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Does anyone use windows?  RSS feed

 
Posts: 1424
Location: Zone 5 Wyoming
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I've been collecting windows and that is my big greenhouse plan. Whenever I look at design threads and such it's always plastic. Does no one collect windows? They are always on Craigslist here and I have a few companies who tell me to take all the old ones I want.
 
steward
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My first greenhouse used the fiberglass type of plastic. Next time I will use patio door glass.
 
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Location: Central Maine - Zone 4b/5a
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Your query led me to this, and now I have greenhouse envy....
 
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Location: VT, USA Zone 4/5
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I was gifted some 4' x 6'6" double pane storefront windows a few years ago - I'm working on the greenhouse now! The trick with using old windows is getting ones WITHOUT a low-e coating. Most new windows have coatings that reduce the amount of solar heat gain and visible light that is transmitted. Sometimes you can see a coating - the glass will look slightly brown, gray or blue. Sometimes you can't see it, but can test for it using a lighter. See here:

http://ths.gardenweb.com/discussions/2595103/identifying-low-e-windows

I bet the glass from old sliding glass doors would make a great greenhouse!

With glass, you'll need a more robust structure than plastic - and you won't be able to move it as easily, but you won't have plastic that degrades every few years either. Also, for those of us in cold northern climes, double pane clear glass is excellent for both light transmission and insulating value.
 
elle sagenev
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Jessica Gorton wrote:Your query led me to this, and now I have greenhouse envy....



Haha! I know! I have about 30 windows and several glass doors. They go up all the time. I just thought it was odd that no one ever posted about that on here.
 
elle sagenev
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Karen Walk wrote:I was gifted some 4' x 6'6" double pane storefront windows a few years ago - I'm working on the greenhouse now! The trick with using old windows is getting ones WITHOUT a low-e coating. Most new windows have coatings that reduce the amount of solar heat gain and visible light that is transmitted. Sometimes you can see a coating - the glass will look slightly brown, gray or blue. Sometimes you can't see it, but can test for it using a lighter. See here:

http://ths.gardenweb.com/discussions/2595103/identifying-low-e-windows

I bet the glass from old sliding glass doors would make a great greenhouse!

With glass, you'll need a more robust structure than plastic - and you won't be able to move it as easily, but you won't have plastic that degrades every few years either. Also, for those of us in cold northern climes, double pane clear glass is excellent for both light transmission and insulating value.



I got all the windows from my work and from my house. My work ones are "antique" windows. The kind with the wavy looking glass that people pay to get for crafting. My house ones were complete trash and about 20 years old so I bet they are fine too. Nice tip though!!!
 
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One thing to watch out for when using glass, is burning your plants. To much sun magnified thru glass will kill most anything you would want a greenhouse to grow. Our greenhouse has 2 large salvaged glass windows, and we quickly learned that we needed a 30% shade cloth to keep the direct sun off. The rest of it is covered with solex, a wonderful opaque product that although expensive is worth every penny.
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greenhouse-17.JPG
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gardener
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I second the use of patio door glass. It's tempered and breaks into little squares if it breaks. When double pane seals go bad, two useful panes are available with a little cutting of the rubber seal. Uniform sizes make framing easy. Untempered plate glass can be used for walls but not for overhead applications.
 
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Location: Pittsburgh PA
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Yep. Wood windows rot fast. High humidity and wood is a no go. Otherwise, people use plastic due to burn, mass scale, and low maintenance. And you can't roll up windows in the spring.
 
elle sagenev
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chad Christopher wrote:Yep. Wood windows rot fast. High humidity and wood is a no go. Otherwise, people use plastic due to burn, mass scale, and low maintenance. And you can't roll up windows in the spring.



But you can open them!
 
pollinator
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Hi Elle,
Glass makes the best greenhouse!
http://www.conservationtechnology.com/building_glazing.html Conservation Technology makes the best glazing gaskets for installing bare glass in a wooden frame. Just post pictures of your situation and we can talk about proper mounting and sealing ie. not gobs of caulk holding the windows in.
In summer just paint the glass with greenhouse paint and wash it off in fall.
I love the wavy cylinder glass and use it often in my restoration work, but it is very difficult to work with and can break at the slightest tweak, so I would recommend selling that to restoration pros that will be so happy to get it(I spend a lot of time looking through window shops' boneyards for this stuff) and use only newer, usually thicker and definitely safer glazing.
All Blessings,
Bill
 
elle sagenev
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Bill Bradbury wrote:Hi Elle,
Glass makes the best greenhouse!
http://www.conservationtechnology.com/building_glazing.html Conservation Technology makes the best glazing gaskets for installing bare glass in a wooden frame. Just post pictures of your situation and we can talk about proper mounting and sealing ie. not gobs of caulk holding the windows in.
In summer just paint the glass with greenhouse paint and wash it off in fall.
I love the wavy cylinder glass and use it often in my restoration work, but it is very difficult to work with and can break at the slightest tweak, so I would recommend selling that to restoration pros that will be so happy to get it(I spend a lot of time looking through window shops' boneyards for this stuff) and use only newer, usually thicker and definitely safer glazing.
All Blessings,
Bill



All the windows we have are in their original frames. We could just remount them.
 
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