Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I can see this is going to be a pane.....

Window update.......Thanks Jennifer (Our Tiny Old House blog) for your concern. Believe it or not, the nails held tight. Now if only my fingernails hold up as well during this window scraping adventure.

Today I started scraping. I spent about an hour on the first window before I went to work. In that hour, I was able to scrap off all the paint AND remove all the glazing compound from one window sash.

I find this scraper works best on windows for two reasons. Number one....it's the correct size, not too big and not too small. Number two.....it has a sharp flat side that works great on removing the glazing compound. I usually scrap all the paint off the bottom rail, top rail, sash stiles (sides), and the sash bars before I attempt to remove the glazing compound. The hardest part about removing the glazing compound is not breaking the glass. Old glass is not perfect. It is slightly wavy and may even have an air bubble or two. I have also found that it is a different color. This is only noticeable when you have replaced one pane. Even then it may not be apparent until you place a white curtain behind the panes. You know what they say.."It's a pain when your panes don't match." I swear I read that somewhere.......well if I didn't......I'm saying it now.....you heard it here first.

I have found that if I take a single edge razor blade and break the seal between the paint and glass that it helps to loosen the glaze. Sometimes this alone will allow you to remove the glaze. If that didn't work I move on to HEAT. Now this is really when you have to finesse it. Too much heat and CRACK....you've got a broken pane and that is truly a pain in the sash, if you know what I mean. I have found that you need very little heat to soften the glaze. If after using my favorite scraper and heat (heat gun), I find that I still of some residual glaze I use my single edge razor blade to get between the glaze and the sash bar. Be careful not to cut yourself or gouge the wood.

At this point I usually clean up the scrapings and take a break. Today though, I just left the scrapings because work was beckoning. Tonight when I get home I will sand and remove the glazing points that are still in place. I would say about 50% of the glazing points came out when I removed the glaze. I will also number the panes before I remove them, just in case they are not exactly the same size. Better safe than sorry........I know someone has said THAT before.

This is how it looked after scraping and glazing removal. Oh and for you really anal people. Yes, I know you remove the hardware before scraping. But in this case I had stripped the paint from the hinges last year and at that time I scraped the paint in the hinge area so I could reinstalled the hinges properly. Tonight I will remove hardware and throw them away. Oh wait, they are solid brass. I'll put the hinges in the scrap bucket to be recycled later. The hardware is in poor condition and not all the hinges are the same. I think replacing all the hinges with new working hinges far out weighs keeping the original ugly poorly working hinges.

Time invested so far......2 hours. One hour for removal of sashes and one hour of scrapping.