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Sash and Case / Yorkshire sash / Simplex Hinges

- a form of window in which two sashes, separated by parting beads, slide within a frame, the case, counterbalanced by weights hung on ropes, the sashcords. A sash window is described as double hung, when both top and bottom sashes are weighted. The boxes holding the weights and cords are the sash boxes. The glazing slides in two parallel frames within the case, the upper sliding outward of the lower. The meeting rail is the point where the top of the bottom sash meets the bottom of the upper sash, which are sometimes diagonally checked to prevent draughts. The projection of the top sash beyond the bottom sash traps a certain amount of shadow which gives the sash and case window a very satisfying 3-D effect. This is something totally lacking in most modern replacements which usually consist of two panes on the same plain, which pivot or are side hung, and are separated by a thick glazing bar supposed to resemble the meeting rail.

In early sash windows, the sash boxes were not checked into the side of the window opening, and were sometimes disguised as architraves. Early sashes, particularly when set into brickwork were usually fitted flush with the wall surfaces. They were quickly moved back into the building as early by-laws required them to be set back into the wall thickness to reduce the risk of the spread of flame.

A Yorkshire sash is where the sashes slide horizontally without the benefit of weights. Simplex hinges are hinges with grooves, fitted to the case, which allow the sash to be swung inwards for easy cleaning. The sash and case window was introduced into Britain in the 1670's from France. The early sash weights were quite often in lead, but cast iron soon became universal. Rather handily, cast iron weights, usually have their weight in pounds stamped on them.

Window frames, and sash and case windows in particular were never painted white. This is a relatively modern trend. Darker traditional colours such as red or green emphasised the reflective quality of the glass and made it more difficult to detect the presence of astragals, which suggested that the occupant could not afford the more desired larger sheets of glass.
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