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Did not pass a car but I was pulling my trailer Considering direction of wheel rotation and fenders it seems unlikely a rock could have come from the trailer’s wheel but I suppose it could have. Oh well.

Going to take a week to get a replacement. Luckily I have another car to drive in the mean time.


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Yep.

As soon as I saw the title I instantly thought that you must have been towing something.

The FJ kicked up a rock and the rock would have bounced off of the trailer and into the window.
That's why a lot of offroad trailers have an angled approach on the front of them.... like Patriot Campers do.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
A 1 in a million shot I think. But I have no better explanation. What’s the saying? When you eliminate all the false theories whatever is left must be the truth. Or something like that?




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Looking at the picture of your rig and trailer, it is entirely possible that a pebble got squeezed under the trailer tire just right at 30-40 mph so that it squirted forward. Or one could have been caught loosely in the trailer tire groove, slipped out on the front side of the tire and bounced off the ground and up onto the rear glass, assuming it was just the right size. Freak accidents like this happen. Or it could have come off the rear tire of the FJ, ricocheted off the trailer just right and hit the rear glass. That is one of the very minor drawbacks of towing trailers. Chances of this happening are as much as being hit by lightning. But it still happens all the time.

I don't think a stress fracture based on a connection to a hinge or something like that would have waited 12 years! Sometimes, on a paved highway, there isn't a car in front or opposing within 5 car lengths and you hear a sharp crack of a stone fly up. **** happens.
 

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I was driving to Montrose on County Rd 1, which is unpaved, at about 35 to 40 miles an hour when the rear window in the FJ shattered into a million pieces. I don’t think it was a rock as I can’t figure out how a rock could hit the rear window that hard when I am going the other way.

Any ideas on what might have caused this?


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While the trailer might be the cause of your window, I had a very similar experience with my rear window. I was driving across the Mojave desert at about 6 in the morning. I stopped for breakfast then took off. By the time we left breakfast it was 98 degrees. I get on i40 and all of a sudden my glass spiderwebs and shatters into a million pieces. Long story short I had dealer in LA overnight a piece of glass to Flagstaff and it was waiting for me when I got there. After talking to the bodyshop owner asking the same question you are, he said that “he has seen it before and 9 times out of 10, it is a small existing stress fracture that causes it to shatter. In my case, he said “parking in the sun during breakfast and driving with my ac blasting was the straw that broke the window.” Good luck with your repair.
 

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I’ve had it happen while pulling a trailer. Stone off the back wheel bounced of my trailer fender and blew the back window out. Sounded just like it was taken out by a gunshot. Hopefully you’ll have it
covered by you insurance like mine was. Good luck! Stumper
 

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Exactly what Bigguy said.

Wife and I were towing our NRS raft last summer on a paved road and BAMM!

Same thing. Window shattered. No Bullet found. No rock found. All I can figure is a rock flew out of a rear tire, hit the trailer and ricocheted up enough to hit the glass but not come through(?)
 

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I thought all glass on a car had to be safety glass including the doors. Is there a different rule for rear windows? That is definitely not safety glass. It might be tempered glass which can fail in some funny ways. A friend had a shower door start a slow crumble in the middle of the night for no apparent reason. He heard some noise and watched the cracks grow and pieces fall. The shower door people said it happens all the time.

Jumping subjects. The old man's car had a safety glass windshield spontaneously crack while parked in the afternoon Phoenix sun. It was about 110degF that day.
 

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"I thought all glass on a car had to be safety glass"

You are correct, all of the side and rear glass is tempered (which is extremely strong, but shatters into a million tiny squares when chipped), and the windshield is laminated glass (which has a PVB layer between two sheets of thin, flexible plate glass, which when broken, the PVB stretches and deforms to hold the glass shards together to hold you in, but who's glass edges are incredibly sharp so they'll cut skin if touched).

The reason why the windshield is different is because stone chips cause it to get impacts far more often.

Laminated glass is very soft. Individual stone chips don't always, immediately propagate, and when they do, overall visibility is usually still possible. Its flexibility is key to being able to laminate the layers together (the two sheets of curved glass must be able to conform to each other, and the PVB sheet, during the process to avoid air bubbles or gaps which would affect visibility).

So, although tempered glass windshields were used for some time (up until the '60s in the US, sometime later in Europe), the rule was eventually changed to laminated glass, so that at high speeds a single stone chip would not result in the whole thing in your face and lap.

Tempered glass, because it is so strong, and because stone chips and high speed are rare in bathrooms and buildings, it is the usual go-to for building construction where strength is required. Also, tempered is way cheaper to make, than laminated.


By the way, in recent years, high end vehicles have begun using laminated glass on the side windows, because the inner, resin sheet can provide a noise dampening benefit. Although the window costs more it makes the cabin quieter.


N
 

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Rock off of FJ tire hit the trailer and ricocheted back into the window.

This is what happened to a friend of mine on our way to Moab.
 

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Any of those red strap buckles near the glass? It doesn't take a lot of force for car window glass to shatter with a pointy piece of metal. I've done it just throwing a BB at a window before.
 
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