Who says they don’t make them like they used to? I stopped by Dow Farm last weekend and my friend Don was making window sash in his shop. He was still at the making components stage, no assembly yet. The wood is a mix of cypress and mahogany to insure longevity. These windows will last 200+ years.
As you can see in the photos, traditional windows are made with interchangeable components. They will be held together with wooden pegs through the mortise and tenon joints at the corners. The sash can be disassembled and damaged pieces replaced without replacing the entire sash. Modern name-brand factory made windows are not repairable and are expected to last only 25 years.
Local craftspeople don’t have the advertising budgets of major window replacement companies, so you may have to do some footwork to find them – but you won’t end up paying for that advertising in the cost of the work!
Dow Farm, which Don has spent 45 years restoring, is one of 13 featured houses between the how-to chapters of “Restoring Your Historic House, The Comprehensive Guide for Homeowners.”
The 720-page best-selling hardcover book explores multiple options for dealing with windows in historic houses. It is available in bookstores nationwide and from online retailers.
Signed and personalized copies are available directly from the author in the shop on this site, https://yourhistorichouse.com/shop/.
Bookstores can order copies from W.W. Norton.
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