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Member postings for Andy Bell

Here is a list of all the postings Andy Bell has made in our forums. Click on a thread name to jump to the thread.

Thread: Designs for up to spec box sliding sash
12/03/2008 14:31:00

Hi Malc,

I've had good look at many old designs and there are quite a few variations for the joints. As with may traditional designs these will have evolved over many years, taking in to account new tools, fixings and adhesives (including machining in 1904). Joints with dovetails on the sash styles are a fantastily elegant solution, the joints may swell,shrink come unstuck but there's noway the window will fall apart.

I'm undescided yet about the joint designs i'll be using. If I can simplfy the designs using modern adhesives and fixings, I'll consider it.  I certainly don't want to disregard years of evolution (your windows have lasted 104 years) just for the sake of easy machining.


Speil ceqer not wurkin,

10/03/2008 10:38:00

Hi John,

Thanks for the ref to UKworkshop forums. I've a search through, theres lots some intresting stuff on there. Three other people have asked for sliding sash designs and I've followed up a few of the suggestions made. But these all lead to old designs.

I've started designing now, and will update when I've got some ideas together.


06/03/2008 22:59:00


Thanks for the referal to TRADA. I've spent most of the evening absorbing the "High performance wood windows" document. It's the loads of detail and reasoning in there that's going to be useful.

Only problem is, I've got to apply the theory to box sliding sash as they dont get a mention, it's all hinged opening.

I'll try their technical helpline tomorrow


05/03/2008 22:53:00

Baz Cheers,

Watching the telly is job I can set the wife on with.


05/03/2008 22:49:00


Thanks for the ref. to Mumford and Wood. I managed to get through and view the drawings. Very interesting, treble seals, drip grooves, vapour/drain holes under the glass. Lots to be considering.

I'm starting to feel the drawing board about to come out.

Thanks John, I'll give TRADA a try as well.


05/03/2008 14:53:00

Hi Derek,

Thanks for your info, appologies I may not have been clear. I'm going to be building these from scratch to accomodate double glazing, mounted from the inside and incorporating seals on the staff and parting beads. Also seals on the top and bottom of the sashes. I haven't yet found a timber merchant that sells the mouldings for double glazing to make the sashes, they are all for traditional single glazing.

Its interesting what you say about cills not often rotting. I've noticed the same,everytime I see a sliding sash I have a look. Its more common to see rot on the bottom of the Box housing. Some maufacturers however advetise the cills being hardwood because of a roting problems. Could it just be a problem with the modern maufacturing design?

I'd like to build using tried and tested designs but incorporating modern seals and glazing. It's old details like this that I keen to make sure I don't miss out on.

Notch at the bottom of the front of the Box so water doesn't collect behind.

Any input to this project will be greatfully received.

Cheers Andy

04/03/2008 23:37:00


You're right I've tried all the web searches 

I've not actually tried asking a manufacture for plans, I just assumed they'd not be willing. I could try the hardware / weights manufacture "Mighton" first. Thanks for another avenue I can explore.


04/03/2008 22:44:00

Hi Sparky,

Thanks for the links. There's a couple of books there that I hadn't seen before, but alas none that mention actually making the sashes and frames. All I can ever find is how to repair, refurbish, install, paint or advice on ordering.

Its beginning to feel like a trade secret or something that no one has published yet. I'm actually willing to pay for some designs and I'm sure others would be interested as well. If someone out there has the knowledge maybe we could get together and put some designs and instructions together. Or put the plans in one of the mags. I'd willing pay a years subscription. 

Thanks Andy

04/03/2008 15:11:00

Hi There,

I'm new to the forum and only found the site today but I like what I see and think I've found some kindred spirits.

I've been searching everywhere I find on the internet for designs of box sliding sash windows with double glazing and weather seals. I've grasped all the basic principles but am a bit stuck when it comes to the details. I think its down to the finer details that will make a good performing, long lasting window.

Lots of what I see on the web is designed for ease of machining based manufacture and often with little regard to how the wood will perform best. I'm thinking mainly of joint design and details to avoid water ingress and pooling. I'm also stuck on, what are the best weather/draught seals, do brushes hold moisture?, are plastic lip seals effective, should I go for stepped meeting rails or wedge type? What clearences should I leave for the seals?

I think I should be able to make each window for around £200 material cost whereas buying them would be around £1000. With 8 to make I've got a big saving that I could spend on tooling up although I can't imagine needing more than a router table.

Has anyone had experince in this area? Do you know where I could get hold of plans? Are there any books with this kind of detail?

Thanks for any help you give.

PS. I'll have to post some pictures of my 15 ft home made pole/router lathe. Proper bodge job.


Thread: Linseed Oil Paint
02/01/2009 20:50:00

Just an update on this one.

I've just installed the window pre-painted with the linseed oil paint. I'm happy with the finish and it seems reasonably tough, I didn't have to retouch any of it after installation.

The main down side of it has been the drying time, over 24hrs per coat in a warm room.

I'll see how it stands up to the weather now.


Thread: Designs for up to spec box sliding sash
02/01/2009 20:44:00
Whoopee. The first one is in and working.

Now for the other Six.

Thread: New Year Projects
02/01/2009 20:35:00

Happy New Year to you all.

Completing current projects is first on the list for me.

Snap - Richard (Mr Maguire) I've got my loft conversion to finish off - A little more woodworking and then the big finish session on the stairs. I'll be after some advice on what to use.

Then, at some point I've got another 6 of my Sliding Sash windows to make as well. Deadline set - Next Christmas.

New project, now the wife has seen I can make doors, I think I'll be making a new front door. Followed by an inner lobby doorway and door with Gothic arches.

I'll be keeping busy.


Thread: Double glazed sash windows
17/12/2008 12:12:00

Hi Andy,

From my research, not experiance, I have been told beding fully in silicone can be sucseful. MAKE SURE you use neutral curing, Low modulus silicone. The viniger smelling stuff will attack the edge sealent of the DG units. Normal glazing silicone wont work.

I choose to go for EPDM seals, 24mm units in a vented and drained rebate. However I've started from scratch, the sashes are 55mm wide and clamp the glass and seals together firmly. 

Check how much length you have in weight boxes to give you full movement. You could get two cast iron weights in each box, one on top of the other, articulated so they still fit in the pockets. Otherwise go for lead, cheapest I've found is direct from the smelters, Heaps Arnold and Heaps Ltd.

Thanks Joe, , only very slightly more technical knowledge so I'm hoping the link will work.

Spell checkers not working so apologies for the spellings.


Thread: Computer Desk Design
05/12/2008 12:50:00


I like the moveable shelves, one big enough for A4 reems, file etc. Have you though about where a printer scaner would go?

Little Bro will be expecting blue if he sees the sketches. Blue dye on ash - Kid Chic.


Thread: Softwood preferred sizes
05/12/2008 11:21:00

Thanks for the explanation and knowledgeable advice. Joinery is my bag at the momement.  I'll do what I can to reduce waste by buying closer to size and  better selection down at the timber yard.



Thread: Computer Desk Design
04/12/2008 18:02:00


You could think about some sort of shelving above the desk for speakers and the other assorted periferals we tend to acumulate. Anything to keep the desk space clear. Also consider leg stretching room underneath.

Good luck with it


Thread: workshop alarms
04/12/2008 17:46:00


The PIR with klaxon would be inside, hopefully the mice I get wouldn't set it of .

I know what you mean about the security lights outside. My big doors go on to a pitch black back lane. The sensor is set so it only operates within about 8" of the door. The doors are strong and quadruple locked. I'm hoping someone would notice an illuminated Ram raid or chainsaw.

Agreed, strong secure doors and windows not forgeting the frames are the best solution.  But anything to put off the opportunist scallywags is a good extra.


04/12/2008 14:10:00


I was going instal this in my garage, I've just not got round to in yet -

A PIR security light with a 240v klaxton wired in to it. I'd have a switch I could reach just inside the door outside of the PIR range. A friend of mine has done similar with a pull cord switch threaded through wall so he can switch it on and off from outside. He also had a baby alarm to make sure he could hear what was happening from his bed room!

I also have 250w security lights over each door, pointing down so as not to add to sky glow.

Cheap and cheerful, if thats the kind of thing you where looking for. Otherwise a bought one with a magntic switches and PIRs eg.

should do the trick.

You can get shed alarms for round £10 but I'm sure they are all that scary.


Thread: Softwood preferred sizes
03/12/2008 20:54:00

Thanks Baz,

Tension inherent in the wood is something I'd not heard about. I though it might have been coming from the outside of a large section being drier and when cut the wetter inside has chance to expand causing the bowing and twisting.

I'll carry on buying as close to size as I can, may be adjust designs to suit stock sizes and planning my purchases a bit better to avoid waste.

Cheers Andy

03/12/2008 15:06:00

Some body once told me they buy 9 x 3" and rip it down to what ever they need. The man at Arnold Lavers said that as the redwood isn't well dried its likely to warp as soon as its cut. I've noticed this when ripping smaller sections down.

Are there better wood yards out there who sell redwood thats had a longer in the kiln? Or is it standard practice now for importers and producers to save a shilling?

I'm sure if I rip my own sections I'll end up with less waste/kindeling.

Dave, It's a good job they still make tapes and rules double scaled for the likes of us.


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