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Plastic storm windows

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by FanMan, Jan 17, 2013.

  1. FanMan

    FanMan Feeling the Heat

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    I'm trying to find the material used on some plastic storm windows. I've only seen it twice, first on storm windows on my parent's house in Florida, and then on a restaurant entrance in Connecticut. The contractor that did my parent's place is out of business, and although the restaurant manager promised to get me a name, she never did. These are custom made windows on aluminum frames, but I'm just looking for the plastic material itself.

    Anyway, this is a very clear, slightly stretchy plastic. I'm not talking about the real thin stretchy stuff they sell for winterizing. It's tough clear like the vinyl plastic used on convertible tops, but stretchier. Because it's stretchy, it pulls tight and flat so as not to distort vision through it... not as good as glass, of course, but better than the average convertible top.

    I want to use it for winter windows on my screen porch... there will be a bunch of 4' square windows on light wood frames, so glass would be too heavy (the windows will be top hinged and hooked to the ceiling when open) and plexiglass would cost more than I care to spend right now.

    Anybody have any ideas where I can find this stuff? Please don't guess at a source if you don't know; I work with various industrial plastic suppliers but I haven't been able to identify this specific material.

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  2. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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  3. FanMan

    FanMan Feeling the Heat

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    Thanks, I'll check that out.
  4. ironpony

    ironpony Minister of Fire

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    if that is the company I was looking at to do the same thing you are thinking, it does not come 4 feet wide I had to do 2 panels in each 4 foot section.
    I will try to find the company name for you. the stuff is practically indestructable also if you do the whole window it folds into itself and exposes 75% of the opening
  5. FanMan

    FanMan Feeling the Heat

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    No, they have it 54" wide which is perfect... if it's the right stuff. I sent them an email asking if I can get a sample.
  6. dougstove

    dougstove Member

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    Hi - what thickness would you use?
    For an interior storm window, how would you get it pulled tight?
    cheers, Doug
  7. FanMan

    FanMan Feeling the Heat

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    I'm not sure of the thickness or even the material. However, the supplier in the link above says the .040" is UV resistant, so that sounds like the one to use. No samples, though. Also, I read elsewhere on the web that the calendared vinyl is stretched a bit during manufacture, so application of heat makes it shrink. That may be just the ticket in getting it to stretch tight.
  8. dougstove

    dougstove Member

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    What are you planning to use as a frame?
    For wide stretches of 24" or more, I am finding that even ordinary window covering shrink film pulls hard enough to bow in aluminum screen frames that I assembled for the purpose.
    I am guessing this heavier vinyl would also pull hard.
    cheers, Doug
  9. FanMan

    FanMan Feeling the Heat

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    I'm planning on a wood frame, 1x2 (might not be stiff enough) or 1x3. I'll have to experiment first with one before I make all 10.
  10. dougstove

    dougstove Member

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    I used some nominal 1 x 2 pine for frames for ordinary shrink film, and for wide spans of 4 feet, it is barely stiff enough; the shrinking can bow the frame inward.
  11. SmokeyTheBear

    SmokeyTheBear Minister of Fire

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    It will depend upon how long the longest sides are as to weather you'll have trouble with 1 x 2 pine buckling.

    I made 16 panels and only had issues with the patio door panels I should have placed a spreader half way up the panel. I'll fix that in the spring.
  12. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    We used heavy, clear vinyl plastic (8 or 10 ga?) on 1x2 frames for about 10 years on our house's older windows. They stood up remarkably well. I stored them in the garage in the springtime. I still have a couple and use them as cold frames.
  13. pgmr

    pgmr Feeling the Heat

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