What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

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ndhayes
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What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by ndhayes »

Why is there an invisible slot milled in Frank Lloyd Wright's ASBH window frames? Should we fill it with something, and if so, what? Architects, homeowners, historians and restorers are welcomed to weigh in. Over on the Book of Faces we've heard screen, bead and rope theories. Is this seen on other homes not ASBH? https://elizabethmurphyhouse.com/2021/1 ... s-windows/

outside in
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by outside in »

Its a guess, but bronze edge strips were typically used for weatherstripping at the time of the systems-built homes. Sometimes referred to as "sprung bronze". the installation process involved bronze strips attached with tiny nails, approx. 1 inch on center, running around either the window jamb or sash. The process is time-consuming, though it does create a long-lasting seal to prevent wind infiltration. My guess is that Wright proposed using some type of bulb, (today's windows use a compressible plastic bulb) be it rope or rubber, to create the required weatherstripping. The photos of the actual jamb appear quite different than the drawing, however, and I doubt if it was successful. Nice try, though.

ndhayes
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by ndhayes »

outside in wrote:
Tue Oct 12, 2021 7:24 am
Its a guess, but bronze edge strips were typically used for weatherstripping at the time of the systems-built homes. Sometimes referred to as "sprung bronze". the installation process involved bronze strips attached with tiny nails, approx. 1 inch on center, running around either the window jamb or sash. The process is time-consuming, though it does create a long-lasting seal to prevent wind infiltration. My guess is that Wright proposed using some type of bulb, (today's windows use a compressible plastic bulb) be it rope or rubber, to create the required weatherstripping. The photos of the actual jamb appear quite different than the drawing, however, and I doubt if it was successful. Nice try, though.
Thanks! Other ASBH owners can chime in, but we see actual sprung bronze on our backdoor and evidence that it was in at least some opening windows. Are you suggested an either/or? Spring bronze or a bulb, or the possibility of both? Redundancy seems unlikely. I'm in the habit of looking at these question through the lens of ASBH economics. We can see many examples where he was working out how to reduce costs while still making something functional. So in this case, perhaps the plan was to seal non-opening windows with a bulb and edge strips on openers.

wjsaia
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by wjsaia »

For the case of an active casement window, it occurs to me that the milled grooves in the interior faces of the sash’s vertical rails along together with the ones milled into the outer edges of the B-9 jamb stops that align with them may have been conceived to create drainage chutes as capillary action breaks that would serve to impede intrusion of wind-driven rain that otherwise might reach and cause unsightly staining of surfaces of the wood sash and stops exposed to view from the interior.

No clearance space or hinges are indicated between the sash and the window frame and stops, so whether this particular depiction is intended to apply to an active or fixed window (or both) is somewhat uncertain, but the rails and stops would be the same profiles for both.

Spring bronze weatherstripping, if any, would be positioned between the sash edges and the A-4 pieces in this drawing.

The window’s vertical rail widths are dimensioned differently on the drawing. What might be the explanation for that clearly intended asymmetry?

WJS

SDR
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by SDR »

Vertical rails = stiles ?

One of Bill's comments raises an interesting point: I find over and again that Wright, in the earlier part of the career, routinely shows no gap---a practical necessity, of course---between door and window sash and the adjacent fixed members, even in full-sized detail drawings. Perhaps this was a convention of the day, one which builders would have had no trouble translating for their use ? Or was this peculiar to Wright's studio ?

S

wjsaia
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by wjsaia »

Oops. Sorry, yes vertical stiles, not rails . . .

WJS

SDR
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by SDR »

No criticism intended, Bill.

I think Mr Hayes has gone further into some details of the ASBH system, as designed and as built (not always the same thing ---even, or especially, in a complex "building recipe" like this one ?), than have other owner-restorers so far---if I'm not mistaken.

In addition to those matters, I find myself intrigued by the "clothing" Mr Wright chose for the various iterations of the formula: a range of exterior compositions consisting largely of a novel arrangement of horizontal and vertical moldings, often and typically as extensions of the casing of openings, which offered themselves thus as form initiators.

Here is a collection of view drawings found in the "Richards" file at Artstor. In addition to amounting to a sampler of compositions and of building parts---including sash---these illustrations in perspective, whether sketched or fully rendered, are a testament to someone's skill as a delineator. I'd love to know who is to be credited with each of the following examples.

SDR
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by SDR »

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© The Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation Archives (The Museum of Modern Art | Avery Architectural & Fine Arts Library, Columbia University, New York)

https://library.artstor.org/#/search/Wr ... =1;size=48


In addition to the question of delineator (isn't that first one a knockout, with the wildest treed backdrop I've seen in any Wright drawing ? Or is that a forest fire ?), is any of these designs misplaced as an example of ASBH ? Do any of them not belong in that file ?

S

ndhayes
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by ndhayes »

wjsaia wrote:
Sun Oct 17, 2021 12:03 pm
For the case of an active casement window, it occurs to me that the milled grooves in the interior faces of the sash’s vertical rails along together with the ones milled into the outer edges of the B-9 jamb stops that align with them may have been conceived to create drainage chutes as capillary action breaks that would serve to impede intrusion of wind-driven rain that otherwise might reach and cause unsightly staining of surfaces of the wood sash and stops exposed to view from the interior.

No clearance space or hinges are indicated between the sash and the window frame and stops, so whether this particular depiction is intended to apply to an active or fixed window (or both) is somewhat uncertain, but the rails and stops would be the same profiles for both.

Spring bronze weatherstripping, if any, would be positioned between the sash edges and the A-4 pieces in this drawing.

The window’s vertical rail widths are dimensioned differently on the drawing. What might be the explanation for that clearly intended asymmetry?

WJS
Intrigued by the idea of a water channel, as opposed to an insulator. This seems testable on our current restoration prototype and I will report. (Here, BTW, are the b4 and after of our working test. https://www.instagram.com/p/CU0p6Yrl0Za/)

Also interested in where you see asymmetry in rails. Can you point to that?

Roderick Grant
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by Roderick Grant »

The drawing above of 4 houses in a row, seemingly variations on a single theme, has always intrigued me.

SDR
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by SDR »

On the drawing on Nick's linked page the two sash members are drawn and labeled with different dimensions: one is 2 1/4" and the other is 3". If this were a plan section---as one would expect from the symmetrical nature of the framing of the window---that would mean that two stiles on the same sash differed, a real oddity. But in Wright's ASBH invention the top and bottom of the window openings are nearly identical, with a steeply-sloped sill replicated at the head. So, this is a vertical section through the window, and the wider frame member is the bottom rail of the sash.

S

wjsaia
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by wjsaia »

Oh ... Never mind. (À la Gilda Radner in the early days of SNL.) :oops:

WJS

SDR
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Re: What is the purpose of the milled slot in Frank Lloyd Wright's windows?

Post by SDR »

Bill has to be the only WC poster ever to have employed the TINY font in a post . . . no ?

Don't ever leave us.

S

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