broken mechanism for spiral tilt windows

Quick Learner from Barrington, RI
Sep 12, 2022 3:40 pm


we bought a house with 20 year old replacement windows. The original installer was Bristol Aluminum from Bristol, RI. They claim they have no replacement parts for the windows that were made in Smithfield, Rhode Island, by Riverdale windows and Door. The installer was less than helpful.... your website is terrific. i have only taken apart one window, as pictured, that is a double sided failure. 

 Many of the remaining windows sag, or are stuck, or have no balance tension. the glass has retained its seals, and the windows do not leak air. other than the problems with the spiral balance, i am happy.potential purchase - repair parts for four windows, plus the Charging tool

broken shoe spring loaded pin Window Frame with 16 inch spiral tube
3 user uploaded images
5 Replies
Emily from SWISCO
Sep 14, 2022 1:11 pm

Hi there!

It looks like you have a tilt window spiral balance like our 3/8" diameter Series 900 or 5/8" diameter Series 600. For the charging tool, see the 75-006. We can identify the pivot shoe but we will need to see a photo of yours removed from the window track along with the written out thickness and width dimensions. That will help me narrow down some options. 

If you needed the pivot bar too, see our 26-369, 26-400 and 26-412. Look over the dimensions and compare them with yours to see if one matches up.

Thank you!

Quick Learner from Barrington, RI
Sep 14, 2022 2:03 pm
your videos are the best. i just tested the steps to remove a shoe, and will complete that task soon.

Emily from SWISCO
Sep 14, 2022 2:17 pm

I'm glad you find them helpful! I'll be here to help whenever you can get that for us! 

Quick Learner from Barrington, RI
Sep 15, 2022 5:21 pm

you guys are the best! after being totally frustrated by the willful ignorance of the local installer, i think we are getting close. :-)

it seems to me that the spring loaded pivots bars are ok. they extend 3/8", are 1/4" wide and are 1/8" thick.

and the pins on the spiral mechanisms appear intact.

the shoe measures 2" x 1.25" x 1/2"- the blue disc has a 3/8" x 1/4" opening

The spring casings appear intact and functional. the tube is 16" long and 1/2" in diameter.

neither of your balance tubes appear to be a direct fit - and i don't think mine need to be replaced.

For the moment, with just one window disassembled, it appears i will need some shoes and a charging tool- once we are confirmed with appropriate shoes, i'll look more closely at the other difficult windows.

I'm doing this so i can clean the windows for my wife..... is there a particular motion that may have broken the shoes by the previous owner?

thanks again!!!

removed shoe
1 user uploaded images
Tom from SWISCO
Sep 16, 2022 10:59 am

Hey there. Emily isn't here today but I can assist you moving forward.

Starting with your shoe, based on the dimensions given I'm very confident that our 15-046 will work as a replacement. It is the same size and will be compatible with all the same parts your window already uses.

As for why these shoes might break, you do have to make sure to raise the window a couple inches before you tilt them in. One of the most common culprits of pivot shoes breaking is when the window is titled while closed. Otherwise, it's possible that your shoes are just too old and even tilting them normally was the straw the broke the camels' back. 

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