How do I put screens on loft windows?
July 31, 2009 8:12 AM   Subscribe

I just moved into an amazing raw industrial loft in Downtown Los Angeles. It has rotating warehouse style windows with no screens, and I'm being eaten alive by bugs. Any ideas about how to put screens on these windows or any not-too-costly alternate solutions? (Here's a picture.) I did a Google search, but can't find the formal name for this type of window, so I'm coming up empty.
posted by ljshapiro to Home & Garden (16 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
This thread has some good ideas in the comments.
posted by kimdog at 8:20 AM on July 31, 2009

If you want to keep it industrial looking then build a screen cage to surround the window. Those type of windows weren't really designed for screens so you won't likely find an off the shelf solution. It's a matter of custom-building something which goes with the style. I think I've seen semi-cylindrical designs for access restriction which could be modified with bug-proof screens.
posted by JJ86 at 8:20 AM on July 31, 2009

Wow, that place looks gorgeous!

This might be more trouble than it's worth, but what about getting some big mosquito net tents (something like this) for your bed/living/eating areas? You could remove them easily when bug season's over (are there bug seasons in LA?)
posted by oinopaponton at 8:20 AM on July 31, 2009

The name of those windows is "hopper windows." Any window contractor can do screens for them, or you could order the screens from a vendor like and install them yourself (or have your general contractor do it).
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:22 AM on July 31, 2009

Those type of windows weren't really designed for screens so you won't likely find an off the shelf solution.

Lots of public buildings (schools, etc.) here in the greater Boston area have hopper windows with screens. It's not the kind of thing you can get in the Home Depot, but it's something most larger window contractors do.
posted by Sidhedevil at 8:28 AM on July 31, 2009

Best answer: The World Famous has it. It's a center-pivot window. Two half-screens: one on the outside, one on the inside (photo).
posted by steef at 8:55 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]

These look like center pivot windows (centre pivot)

Here is a place in the UK that shows a way to screen them. I imagine it can be done in LA, too.
posted by SLC Mom at 9:02 AM on July 31, 2009

I am going now to sit in the slow typist's corner.
posted by SLC Mom at 9:03 AM on July 31, 2009 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Hopper windows open in, with a hinge at the bottom. The windows in your loft have a hinge in the middle of the window, and open in on the top and out on the bottom.

I sit corrected. I misparsed the photo entirely--I didn't "read" the window as pivoting on the center, but read the inward-facing half as a hopper.

If you're not going to do it yourself, I suggest either or Bella Screens as possible vendors.
posted by Sidhedevil at 9:15 AM on July 31, 2009

Maybe a cheaper DIY solution.

I work in an office with the same windows, ours are fully transparent so we need to do this or the glare gets out of control, but we have large floor to ceiling drapes covering the windows, which actually seem to do a pretty good job on keeping out flying critters (in SF its not as big an issue). Some get through but it may be good enough. Also adds a nice decorative element.
posted by bitdamaged at 9:32 AM on July 31, 2009

Response by poster: steef's photo is exactly what I'm looking for, but the website is in the UK. Did a google seach for US vendors and nothing so far. Unfortunately, the term centre pivot seems to be the UK term for these windows. Can't find any vendors for the screens in the US. (I tried the US spelling - center pivot - to no avail.) I would prefer not to have curtains, as I have approximately 60 feet of windows with 16 foot high ceilings which would need to be covered. Any ideas about US terminology and/or US based websites that sell the suckers would be great. In the meantime mosquito netting and possibly The World Famous' DIY solution (If I'm feeling industrious) sounds like a good idea.
posted by ljshapiro at 9:41 AM on July 31, 2009

The idea of large floor to ceiling drapes got me thinking...

How about if you buy several rolls of that fiberglass screen material (available at pretty much any hardware store, I think) and sew long panels of it together to form a large floor-to-ceiling curtain of sorts. Attach those clippy deals to the top of the curtain with the little balls on the end that fit into a ceiling track. (Yeah, I'm a professional.) Then, install the ceiling track dealie just as far out into the room as you have to to accommodate the open window. When you've got the windows open you just pull the screen "curtain across the whole area.
posted by rhartong at 9:55 AM on July 31, 2009

Response by poster: That appears to be the correct term. Thanks. Still can't find screens for them, but at least now I know what to ask for.
posted by ljshapiro at 11:41 AM on July 31, 2009

Best answer: Could adjustable screens like these possibly work?
posted by tamitang at 4:30 PM on July 31, 2009

Best answer: I'm guessing that the windows are made of cast iron or steel, in which case the easiest way to hold the screen material in place is flexible magnetic strip. That's what we use to hold bugscreen over our VW camper windows. Fold and stitch the edges of the screen material into long pockets to hold the tape. Or you could use velcro tape (which is what's used on our yurt) with one half of the velcro glued to the window and the other sewn to the screening.
posted by anadem at 6:47 PM on July 31, 2009

Response by poster: tamitang - the 20" version of these screens will work perfectly, possibly with the addition of anadem's suggestion of magnetic strips. Thanks so much! You guys rock!
posted by ljshapiro at 8:27 AM on August 1, 2009

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