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Plantation Shutter Details: The Knowledge

The inner workings and some technical aspects of Plantation Shutters

The Shutter Panel: somewhat like a door, this has several major components as detailed below. The shutter panel is held closed with ultra high power tiny magnets.
There are various materials, woods and plastics that go up to make the shutters, they can be finished as a painted wood - including any colour of your choice, covered in a high tech polymer finish or made from solid plastics for waterproof application. Some, those made from solid wood can be stained from a standard set of stains.



The "working” part of the shutter. They are elliptical in cross section. Smaller louvres in plantation shutters give greater privacy, larger offer higher levels of light transmittance. If you can it's best to keep the louvre size in scale with the window and avoid an over busy look.
In order of popularity 76, 89, 64, 48, 110mm are the preferred sizes.
It is possible to have the shutter louvres fixed in the frame so as they do not tilt, typical uses of this would be doors in bathrooms, wardrobe or larder doors in some rooms


Traditional  Tilt Rods

The louvres on Plantation Shutter Frames are coupled together so they act in unison when opening or closing.
To achieve synchronising effect a rod joins them. This takes the form of "Traditional" or a stick hinged from each louvre, this can be positioned centrally or to one side toward the hinge or opposite to it.
We do not usually advise central tilt rods on narrow panels, especially with small louvres as this leads to an overly busy shutter.


Hidden Tilt Rods

The hidden tilt rod option shows no tilt rods to the user. The mechanism is hidden within the panel stile (side), providing the ultimate in clean clutter free minimal contemporary styling, There are limits to the number of coupled louvres that vary with the louvre size. We will advise on this during the survey.


Split Tilt Rods

To enhance functionality and increase privacy options it is possible to "split" the tilt rod at a predetermined point. In a bed room for instance you may want the lower half fully closed for absolute privacy but an upper portion open look through and enjoy the view.
 A split is available with traditional or hidden tilt types.

mortise join

Stiles & Rails

Stiles are the sides, the top / bottom rails. Stiles are not simple pieces of wood, to maximise integrity they are made from an engineered laminated construction. This is done to eliminate natural warping and to produce a stiffer more uniform load bearing part of the assembly. The style can be butt - square edged, rabbet - stepped or have an astragal - strip attached. Rails are Morticed into the Stile.


Mid Rails

When shutter panels reach above 1800mm it is mandated that a further rail is added to help improve the integrity of the shutter. This “mid” rail can be positioned anywhere, in a door maybe handle height or in a tall window to match the window glazing bar, similarly with sash windows. More examples of this can be seen below- the good and the down right ugly execution of location.



In almost every application the shutter is hung on two or more hinges. These come in several colours, brass, stainless or nickel finish. The can be put to the left or the right - “hung” and also in some instances facilitate bifolding action. Waterproof shutters are by default fitted with stainless steel to avoid corrosion.


Shutter Frames

The Shutter Frame: The shutter is hung within a frame, usually 4 sides sometimes 3 rarely 2. This is made in several forms and depths, Shutter Perfection make the choice commensurate with the shutters duty and location and advise carefully during the shutter survey. We make special posts for Bay windows that suit the angle of the window itself for a neat fit.


Bay Posts 

There are three forms of Bay windows, square, traditional standard 135° or special angle. We can accommodate them all and manufacture the precise angle to match the window frame for an accurate fit.


Track Guide

This is the bottom track follower and runs in the low profile track that is securely fixed to the floor


Track Runner

In almost every application the shutter is hung on two or more hinges. These come in several colours, brass, stainless or nickel finish. The can be put to the left or the right - “hung” and also in some instances facilitate bifolding action. Waterproof shutters are by default fitted with stainless steel to avoid corrosion.


Bottom Track

About 19mm high this is the bottom track that keeps the shutters vertical. It is fixed to the floor.


Astragal Stile

The Astragal is the small strip of wood covering the gap between the shutters


Rabbet Style

Rabbet stiles are usually found in multifold shutters such as tracked assemblies. They interlock and this forms a light block to keep privacy levels at 100%.


Butt Style

This for of side stile is used when a single shutter fits into a frame, these are usually small shutters for a single window when the frame forms the light blocking action


Black Out Blinds

Using a special frame we can add black out blinds, these considerably reduce any light in the room when dropped. The blinds are accordion in cross section and silvered inside so are thermally very efficient. When pulled up they have a small stack height at the top of the frame. Not available in Boston or Georgia materials



Magnetic catches are used on all shutters except waterproof. These keep the shutter in closed. In some shaped applications all the shutter is held in by magnetic catches - such as circular. Waterproof shutters use a polypropylene and nylon ball catch to capture the shutter


Laminated Stiles

The inner core of the stile is engineered from a laminated stack of cross grained woods, this is done to prevent twisting bows and other deformations. The layers have grain going in different directions cancelling each. other tendencies to warp


Louvre Tension

The louvre “tension” i.e. Stiffness can be adjusted by the simple expedience of a simple screw adjuster seen here in the stile.


Low Profile Handles

Larger louvres can mean we need to fit lower profile handles to allow a clearance and prevent the louvre clashing with the furniture. Seen above for comparison are normal and low profile handle.



We can at the point of manufacture fit bolts to enhance security - by this we mean keeping infants within the room not keeping burglars out, Shutters enhanced security comes more from being invisible behind them when closed.


Mid-Rail - BAD

How NOT to do a mid rail, our competition seem to take the term literally and placed this one half way up the shutter, looks bad, is bad. 


Mid-Rail GOOD

In very tall shutters a mid-rail is mandated but it can be at any point in the height, the most obvious place is to match the window frame build


MId-rails In Bays

Bays tend to have a top portion where the “pop” windows are situated, so unlike the example seen in MID RAIL BAD it’s the ideal position for them in the shutter as it obscures no more light than that lost already to the window frame itself.