.

There are two ways a rear windshield is mounted.
1. Like the old SUV's (eg: Sumo) - the door has a cut-out for the windshield - this cut-out is surrounded by a metal border. The windshield is then mounted using a beading.

2. The cars that you have shown above :
The windshield is stuck on to the metal border, giving a more aesthetically pleasing look. The black border hides the metal frame of the door.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:19   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by condor View Post
2. The cars that you have shown above :
The windshield is stuck on to the metal border, giving a more aesthetically pleasing look. The black border hides the metal frame of the door.
Thanks Condor for the prompt reply.

If that's the case then why the size (thickness) must vary so much?! If it's stuck into the frame then you mean to say the frame is that thick? For example look at the Chevrolet Beat, Ford Ecosport.. They all have a thick border that hamper visibility and I don't think the frame would be so thick.

If the border is designed to hide the frame then Sedans have a low frame as many have a low border. Structural integrity is in question so nothing much can be done to decrease this birder issue. Right?

Cheers,
Anurag.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:30   #6
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Most rear windshields these days come with electric defoggers. Some of them also have radio antennas built into them. So in my opinion another reason for the black border may be to hide the wire ends.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:35   #7
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

I vaguely remember seeing this assembly process during Toyota Bidadi visit.
Behind the black border and the metal frame, there is also a some black glue which the operator applies (some greasy and rubbery glue), so it makes sense to make the black border more sensible and stylish to cover all these things happening behind it.

But mainly, i think that's what is holding the glass to the frame.
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Old 18th July 2013, 11:41   #8
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post
-If that's the case then why the size (thickness) must vary so much?! If it's stuck into the frame then you mean to say the frame is that thick?
1. The thickness of the border on each side - top vs sides vs bottom vs corner will depend on the thickness of the frame of the door on that side of the cut-out for the windshield.

That's why you will see the sides and/or bottom to be thicker

2. The corners show more border, partly for aesthetic reasons. In some cars like Santro / A-star, the rear indicators bulge into the winshield area, and hence the corner looks thicker.
..
Quote:
have a thick border that hamper visibility and I don't think the frame would be so thick.
- Yes we do complain of thick pillar areas that hamper visibility. Would be a trade-off for this type of windshield mounting - which gives a better mounting than in the case of beading mounted windshields.
(compare the older cars with the newer cars - Amby / Padmini / 800 vs any of the cars you have listed here)


Quote:
If the border is designed to hide the frame then Sedans have a low frame as many have a low border.
Not frame of the car, but frame of the door where the windshield is.

Quote:
Structural integrity is in question so nothing much can be done to decrease this birder issue. Right?
Not much, for this type of economy designs, IMHO.
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Old 18th July 2013, 12:05   #9
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Rear glasses are not mounted on the main structure for all hatch backs and SUVs. Its different on a sedan and hence you will find lesser black material used on the rear glass. The black material is vinyl with industrial glue to hold the glass in place. Earlier thick rubber strips around used to do the work.

This is done more from a aesthetic point of view (to provide a flush fit) and also to save cost.
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Old 18th July 2013, 12:21   #10
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

It depends on a mix of parameters -
1. To hide the metal frame, glue used to fix the wind shield.
2. To avoid de -fogger metal strip heads being visible from outside
3. Aesthetic appeal.
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Old 18th July 2013, 13:08   #11
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vikram_d View Post
Most rear windshields these days come with electric defoggers. Some of them also have radio antennas built into them. So in my opinion another reason for the black border may be to hide the wire ends.
Quote:
Originally Posted by mpksuhas View Post
It depends on a mix of parameters -
2. To avoid de -fogger metal strip heads being visible from outside
I would beg to differ from everyone who feels that it is there to hide the connection of Electric Defoggers. If you see the LS / PS model of Chevrolet Beat, even they have this black border, whereas these variants don't come with defoggers. Same with LX model of Alto, or any car's lower variant without defoggers.

I would more likely agree to Condor's first explanation - It hides the ugly looking metal frame + Aesthetic appeal (as mpksuhas mentioned).

Adding to this, my Chevy Beat has this black frame even on the front windshield !!! And I don't see any defoggers here. So I can bet, that it is purely to hide metal frames and make the car look stylish and beautiful.


The rear windshield's black border - What for?-dsc04047.jpg

The rear windshield's black border - What for?-img_1994.jpg
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Old 18th July 2013, 13:19   #12
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Soumyajit9 View Post
I would beg to differ from everyone who feels that it is there to hide the connection of Electric Defoggers. If you see the LS / PS model of Chevrolet Beat, even they have this black border, whereas these variants don't come with defoggers. Same with LX model of Alto, or any car's lower variant without defoggers.

I would more likely agree to Condor's first explanation - It hides the ugly looking metal frame + Aesthetic appeal (as mpksuhas mentioned).

Adding to this, my Chevy Beat has this black frame even on the front windshield !!! And I don't see any defoggers here. So I can bet, that it is purely to hide metal frames and make the car look stylish and beautiful
The black border on the Front Wind Shield is there on all cars but the point is it is uniform thickness on the front in all cars but not the same on the rear wind shield.

I too feel condor has explained the point well and seems mainly for aesthetic appeal and to hide the frame below.

Anurag.
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Old 18th July 2013, 13:40   #13
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

It is there to hide the black adhesive (tar like) which holds the glass to the frame. The adhesive, since applied manually will not have an even finish & spread when the glass is pressed to the frame. It needs to be hidden. Difference in width between car models is because of the difference in door frame designs and aesthetics.

Sedans generally will not have any door design interference or tail lamp design aesthetics under the glass & hence less width.
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Old 18th July 2013, 13:41   #14
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by a4anurag View Post

The black border on the Front Wind Shield is there on all cars but the point is it is uniform thickness on the front in all cars but not the same on the rear wind shield.

I too feel condor has explained the point well and seems mainly for aesthetic appeal and to hide the frame below.

Anurag.
Exactly, that is what I am trying to put forward. There is no special reason for putting up those black borders, except covering up the ugly metal frame + black adhesive. For the front windshield, most have a fixed design, mostly rectangle. So the border is uniform. Coming to the rear windshield, the structure varies. So the width of the border varies. If I make the rear border width for my Beat, a little thinner, I am sure it would expose the rear speakers a bit. So the border is wider in my Beat.

Last edited by Soumyajit9 : 18th July 2013 at 13:42.
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Old 18th July 2013, 13:41   #15
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Default re: The rear windshield's black border - What for?

I believe the thickness relates to the width of frame / monocoque that will be exposed when the hatch is opened. So its closely related with the hatch / rear door design. In case of the sedans, design is such that there are no hinges nor are their any other parts like struts / AC vents behind the rear windshield on the C pillar. So there is not much to hide, and thus the black border is the thinnest. In cars where there is a rear hatch / door that takes the rear windshield along, the black border will be thick.
In UVs / hatches, these parts come into picture along with inner body panels & plastic moldings which are broader than the door border besides the cut-out area. So these have to be hidden using the black border.

Last edited by Reinhard : 18th July 2013 at 13:45.
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