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Beveled Glass Door
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 Posted: Sun Sep 22nd, 2019 08:53 pm
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Don Burt
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My neighbor has a 100 year old beveled glass front door. ABout 15% of the joints have cracked and there's some play in the panel due to multiple cracks at the top of the door. They use the door. They have young kids that use the door. Is it OK to try to patch up the cracks with epoxy? I don't want to subvert any possibility of doing a quality repair of the piece, but I can only imagine what a rebuild of that thing would cost. And I don't know of anyone who happily does it. I know some good gooey epoxy would hold those lead joints together for a few years. What would you do?

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Last edited on Sun Sep 22nd, 2019 08:57 pm by Don Burt



 Posted: Mon Sep 23rd, 2019 12:58 pm
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Don Burt
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 Posted: Mon Sep 23rd, 2019 01:54 pm
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David Crane
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Hi Don, I have patched a few of these things in the past and never had a very happy outcome. My advice would be to convince the neighbor to do a reglaze with a lead profile close to the original zinc and put up with the necessary horizontal steel reinforcement. That good good epoxy would just make it harder.



 Posted: Mon Sep 23rd, 2019 06:16 pm
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Vic
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I agree with David. The zinc came is hollow formed. So even if you "successfully" epoxy a few places, the same type of damage will continue in other areas.



 Posted: Wed Sep 25th, 2019 02:05 pm
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Rebecca
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Yep, me too. Whenever possible, I re-lead zinc panels, especially bevels. Bevels are heavier than regular stained glass since they are thicker. Be sure to add the reinforcement as David says.

And caution them, as my mother always said, "Don't push the glass to open or shut the door."

Rebecca



 Posted: Thu Sep 26th, 2019 02:40 pm
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Courage
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Personally, I hate going in after epoxies repairs. It’s just so much better if you can re-metal, if not find a small dremmel bit, and gently prime the surface even though it will be pitted, without scratching the Bevels. the solder will only take to a clean/primed surface. It is important when the surface has been primed, to pre-warm the zinc with a mix of muriatic acid and small zinc shavings for a zinc chloride solution, take outside! Then take off excess shavings one off gassed. The metal likes to be coaxed into accepting the solder after it’s been fluxed. If you are good at soldering, do a crisscross pattern in your pre-warming. Only put the flux where you want the solder. So don’t be sloppy. If you can’t do this repair because the zinc is too old, dry, brittle, pitted, then an epoxy might buy them some time. I have done hundreds of these, but choose to re-metal as the time spent on the failed joints can be ridiculous and they only last a few years. Also, colonial zinc is back on the market and can be purchased at several wholesalers. If you choose to do this type of repair, which is not recommended, then ultimate solder might be your best friend. This solder seems to work the best on old nasty metals.

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 Posted: Thu Sep 26th, 2019 04:03 pm
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Vic
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A way to contain where the liquid flux goes is paint the came with "white out" just beyond where the solder joint is.It's an easy clean off. After scraping the zinc clean, flux and add a small amount of solder and while the solder is still hot rub with a wire brush. This will "push" the solder into the metal. Might need to do this a couple of times



 Posted: Thu Sep 26th, 2019 04:40 pm
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Courage
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Pretty cool Vic,(whiteout, haha) and no doubt it will be several times soldering and working.



 Posted: Fri Sep 27th, 2019 01:51 pm
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Don Burt
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Thank you for the excellent feedback. I let the neighbor know the situation. There's another neighbor down the street with a decorative dining room panel that is accordion folding. Their puppy dog eyes when they ask if I can do anything to help are a horrible strain on my common sense. I'm too old to learn to relead a full size antique beveled glass door. I struggle to fabricate my own glass. But this community is a Victorian gem. If I got good at it and did it full time, I could make two, maybe three thousand dollars a year. Maybe four if I worked weekends.



 Posted: Fri Sep 27th, 2019 04:58 pm
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David Crane
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Everybody knows anybody who gets anywhere near decorative glass has no common sense. Why worry at this stage of the game. Who told you you have to be good at it and could make that kind of money doing it? I'm too old too but please forward my contact info to all your Victorian neighbors. I am shameless and of course never had any common sense.



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