vent window weatherstrip

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    I have been fitting the Steele repro molded weatherstrip to my front vent window frames and as has been mentioned by others before it isn’t a simple process. The right hand side didn’t fit in the frame very well. Part of the problems on the RH side were places where the rubber was supposed to be pocketed on the inside to fit the frame, the locations in the rubber didn’t match the frame locations. These were trimmed with an X-acto blade. The next problem was that the parts of the weatherstrip that are supposed to seat inside the u shape of the frame are molded square. The corners of the rubber interfere with the inside radius of the frame channel. This makes it fit too tight around the window. I cut chamfers into the edges with an X-acto and after that it fit okay with some more fussing.

    Oddly the left weatherstrip matched my frame pretty well, but also was too tight around the window. The big culprit was that the thickness of the rubber along the back vertical section was simply too thick. This may be from a buildup of tolerances between the frame, the window hinge location, and the dimensions of the rubber. At any rate I had little choice to make it work – I had to grind the rubber down on the back (as well as along the top) to make it fit. Grinding rubber is not easy, I spent hours using a vibrating sander with course grit slowly working my way down before I discovered the tool of choice for this – a Dremel with the small drum sanding attachment. It cuts surprisingly smoothly and controllably as long as you keep moving and don’t sit grinding in one spot. Halleluah! There is probably only .080 left of rubber on the back of the frame and I was left in black face, but the window will now swing in and out without undo force. Hopefully I won’t be stripping the sector gear.

    chamfering the weatherstrip


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