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Subject: Window films

Window films

From: Anne Downey <adowney>
Date: Monday, September 23, 2002
Monica Dean <mdean [at] mollybrown__org> writes

>I have been reading the archives, and wondered if there were any
>different feelings on this subject since 1999.  I am the Curator of
>Collections at the Molly Brown House Museum in Denver, CO.  We have
>had UV filtering Plexi on our windows since the late '80s, and it is
>time for it to be replaced.  We are in the process of researching
>whether to replace the Plexi again with Plexi or to try the UV film.
>The reason I am attracted to the film is that it also blocks out
>heat (a major problem here in the summer time).  However, the
>windows are historic, and I have heard all of the horror stories
>about windows breaking when film removal was attempted.  Does anyone
>know of anything new on the market that is easier to remove, or are
>we safest staying with the Plexiglas?

I would recommend against using the films that are applied directly
to the window glazing.

Wyck, a house museum in Philadelphia, had these installed a number
of years ago. When removal time came, the films could not be
removed--they had fused with the original glass glazing. I think
also that installers are also now  reluctant to install these films
in historic houses, in part because of the irregularities to the
original glazing, and also because of the number of separate glass
lights that make up an older (pre-Victorian) window--it can be too
labor intensive.

Cliveden, another house museum in Philadelphia, has been very happy
with the UV filtering shades that they had installed (I think about
8-10 years ago). These shades are completely reversible (just remove
the fittings) and are almost completely un-detectable, especially to
the typical visitor.

Anne E. Downey
Senior Conservator of Works on Paper
Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts
264 S. 23rd St.
Philadelphia, PA  19103
Fax: 215-735-9313

                  Conservation DistList Instance 16:23
               Distributed: Wednesday, September 25, 2002
                       Message Id: cdl-16-23-004
Received on Monday, 23 September, 2002

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