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Handling it well  – Form meets function in an everyday object

You touch it countless times a day, but when you try to describe the handle you're holding from memory, the right words fail you. Is it long or short, does it fit smoothly in your hand or is it rough like a foreign object? We touch handles so subconsciously when entering rooms and opening windows that we rarely notice the small details in this everyday object. But they're always present. Handles are used every day to help circulate air in rooms or connect the room to nature through open windows. While it may be a tool which performs a function, its design shouldn't be relegated to second place. It can also be experienced by all the senses, including sight and touch.

You never get a second chance at a first impression – and they are formed quickly. Facial studies have shown that it takes just 400 milliseconds for people to form an initial impression of someone else. But it's not just our eyes that decide our interactions, it's also our sense of touch – one of the most important perception tools in humans – which helps us to process information in a given situation. The skin allows us to sort and assess aspects such as pressure, contact, surface structure and temperature, through touch and movement. Haptic resistance gives immediate feedback to the user on the desired function. Grip and touch – the meaning is reflected most notably in everyday life when we sense materials and shapes.

The visual effect of a product played a key role in its design right up to the 1980s. The car industry initially discovered haptic perception for itself as a sales-boosting element. Interested buyers can touch the car, grip the steering wheel, feel the surfaces and control buttons. It's no wonder that so-called sensor labs conduct research into haptic components. Dr Martin Grunwald, a psychologist at the University of Leipzig and Head of the Haptic Research Laboratory at the Paul-Flechsig-Institute for Brain Research, goes one step further. He believes that our day-to-day life is a "tactile space" which is mostly explored subconsciously as these features cannot be seen visually. Even though the process is subconscious, our sense of touch has a huge influence on our perception. But it's not just tactile qualities which are important in an object; the shape, surface and colour are also key to the overall impact. A nice handle can be eye-catching and intensify the effect of a room, through both its geometry and surface quality.

Schüco provides window and door handles to meet all requirements. 
What needs to be taken into account when selecting a handle?

Functionality and quality

A handle combines the functions of opening, sliding and locking in one unit. In addition to the choice of material and type of handle, its positioning also needs to be considered. The number and arrangement of handles will depend on the size, type of movement and weight of the opening unit. A heavy glass sliding door is easier to open with a floor-to-ceiling pull grip or embedded flush pull grip than a small handle knob. Opening units that are used every day and are subjected to regular stress need to have the corresponding equipment and robustness.

Look and feel

Schüco has developed a range of handles which fit seamlessly into the stylish range of Schüco windows and doors with their matching design. The universal handles have a timeless, simple language of form. In addition to the clean lines – complemented by concealed fittings – the high quality ensures a timeless look. The universal design ensures a uniform appearance, not only for handles, but also for all opening types and applications within the range of Schüco window and door systems. In order to meet all the requirements, the handles are available in aluminium and some in stainless steel, as well as with different surface finishes, from anodised silver to RAL colours.

Safety and service

Around 40% of all house break-ins are made via the window. Replacing standard handles with a lockable handle makes it harder for burglars to get into the house through the window.

Although lockable window handles look the same as "standard" window handles, they have an additional locking function in the form of a cylinder lock integrated in the handle. However, lockable handles are not just suitable for adding additional burglar resistance, they also provide child locks.

The numerous accolades, including the red dot design award, iF product design award and Design Plus, all underline the standards of quality at Schüco.

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