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How can I open and close a window that works on a roller from left to right?


The house we have incorporates a security panel that prevents would be thieves from breaking in. My mother is close to 70 and from the kitchen counter the door I am trying to open and close is 38" from the edge of the counter. She is 5'6 and does not have the energy to slide the door open. She usually unlocks the door and then steps outside on to the balcony and opens it from there. I want to find a way to make it electric if possible. I haven't finished the tilework so I can still run electrical lines and switches to the area. The best idea I can come up with 12v automotive power window motor that is mounted on the right side of the opening. A dog ear be mounted on the top part of the opening for support, and a dog ear be mounted on the door...just right of the LEFT dog ear support itself which will have motion. Attach (weld) a screw onto the power window motor. When engaging the window motor to open the threaded rod revolves in place and the door opens. Same happens when the door closes. My problem for when the door is ACTUALLY supposed to stop in order to be locked by the built in handle. It needs a limiting switch that is engaged to cut power when the proper distance has been traveled. I got this idea from my gate opener for my driveway, the only difference there is that it operates on a chain and has 2 limiting switches for open and close.

My father wants to go a simple route and put a pulley on each side of the window and if you want to open / close the window you pull the appropriate line. I just see that as ugly and will be breaking eventually.

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siamonsez6 years ago
I'm a little confused about how the shutter 'opens'. It sounds like it slides, but then you said the surrounding wall is all concrete, so is it mounted to the exterior? Like when it is open, can you see the whole thing from the outside to the side of the window opening?
Depending on how easy it is to open, I was thinking of something like using the motor out of an sacrificial drill hooked up to a chain drive. If you could find one where the forward/ reverse switch is part of the power switch and not mechanical you could remote locate it to the counter somewhere with a toggle so that it works like a car window. Might not even need limiters with the clutch system many drills have, just find a setting where upon the resistance of the shutter being all the way open/closed, it just slips instead of burning the motor.
gearface6 years ago
Yeah, I'd have to agree with the slide actuator idea.  Not sure what you have in mind price-wise, but you can get decent actuators for under $500 that would probably do the job... Definitely put in limiters though, don't want that window getting torn off!
orksecurity6 years ago
Can't really comment productively, since I'm not familiar with that kind of barrier and I can't see enough detail from your photos.

However, I'd suggest out that your father's solution and yours are essentially the same thing except that yours is motorized. There may be something to be said for simplicity, unless physical ability to operate the panel is an issue.

(Of course the better time to think about this would have been while selecting the security device. A motorized equivalent may well exist, or something which was secure but didn't block the window so badly might have been worth considering. But you've already made the investment, so....)

((I don't think I want to ask where this is. In most of the places where I've lived, that security panel strikes me as probably being overkill. And I'm including NYC. Of course if you need severe-storm shutters anyway, maybe...)

There are standard ways of motorizing casement windows, since they're already deigned to be operated with a crank. But those wouldn't have worked with the barrier you've installed in front of that window. (I'm afraid to ask where you live; that's one heck of a barrier.)
Pyper70 (author)  orksecurity6 years ago
Live in Europe. Its mainly a storm window....It's not really much for security all it came with was that white handle in the 3rd pic. I added the "deadbolt" undeath to keep the door from being shimmied open. The best option would have been to put a roller shutter but then the top 8" of the opening would be covered, and I can't dig the area above the window opening because its all concrete.
OK, I think we may be talking at cross purposes -- I'm confused by the white thing behind the window.
Pyper70 (author)  orksecurity6 years ago
The glass window opens without a problem. The part I am trying to open remotely is the white panel behind, that is a storm window with a lock handle and a "deadbolt" style lock.
OK, that's what I originally thought you were asking about. Thanks.

I really can't see enough to have a strong opinion on it. How does it open? Slide, swing, lift, or do the individual panels tilt?
seandogue6 years ago
you could always use sash chain instead of rope for the pulley system. I doubt you'll be breaking sash chain any time in the near future, and in fact, if done correctly, it might look quite pretty. Also, there's no reason that a motor drive couldn't be connected into that system.
Re-design6 years ago
One solution would be to mount a screw motor or linear actuator to the window and frame. It would have plenty of power to open and close the window. In addition when closed the window would be locked since there is no way to force the screw motor unless you destroy it. The downside of that is that a screw motor is not very attractive and a pulley and cord would be less intrusive.

Screw motor or linear actuator.


sometimes you can find these things surplus at a nice price.


You could cover your cord and pulley or motor and screw with trim.
+1. Plan on trim to cover whatever mechanism you use, and attractiveness becomes a non-issue. (Make sure the trim can be opened for maintaining the mechanism, though.)

Downside of the screw approach is that it may be slow unless you have a hefty motor. And, like power windows in cars, it may present some hazards unless it's set up with a safety switch (or operated carefully), since if it has enough force to move the thing it probably has enough force to give a nasty pinch.
Pyper70 (author)  Re-design6 years ago
I was thinking about the track actuator, But I have seen those prices and it ain't pretty....If I find a ball screw track actuator its the best bet.