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Old 06-18-2013, 05:08 PM   #1
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


I got this old window a basement room (see attached photo #1) that is nailed shut (done by previous owner). The framing around the window is "Mickey Mouse'd", so I'd have to work with what's currently there (see attached photos #2 and #3). I'd like to make the window functional again (i.e., have the ability to open and close it) and add dead simple trim. How can I do this?
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Old 06-18-2013, 05:23 PM   #2
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


Boy, that's some funky framing--and to tight to the window---

How handy are you? what tools do you have?

Ideal would be to replace that window with a modern vinyl one---could be that a standard off the shelf one, a slider. would work.

If you wish to keep the old window and simply trim it out nicely--some cutting may be needed to the framing in order to give you clearance---

1/2" cabinet plywood is often used to make the jambs--then what ever casing you like to picture frame the opening---

open the window---used a scrap of 1/2" material to see of your window will clear the new jambs.

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Old 06-18-2013, 05:24 PM   #3
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


that window is old and guarenteed not very energy efficent. why spend money and time on trimming it if in the near future youll just have to remove it when you go to upgrade the window. do it all now all at once while its accesible
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Old 06-19-2013, 03:00 AM   #4
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


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Boy, that's some funky framing--and to tight to the window---

How handy are you? what tools do you have?

Ideal would be to replace that window with a modern vinyl one---could be that a standard off the shelf one, a slider. would work.

If you wish to keep the old window and simply trim it out nicely--some cutting may be needed to the framing in order to give you clearance---

1/2" cabinet plywood is often used to make the jambs--then what ever casing you like to picture frame the opening---

open the window---used a scrap of 1/2" material to see of your window will clear the new jambs.
I'm kind of handy. I only have a skilsaw, multi tool and roto zip. The clearance around the window (for opening and closing) ranges from 1/4" to 1". The depth for the jambs ranges from 4" to 4 1/2".

With this funky framing and lack of spacing how can I do a dead simple trim and functional window?
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:21 AM   #5
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


I suggest you make the opening larger by about 1 1/4"---that might require
a SawsAll---

Then you can build a box using 3/4" wood---measure each corner depth---that is the cut width for each jamb--because the opening is not even to the face of the drywall--the boards must be trapezoids----so when the box is built it will be tight to the window and flush to the drywall.

If you choose not enlarge the opening,you will need to use thin plywood--that will not look very good and will warp quickly due to moisture.
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Old 06-19-2013, 06:53 AM   #6
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


With only the tools listed it may be easier to cut the window itself down and add to the stops.
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Old 06-19-2013, 01:19 PM   #7
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


I have a Sawsall too, but prefer not to make the opening larger (it'll be too messy). The bottom is the real booger measuring 1/4" to 7/16", left to right. Could I simply buy 1/2", 5/8" or 3/4" x 5 1/2/6" cedar board and sand it down (borrow whatever the appropriate tool is for this from dad or neighbor) to 1/4" to 7/16" to make the bottom jamb piece?
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Old 06-19-2013, 03:17 PM   #8
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


Why are you wasting time on a window that does not merit it. Replace it, and be done with it.
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Old 06-19-2013, 04:44 PM   #9
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


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that window is old and guarenteed not very energy efficent. why spend money and time on trimming it if in the near future youll just have to remove it when you go to upgrade the window. do it all now all at once while its accesible
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Why are you wasting time on a window that does not merit it. Replace it, and be done with it.
Three reasons...:

[1] I can't find a modern/vinyl window that's the same size (40" x 25"). that means a lot more work to get the new one to fit since it's not the same size

[2] The current old window matches the other basement windows which are visible from the backyard - three original windows and one modern one would look weird

[3] The whole basement will be remodeled eventually, including replacing all the windows. No sense in getting the new window now when it'll be replaced again in the remodel.
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Old 06-19-2013, 04:49 PM   #10
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Three reasons...:

[1] I can't find a modern/vinyl window that's the same size (40" x 25")..
You can order vinyl windows any size you want to the 1/8". And no, it doesn't make it custom = more $$$.
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:36 PM   #11
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


That's good to know for the remodel. Since reasons 2 and 3 still applies, I'm stuck working with this old window.

What about the idea of sanding down cedar boards for the bottom piece of the jamb? Is it possible? If not, any other ideas?
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Old 06-19-2013, 05:48 PM   #12
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


How does this thing even open? I see a the bolt at the top but where's the hinges? I can see were there use to be hinges on the top and the bottom.

The only reason you'd use Cedar is if that is the look you're going for. The only clearance issues I see is at the sill, unless I'm missing something.
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Old 06-19-2013, 08:41 PM   #13
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Once you replace the windows all the work your trying to do now will all have to come out and be redone.
I agree it's makes no since to work around that window.
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Old 06-19-2013, 09:18 PM   #14
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Once you replace the windows all the work your trying to do now will all have to come out and be redone.
I agree it's makes no since to work around that window.
IDK Joe, recently I spent a week restoring a rotted out 20 pane wall of 100+ year old wavy glass. We discussed replacing the old inefficient glass with new dbl pane units but it was important to them to keep it all original. I enjoyed the challenge and applauded them on their decision.

I sure hope the next owners don't tear out all of my work on this Painted Lady just to maybe save a few bucks on their utility bill. It's like scrapping out a 442 for a down payment on a Preis in many circles.

Everyone's entitled to there opinion but once someone says "I need to work with what I have" then helpful post to accomplish that is a good thing as long as it's safe.

I install new energy efficient windows all the time but if restoration is what they want I'm there for them too.
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Old 06-20-2013, 09:43 AM   #15
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fix up old window, add simple trim, make fucntional


The three sides seem simple enough to do what you are thinking. If you are planning on hinges at the bottom, then mounting the hinges to a 1/4" sheet is not going to work. The hinges need to be mounted very solidly. One possibility would be to cut 3/8" off the bottom of the window to gain more height. Shimming the low places is going to be a lot easier than sanding a taper on the entire bottom board. Some people would just use 1 x 4 for trimming out a basement window, but if you spend an extra $6 for casement, and miter the corners, its going a lot better.
Those windows look pretty tight on the sides too. A plane would be the proper tool to shave a little off the sides of the window.

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