Perhaps you read the title and are anticipating advice or recommendations regarding those essential, but often overlooked, pieces of hardware on virtually every door. However, this blog is about the actual hinge tips…or tops…aka, the ends.
The button tip is the most common hinge top or tip. It is supplied “standard” unless you specify an “optional tip.” Options, for Hager Hinges, include Ball, Steeple, Acorn and Urn, which are all decorative, and available at extra cost.
Recently, Hager’s Ginny Powell Tweeted, “Need a little bling for your hinges?” and included a link to Hager Hinges’ ornamental metal accessories.
Bling may not be a term most architects would use, but it was ideal for a social media connection to these often neglected alternatives for plain button top hinges.
The optional tip that is most often specified in institutional facilities, however, is the Hospital, or Anti-Ligature, Tip. The hinge barrel ends are sloped, making cleaning easier, and making it difficult to attach rope or wearing apparel.
The Ives Hinge literature describes their Hospital Tip this way: “Ligature resistant sloped tip improves patient safety. Available option on IVES architectural hinges and pin and barrel continuous hinges.”
Hager’s line of Detention Hardware includes, among other models, the IHTAB850 three knuckle Institutional Prison Hinge, shown above, with welded, anti-ligature, Hospital Tips.
At a meeting I recently attended, one of the hardware “trends” that we charted was, sadly, increased specification of “Anti-Ligature Hardware.” Allegion just published a marketing piece titled, “Ligature Resistant Solutions,” which, in addition to introducing new ligature-resistant products, cited statistics like, “Suicide is the 11th leading cause of death in the United States, with an estimated 800,000 people attempting and over 34,000 people succeeding in taking their life annually.” And, “1,500 suicides occur in hospitals each year.”
The humble hinge goes mostly unnoticed, but it is playing an increasingly important role in the safety and security of a door near you.