The Building Conservation Directory 2021

125 C AT H E D R A L COMMU N I C AT I O N S T H E B U I L D I N G CON S E R VAT I ON D I R E C TO R Y 2 0 2 1 METAL , WOOD & GLASS 3.3 G E N U I N E E N G L I S H OA K Guaranteed Grown On British Soil Structural Oak Joinery Oak Oak Cladding Traditional Oak Flooring ~ wide & long boards 01763 208 966 | TIMBER SUPPLIERS ◾ W L WEST & SONS LTD Selham, Petworth, West Sussex GU28 0PJ Tel 01798 861611 Email TIMBER SUPPLIERS : Established in 1865, W L West & Sons Ltd is a family owned and managed company supplying a wide range of timber products. It offers: machining facilities for mouldings, to match historic designs; CNC machining for complex shapes to match heritage mouldings and carvings; solid hardwood flooring to varying specifications; oak beams, fresh sawn and well air dried and; shakes and shingles, hand cleft from the company’s Bavarian supplier in oak and larch. Also, all styles of fencing are supplied and installed by its own team, and gates manufactured in its workshops, copying historic designs where needed. ◾ WEALD AND DOWNLAND LIVING MUSEUM Singleton, Chichester, West Sussex PO18 0EU Tel 01243 811931 Email CONSERVATION SUPPLIES AND SERVICES : See also: profile entry in Courses & Training, page 172. the conservator can adjust the proportion of polymer according to the intended use and the viscosity required. However, one issue to be aware of is that the polymer tends to accumulate at the surface as the solvent evaporates, and this can be a problem for some applications. Thixotropic resins can also be invaluable in certain circumstances. Because they stiffen as soon as you stop moving them, they enable repairs to be made in situations where non- thixotropic resins would slump or run out of the repair position. Surface finishes If paint is to be applied afterwards, filler can be used to improve surface finish and repair dents and scrapes. If the surface is to be left unpainted microcrystalline wax, rather than varnish or shellac, can be employed to consolidate friable surfaces. Where only the decorative surface of a timber is to be retained, it is possible to cut the rest of the timber away, leaving as little as 3mm of timber. This can then be planted onto a new timber using a reversible adhesive with any gaps filled with reversible filler. If mechanical fixings are essential, places for these should be carefully chosen to minimise their impact both physically and aesthetically. Examples Creaking stairs Stair treads and floorboards often creak as one piece of timber rubs against another. Wedges to the underside of treads or risers may need to be replaced or re-fixed, and additional blocks and reinforcing pieces may be fixed from below to restore structural integrity. Where access from below is not possible, connections may be improved using screws and dowels as outlined above. If it is still not possible to prevent movement sufficiently, a second material can be introduced between the two to provide a slip plane which should eliminate the noise. Doors and windows Rain often affects the timber of doors and windows closest to the bottom due to rain splashing off the threshold or window cill, or from water running down from above. The bottom rail and the bottom corners of stiles of doors and windows are particularly vulnerable to decay, even on upper sash windows. Glazing bars also suffer and cills are very much subject to the weather, especially if poor design means that water pools underneath. Removing localised rot and replacing with resin is quick and effective in saving the vast majority of the window or door, but often it will be necessary to replace the lower horizontal components (bottom rails and weather bars for example) and splice in new pieces to the bottom of the stiles and other vertical components. Timber decorations and trims In the past, timber has been used in many decorative ways and the ravages of time has not always been kind to these elements. These are frequently the features which make a place special and are very much worthy of saving. It could be a decorative barge board, decoration to a beam or a shop front. Resins work well either in the replacement of decayed timber or to consolidate what is left, even if it has become very friable or worm ridden. Reinforcement with additional timber may also be used to good effect, with the remains of the original decorative feature attached to the new timber substrate. In conclusion, due to the wide range of repair technologies and approaches available, repairs to decorative joinery can be achieved in almost any circumstance. The approach should be selected after due thought has been given to the condition of the component, its significance, and the availability of the skills required. Success depends on using people who are appropriately skilled and who are able to use a range of materials and methods. In this way significant benefits can be achieved, not only in terms of saving the historic fabric but also in terms of quality and even of lower cost. Recommended Reading English Heritage Practical Building Conservation: Timber , Ashgate 2012 ROBIN RUSSELL BEng(Hons) is director of Corbel Conservation Ltd (see ) and he has over 30 years’ experience in the conservation of historic buildings. When contacting companies listed here, please let them know that you found them through The Building Conservation Directory