Fabco Sanctuary Ltd is a leading specialist for the restoration of metal windows of all types and periods including cast iron, wrought iron, steel and bronze, in formats such as lattice, flat iron, hopper and even more modern crittal. Windows may date back as far as the 15th or 16th Century but the majority of windows date from the 19th or 20th Century.

When restoration is carried out correctly the lifespan of the metal window is greatly extended and where possible subject to consent, the windows can be adapted to meet more modern day expectations whilst maintaining the authenticity and originality of the window, often this is the only option available to owners of listed buildings.

At Fabco Sanctuary Ltd we undertake the full complete restoration service well as offering a full replica manufacturing service.

Repair or restore?

Limited improvement to windows can be achieved leaving the windows in place and carrying out local repairs but this should be limited to either re-glazing or replacement of handles etc, any other repair can only be considered short term or temporary.

Several window companies do offer a ‘refurbishment’ service that undertake works to the window whilst it remains in the building, this is fine for a localised repair and is more economic but it is not possible to correctly restore a window or enhance the window properly without removing it back to the factory. (Whilst these works are undertaken the building is fully glazed so that there is minimal disturbance to the client).

What are our aims when restoring a window?
  • To ensure the lifespan of the window is considerably extended.
  • The operation of the window is restored to modern day expectations.
  • Where possible a modern weather seal is incorporated into the window so that draught-proofing and insulation are greatly improved.
  • The historic integrity or originality is maintained.
  • The aesthetics or the visual impact is protected.
  • The window is protected against future corrosion.
  • To greatly reduce the required future maintenance.
Our Process

Whilst there may be slight restrictions and changes to our process for windows of particular historic importance the following is a list of the general process that is followed but tailored to suit individual requirements.

  • Removal from site and temporary glazing with glass.
  • De-glazing and dismantling of windows ready for shot-blasting.
  • Shot-blasting to remove previous coatings and corrosion.
  • Removal of severely corroded sections and replacement with matching identical section (we have our own machining workshop and can produce replica sections from stock materials).
  • Areas of light corrosion are repaired by building up the base metal and machining back to blend in the repair.
  • All fixings are re-machined to metric threads to aid in future maintenance.
  • All hinges are re-machined/restored or replaced.
  • All handles, stays etc. are restored or repaired, exact replica’s can be produced to replace missing items or suitably commercial alternatives sort.
  • Straightening of distorted windows using various processes to break the ‘memory’ of the metal.
  • Provision of modern weather seal, (this may involve the resetting of hinges).
  • Future corrosion protection by means molten zinc applied to the surface of the material.
  • Paint finishing is normally by means of polyester powder coating giving maintenance free windows in excess of twenty five years but other finishes are available.
  • Assembly and glazing, glazing is normally carried out by using silicone instead of putty as a glazing compound again this is to give years without maintenance but again other methods are available.
  • Installation, the casements are installed using stainless steel fixings are normally sealed around the perimeter using a special silicone that will not stain stonework.
Type of Glazing

We can offer all types of glazing including leaded lights and real stained glass. In general if the glass is historic then we will reuse the existing glass if it is not then the glass is replaced to match the original unless specified otherwise. Some existing windows can take double glazed units but that is dependent on the format of the window.
On listed buildings it is very difficult to get permission to use double glazing and even if successful normally you can be limited to very expensive types of double glazing, we are more than happy to advise in this process.

Why not new windows?

Sometimes new windows are not an option because of listed building consent or conservation area restrictions. Sometimes new windows of a similar format are acceptable on listed buildings, our attitude to this is that new windows are fine as long they are sympathetic to age and character of the building but even slight changes such as modern hinges or window sections can instantly change the appearance of a building and the windows then look very wrong.

At Fabco Sanctuary we offer both a restoration service and a new window manufacturing service and either will be sympathetic to the requirements of both the building and the client. In relation to cost it is dependent on the type of window and glazing as to which is more economical new or restoration but when restoration is carried out correctly the windows should function as efficiently and have the same lifespan as any new metal window of similar format.

Why use Fabco Sanctuary Ltd?

Our company specialises as a conservation and restoration company combined with manufacturing new period windows, having recently completed the restoration of 11,500 windows at Christ’s Hospital School in Horsham and also the restoration as well as provision of new windows to Walpole’s Villa Strawberry Hill. Our clients include English Heritage, The National Trust, Historic Scotland, Church of Ireland, Historic Royal Palaces, Architects, Building Restoration Companies and Private Individuals.

The Steel Window Company is a Trading style of Fabco Sanctuary Limited.
Registered In England & Wales No. 6552850. Vat No. 931 9093 17
© Fabco 2008 -- Unit 1, Hobbs New Barn, Climping, Littlehampton, West Sussex, BN17 5RE
--Tel: 01903 718 808 -- Fax: 01903 718 903 -- info@thesteelwindowcompany.com--