Once the paint is scraped (good grief, that’s an annoying job!), it’s time to patch the damage and prime it fast* so that it can stop being disintegrated by the weather 🙂
The house is pretty solid, structurally, but there are a few (thousand) points of vulnerability – such as the window frames. Since moving in August I’ve been nagging Sergiu to get results (unreasonable expectations, party of me) and he finally (I’m ridiculous) scraped, patched, caulked, and primed all of the many, many windows** on the house.
While generally in good shape for things built 150 years ago, some of the window-frame wood was beyond saving. This indisputable fact is made more complicated by the fact that Sergiu and I have very different approaches to project management – mine prioritizing efficiency and his prioritizing speed.*** i.e., I don’t like repeating work and wasting materials, but Sergiu just wanted to get it done so he used some wood pieces to just cover the hole, figuring he’d do it over with the “right” pieces of wood later. Clearly I’m still annoyed by this.
This process was rough for everyone. Mostly Sergiu, who had to listen to me whine about it for two months. But also mostly for me, who had to whine about this for two months to get it done. But really, mostly Sergiu – who got stung by about 42 bees in the process.****
Ultimately, it got done,*^ which is what is important.
In addition to the many beautiful, normal looking windows, there were a few others that fell into one of two categories: “In better shape than they first appeared to be” (below)
and, “random stupid windows that were installed (poorly) decades (if not a century) after the original construction of the house, and which are definitely being removed and replaced with the proper window type when I have time/money/energy” (below)
In the case of the latter, the immediate action is to protect it enough so that the surrounding house (frame, siding, insides, etc) doesn’t get damaged by the shoddy construction practices of post-1870. Sergiu (finally) got the flashing on, hopefully protecting the house from future rain/snow/zombies/etc.
It’s been a long 2 months (also super short), and I’m visibly annoyed there isn’t more visible progress, but the time has been largely spent adapting to our new surroundings (and commute), trying to find where to buy food, water,*^^ mowing the lawn,*^^^ taking lukewarm baths, and live out of the boxes we still haven’t come close to unpacking (or organizing in any way).
Hopefully October will bring with it some really satisfying progress (personally, for the house, politically.. I’ll take any/all of the above).
*Fast being a relative term, in this case resembling anything but actual fast.
**I don’t even know how many… guessing I’d say approx 30? I have to count when I get home.
***In this case, “speed” is a synonym of lazy and shortsighted…
****Again, it was/is definitely rougher on me because I keep finding things he didn’t do. Like half the damn windows (see pics above)
*^Apparently not totally…..(see ****)
*^^ Not among our accomplishments for August/September, getting the well tested. 😡
*^^^ Probably best to not get me started…
3 thoughts on “Scraping – Patching – Priming: Windows”
Windows are a tricky thing. From a restoration perspective, you want to save as many as you can. Sadly, even the most solidly-built windows and frames of yore are not necessarily economical when it comes to energy-efficiency. On the flip side, well-built “modern” windows, though delightful in regards to the utility budget, are often ugly as hell and detract from the charm. One CAN find “retro” windows that give a whiff of period flavor, but they are often enormously expensive. What to do, what do do…
I can understand Sergiu using his “patch boards” to stop deterioration as quickly as possible, but I’m with you: Just do it right the first time, if at all possible…
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Yes, this has become a common dispute between us.
I think that we can make the original ones at least more energy efficient with complete stripping, restoring, and adding weatherstripping and smarter insulation. I hope. My way takes forever though lol
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