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KZeren 09-04-2012 06:54 PM

Sash cord access panels
My house was built with no access panels to replace the sash cords. I want to cut access doors. It needs to be a nice, neat job because it is a beautiful stone house and the window frames are natural wood. Any suggestions of how to pull this off?

By the way, I've replaced lots of sash cords so i don't need help wit that. Just need to create access doors.


DannyT 09-04-2012 07:34 PM

a multi tool would probably be your best bet if you don't want to pull the casing off to get to them. it's the only thing i can think of that will make the cut without making a mess.

Duckweather 09-04-2012 07:58 PM

Most I have seen have a bevel on one end, or both, wide side out. If you cut a scrap with a 30 to 40 degree angle, screw it to the frame and use the angle to lay the blade on as a guide for the multi tool, ( we have been calling it a zippy tool), actually an oscillating saw I think. you may have to cut new doors if the they are too short because of the cut, (kerf).

gregzoll 09-04-2012 08:01 PM

Are you sure that the panels are not just painted over? A lot, you have to pull the front stops, pull the window, and the panels are actually where the windows slide up and down along.

KZeren 09-04-2012 08:58 PM

THANKS for the replies!

I'm sure the doors aren't painted over because they are not painted.

I don't want to remove the casing for fear of messing up the pretty natural woodwork. So the multi-tool idea and the double bevel cuts sound like the right idea. The guide sounds good for the angle but I don't want to screw anything to the natural wood. Guess I'll have to wing it.

I'll need to buy the tool and give this a try. Thanks again!

gregzoll 09-04-2012 09:02 PM

The panels are there, you just have not looked good enough. Pictures help.

KZeren 09-04-2012 09:05 PM

Naw, no access panels. I've had some sashes out, even. It's hard to believe but the no-access panel windows are common 'round these parts. Grrrr... I've replaced lots of sash cords in my time. I need to cut doors this time.

Fix'n it 09-04-2012 09:43 PM

there are no doors on the old windows i am replacing.

gregzoll 09-05-2012 07:29 AM

As stated before, the panels are actually the rails that the windows ride along. You pull the stops, then you have to pull the windows to tie the cords and have them hang on the panels. Once you get those done, you can then pull the casings to get to the panels & remove, then pull the cords.

It is actually just easier to let the cords slip into the wells, then use retrofit units for the windows vs. trying to replace the sash cords on the weights.

Duckweather 09-05-2012 07:33 AM


Originally Posted by KZeren (Post 1003411)
THANKS for the replies!

I don't want to screw anything to the natural wood. Guess I'll have to wing it.

I'll need to buy the tool and give this a try. Thanks again!

Use a couple small brass oval head screws with trim ring I have seen a lot of original ones like that. I would advise a corded tool, they have more power and the hassle of the cord does not outweigh the small batteries and lower power, (because they always run out when you are at the top of a ladder).

KZeren 09-05-2012 08:42 AM

I'm curious to know about the "retro fit units" for the windows. Do you know a source?

Duckweather 09-05-2012 04:09 PM

There are usually siding, roofing, window, suppliers. Around New England there is Harvey Industries, & Applicators Wharehouse. They usually deal with contractors so you have to set up a business cash account.

gregzoll 09-05-2012 06:43 PM

Here is one version another version

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