|Project by MatthewG||posted 10-29-2013 03:35 AM||2149 views||17 times favorited||14 comments|
A friend asked if I could build a “barn door” for a renovation of her attic. The door opening is about 79×29 inches; the door needed to be 77-1/2×31, to allow 1” overlap on each side. The door height was set by the ceiling height, minus the space needed for the rails.
After looking at a couple of options, we choose red cedar boards, rough on the side facing out. We picked eight 1×6s, about 7/8 thick, with just enough knots and interesting pattern, and decent color match. Back in the shop, I grooved the vertical edges, and put in a dark hardboard spacer, to give nice even lines. She had chosen the pattern for the overlay (the double Z), so that saved me having to think about that :) The rough surface was sanded with 80 grit to smooth them to the touch while keeping the appearance.
She already had the “roller and rail” hardware, and the handles for both sides of the door. Although expensive, it was very well crafted, heavy and solid as a rock. The only dicey part was re-drilling a few holes thru the top rail to match the stud spacing—the holes are a bit over 5/16 diameter thru the 3/16 thick steel, and I did not want the heating to mar the flat black paint. (Oil is your friend here.)
The rollers are mounted with thru bolts; you have to countersink the back sides to clear the wall surface. The top rail has to be carefully leveled, so the door doesn’t roll open or closed. The bottom edge has a slot, that slides over a “L” shaped bracket screwed to the floor. There are stops on either end of the rail to limit the door’s travel. The action is nice and smooth, in no small part due to the quality hardware. I think the door weighs about 40 pounds. It makes a really cool sound when it rolls :)
All-in-all, a very fun project, and she seems very happy! Thanks for looking!
-- Matthew, from beautiful Wisconsin USA