I grew up in a house that my Dad designed and built almost entirely by himself. One of the features I remembered as a child were the many ratcheting awning windows that he built by hand and used throughout the house. I really wanted to incorporate a similar design into my tiny house. However, my awning windows posed unique challenges due to its smaller size, tighter operating spaces and leaving room in the window frame for the future addition of stained glass art.
We started with the outer window frames since we had those starting dimensions. Constructed from marine-grade plywood and covered with cypress, these little windows are built to last.
Then we followed up with the inner window frame (which will hold the stained glass and protective Plexiglas layer) and screen frame.
By far the most technical portion of these windows are the custom ratcheting gears that allow the window to be opened at different angles, shut completely and locked. In the original designs my Dad created incorporated a horizontal wooden bar, used as a handle, connecting the ratcheting mechanisms on either side of the window. I did not want to have a bar block the visibility of the stained glass especially in the closed position. We chose to solve this by leaving out the bar and instead operate the window with two separate ratcheting handles. These wooden gears are made from 3/8″ Baltic birch plywood.
The installation had a few hiccups, but here they are installed.