Bowed or Compass Sash Window Frames, Windows and Cills/ Sills Repaired and Restored in Brighton, East Sussex
When it comes to really showing you what we can do then you can look no further than this page. Bowed sash windows or Compass sash windows are one of the hardest windows to make from new and to restore them properly shows that a carpenter is skilled in every aspect of making windows and restoring sash windows. These were originally made so that the owner could get a better view of the sea. These sought after windows are not that practical anymore because you are very limited to what you can put within them. This is why you would only see these on Regency and Victorian properties mainly from the 18th century in England.
We say this is one of the most difficult windows to build because to construct a bowed sash window like this you need to set up jigs to make sure that the window is going to be square and has the right curvature on the sash window.
Sussex Sash Window Restoration can come round with our mobile workshop to your own doorstep. We have a dedicated van that has been turned into a workshop with every little thing that we need to restore your sash windows in the fastest possible time. We can guarantee that if we have to take your windows away (due to the size of the windows) to our workshop, then we will have your windows back within 48hrs and glazed as well, depending weather we are installing the original bowed glass and we don’t have to wait for the glass to be made.
Bowed windows sometimes get altered over the years
Another problem with old properties is that repairs can be botched through owners attempting D.I.Y or carpenters/painters trying to make an easy fix through the years. Mainly the thing that does get damaged from the
windows moving, due to the weather, water ingress and rotting timber is the glass.
The original glass would have been cylinder glass. This has a vertical wave effect in the glass due to being hand blown and swung in pits. This is then heated on a curved template to make the curved glass we can still obtain this from 3 different sources in Europe direct from the manufacturers. Please see our dedicated page on this to find out more about Architectural glass for more info.
But unfortunately some of the glass that you will find in these windows has been replaced with straight float glass altering the aesthetic look of the property completely. The only way to install this is to cut the back of the windows on the sight line, so that the curve on the window where the moulding is will be taken away. This is a very frowned upon thing with the councils or conservation officers. This is because you are altering the total look of the windows themselves. This is a preference that some people take because of the cost of the glass itself, but we can install the original bowed glass in plane float glass at a much cheaper cost and a quicker time scale than the original cylinder glass.
Why are Bowed sash windows one of the hardest windows to make
Essentially, this is because the glazing bars have to be in line with each other. Sometimes within time the windows will have moved and the window frames themselves will be totally out of square. The windows could be different throughout the house due to different carpenters making them when they were originally constructed.
So you would have to have templates made from every window that you have just in case. Because when you have a mid-rail and it is slightly different from the original then the overall width will be smaller or larger if the curvature is different and the window will not fit. This can be explained if you split an oval shape down the middle at the longest points and the ovals can be different sizes. The diameter would be totally different.
Why curved window are made in sections
To get the curve either on the windows or the window sills themselves you have to use glue lam timber this is timber that has been joined together by glue and clamped together, this is then cut on a bandsaw to get the curvature of the windows themselves.
On this project page you can see me cutting the sills into the windows in sections. This had to be done like this because the windows are being restored and the curvature of the window is a very tight curve this was more like a semi-circle.
If the windows were made in one piece than the likelihood of the windows having defects would be high and the strength of the timber would be compromised due to the grain being back to front instead of side to side. I hope you have enjoyed one of our many project pages. If you are thinking about restoring your sash windows than take two minutes to look at our Antique sash window furniture shop to give your property that original traditional look.