How can new technology help traditional timber windows last a life time?

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    The demand for traditional timber windows has recently been revived due to home owners, builders and architects all beginning to rediscover both the environmental and aesthetic value of traditional timber windows. This has been great news for an industry that struggled to compete against cheaper PVC alternatives over the last 20 years.

    However, timber window manufacturers large and small all face the same issues with working with wood. As one window manufacturer put it “wood is the only thing on the planet that is still alive when it is dead”.

    Wood when hot and dry can warp & bow and when cold and wet can swell & rot if not treated correctly. Even if every precaution is taken due to the small nature of the beads used in traditional timber windows manufacture there is still a chance that they’ll warp, bow or swell out of shape.

    It is no surprise that the beads tend to be the most vulnerable part of a wood window. The natural characteristics of wood means that even if every attention to detail is paid when selecting, preparing and fitting wooden beads and bars they can move when in a finished window on site.

    The Solution

    Qwood beads are a wood composite rather than just wood. They offer the advantages of improved fabricating performance and design (real reductions in time and material waste) and no long term maintenance of traditional timber windows.

    Qwood window beads and bars achieve this because they have the appearance of timber, but they do not have any of the drawbacks such as rotting, twisting and knots in the wrong place. They can be fabricated and cut just like timber profiles and the smooth surface ensures they can be painted with standard processes. Once in place, either internally or externally, there are no further maintenance requirements.



    Qwood development began in 2003/4 when it was identified that advances in wood composite material technology enabled the creation and production of small profiles with the look and feel of timber, but without any of the logistical and handling drawbacks. A requirement for window beads with these properties was identified, and after a further 5 years of development, the first Qwood window beads were introduced to the market. Most major UK timber window manufacturers are now Qwood partners.



    The market need for window bead profiles that did not rot, warp, contain knots and could be painted has steadily grown. Traditional timber profiles have become costly in terms of time and wasted off-cuts. As wood composite technology advanced, along with bespoke tooling competence and extrusion techniques developed by Qwood, Qwood profiles were designed to provide solutions for the traditional timber window fabricators. The products proved themselves immediately and they have given the users immediate benefits in terms of time saving, less waste, reduced maintenance and above all lower costs. Qwood offers a design service for individual clients for whom bespoke tooling is produced for their own profiles, alternatively fabricators can choose from an increasing range of standard Qwood beads.



    As the benefits of Qwood window and door beads and bars are experienced by an ever increasing number of users, not only in the UK but also in Europe, Qwood is continuing to invest in development. Tooling resources have been expanded, and the knowledge gained in the design of WPC profiles means that there will be more Qwood products to meet an increasing market need for viable cost saving window and door bead profiles.

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