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leadlight in aluminium windows?

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011

    Default leadlight in aluminium windows?

    Ok, I know next to nothing about leadlighting except I think it looks great, and I would like to get some put into my new extension.
    Some of the work on this site are amazing and reasonably priced.
    My question...is there a ny problem with putting leadlight into aluminium framed windows??

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Western Australia


    There's a zillion kinds and brands of aluminium frames and knowing exactly which ones you have to deal with ( are using ) will assist in planning ahead re leadlights. Some aluminium frames have to be disassembled and a special Y channel border lead used in the leadlight construction ( exact size is extremely important here ) and leadlight fitted with a rubber channel. These frames are a pain in the a$$ to fit and require a glazier to measure for build size and refit. Others are a pain as the leadlight has to be a special size and fitted in with double sided glazing tape, which once the leadlight is inserted and jo0ckeyed into position the tape cover strip is pulled away till it sticks. if you make a blue with locating the window in this type of frame and installation its hard to re do without damage to leadlight. Others have a hard plastic quad style channel fitted to the existing glass and once a leadlight goes in the channel cant be re-used. A substitute "look" is achieved in this case by using masking tape over leadlight edge ( inside border lead edge ) and on the frame ....squeezing black silicone into the resulting gap between two lots of masking tape, and thumbing the silicone once you have sprayed either glass cleaner over the fresh silicone or using soapy water for the same result ( stops fresh silicone sticking to fingers ).
    Also to be considered is size of aluminium frame. You cant build a one piece leadlight window if the frame is too large.....some leadlights will have to be made in two or three sections and assembled in place by interlocking border leads.....we use for instance an 8mm round lead with a smaller u lead inserted into the channel of the larger lead. Generally any window larger than about 800 wide by 1m or 1.2 metres will need to be made in two pieces or more depending on size. Proper reinforcing methods for the leadlight will be a factor. What can be fitted with reinforcing bars into a wood framed window cannot be done in the same way with an aluminium window. Internal reinforcing will have to be used and all we now have available to us is the lead with a hollow for a steel strip to pass through the middle. The lead with a brass strip through the middle has just been deleted from availability.
    Best you make your aluminium window choices with a reputable leadlighter at hand .......one who knows not only the various fitting issues with each type of aluminium window but also the size constraints in regard to appropriate reinforcement for long term stability and safety of the leadlight.
    Karen of Artistry Stained Glass
    30 Years in the Business of leadlight and stained glass ( church windows )

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