Made to Measure Blinds by The Yorkshire Blinds Company
What to measure in – Always measure in millimetres (mm) as most blind suppliers require a size in millimetres. Where to measure – In normal window areas there are 2 potential places for your blinds to be installed, these are known as the window face, or the window recess. Roller Blinds can be fitted to the face of your window frame or wall, or into the top of the window recess. This gives you complete control over the positioning of your blind.
For a recess measurement:
Make sure you have enough depth to mount the inside the window frame area. 75mm should be fine; any less will result in the blind protruding out of the recess. If you have less than 75mm it may be worth considering installing your blind outside the window recess as a face fit.
1) Measure the width of the recess from wall to wall at the top. This is where the brackets will be fitted. Be sure to measure across 3 areas of the width to ensure the area is the same width (or very similar) and the walls do not have bulges that will affect the operation of the blind.
2) Note down the shortest measurement.
3) Take off 10mm each side – this will give you some flexibility in case of any variants in your walls and will ensure your blind doesn’t get damaged. If you want total light block out we suggest you fit your blind to the window face.
4) Measure the drop by taking the measurement from the top of the recess to the bottom.
5) Note down the shortest measurement.
A stopper is provided with many Roller Blinds which means you can restrict the movement of the blind to ensure it extends down to fit perfectly on your windowsill. Operate the blind chain with one hand and with the other pinch one of the chain balls between your thumb and forefinger and work out when this will reach the top of the mechanism. When you have your perfect length worked out nip the blind chain stopper onto the chain with a pair of pliers.
For a face measurement:
1) Measure the exact width of where you’d like your blind to be. As a guide add an overlap from the window frame of between 50 and 100mm this will help reduce the gap at the side of the blind, providing better light control and more privacy.
2) Note down the measurement.
3) Measure the drop from the top of where you want your blind positioned to the bottom.
4) Note down the measurement.
• Ensure that on all recess width measurements that you have deducted 10mm from each side.
• Measure at least twice to make sure there are no errors.
• Note the side you wish the controls to be so that they are easily accessed.
• To be sure of a great fit it is important that when measuring you account for any obstructions like window handles.
• For full length windows we recommend that you measure to approx 20mm off the floor. This will give enough clearance and allow the blind to have room to settle overtime.
• For face fit installations remember to raise the blind by 100-150mm above the frame to allow the roller mechanism to clear as much glass as possible when raised. This will allow more light into the room and is important when blinds are on doors, to allow for clearance.
• Decide if the blind is over roll or under roll, i.e. is the fabric to roll off the front of the tube or the back. The fabric rolling off the back is generally the standard roll.
Other installation considerations
Shallow sill depth (recess fitting):
Around 50mm minimum sill depth is required to fasten all brackets as the minimum depth necessary for a flush mount (where the product does not protrude into the room). If your sill depth does not cover this you should probably consider a face fit installation.
When two meet in a corner or in a corner where there is only glass, there can be a privacy problem. That’s due to a gap where the products fit together. In order to minimize the problem, consider making one product bypass the other, then specify the other product to fit flush into the first.
The wider and taller you specify your product, the better your privacy, insulation, and light control. You will need approx 100mm (width) x 50mm (drop) additional per Roller Blind for the mounting brackets at the top. This higher and wider measurement means that when the Roller Blind is raised it blocks less of your view.
For the width you also should add at least 30mm on both sides of the glass. However door handles may constrain the width you’d prefer. Ideally the Roller Blind should fall just inside the door handle.
Roller Blinds can be installed on either a wood or metal doors. For metal doors, you’ll need “metal screws” designed for attaching to metal doors.
All our blinds can be specified to mount either within the doorframe (RECESS) or over it on the wall (FACE). When deciding this ensure you measure to see if the handle is an obstruction.
For an outside mount it is normally sufficient to measure about 100mm wider on both sides. The wider you specify, the better your privacy, insulation, and light control. For the height, specify about 50mm above the top of the frame.
Roller Blinds – How to Install
Roller Blinds are easy to fit and we are confident it won’t take up too much of your time. Be sure to read all of the instructions below.
1) Power drill
2) Drill Bit
3) Phillips Screwdriver (The one with the crossed head)
4) Flat head Screwdriver
5) Box of Screws
6) A pencil
How to fix your brackets into…
Concrete, Brick or Plaster:
If you’re drilling into concrete, brick or plaster you should use a 5.0 mm diameter masonry drill bit. You will also require wall plugs and 1 inch phillips head screws (8 gauge).
Wood or Steel:
If you’re drilling into wood or steel you should use a 3mm diameter high-speed steel drill bit. Often in wood you can secure the screws into the wood without any need to pre-drill.
If you’re drilling into tiles then cover your drilling point with masking tape. This will prevent the drill from slipping.
1) Gather your tools and unpack your blind.
2) Remove the blind from the package and locate the installation brackets which are supplied as a pair. Have a look at your blind and see which side you ordered the control to be on.
3) One bracket is used with the control side of the blind (the side with the chain) and the second bracket is used with the rotator side (see Diagram 5).
4) The installation brackets are always mounted so that the inner surfaces face each other. It is very important that the brackets are mounted so that the blind is level when installed.
5) Decide where you want the blind to be positioned. The brackets can be placed in 3 different ways:
Inside the frame (recess fit) mounted to the side of the window recess.
Inside the frame (recess fit) mounted to the top (ceiling) of the window recess.
Outside the window frame (face fit).
6) Mark out your drill holes with a pencil using the blind brackets provided as templates for holes. Ensure that the brackets are perfectly level, so that the blind rolls up and down straight.
7) Drill your holes and then screw the brackets into place.
8) Simply clip the blind into place by putting the opposite side to the chain in first, and then clipping in the chain side
Safety first! Child safe chain guide:
It is a requirement by Australian Child Safety Laws that the blind chain must be attached to the wall or window area by the Chain Guides provided. With the Chain Guide secure in place holding the chain you can prevent any risk of strangulation, especially if the chain is lower than 1.6m off the floor. To maintain child safety standards also make sure to keep furniture and cots away from blind chains.
To fasten, hook the chain into the device and mount to the face of your window area or inside the recess. Mount the device slightly out of the way of the blind, so it does not interfere with the operation.
The secured chain guide must allow the chain to have some slack but not be able to form a loop of more than 220mm. Too much tension will make the blind hard to operate. The chain should run through the Chain Guide freely.
Troubleshooting / Common Problems
The blind has a crease or kink on the fabric…
If the blind has a small crease or kink, this may be due to transportation. Blind fabric needs to settle and often small imperfections will rectify themselves. The natural weight and hang of the blind mean that small creases or kinks should fall out over short period of time. Warm weather helps this process.
In addition to this blinds that are left in one position for long periods of time may result in the fabric holding a crease or a kink to the cloth. Again, this will drop out over time. If the blind is rotated regularly in different positions this helps to eliminate this problem.
The blind is not operating smoothly…
When pulling the chain to operate your blind if you feel tightness and the blind does not roll smoothly and makes a noise then it is highly likely that the positioning of the chain drive end of the blind is in the incorrect position. Check the end cap where the gap for the chain should be at the bottom, make sure the cap has not rotated out of position.
The blind doesn’t sit comfortably between the brackets…
The blind should be a good fit between brackets, if there is up to 4mm of play between the blind and the brackets then this can be taken up by turning the serrated wheel in a clockwise direction until it locks into position. This extends the pin out.
If the play is more than 4mm, then we suggest either bending the brackets in slightly, no more than about 3mm each side.
If there is more play than that, one or both brackets need to move closer together.
Likewise, if you find it too tight to clip the blind into place you can try bending the brackets out slightly, no more than 3mm on each side. If this is not enough one or both brackets need to move closer together.
The blind doesn’t roll up and down properly…
If the fabric is rolling off to one side this can often be fixed by straightening the fabric up by pulling it across to its correct position by hand, if this does not work…
Then you can try to enlarge the diameter of the tube on the side that the fabric is rolling away from. Roll out your blind to expose the tube. Place some tape, preferably masking tape, on the corner of the side that the fabric is rolling away from. Sometimes a couple of pieces of tape are required, to be stuck on top of each other to build the thickness up enough. You may need to repeat this process a few times until you achieve the perfect roll.
If this does not work, then usually the bracket needs to be lowered slightly, to overcome the problem. It may be 5 – 10 mm, usually because the head of the window is not level.
Roller Blinds – How to Maintain
Cleaning the blind only requires a damp cloth. Make sure not to rub the blind too hard when cleaning as you may damage either the coating or discolour the blind.
Removing the blinds…
If you would like to take your blind down, simply rotate the clear plastic cog at the pin end of the blind. This will release the pin from the bracket. Make sure you have hold of the blind securely so it does not drop down – ideally have someone to help you do this.
If your blind gets damaged many of the component parts can be replaced inexpensively. Refer back to your supplier for spare parts. Common replacement parts include the bottom rail and chain. The bottom rail might need some more intricate work to replace so we recommend you send it back your supplier for the rework.
If you need to replace the chain, it is a fairly easy process. Firstly remove the blind from the brackets and the remove the chain drive from the tube. Loosen the small screw in the centre of the chain drive, do not remove it fully. Once loosened you can pull the end cap forward enough for you to release the chain from the cogs. Add your new chain and then tighten the screw and slot the end cap back in place.
Changing the chain control side…
If you decide that you would like to have the chain control on the opposite side remove the end caps and swap to opposite sides. Also swap the bracket positions over.
We pride ourselves on sourcing the most effective products on the market that are of the highest quality. Many Blind Depot products are manufactured in Australia to your specific requirements and are made to measure so we can ensure that we deliver the perfect solution to suit your needs.
What Are Back Tab Curtains?
Over the past few months, I’ve been working on my latest cloud-connected smart home project: an automated controller for my blinds. I’m naming this project Helen, after Helen Keller, an inspirational American author.
I’m always improving, and never satisfied, so this project has changed components a few times to get to the state where it’s at now:
Bali solar shades from Home Depot, with motorized option.
The motorization is supplied by Somfy, who basically has the monopoly on motorized shades. They come with a nice, simple, remote control.
My most very favorite cloud connected device, the Particle Photon.For the uninitiated, the photon is a super simple cloud-connected Arduino. Particle has great customer support, a busy community, and open source almost everything they do. I can’t speak highly enough.
A microcontroller (i.e. Arduino) lets you write a little bit of software (firmware, technically) to blink LEDs or set output pins high (3.3v) and low (0v). The photon extends that by giving it a cloud interface.
My idea was to simulate pressing the actual buttons on a real remote control, with a Photon. I bought a second remote control, and extracted the circuit board. I very carefully soldered some wires to the small pushbuttons on the remote. I connected those (via optoisolators) to outputs on my Photon. And that’s it, in a nutshell. Here are some pictures:
My remote control has 3 buttons: open, close, and “my” (an overloaded stop button). So I created 3 Particle Functions, used 3 pins for output, and connected those outputs to 3 optoisolators. I put the very simple Arduino code/sketch on GitHub.
Note: I lied a little bit. I actually have 2 blinds, and 9 functions, but the idea is the same.
A simple app with custom material style skeumorphic interface.
I used Inkscape to trace the actual remote, and draw a vector-based material style UI. I used Floating Action Buttons for the buttons. I used the Particle API for Android. I threw it all together in a Kotlin app.
Google Home -> IFTTT -> Particle
So what’s the next step? Well, controlling it by voice. Now my kids regularly ask our Google Home to “ok Google, please open the blinds”. IFTTT made this almost trivial. I created a new recipe, with Google Assistant as the trigger: “say a simple phrase”, and Particle as the action: “call a function”. That’s all there was to it!
Nothing in this project was super ground-breaking, but the end result was very fun!