Operable clerestory windows in addition - what style?
Happy new year, everyone! My resolution: devote every spare moment in 2012 to planning the addition to my bungalow. :-)
In my ~16'x20' breakfast room/family room addition, which will face south and have E-S-W exposures, I'd like to have OPERABLE clerestory windows on the three exterior walls. They'd be high in the wall, just under the eaves, which will be very deep and overhanging, to match the bungalow style of the rest of the house. My goals are to get some natural ventilation/airflow (it's really hot in the summer here); to have windows I can safely leave open in my urban neighborhood where I wouldn't leave more accessible windows open; to get air and indirect light into the room even when the lower-level windows will need to be shaded against direct southern and western sun; and to be able to get fresh air in during summer rains, since these will be shielded from the rain by the eaves.
Question: what's the best window style to use for this, and what are the options for controlling windows that are too high to reach unaided? On style, awning would seem the natural choice, but I've seen so many awning and casement windows go out of true over time and stop operating properly. Maybe awnings opening *in*, so in the worst case scenario I could climb up on a ladder inside and push them closed? Sliders seem more likely to work smoothly over time, but that would cut in half the amount of air that could come in per window opening (which might not be a deal-breaker). On mechanism: I'm reluctant to commit to anything electrical and be stuck being unable to open or close my windows in a power failure! Honestly, the most reliable system I've seen for high-up windows are the old-fashioned latches on church windows that you operate with a hook on the end of a long stick, but I doubt anybody makes modern windows in that style these days.
Any ideas or cautionary tales?