Who says they don’t make them like they used to? I stopped by Dow Farm last summer and my friend Don was making window sash in his shop. He was 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 are 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. This is not true of modern name-brand factory made windows, which 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.”
Signed and personalized copies of the award-winning and bestselling 720-page hardcover book are available from the author in our shop, YourHistoricHouse.com/shop/.
Our shop also carries “A Field Guide to American Houses” by Virginia McAlester and select preservation and restoration titles by other authors. Save with our multi-book combo packs!
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