Causes and solutions for window crazing.

From: (Pete Coe)
Organization: NETCOM On-line Communication Services (408 261-4700 guest)
Date:         30 Jul 96 01:33:00 
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Just back from my first flight in way too long.  Thanks to
my travel agent I managed to get a window seat, but ended
up severely dissapointed because I could barely see out of
the window.  It was so badly scratched/crazed that it was
more like looking out of frosted glass than a real window.

My window was facing the sun for most of the journey, but
when we turned for finals, I still had a very fuzzy view.
It wasn't just my window either, all that I could see were
equally fuzzy.

All planes I travel on seem to have some level of scratches,
but this was by far the worst I can remember.  I was flying
on a Delta 757 behind the wing, and the plane was apparently
only 3 years old, so this level of abrasion seems extreme.

I seem to recall that this crazing was blamed on volcanic ash,
and the volcano blamed was the one that nearly downed a BA 747
a decade or so back.  Now if that was the case, surely the ash
would have settled out by now, or is this now an epidemic.

I would like to think that part of the care and maintenance of
a plane would be the polishing and/or replacement of fuzzy windows,
but as they are not a safety item what is the reality?