Decorating my daughter's room for her 16th birthday (surprise) -- plan to
make shutters for the window. Looking for recommendations on a couple of
design details: (1) Crown Staples vs. Brass Eyelets to secrue the tilt rod
to the louvers, (2) Metal vs. Plastic pins to secure the louvers to the
stiles, (3)Use of tensioning mechanism vs. self-balanced louvers -- i.e. If
I do not using a tensioning mechanism will I likely have problems
controlling the position of the louvers?
Any recommendations on these 3 details from others who have some experience
making shutters would be greatly appreciated.
I used staples (I guess you could call them crown staples) manually pushed into
each shutter louver edge and along the adjusting rod. I used small wooden
dowel for pivots and depended on the self balancing/friction to hold the
louvers in place. Worked great for me. Set of 4 is now over 10 years old and
are 6 feet long and 18 inches wide. Didn't have any real woodworking tools at
the time so I used brick molding from the lumber yard for the stiles.and
standard 1by lumber for the rails. IIRC making the louvers was a real PITA
using jigs with a borrowed 4 inch jointer and a belt sander to round over the
edges. Mike in Arkansas
I've made more shutters than I care to remember:
I used staples. I hadn't thought of brass eyelets but don't see why
they wouldn't work. I imagine it'd be slower than staples but if you're
only doing one window's worth it probably doesn't matter. I did a
house full so speed was an issue. Once you've built a jig for shooting
the staples it goes really fast. I used plastic pins because I
couldn't find metal onces. I would have used metal ones if I'd found
them because I always prefer to use quality components in anything I
build. The pin has to have a shoulder so you don't get wood rubbing
on wood, although I suppose you could use a straight metal rod with
a washer for a pin. It'd be a real pain to keep the washer from falling
off when assembling the shutter though. It's already a bit of a hectic
No doubt about it - use some type of tensioning system. Over time the
louvers WILL loosen up and fall shut under their own weight. What I did
was drill a hole just a hair larger than the diameter of a BB to meet up
with the pin hole on one central louver. Drill it on the hinge side so
it's hidden. Drop a BB into the hole so it'll bear on the end of the
pin. Drop a spring from a cheap pen into the hole (I bought a box of
pens for a few dollars). The diameter of these springs it perfect for
pushing on a BB. Then drop another BB into the hole on the other side
of the spring. Now grind a small flat on the tip of a wood screw to
bear on the BB (just a quick touch on a grinder) and screw it into the
hole. When the louvers loosen up just give the screw a turn. The screw
pushes on the BB which pushes on the spring which pushes on the BB which
bears against the louver pin. Simple, eh? :-) Actually, I thought about
it after the fact and don't really think you need the spring in there.
Just one BB and a screw should be fine. The spring is probably completely
collapsed when you get the right tension so it's not adding anything but
complication and a lot of excess pen parts lying around.
Scott Post firstname.lastname@example.org http://home.insightbb.com/~sepost /
Scott and Mike ..
Thanks very much for your insights -- very helpful.
Scott discovered your website from a search of "Google" a week or so ago.
I've printed a hard copy for reference -- and have read through it several
times. Thank you!
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