Tag Archives: sash window hardware

  • Don't Spoil the Ship

    ….for a ha’porth of tar. This old adage about ruining a good product by being cheap with key components has never been more appropriate than with the new generation of timber windows, says Mighton’s Mike Derham.

    Anyone wandering around this year’s FIT Show could not help but notice the small, but significant presence of timber windows and in all frame styles, confirming their steady return to the home improvement sector.

    Under the unifying battle cry of ‘why install windows manufactured to look like wood, when you can have the real thing?’, the joinery industry believes that the self-inflicted demons that allowed the PVC-U replacement window sector to boom 40 years ago, are now firmly behind it, achieved through advances in timber preservation and joinery production technology.


    As well as quality, a number of other factors are in favour of a return of good quality, timber frames: time, in that many have simply forgotten the often appalling quality softwood frames that were once installed in new homes; and another is, ironically, that PVC-U and aluminium replacement windows and doors have now gone upmarket to meet the price points of timber, especially for those categorised as ‘Heritage’ styled frames. Thus, windows produced in all three framing materials may be presented to homeowners as options, with many who would choose timber if they could be assured of comparative performance.

    Quality is the key to the continued resurgence of timber frames as replacements: but installers buying frames in to offer to their increasingly well-educated and infirmed homeowner customers, should consider not just the manufacturer’s information about the frames, but to also look closely at the quality of the hardware.

    It is our experience from supplying the quality joinery industry with high quality fixings and hardware for 30 years, that despite the passion that often goes into the manufacture of traditional box sash frames, that some producers can be extraordinarily stingy when it comes to the key operating components of their product. The frames may last for years, but because they skimped on the hardware, failures – and consequent call-backs – occur.

    My worry is that with this renaissance of timber frames in the home improvement sector, the pressures of competition will lead producers to cut corners with the hardware, something that will be a huge mistake for products that are making such an impressive come back. Homeowners considering timber windows against alternatives in PVC-U and aluminium, will be doing so because they believe that they are buying and paying for the very best. Their decision will be based on the aesthetics of the timber but also in the overall product, which includes the visible fittings. It will also be based very much on the way the window operates, and whilst cheap hardware may stand the test when installed new in a showroom, any diminishment of performance will be become quickly noticeable when installed, by people that have paid for and expect the very best.

    A surprising number of manufacturers undermine their products – and potentially your reputation - by shortening the viable service life of their products with the installation of cheap hardware. This goes against every instinct that I have as a former manufacturer of timber box sash windows and surely, it makes no sense at all. Installers may make the assumption that as they are selling windows from an otherwise reputable manufacturer, then high quality hardware will, surely, be a given. Sadly that is not the case and the purpose of this editorial is to urge installers to be clear on the quality of the hardware installed. For it is your reputation that is at stake here and you that will pay for the call-backs when the hardware fails.

    Close attention to these details will save you a great deal of money; and ensure your reputation remains intact.



    Choosing and using Mighton products has been made easier than ever with two new, product-dedicated catalogues with extended ranges and quick-navigation format.

    For 2018 the company has launched separate catalogues for its core ranges, making each more focussed on each customer’s needs, as well as adding new product ranges and much more technical and how-to information.

    The main hardware catalogue has 132 pages packed with all the best in window and door hardware, including Mighton’s new Armourer range of security products as well as the acclaimed Angel Ventlock sash window restrictors.

    Mighton’s patented machinery range for professional joiners now has its own dedicated catalogue to reflect the growing popularity of machines such as the X-Cut cross-jointing and Scribe-It end-scribing machines. The 12-page Mighty Machines catalogue also tells everything about Mighton’s Mobile Demo service, offering free demonstrations for real hands-on experience of any of the machines anywhere in the UK.

    Mighton has also moved its massively expanded range of Mighton Ankerstuy paints and stains into their own dedicated catalogue.

    As well as being more product-specific, the catalogues now have colour-coded icons to help navigate quickly and easily to any of the product sections, all presented with a clear and stylish new design.

    Chairman Mike Derham said: “We are proud of our comprehensive product ranges, with the best of everything that the professional could ask for. Now, with these new catalogues, we have not only packed in more of everything, we have also made them quicker and easier to choose the products – and to learn how to make the very most of them.”

    To learn more about Mighton Products or to order a new catalogue visit www.mightonproducts.com or call 01223 497097.


    rsz_demo_vanMighton Products has recently extended its customer service offering with the addition of two Mighton Mobile Demonstration Vehicles, one each to cover the North and South of England.

    Providing machinery demonstrations to customers, each van is also kitted out with a range of paint swatches and panels in a variety of types and colours to allow customers a first-hand look at the different finishes on offer from the Mighton Ankerstuy range. Weather-stripping samples and a selection of beading options are also on display with the company’s own MightyBead® brand growing in popularity since starting the demos, as customers have been able to see for themselves its stellar performance when used in conjunction with a machinery demo from one of the knowledgeable Mighton team.

    With plans to add a third van to the fleet later this year, the company is keeping up with its growing customer demand after a wave of positive feedback from customers. Chairman Mike Derham explains: “The first van was bought at the back end of 2016 and high demand for the service meant that a second, larger van was recently purchased, which allows us to cover a much larger area. Feedback from the demonstrations and the products on display has so far been really positive, as many customers can’t always find the time to visit the Mighton premises. This service allows us to get to our customers quickly, and makes the buying process much more convenient for them.”

    Mike adds: “The machinery demos are available to customers by appointment, either at home or work, and because both vans each have their own independent power supply via a generator and compressor, it eliminates the need for us to connect to a mains supply at a client’s premises, making it much more time-efficient and hassle-free.

    To find out more or make an appointment, call the Mighton Products team on +44 (0) 1223 902 455 or visit www.mightonproducts.com.


    The rsz__mg_6117owners of period properties can be the toughest to please. So offer them the right products from the start, says Mike Derham of traditional hardware specialist Mighton Products.

    Ownership of a period property in itself requires a certain mindset. Following their heart’s desire to live in a building that they believe to be more characterful than more modern buildings often despite inconveniences, buyers of such properties are often obsessively committed to authenticity.

    Such zeal means that anything other than authentic materials, finishes and high quality fittings will not pass muster with the homeowner; the best way to prepare for such encounters is to offer the very best products available. Simply put, in this world, quality pays.


    At Mighton Products whilst we supply hardware – and dammed good stuff too – for PVC-U casement and especially sash windows - our world is still dominated by timber. Which inevitably is what most owners of period or heritage properties will insist upon. And if you have a reasonable number of heritage homes in your area then if you don’t gear up properly to supply them then you might as well not bother at all.

    We have been specialising in this elevated sector for some years and are well established as the market leader. So we are reasonably well placed to offer a few words of wisdom:

    • Knowledge is power! Prepare yourself – study the area through the Internet, the local library and research the history of properties including the architects and builders if available. Also make a study of the building types, periods and style of construction. Visit areas with a preponderance of period buildings and note the characteristics, learn if buildings and areas are listed and what that actually implies. Also, are buildings and areas subject to conservation restrictions?
    • Not always but usually, the best material for genuine heritage buildings is timber. Many listed properties, especially in London, are encouraged to refurbish original windows for as long as possible before replacing them altogether, so when they are replaced they have to be superseded by a like for like product. Like for like usually means wood.
    • It used to be that timber sash windows were not as efficient as their PVC-U counterparts when it came to elements such as draft proofing and insulation, but that is no longer the case. Modern versions not only perform better than ever before on a number of levels but have evolved to do so without interfering with the look or the operation of the window.
    • Zealous owners may feel they have to accept high maintenance with timber frames but these days, with the right finishing treatment this need not be an issue. Water based alkaloid paints and modern stains are readily available and are highly effective in making timber window maintenance a much easier and far less recurrent task – maybe every 7-10 years only. Using wood/plastic composite beading is also a great way to guard against the upkeep of wood windows. These are usually one of the first parts of the window to rot or show their age, but using a wood composite version guards against rotting and premature replacement. These can be found with 20-30 year guarantees and are a low cost way of maintaining a quality finish.
    • A crucial consideration is the hardware, the cost of which should always be relative to the cost and quality of the window. Some installers might be tempted to present inferior or inappropriate hardware but being caught out will be worse than being caught kicking the owner’s puppy. The hardware tends to be the cheaper part of any installation so why do a disservice to an £800 to £2000 window by installing poor hardware? The savings are usually so minimal but the negative impact it has on the quality of finish required for any heritage project will be profound.
    • Although the purist will never countenance the installation of replica heritage frames in PVC-U they are becoming increasingly convincing. But when it comes to making them look like wood there are always telltale signs that a canny customer looking for authenticity will be aware of. A real timber frame is actually smooth and those that know what they are looking for will pick up on this. The grain effect foils on the PVC windows can look very good, but if true authenticity is what the customer is aiming for, nothing can beat the real thing.

    In summary, when selling in heritage and conservation areas knowledge is everything! Prepare, and also get the backing of suppliers that know the business and can offer you sound and dependable advice.


    SBD OPSI logo Over 60mm Col DWG_1Mighton Products has achieved PAS24 and Secured by Design accreditation for a range of the company’s specialist vertical sliding sash hardware and security products for timber windows. Mighton undertook compliance with these key standards to further improve the quality and performance of the products it supplies for use with traditional sash frames.

    Products included are: Sash Pulleys  (1¾"); Locking Ventlocks; Push Ventlocks; Locking and Non-locking Heritage Fasteners; Locking and Non-locking Fitch Fasteners; Solid Brass Sash Lift; Securibead; Cill Locks; Meeting Rail Guard; Bottom Rail Guard; Locking and Non-locking Securifitch; Meeting Rail Interlock (aluminium).

    "As the UK’s leading supplier of hardware products for timber sash windows we have a responsibility to ensure performance standards that lead the market, and we will work closely with our customers to ensure they are successful in meeting their specification obligations," explained Mighton’s Mike Derham.

    Mick Reynolds from Secured by Design said, "Mighton's range of PAS24 tested hardware for timber sash windows are ideal for those looking to meet the requirements of Part Q of the Building Regulations when making bespoke products. They also assist their customers looking to achieve third-party certification on their doors and windows so that they are more likely to pass first time."

    In addition Mighton offers customers a free drawing service to help meet security requirements of the Document Q of the Building Regulations when project specifications require a full suite of PAS 24: 2016 products.

    The standards will be revealed in the company’s latest catalogue, due for publication on April 1st. For a free copy email sales@mighton.co.uk, or telephone  +44 (0) 1223 497097 and speak to one of our team.

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