Barn door for a friend

  • Advertise with us
Project by MatthewG posted 298 days ago 1877 views 17 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

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

14 comments so far

View MilFlyer's profile


108 posts in 299 days

#1 posted 298 days ago

Love it! Great idea for bringing a bit of the country in the home!

-- Richard "Fear is nothing more than a feeling. You feel hot. You feel hungry. You feel angry. You feel afraid. Fear can never kill you"--Remo Williams

View maplerock's profile


410 posts in 427 days

#2 posted 297 days ago

That is one fine looking door. Congratulations!

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

View a1Jim's profile


112011 posts in 2204 days

#3 posted 297 days ago

Cool door ,very nice work.

-- Custom furniture

View hoss12992's profile


2571 posts in 520 days

#4 posted 297 days ago

This is really cool. Great job

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View MasterSergeant's profile


1284 posts in 1315 days

#5 posted 297 days ago

Very interesting, nice look!

-- Kelly, woodworker under construction

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

3873 posts in 1007 days

#6 posted 297 days ago

I have a soft spot for barn doors and would be proud to own this one, bet she is very happy.

-- |Statistics show that 100% of people bitten by a snake were close to it.|

View TheeWoodShed's profile


162 posts in 537 days

#7 posted 297 days ago

Great job!!! Great choice of woods too!

-- "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life."

View oldnovice's profile


3691 posts in 1994 days

#8 posted 297 days ago

A door this good looking is a barndoor in name only! Have to show this to my daughter as she has been wanting one for her closet.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View Cadkook's profile


5 posts in 317 days

#9 posted 297 days ago

Very nice work!!

View jerryo's profile


130 posts in 1590 days

#10 posted 296 days ago

Great job Matt. That hardware is expensive but such a beautiful door warrants the expense. Jerry

View MatthewG's profile


66 posts in 1406 days

#11 posted 296 days ago

My apologies for the postings above from “Moron”. Not sure who this guy is; I flagged the posts to have them removed.

-- Matthew, from beautiful Wisconsin USA

View oldnovice's profile


3691 posts in 1994 days

#12 posted 296 days ago

MatthewG, I agree, you really can’t tell if he is being sarcastic or caustic and he does have a rather poor choice of words. Many of the comments have nothing to do with woodworking! Maybe his name fits!

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View EnredandoNoGaraxe's profile


39 posts in 684 days

#13 posted 295 days ago

I love how this things look.

-- Sergio, Galicia (Spain),

View Joe's profile


62 posts in 569 days

#14 posted 295 days ago

Looks great! Thanks for posting!

-- It's better to have a tool and not need it than to need a tool and not have it.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics :: gardening showcase