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Glazing Old Single Pane Windows part three

By HHr Staff ~ Colbyt

This article, part 3 explains the glazing process.

Replacement windows are looking better all the time aren't they!

Placing the new glazing:
I am right handed so these directions are written for a right handed person. Lefties will need to adjust this.

Take a ball of putty and work it in your hands to warm and evenly distribute the oils in it. Hold the putty in your left hand and press the putty into place into place using the knife from top to bottom or left to right. With practice you will learn to feed the putty from through the end of your fingers in a very efficient manner. The putty oozes between your circled index finger and thumb. The process is very much like squeezing a tube of tooth paste or using a pastry or mortar bag except that your hand is the container.

All you are doing now in getting the putty in place on all four sides of the frame. It will be over filled and uneven. Then you go back and finish it removing the excess which is added back to the ball for the next window.

To finish you start at a top or left corner and press gently on the putty knife with your left thumb as you pull the knife to the bottom or right in one long continuous stroke. It may take more than one finish stoke until you get the hang of it. The side edges of the knife blade should rest against the wood and the glass as you press and pack the putty into the triangle shape. The handle should point in the direction you are pulling towards.

Glazing a window is a lot like finishing drywall. The newbie mistake is thinking that it must look perfect before they quit for the day. So they keep messing with it until is totally screwed up. Drywall you can sand as long as the tape is buried deep enough. Glazing compound does not sand. There always going to be a few ridges to be removed when the putty has had a chance to set up. On your first few attempts you may have to add an additional bit of putty to a low spot.

If you have achieved a smooth stroke on all four sides of the window and just have a few blemishes in the corners, quit now and play again in a few days!

Finishing the corners
During the first week and anytime after 24-48 hours of the initial application of the putty any small ridges can be removed using your utility knife and a fresh unbroken blade. Hold the knife so that the blade is parallel to the surface and angle and remove that which offends you. The surface can then be smoothed with your putty knife dipped in water or a small skim coat of fresh putty can be applied.

Just one final note; no one is ever going to stare at that window, glazing and paint job as much as you have the last few days. When was the last time you went to some ones home and thought, "That is a really crappy glazing job".

If it keeps the water and air out and holds the glass in place you done good.

Part 2 explains the removal of the old glazing material.
Part 1 covers tools and preparation.

More Articles in:  Windows and Doors

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Glazing Old Single Pane Windows part one
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Glazing Old Single Pane Windows part two
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