For anyone outside the glazing industry, the term ‘window horn’ will probably sound strange and almost comical. You’d be forgiven for thinking, ‘a window doesn’t have horns, is this some sort of typing error’. A window horn, however, is a key feature of any traditional sash window. Window horns, often referred to as sash horns were originally an integral part of a sliding sash window.
Strength and support for traditional sash windows
Window horns were originally used in timber sash windows to strengthen the window’s structure. They supported the mortice and tenon joints and prevented the sashes from opening too far and becoming jammed. As the Victorian period progressed, architects wanted to use increasingly larger glass panes. Without the glazing bars, a new method of support was needed. Thus, sash horns were born.
If you look closely at any period property from the Victorian era, you should be able to see the window horns. They were manufactured in several shapes depending on the architectural fashions of the time and place. Some are a simple curve while others feature an ‘s’ shaped design, an inverted slope, or a more intricate combination of inset and protrusion. They are now representative of the period style and are considered essential in any heritage property renovations.
Run-through vs stick on sash horns
With the invention of sash windows made from uPVC, window horns were no longer required to support the window’s structure. For period properties where maintaining the heritage aesthetic was paramount, an alternative was required. At first, uPVC window manufacturers used stick on or bolt on sash horns to replicate the original style. They were fairly authentic but the joins were noticeable on close inspection.
As the uPVC sash window market developed, run-through sash horns were invented. Run-through sash horns are incorporated into the window’s design to create a smooth and authentic appearance. The Rose Collection sash windows are so authentic as to be almost indistinguishable from timber. Featuring run-through sash horns and a wealth of period detailing, the Ultimate and Heritage Rose in particular, have been approved for use in conservation areas across the UK.
We hope that this article has been useful and the term window horn now makes more sense. If you’re thinking about replacing your windows and you’d like to find out more about the Rose Collection give us a call on 01234 712 657 or contact us online.