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Old 03-20-2012, 07:27 PM   #1
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How would you repair/replace this meeting rail? (57 yr old wood windows)


Started rehabbing my 1955 windows I have 2 double hung attic windows on the gables of each end of the attic. They've been neglected for years. I got rid of all the peeling paint and started sanding. I was going to tear them out and just put in some cheapy vinyl ones but started researching rehabbing them.

This was neglected so long and exposed to the sun the lower meeting rail of the upper sash was partially rotted and was slightly bowed, from rain and condensation. I took out the glass and when I pushed down on the bowed part to see how flexible it was, it broke There was obviously a weak part. The rest of the wood seems OK though.

I've thought about a few ways to attack this:
1) Replace the rail altogether. I could do it professionally but, it may cost more than it's worth. I have reasonable wood working skills.

Or

2) since it's a clean break and at an angle, use a combination of stakes/dowels/screws to patch the break together and use filler/adhesive like Woodepox and put it back together, then sand, prime/paint/glaze.

3) replace with the vinyl windows

Considerations- I don't mind getting my hands dirty so I want to try to rehab these as it will be practice for the ones on the main level (all original, but need reglazing, some some need refinishing).

These are in the attic so the rehab job doesn't have to be perfect, but the attic is tall and does have the potential to be finished in the future.

The house isn't in a historic district but I'm the type who likes to have things as close to their original design when possible/practical. I like the interior trim and millwork of the 1950s windows and intend on keeping them. They have storm windows and my energy bills aren't ridiculous, so replacement windows are not going to pay off.

Pictures:
Looking from the "inside out"


Looking from "outside in"



Different lighting


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Old 03-20-2012, 07:37 PM   #2
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How would you repair/replace this meeting rail? (57 yr old wood windows)


Do you have a table saw and maybe a router?

That's a rather simple window---rebuilding that should not be hard---

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Old 03-20-2012, 07:59 PM   #3
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How would you repair/replace this meeting rail? (57 yr old wood windows)


Yes, I have a table saw and a plunge router. Perhaps I'll try to duplicate the rail. Pardon the newbie question but I've done other woodworking (mostly loudspeaker cabinet building) but never a window. What kind of wood is best?

Also, I can't separate the meeting rail from the side stiles It has the interlocking fingers but there does not appear to be a dowel that's keeping it together. It pivots but I can't get it out. Any suggestions before I break out the chisel?
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Old 03-21-2012, 05:06 AM   #4
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How would you repair/replace this meeting rail? (57 yr old wood windows)


The rail may have a tenon--look at the side of the window--

Red wood--cyprus--or fir---

You need to be inventive in your thinking---and use a strong waterproof glue--

I have rebuilt a few windows--each one requires a lot of thought--
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Old 03-24-2012, 10:55 AM   #5
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How would you repair/replace this meeting rail? (57 yr old wood windows)


Been a few days, but after examining another rail, I'm going to try to duplicate the rail. Since it's the upper sash's meeting rail, it's going to be hidden by the lower sash's meeting rail. Not to mention it's in the attic nobody is going to see it anyway The shape is very easy, I thought it had some little design on it, but it actually does not, just an angled cut. I should be able to duplicate it with a 2 x 4, table saw and a chisel. We'll see

Last edited by cbrc5eric; 03-24-2012 at 11:00 AM.
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