help!! window restoration quote, are you for real????

kpaquetteMarch 11, 2009

So, I thought I had talked my husband out of removing our pretty old original windows and installing sash kits. After research on this site, I decided restore/storms was the only way I could go with a good conscience. ;-) But then we got the quote. :-(

I called Heritage Restoration in Providence, RI. (house is in Newport.) The are supposedly top notch, so I'm not worried about the quality of work. But seriously??? For $550 a window, they propose:

"Partial Sash Repairs"

All work will be performed on-site and will consist of the following:

* Remove upper and lower sash

* Mill sash to accept weather stripping

* Spot glaze missing or loose glaze

* Removal of broken panes of glass and replace with historic glass

* Removal of existing pinch locks and filling holes

* Install new spring bolts, upper sash will have one for locking purposes and lower sash will

have two installed

* Installation of all new interlocking weather stripping on jambs, sills, and meeting rails. (See

Weather Stripping Detail on next page)

* Drill holes in weather stripping at jamb in three positions (closed/locked, half open, full


* Reinstall sash to operate and function properly

For real??? The labor rates are $50/hr. How much can the materials possibly be? (I know the glass is expensive, but we are talking about a few panes.) And they aren't even totally reglazing!!! Are there $75 worth of materials per window??? So NINE HOURS of labor for each window? No Way.

Husband is going to call and talk to this guy. Because that just seems WAY off. Can someone give insight - and recommend other window restorers that will come to Newport?? I'm having a hard time finding someone.

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When I read to title of your post before opening it, what went though my head was "$1,000 a window", so to me the qoute seems fairly reasonable.

I think you'd be surprised how labor intensive the project it. Are your sashes currently painted shut? If so, loosening them without hurting the sash is a lot of work. The adjusting and making things work smoothly phase can take a while. We just had a guy come and get our pocket doors operating again, which involved adjusting cleaning greasing and tinkering with various things. It took him five hours.

But in the end, you'll have the windows that were meant to be on the house, with wonderful old glass, in good operating condition, and pretty energy efficient. Priceless.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 8:12AM
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Yes thats for real,we restored ours they took the glass from old made new to match what was there.We paid over 800 per window,we had 22 plus windows.we do like the result though.


    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 8:12AM
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And don't forget if there ismore than one person working that is $50 per person. $50/hr is cheap.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 8:21AM
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Oh lord. I guess I expected more - like total reglazing. I thought I read somewhere here a much lower number (I had in my head $350/per) but I must be getting it confused with something else. :-( All of our windows are in good working order (none are painted shut) - they just need new pinch levers and weatherstripping, maybe some glaze here and there. We have about 6 broken/cracked panes. (they are big panes, however.) DH says there's absolutely no way we're paying that much. Our wooden storm quote was also very high. I hope I can talk him into it...

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 8:55AM
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And now you see why most of the people restoring old houses do the windows themselves - even if it takes forever. It isn't complicated, but it is quite time consuming. You have to gingerly push/prod/pull/beg each piece to come out.

There are lots of resources out there on how to repair/restore old windows. All you need is a few simple tools and materials and a ton of patience.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 8:59AM
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Thank you, Bill. I'll run it by Hubby. It's tough b/c this is a long distance reno, we are doing some work ourselves (electrical, tiling, paint) but with our schedules it comes down to a cost/benefit - If hubby has to take time off work to do it then it quickly becomes more cost effective to pay someone to do it. I'll try to work that angle. LOL If it were just a few windows then it would be fine - but 16? With everything else going on, the thought of this might make his head explode.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 9:12AM
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Has anyone here had a full restoration, where they remove the windows, take them to their shop, strip all the paint, totally reglaze....that quote was for $1300. We're considering it. (ha. and we were freaking over $550.)

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 10:28AM
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We had someone "fix" all of our double hung original wood windows for $300 per window. All were painted shut, needed new rope and weights. One needed new glass which I purchased and delivered to them at the house. No weather strips, no spring bolts.

This was about 3 years ago.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 12:48PM
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Until you've fully restored an old window, you have no idea how much labor is involved. I've done over a dozen large windows in my house & there's no way I would do anyone else's for $1000/window; the hourly rate is just too low if the work is done properly.

$550 sounds cheap since it includes weatherstripping, etc but your proposal doesn't seem to include stripping, repair, & priming for paint. You'll get a much more thorough paint job is it's done while the sashes are removed from the frames.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 1:57PM
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Yes, I also was wondering if there was a separate charge for getting the woodwork "up to snuff" as it were (stripping, repair, priming, painting the sashes, stops, parting beads, etc).

And does their estimate say what they'll do if they find that a wooden piece has decayed and needs repairing? What is the additional charge then?

It might save you some in labor cost if you and your husband take the sashes out yourselves, and have the labor clock start ticking from when the restorers pick up the sashes. However, I don't know if that is a practical step to take. FWIW, I've been reading the "Working Windows" book to prepare myself for taking a crack at repairing some of my windows come springtime.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 3:08PM
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I really think you should take down one of your windows, strip the paint, replace rotted wood as necessary, replace any broken glass, reglaze, prime, repaint, and then install. Oh, and don't forget to repair/repaint the frame, especially the sill, which tends to have damage from weathering. Keep track of your time and of course the materials used. Then report back to this forum, with your results. My guess is that you will be happy with the way it turned out, and possibly quite reluctant to let anyone else work on your windows.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 3:27PM
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While I haven't done the window repair, we've been working on stripping layers of paint and restaining and that is a ton of work. I also would suggest you try the repair with a window or two and see if it is worth it to hire out.Also curious about estimates on storms, as we're looking to add those.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 5:26PM
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I'm curious which thread led to you believe it's best to restore. I'm new here. I have an almost 100 year old house now with restored windows and storms and in the almost 100 year old house I'm working on (what was I thinking) I felt I needed to replace. It is less than what you were quoted for restoring. My windows are old, but not pretty and I'm trying to make the home as energy efficient as possible.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 6:24PM
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They are installing interlocking metal weatherstrip, not just repairing. I wonder how much more to remove all glass, strip sash, prime and reglaze? That would be a holistic approach. I find it's a waste of time to do any less.

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 6:37PM
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Guess you need to move to AL. We had our ropes replaced ( lead weights are FOREVER) and the windows unstuck as they were painted shut x 100 yrs. It was 40 an hour for our painter. The storms were custom from our local glass company at 150 per window. So,very cheap and we have lovely wavy

glass and our heating bill DROPPED amazingly. I know this is the South but we get lots of cold weather and wind and rain. I think the estimate is crazy. But I am not in the NE...noone would ever pay that here . Just a FWIW. c

    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 9:41PM
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Oh...I was afraid this post would come up sooner or later. Uggh. Another project I'm avoiding at the present. My thoughts are with you--and this is one where I would just grin and bear it either way--pocketbook-wise or time/energy-wise. No way I would replace my old wavy glass and neat wooden windows in this old rambler ;)


    Bookmark   March 11, 2009 at 10:23PM
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Thanks you guys. I've showed this thread to DH and he's mulling things over. ;-) Casey, la Koala, Antiquesilver - the quote for the full restore, where they remove allllll the paint in their shop, totally reglaze, basically have new "old" windows when you're done is $1300 per window. I would love to have that done but I doubt it's in the budget.

The thing is, this is our summer house, and DH comes is only there 3 days a week - I think the thought of probably most of his summer spent doing these windows makes it worth paying someone. He has done some of the work on the renovation already (electrical, tile) and he and I are going to do all the interior paint. Not to mention all the landscaping, painting the arbor and fence.... That will take up most of our time. We didn't want to wait on the windows b/c we had new heating/cooling and insulation put in and that seems like kind of a waste if all our energy savings goes "right out the window."

AnnMarie there are plenty of threads here re: replace vs. restore - In a nutshell, weatherstripped windows with good storms are just as energy efficient as new. And the character of the house isn't ruined. changing the windows will greatly change the look of the exterior of your house. Research that topic here before you change out your windows.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:02AM
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Your quote sounds like its a really nice delux top of the line restoration job - historic glass, milled for weatherstripping,etc - which may or may not be worth $500 ea to you.

I suggest you shop around for a local all-around handy person who specializes in and/or really loves old houses - here we have a local guy who specializes in only old window restoration. Those hoity toity "heritage restoration" places are bound to be expensive and yeah maybe there's stuff where youd want to hire a highly skilled $50/hr. fine artisan but window restoration is not rocket science, they're very easy but time consuming. The $25-35/hr.guy may be all you need.

It can be tricky to figure out how to take apart your specific windows (they're put together in a lot of different ways) but once you do then that's half the battle.

Is the weatherstripping necessary if you're only there during summer?

Because they're so easy but time consuming this really is the perfect job for the average do it yourselfer - in leiu of that you should be able to find someone to do it for less $$$.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 1:56PM
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Hi Kashka,

I would LOVE to find a local guy who does it = the house is located in a "small town", everyone knows everyone and it's almost all considered a historic district so (if people follow the rules) there are tons of original windows that I'm sure must need restoring - I asked a neighbor who had restored windows and YEP, he did them himself. My contractor (who also knows everyone) has had a bear of a time finding anyone. I was the one who contacted Heritage, upon recommendation from someone who has done some of the historic buildings in town (but who is 3 hours away and would only consider our job if we did the full restore.) When we're there, if we're still looking, we'll ask around more.

It is just a summer house - for now. But we do plan on living in it year round one day. The main reason I wanted to go ahead and get it done is because the whole interior is set to be repainted (by us) and I'd like to paint the windows along with it. Seems silly to do that if we're just going to be taking it all apart soon. Plus we do have AC, though I suppose it's not in use a ton (since we're in NE.)

We're doing storms, too - maybe the answer is to get the storms on for now (so we'll have some screens!) and that will offer some energy savings, at least. Right now you can feel drafts like crazy, as if the window is open! We can then address the windows at a later date - either us doing it or paying someone else.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 2:27PM
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Yes, I'd invest in the storms (wooden, hopefully, or the hidden kind, not aluminum triple track which are a waste of money if intended for energy efficiency) for now since you won't be living there in the winter. It's likely that you only use minimum heat in the off season and draftiness won't be an issue.

I'd also paint the interior windows if you're already planning on doing so, since it will make your decorating look so much better to have it looking nice. Even if later you take the main sashes out, you'd only have to lightly sand, prime any bare wood revealed by repairs, then add another top coat afterwards. (You might consider only putting a prime and single top coat for now, with this in mind as a possibility in the near future.)

I sympathize with not wanting to spend every day of your vacation repairing stuff at a second house, but try seeing this as an unexpected opportunity to slow things down. Don't do anything with windows (beyond replacing any broken out panes) for this year.

You might try taking out a sash set (one of the not very challenging ones) and seeing how you like doing it. Sash work is one of those supremely appropriate DIY jobs, since it can be down one window at a time with little loss of efficiency - and enormous dollar savings. You can't install half a heating plant or or plumb only the cold water lines or half-jack up at rotten sill. But you can tend to windows very slowly. And many of the steps need a week or so to dry between work periods, so they're ideal for visiting weekenders to tackle.

BTW, There's at least one outfit that runs short weekend courses (in NE) on window working skills. (see:

New storm windows this year (dollar-saving compromise: have them made and fitted by someone else and finish paint them yourselves). This will allow you to later remove primary sashes and still have storm-protecting panels in place while the sashes get worked on.

I have 27 double hung sashes in my house and another 45+ in my barns, so I'm working my way through them. It can be done - I had no experience before I started. Sometimes I think the hardest technical part is sorting out the various firm opinions about what to do (or not do) and the hardest work part is summoning the patience to go slowly, very slowly, as you work with the windows: extracting them from the jambs, softening the putty, removing the lead paint in a safe way, and then patiently waiting for the repairs to cure, the putty to harden, the paint to dry, etc.

The upside of this is that you will be taking one hundred year old material (often made of a quality not available for sale today, at almost any price) and returning an important - and irreplaceable - original style detail of your structure to full duty (and modern energy-savings standards) for another 75-100 years, if maintained from here on. There are actually few more satisfying old-house DIY tasks.

Plus, you'll save 10 or 12 grand. Good enough to pay some one to do a chore that can't be separated into parts, or requires special expertise and tools like plastering or masonry.

And best of all: You don't have to do it now, other than repair any broken window that might lead to vandalism or weather damage. For a single pane or two, you don't even have to take the sash out (even though it's easier work flat).

Get a copy of Terry Meany's book, Working windows, and get a copy of the window repair book sold at John Leeke's site (

I think newly purchased old buildings are most at risk for significant, owner-ordered damage during that initial "we've got to get it done, now burst of work. It's really a blessing (emotionally and financially for the owners, and physically for the house) when there isn't too much cash around for renovations in the first year or two.

FWIW, I think $550 per window doesn't sound bad for the weatherstrippng component. I would have expected it to be higher, especially since, like Casey, I wouldn't do all that weatherization without completely removing and reglazing the windows. And, that is a bear of a job, but essential, in my mind since that's a big source of leaking.

And nine hours per window? Easily much more!



    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:25PM
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I am going to use my tax refund to have my historic windows fixed. Newbie on the home repair...but we were quoted $150 per window to have our ballasted (sp?) windows taken apart, have nylon rope inserted, the weights checked/replaced, and to reseal them to make them more energy efficient. I am in GA so lower cost of living than the northeast, but at $500-1000 per way could I get those suckers done.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 7:51PM
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I would advise using proper sash cord, not nylon rope. The wrong diameter will be constantly jumping off the pulley, and twisted rope will stretch, causing the weights to not support the sash.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2009 at 11:33PM
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FWIW - when I did my windows in the 90's, I used nylon cord (it never dawned on me that the original kind was still being made & my carpenter had used nylon on a small window he repaired so I never considered anything else). I purposely used the braided kind rather than the twist hoping it would be less prone to stretching & I was very careful to buy the same diameter as the original. In almost 20 years, I've never had one come off the pulley, or break, or stretch, or any other problem.

Now that I know that cotton cord exists, I certainly would recommend it for authenticity but I'd also give high marks to properly sized nylon as well.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 12:35AM
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You guys are GREAT! I think what I'll do is move on the storms (yes, wooden, getting local bids but am very impressed with Adams Architectural.)

DH *might* have the "summer off" (he's a consultant, his client is due to end in June, but they've said that for 2.5 years. he'd probably wait until Sept. to start working again, if possible.) If he's off, he (we) will tackle the windows, one by one as weather permits. (our house is TINY, no room to work, so would need to be done in the driveway, which is uncovered.) But with the storms there, there won't be the urgency.

I will check out those books and links Molly! You're right, this IS something we can do ourselves if we have time and patience - and it's a huge savings on an already insanely over-budget renovation.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 6:40AM
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One issue if we do this ourselves -

Most of the windows (except those on the porch, which was a early 1900s addition) use levers - I think the quote referred to them as "pinch levers" - to hold the windows open. It's a lever on the lower sash that you can raise/release to set the height that the sash is opened to. I can't find these levers online, some of them are missing and would need to be replaced. Does anyone know what these levers might be called (so I can google them) and/or where I can find replacements? I've found sites that have replacement hardware, but not these specifically.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 2:22PM
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My original windows were replaced by a PO and now we have past-their-prime 20 + year old replacements. Wish we still had our wooden sashes and wavy glass.

To do replacements of the replacements, it will be $1,000/window. To be able to keep your lovely windows @ 500 each sounds like a good deal to me.



    Bookmark   March 13, 2009 at 8:32PM
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You might check around. My handyman is doing my 100 year old windows for about $250. each. I do part of the work myself. He removes both sashes (and they are very much painted on), reglazes both and replaces glass as necessary, sands them down until smooth. Then I take over and prime and paint. Then he comes back and re-installs them with new ropes and weatherstripping. They turn out just fine and I'm so happy to reuse the old sashes as there is nothing whatsoever wrong with them. Even at $250. per window the process is laborious on both fronts--I despise the painting--so I'm doing no more than 3-4 per year.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 10:47AM
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ok this is why mine were 1,000 a piece you must compare apples with oranges,you would not get what we got for 250..we had the complete window removed down to brick,they were rotted etc.they built a full window to replace what was there.,they took glass out of old windows,put in new ones,we have a full glass storm,you remove and put a 1/2 screen just on bottom half of windowplus labor,beautiful windows ,house is warm,last a long time...

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 11:57PM
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Well, we've decided to:

Start with wood storms. we were recommended SpencerWorks by a woman who has done restoration projects on the historical buildings in town. Called and had a long conversation with John Spencer, the owner, yesterday. will get quotes from him and from Adams Architectural. But after giving Spencerworks our basic dimensions, he's guessing $350/per, primed and PAINTED to match our trim. This is what we thought they would cost unpainted, so we're happy about that.

Then we are going to try a window our for ourselves. Will buy the book you mentioned. Will pick the brain of our neighbor who did his own. ;-) We'll see how it goes, how much we "enjoy" it haha, and then decide if we'd rather just hire it out.

We are leery of hiring a handyman, especially since they need weatherstripping and I'd definitely want someone who has done that before - I don't want someone routing channels anywhere in my old windows unless I'm sure he knows what he's doing.

We have a guy who will dip strip the windows for us, after the panes are removed, for $75/per. Is that something we should consider? If we did want to get them down to the bare wood, it seems like that would be the most laborious part, for us.

Thank you so much for your insights - I've learned alot about wood windows over the past few days. ;-) I think where I got my impression of how much it cost was seeing these "handyman" responses.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 7:33AM
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Don't let anyone "hot dip" your windows. That means a caustic stripper (lye), which can profoundly raise the grain, destroy old wood, and cause instant paint failure. You need a "flow over" type stripping. That uses chemicals that do not raise grain or break down wood fibers. $75 per pair would be a better price, seeing as how removing the glass is most of the work.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:32AM
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I wouldn't recommend dipping the windows. Those chemicals are a) really nasty for the environment and the workers and b) are hard to neutralize completely leading to the possibility that you might have paint failure down the road and c) they raise the grain a bit.

Look at John Leeke's directions for making a steam box which is the safest from the point of view of lead abatement and operator safety. It's great for softening the putty and removing the paint as much as necessary. Requires light sanding to take of any"fuzz" raised by overdoing the moisture.

But if you're doing only a few sashes at a time, you might plan on doing them outdoors with cautious use of a low temp heatgun (with glass well shielded) to loosen the putty and then after the glass is out, a more vigorous application of the gun to scrape off the remaining paint. If you stay below the lead vaporization temp, work outside and are meticulous in collecting and disposing the paint debris it shouldn't be too onerous or dangerous.

But you should practice lead-safe working techniques, including overalls, eye-protection, lots of drop cloths and maybe some form of breathing protection. The best would be a respirator rated for lead dust exposure. I confess I don't use a respirator, just a small mask rated for lead.

You'll also discover which scraper blades (keep'em razor sharp) fit your molding profiles and it will go surprisingly fast once you've learned how much to press.

The quote on the storms seems a bit high to me, but if they included removable/integrated screen panels as well, it seems worth it.

The first window or two seems to take forever, but it's a learning curve.

You'll need to make some decisions about putty. For quick repair of broken or missing panes with the windows in place you might want to use ordinary glazing compound for sale at big box places and hardware stores.

For a full sash job where I have the sash out on a bench I use a Sarco product. You can read about it on John Leeke's site and there are sources of re-packaged small quantities and big 80-lbs tubs from the manufacturer.

The other thing to consider is whether you are going to put any undercoat beneath the primer and finish coats. Many people do this to improve old dried-out wood and promote good paint and putty adhesion. The oft-quoted old-time recipe is turps and boiled linseed oil. That is now in disrepute because of its reported propensity to promote mildew. There are some other recipes floating about without the linseed oil component.

Another site with lots of window restoration chat and freely-offered experience is the Old House Web forums (pre-1900 board). The resident expert there is Jade who makes her living restoring old windows and offers her knowledge to any query.



    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:34AM
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Thank you so much Molly! I've spent the bulk of today reading the forum posts on John Leeke's site (thank you so MUCH for that link) - I'm making a list of the items (and brands, including sarco) I need to buy. I am watching Ebay for Jiffy steamers and DH is building us a box. (will come in handy for our front doors, too.) After watching the videos I can't imagine trying to get paint and glaze off without it!

I've ordered Meany's book and will study it as soon as it arrives. Meanwhile I'll keep reading Leeke's forum and taking notes - so funny because I've spoken with Jade (a regular contributor there) on the phone - she was the first person I contacted trying to find a restorer, we had a very long and interesting talk about windows. She's the one who recommended Heritage to me.

We'll tackle our first window late spring - I'll report back (i'm sure with many questions) and let you know how it goes.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 4:22PM
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We had our 14 windows completely restored (stripped, reglazed, painted, new ropes, hardware cleaned up, and weatherstripped). I think it was around $1k per window. Totally worth it if you ask me. Think of it this way: most people wouldn't bat an eye at spending $15k on a kitchen remodel or a new car (well, before the economy tanked, anyway) this any less important? The restored windows would probably outlast either of those two things.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2009 at 9:41PM
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I agree bungalow - the problem is we are also doing the kitchen, bathroom, heating, electrical, plumbing..... ;-)

Meany's book arrived yesterday. I've been studying. I know once these windows are done they'll last for decades more if they're properly cared for - we have 16 and assuming all goes well we hope to do 4-6 per year, more if we stick to it and spend much time there in the winter. (this is our summer house.) We might hire out some of the work if it makes sense - maybe bringing in a glazier if we can't master that.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2009 at 7:59AM
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I think you have your ducks in a row as far as basic economy and comfort, and that is get the storms/screens done. The windows can be one of those projects you do as you can fit it in if you aren't having leaks into the guts of the walls or interiors.

Glazing is not that hard. Sash weight replacement isn't either. Once the window proper is out and you're working on them where you can access them comfortably it's really not that bad. If you have storms in, especially in decent weather, you can also take your time.

You are lucky you just have sixteen windows, LOL. Most of my homes built in that ear had at least 31. The first old Victorian I bought did. It was a major investment just getting drapes up to them, thankfully the windows were still in good shape.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2009 at 12:05PM
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yeah, our victorian is a teeny cottage, only 2br/1ba, so not room for any more windows. ;-) I'll probably do ok with the glazing, I tend to do well with things like that that require a bit more "art." DH, OTOH, not so much. haha.

The only thing I'm a bit concerned with is the open/close mechanism. We only have weights in 5 windows (when the porch was enclosed in the teens-20's) For the rest it's a lever on the right side of the lower sashes, it isn't mentioned in Meany's book, and I can't find replacement parts online. It seems to be somewhat the same premise as sash pins but better, in that you only have to use one hand to operate it. I'm going to have to take the sash down, see how it's in there, and find someone to make them, most likely.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2009 at 12:24PM
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You can find things like that in the oddest places. Our area (old historic river town) is just rife with old homes, and they are very underappreciated and often get cobbled up and rented out until they hit such a stage of delapidation they are condemned and gutted. I am an antiquer and see old hardware and mechanisms in the antique shops in bins and baskets for a song. They show up in auctions in bushel baskets stored for decades, forgotten about in garages and barns.

There are a few folks here who will go harvest things like oak fireplace mantels and old glass, but often it ends up in kidding. But whomever harvests these things surely must sell them. You may even enquire of companies who do house razing, if they have 'regulars' whom they let harvest materials from their demolition jobs.

I am having a hard time visualising the levers. If you get a chance and can get a picture of one, could you post it? It would give everyone a chance to give you some input if we are anywhere we could see supply them.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2009 at 10:03PM
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Thanks, Calliope! I'll have my contractor take a picture tomorrow and I'll post it here. I should have thought of it sooner. :-) Might post it over on Leeke's forum as well, actually.

    Bookmark   March 19, 2009 at 10:12PM
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here are pictures of my "pinch levers". My contractor pointed out that this mechanism won't even work with weatherstripping. he's suggesting replacing with spring bolts, but I guess I'm having a hard time understanding how that is any better. (Time to look it up in Meany's book I guess.) What is the best solution for this hardware issue?

    Bookmark   March 20, 2009 at 11:12AM
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That's a new one on me! I have pocket doors with this type of latch but they open with a knob instead of a lever. I'll be interested to see what others say. I'm having a hard time envisioning how this latch had space to open enough to catch on something much less if there were several stops along the jamb. Out of curiosity, do you have a photo of the jamb showing the hardware where the latch would catch?

    Bookmark   March 20, 2009 at 1:07PM
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There is no hardware on the jamb - it actually just claws the wood. (Just called contractor, who took out the sash for the pic, to confirm.) Needless to say, certain windows had nothing to "catch" to anymore in certain places, and didn't stay open very well, if at all.

Ugh, I don't want sash pins, do I?? They seem like such a PITA to operate. But I guess that's my only option?

    Bookmark   March 20, 2009 at 1:32PM
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Whether pinch levers (and I can see how your jambs might be leaking after years of being pinched) or sash pins, you still have an incompatibility with strip weatherstripping installed in the jamb channels.

May I suggest an old fashioned, and very simple thing? A dear friend of mine made me several of these. Take a 1 1/4 inch by 3/4 inch piece of wood. Along one long side cut several stair-step notches at regular intervals. On one end trim off the bottom on the same slant as the slope of the sill with the slant headed down towards the side of the piece with the notches cut out. If you like, at the top drill out a 3/4 in diameter hole (so it can be hung when not in use, otherwise unneeded). Now sand and finish the piece nicely and you have a perfect window prop-per upper stick. Just open the window and let it come down on whichever step corresponds to the height you want to open it. If you want the window open to its full height, then set the whole stick into the jamb channel below the sash. My friend made me some in cherry, mahogany and other lovely woods so I think they are very attractive, too.

Simple, lasts forever, no moving parts and nothing to interfere with great weatherstripping.


    Bookmark   March 21, 2009 at 9:04PM
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If the sash pin is mounted near the top of the sash, it is compatible with metal weatherstripping, which should only extend 1/2" above the top edge (check rail) of the sash. That leaves the window jamb wood almost fully exposed for the holes the pin engages. The pim would be incapable of locking the window, unless a hole was drilled in the metal weatherstrip. The rib in metal w-strip is installed off-center, so would not be in the same part of the sash edge as the pin. (pin to the inside, rib to the outside, sash cord relief in the middle)

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 11:11AM
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Well Jade over on Leeke's forum has said that this isn't a "claw" - it just applies tension, and it should work with weather stripping. (it would press against it, not gouge it out.) She recommended spring bronze, so I'll give that a shot. If it seems like that's not going to work, we'll reassess

As for the windows missing their hardware, Molly, that's probably exactly what we'll do. It's only a couple...maybe some pretty white distressed iron scroll-y brackets would do the trick. :-)

    Bookmark   March 22, 2009 at 1:53PM
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I've been following this from a distance - So glad you are doing the right thing by your windows & home. I have a 1930 Dutch Colonial w/double hung 6/1 configuration
When we did a reno the GC was rec replacement windows - OH, NO!!! - I found a true craftsman locally that just does window repairs - he works w/another gentleman and they are incredible - He rehabbed every window in our home - took them apart, put in new parting strips, repaired glazing where needed, re-weighted (this was incredible - he drives around w/old window weights) - new roping ta da! Link below to his site. Operating functional windows - he even took the lovely arched windows from the attic stripped, re-glazed and reinstalled - it was $200/window so glad we did that.
Next was the storms - 1/2 the home had aluminum triple track (2nd story) old bad condition, the 1st story had wood storms - heavy, not really fitting correctly any longer and oddly configured 2/2 on top of the 6/1 weird.. in any event I ckd Adams architect & didn't like that they were pine - thought they wouldn't have the longevity needed. We ended up w/Harvey triple track storms & are pleased w/the results.

There was also an article in this old house on how to weather strip windows
This might be it,,211760,00.html

Good luck!

Here is a link that might be useful: The window dr

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 10:14AM
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I live in AL as well. Who did you use for your window restoration and storms?

I'm in the Montgomery area and estimates are a lot more expensive than that. You got a great deal.


    Bookmark   June 22, 2009 at 3:39PM
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