Sheet Blown Glass Windows from 1894 Victorian Home

These Blown Cylinder Glass Windows (also known as broad glass or sheet glass) are $15 each, or Best Offer. 

We are rehabbing/restoring an 1894 Victorian home in the Historic Old North End of Colorado Springs. While the resale value of this house is greater with newly repaired frames and energy efficient windows, we didn’t want to just through these 109 year old windows out because of the unique and special character of the glass. Maybe you neeed a replacement window?  As best we can tell, the price above is reasonable. If you know more and can substantiate a better, verifiable deal on line, let us know and we’ll take your price.

Measurments/apox: (12) 14×33, (2) 15.5×33, (12) 16×33, (4) 12×23, (2) 20.5×17.5, (4) 22×33, (2) 16×33, (5) 15.5×33

large window IMAG0148 Victorian Blown Glass Windows

History for Cylinder Windows from – from Old House Journal 1998

Old window panes look wavy, distorted, and handmade – even after 1900. Understand their manufacture, and you’ll know why.

 Ever peer through an old window and see … the glass? The distortions in antique glass are part of the charm of old windows and a historic feature well worth retaining. Though some may tell you that ripples and dimples are a sign of age – as if glass sags like flesh after a century – the truth is less fantastic, though almost as amazing.

It’s all a result of how glass was made. Once you grasp the two basic methods used to make window glass until the 1910s, you can tell a lot about the age of your windows and how to care for them.

Cylinder Glass

Though crown glass was made up to the 1850s, it could not supply the need for bigger panes created by a growing population. The glass that could was cylinder glass (also called broad glass or sheet glass), and it dominated this industry for the rest of the century.

To make cylinder glass, the glassworker blew a large tube of glass. After cracking off the blowpipe, the glassworker cut off the ends and slit the tube down one side. From here these shawls were transferred to a special oven where they could wilt and unfold into a flat sheet.

By the 1870s, glass manufacturers were adding pits dug deep in the floor of the glass factory to allow blowers to swing the glass as they blew. The resulting cylinders were up to 18 inches in diameter and a remarkable 7 feet in length.

Two decades later, some manufacturers had mechanized the steps with cranes and compressed air. These cylinders made possible by the Lubbers process – the last before the switch to drawn-sheet glass manufacturing in this century – were several feet in diameter.

Doing Old Windows

You can determine whether you have crown or cylinder glass simply by eye and feel. In crown glass, the spinning process leaves subtle curved swirls or ripples in the panes that appear when you look obliquely at the glass. In cylinder glass there are faint parallel ripples – the clash between the different inner and outer circumferences of the cylinder as the shawl is unfolded.

When cutting glass for window repairs, the point to remember is that cylinder glass has a smooth side, once the outside of the cylinder, and a rough side, the former inside. Your chances of a clean cut are better if you cut from the smooth side. Most original crown glass is rare enough that you probably don’t want to cut it at all.

Whatever your windows, they may be hard to clean because decades of weathering have left minute pits in the surface. Instead of spray cleaners, use a paste product such as Glas Wax which you can buff to show off your beautiful wavy glass.

Making Cylinder Glass

At Glashutte Lamberts in Germany, artisans still make mouth-blown cylinder glass. The process starts with a red-hot balloon of glass.



After cutting off the ends, the new cylinder is inspected for quality. Scoring the cylinder lengthwise with a glass cutter severs the cylinder into a shawl.




When placed in the furnace, the shawl unfolds with the aid of an artisan into a sheet of glass.



After more heating and cooling, the final sheet is ready for grading and cutting.