Breathing new life into Georgian windows
Specialists in residential spraying, McWilliams Decorators and Contractors, are renowned in the Midlands for their work on period properties. When the owners of the Grade II listed Wall Hall in Wall, Staffordshire, wanted to breathe new life into their Georgian windows, they turned to McWilliams for help. Q1 Tapes and Festool helped in this precision job.
Peeling back the years and creating new crisp edges
Wall Hall is a 240-year-old building which has had countless coats of paint applied to its original sash windows throughout its long history. It was up to McWilliams to painstakingly remove years of old paint before recoating the wooden frames and creating a crisp edge along each glass pane.
Rhys Williams comments: “This job required slow and methodical working, to ensure that the centuries of old paint were removed carefully, without scratching the window panes.
“The wooden frames needed sanding and the glass needed cleaning before masking and repainting could start.”
Selecting the right materials for the job
Working on a listed building requires not just patience and skill, but premium-grade tools and materials too. The McWilliams team relied heavily on high-quality glass scrapers and chisels for the removal of the old paint, followed by a Festool sander with 80 grit paper.
Once they were ready to mask and repaint, there was only one masking product right for the job. Q1 Precision Line premium quality masking tape offers a 30-day UV resistance, clean removal and razor-sharp edges, perfect for the prestigious and painstaking job on the Georgian windows at Wall Hall.
Delivering a precise finish through a methodical process
The owner of Wall Hall lamented the way centuries of paint had been applied badly by hand, which had resulted in uneven lines and paint on the glass. To rectify this, the first step of this sensitive project was to use a glass scraper and chisel, to careful remove as much of the old paint as possible from the window panes.
Next, McWilliams sanded down the wooden frames using a Festool sander and 80 grit sand paper, taking extra care not to scratch the glass.
Ryhs continues: “I prefer to completely sand the wooden frame and first fill with a suitable caulk or filler before masking the windows. This gives a better result and the tape won’t remove the caulk when you take it off.
“Once the sanding and first fill was finished, we carefully and precisely masked each pane of glass using plastic and Q1 Precision Line tape. The plastic would protect the windows from overspray and the Precision Line tape would create the razor sharp edges the customer wanted.”
Ready for painting, Rhys prefers to mix a small amount of grey paint into his waterbased primer so that it is easy to see when it comes to rubbing it down with a 240 grit sanding pad. Once the primer is on, he meticulously completes his second and third round of filling with caulk or filler.
“It’s important at this stage not to sand too far, so I feel the window frames with my hand as I go to make sure I get the best result, removing any bumps, but not sanding too deep and creating more work,” says Rhys.
“Once I’ve finished that step, I dust off the windows and use a tacky rag to ensure there is no dust present before I start spraying the top coats. Again I use waterbased paint because its inherent flexibility moves with the wood.”
Importantly, Rhys removes the Precision Line tape when the paint is still tacky which he believes gives the best razor sharp edge.