Sash Window Terms And Meanings

One of the most traditional types of window found in period properties is the sash window. We’ve all likely seen a sash window, they are the types which are usually spilt into two horizontal sections and these sections can be pushed up or down to open either the upper or lower window.

Rectangular sash window

Image Credit: Sash Window

If you are thinking of having a sash window installed or are repairing one in your home there’s some terminology used which you might not understand. This article will try to explain some of the common terms.

This if the moulding which covers the box frame join with the wall. Architrave is also used around doors.
Bottom rail
This is the lower rail on the bottom sash which is generally deeper than the other rails to compensate for the depth of the sill.
Frame lining
These are the pieces of timber which face the sides and head of the box frame.
Fitch catch
This is another name given to the thumb catch which is used to fasten the window. It fits between the two windows.
This is the short extension which features at the edges of the sash. It used to be used to strengthen the frame joints but in new windows is generally just a decorative feature. It is sometimes also called the joggle.
This is the piece of wood which is the small lower ledge on the inside of the frame. There is usually no sill on the inside of a sash window because the window is fitted to the inner brickwork.
Parting bead
This is the small bead which separates the two sashes and keeps them in place. It’s usually set into a small groove.
This is the ‘pocket’ in the side of the window where the sash weights are held.
Pulley/pulley stile
The pulley and pulley stile, which supports the pulley, are fitted into the top of the pocket.
Sash weights
These are the weights with sit in the pockets and act as a counterbalance for the window.
Spiral balance
This is generally the new way of counterbalancing sash windows. Instead of the weights and the pulleys, a spiral mechanism is fitted into the frame and tensioned to hold the weight of the windows.

The names given to different parts of a sash window may change slightly between different counties but one thing remains the same – the beauty that a sash window can bring to a home.


Author Bio: Harry Craven is a window fitter who only works with traditional materials. He has used on a number of occasions to provide automatic window opening solutions.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Erin Emanuel

One Comment

  1. WoW o.O I didn’t even expect that there is such terminology. I just call parts “thingy” and “that thing”. Now I get it why the guys at the household shop were looking at me with utmost contempt…

Comments are closed.