Oak Cottage Windows

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John McM

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Hello Folks,
I harbour ambitions to replace my old rotten windows in my cottage but can't afford bespoke timber replacements. UPVC would be inappropriate. I would like to combine all the benefits of modern high performance windows with the warmth and beauty of oak. Kind of rob the plastic window industry of all their ideas and use them in simple wooden casements. I'm a hobbyist, armed with more enthusiasm than knowledge. That's where you 'old sweats' come in.
My current windows have georgian glazing bars but I can't face another summer painting the blighters. I'd rather listen to my beard grow. Instead the new units will be the leaded light type.
I plan to use a 1/2 router window sash set to make the casements, such as:-
www.woodmagazine.com/wood/story.jhtml?s ... ta/302.xml

To incorporate the rebates for d/g units, the casements would have to be in thicker stock than that suggested. Can I use this set anyway and make an additional cut with a tablesaw to fashion the rebate?
Is it practical to fit friction hinges to timber windows?
Is it practical to fit Espag/Shootbolt locking mechanisms to timber windows?
What weather seal/draught strip should I use?
Is linseed oil the best finish? I do not want to paint them.
Indeed is oak a good choice and what moisture content is ok for exterior joinery?
Have I missed anything?
It's the 1 area of wood crafts with virtually no written material. I can only find a few pages in the odd joinery text type book.

Anyway, many thanks in anticipation
John McM
 

JFC

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I think your better off using an ovolo cutter http://www.axminster.co.uk/product.asp?pf_id=20961&name=ovolo+cutter&user_search=1&sfile=1&jump=0 and a straight cutter for the rebate . I use wider stock when fitting double glazing so i can hide the metal in the rebate and still get a casement opener onto the timber thats left . So 55mm x 45 mm rather than 45mm x45mm . If you rip it out of 75mm x 50 mm PAR you can use the off cuts for your blazing beads .
Mighton http://www.mightonproducts.com/ sell all the draught seals etc that you will need .



You type faster than me Mr G :lol:
 

jasonB

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Don't forget you will have to get the new windows approved by your local Building Control. Worth having a word with them first to see what they are looking for with regards to part L and if your cottage is listed you may not be able to alter the material or design.

Jason
 

John McM

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Thanks for your help gents. Can anyone recommend a source of reference material for making windows? I can make mortice and tenons ok and rout rebates and mouldings but scribing the rail to the stile is the bit I'm particularly unclear about. I thought I could get round it by using a matching window sash set. Also I forgot to ask about adding ventilation. Do you just rout a groove for the little grills or drill a series of holes? I would run everything past building control although the cottage is not listed. I still don't want to paint them. Once was enough. In light of that what wood be the best option? I thought perhaps Rustins Flexterior as a finish. I have a bit of time for the research, still got to finish the rocking horse for my daughters Xmas pressie first.
Many thanks
John
 

JFC

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Scribing ..... Just put you're M&T together and mark the moulding , cut out the shape and lose the rest where the joint is . In other words make your moulding as deep as your rebate and cut off the moulding where the joint is . ( dont forget to add the extra length to your top and bottom rail )
 

JFC

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The extra length comes from remembering the timber is not ?mm anymore as you lose the moulding .
Its caught me out a few times when ive been busy :oops:
Its how ive perfected launching timber across the workshop without hitting the windows :lol:
 

Keith Smith

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John, oak isn't the most ideal timber for windows, but they can look great.

I laminate the windows I make, each rail and stile is made from 3 pieces which makes them very much more stable, it means that there are potentially few actual joints, just something for you to consider.

As for finishing, the Nation Trust use linseed oil, I think because it is traditional but Tung oil or Garden furniture oil is better IMHO. The instructions may say don't wipe off the excess if used outdoors, but ignore that. The windows will need constant maintenance though re-oiling once or twice a year depending on exposure. I wouldn't recommend varnishing them, they go black underneath and you are left with no alternative but to sand it all off.

Its best to treat the windows with a clear preservative before finishing, oak has a lot of spores in it and they will turn black making the windows look a mess, for a while at least, if you don't.

Keith
 

John McM

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Keith Smith":10d2skhp said:
John, oak isn't the most ideal timber for windows, but they can look great.

What wood do you use ?
Keith Smith":10d2skhp said:
I laminate the windows I make, each rail and stile is made from 3 pieces which makes them very much more stable, it means that there are potentially few actual joints, just something for you to consider.

Do you alternate the grain ? Can you give me an idea of the sizes you use so I can play around with the idea in Sketchup ?

Chaps, I think you've convinced me I don't need a "set", but how do you mark and cut the scribe. You make it sound easy.

Many thanks
John
 

Keith Smith

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John and you though making windows was easy :wink:

What wood do you use ?

Oak :roll: :lol: It's not ideal but most of my work is out in the country, barn conversions and old cottages, most are listed or in conservation areas so oak it has to be.

Do you alternate the grain ?

No, it's not like ply, the grain all runs in the same direction.

Can you give me an idea of the sizes you use?

This isn't so easy as there are so many options, depending on if the windows are storm proof, double glazing thickness, glazing bead size, is there drainage for the double glazing or solid bed etc etc.

As a rough guide I make the central frame the same thickness as the double glazing unit with the two outer frames 15mm.

I normally don't cut mouldings in the frame, the glazing bead has any moulding detail.

Keith
 

Keith Smith

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Jacob, I sort of fell into laminating opening lights; a neighbour came round one Sunday morning he had opened a window and it had literally fallen to pieces. He needed a replacement fast and I didn't have any suitable timber; so I laminated one up. It worked really well and I was recommending John to consider this as it simplifies constructing casements. I don't normally laminate frames, although I did once when I had to fit two types of draught exclusion strip and the cutter wouldn't reach.

I appreciate it's a lot more work but I feel I'm able to make stronger joints this way, useful if I'm fitting 28mm dg units in a very fine frame for instance.

Plus oak being the price it is more efficient in timber use and I'm able to use up a lot of my off-cuts.

Keith
 

John McM

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I live in a very rural spot and really like the oak look so I'll go with that. I'll experiment with traditional and laminated. Maybe make a trial casement using each method.

Keith,
What hinges do you use?
How do you make the drainange for the d/g unit - just drill holes in middle frame ? What sort of size?

Thanks again
John
 

Keith Smith

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What hinges do you use?

Something like this for stormproof hinges;

http://www.isaaclord.co.uk/prodData.asp?prodid=1288&SubCat=5

How do you make the drainage for the d/g unit - just drill holes in middle frame ? What sort of size?

There are two schools of thought for fitting dg units with silicon glazing compound. One is to completely bed the unit in silicon leaving no gaps, the other is to provide drainage to the edge of the dg unit. This is achieved by only sealing the glass where it presses up against the inside face of the rebate. The glass is offered up and a gap is left all round the unit by packing the unit with spacers. I find it's best to make the rebate slightly deeper to accommodate it and hide the metal edge. I cut two or three slots in the bottom rebate to provide drainage; the bottom glazing bead projects out from the frame and has a drip bead incorporated when this is fitted you need to make sure the drainage slots aren't blocked with silicon. Then the rest of the glazing beads can be fitted making sure the gap round the dg unit isn't filled with silicon.

I don't know if this make sense :roll: but this is the recommended method of fixing as far as I am aware, but to be honest I'm not sure it makes much difference. Even in plastic windows, with thoroughly drained edges, the dg units are still prone to fail. It strikes me that many units are faulty at manufacture but it takes a long time, years, for the tiny hole to fog the glass because the desiccant in the beading absorbs the moisture for a time.

Keith
 

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