Removing Metal Buck in Window

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  #1  
Old 08-03-13, 08:28 AM
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Removing Metal Buck in Window

I have a basement window with a rusting metal buck. The metal buck is rusted badly on the inside bottom to the extend that the rust has split the metal. On the outside, the metal buck is starting to separate from concrete and rusting in places. I would like to take the metal buck out before replacing the window.
Every window company I have talked to dont want to replace the metal frame. Some have suggested removing the rusted part of the frame only. But it seems the frame is beyond repair. Where do I start? I am in the doghouse w/ my wife on this one. Help.

ps: I am in the Chicago area, if you know of anyone who can help me, I'd welcome any recommendation.
 
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  #2  
Old 08-03-13, 11:10 AM
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Well, the least invasive way to deal with it is prep and paint. But assuming that has been ruled out, the vinyl window obviously has to be removed first. Once that's done you can select your next weapon... a grinder and abrasive wheel, or a cutting torch. If you cut each side in half, you'll be able to remove the corner sections fairly easily, with a little wiggling and prying.

You can expect that what will be left will be a fairly ugly cement opening. If you expect to reuse the existing window, about all you would be able to do is anchor a "stop" onto the opening for the window to butt up against on all 4 sides. (its never a good idea to have a stop on the bottom of a window because it catches water- you'll have to caulk it well and maintain it regularly). The width of the stop can vary, depending on where/how deep you want the window to sit in the wall. But you'd probably make the stop wide enough that it lines up with the outer surface of the wall.

And then you'd probably want to apply some face trim to the opening, nailing it to the face of the stop and anchoring and/or gluing it to the wall, then caulking the perimeter to the concrete foundation.

On top, it would be best if there was a kerf cut made in the concrete so that a metal flashing could be inserted over the top piece of trim to act as a drip edge on top. The flashing should be galvanized, tin or copper, but not aluminum. The kerf cut would pitch upward at a minimum 15 angle, and metal flashing would be inserted into the kerf, wedged into place with lead shims, and then sealed with a polyurethane sealant that's designed for concrete applications.

At least that's one way you could deal with it.
 
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Old 08-05-13, 07:33 PM
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XSleeper:

* Would cutting w/ a torch damage the underlying concrete? This sounds like the quickest method. If using a torch, would you still recommend making four cuts (on on each side) or cutting all around the metal frame - perhaps one continuous cut on all four sides.

* There is already a stop on all four sides. The metal buck is covering the stop. I dont think the stop is a hollow one made from the metal buck only. I don't know what shape the concrete is in under the stop. Also, the stop does not go all the way to the outer edge.

* What if the stop is not there and the window is framed w/ a 8" wide 1" thick treated wood? What is the best way to seal the window/wooden buck/concrete joins from the outside?

* Where should the top kerf be made - on the vertical outside surface at the top of the window or on the horizontal outside surface on the top ledge of the window? I am not able to picture your suggestion on the kerf. A link to any picture that may dummy it down for me?

Thanks
Vik
 
  #4  
Old 08-05-13, 08:43 PM
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Last time I checked, concrete doesn't burn. But it will surely discolor it. And if the concrete is wet, it certainly could "pop" when you heat it. I would still recommend cutting each side.... four 8" cuts versus.... the entire perimeter of the window??? You may even find that if the steel is tight that you will need to make 2 cuts per side to completely remove a portion.

My reason for mentioning adding a stop is that the concrete you will be left with (once the rusty jamb is removed) is probably not going to be pleasing to the eye, and you will likely want to cover it up. But maybe I will be wrong and you will just be able to paint the concrete and it will look fine. "IF" you need to add some trim (jamb/stop) in order to cover the concrete, I am saying that added trim would probably need to extend to the outer edge of the concrete where it would meet a piece of face trim, to completely cover the area that was formerly covered by rusty steel.

I doubt there is any wood there. If there was, you would see it on the inside.

The kerf is a cut that is made into the exterior surface of the wall above the trim. Picture adding a 1x4 trim on the face of the wall above the window. What is going to keep water from running behind that trim? If you cut a kerf into the wall (and rather than cutting it straight in, angle the cut upward, like a roof is angled upward) then you will have a slot that you can insert a piece of flashing into, and the top of the flashing will angle downward so that it sheds water. Then caulk the flashing in with a concrete sealant so that water can't get behind it.
 
  #5  
Old 08-06-13, 09:50 AM
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XSleeper:

Got your point on the stop and the great explanation on the kerf! Thanks

I checked and the window does not have a stop at the bottom. The metal frame is providing the stop on top/left/right.

How would you recommend sealing the wide gap between metal and concrete on the outside - shown in one of the pictures - bent the metal as close to concrete and then fill it with some ____?
I have other windows with similar construction and wondering about preventative action.
 
  #6  
Old 08-13-13, 06:36 PM
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Finally someone with my same problem

I am new to the forum but have been searching for months for this info. I appear to have the exact same window and I am tearing out this week. I bought new windows for the install after forming a buck of some sort. It is unknown what the concrete looks like behind the frame so I am buying a grinder and some various attachments. Will see what I find.
 
  #7  
Old 02-08-14, 09:38 AM
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Project completed

I wanted to let everyone know that this project is now done. XSleeper, big thanks to you for all your advise. Believe it or not - Dremel rotary tool for $50 (the smallest one) along with metal cutting rotors was very helpful. We started using the tool when we could not take the metal out of the corners (it was embedded in concrete and concrete was starting to break). My suggestion is that if metal buck is buried into the concrete at corners - cut the corners out cleanly w/ a Dremel or small rotary tool.

Thanks everyone!
 
  #8  
Old 02-08-14, 10:54 AM
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Good feedback! I probably would have broken the concrete to smitherines... a Dremel isn't a tool I would think to use when tearing out basement window. Nice job!
 
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