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Sportique

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Here's the problem:

A friend has a rather small room which, when a single bed is in place there is insufficient space to open a standard door. :roll:

She has a standard ready-made door in place and has asked me to cut it vertically in half, then fabricate and fit two vertical frame pieces to match outer existing frame so that we have two independent but half-width doors. - (thus needing less space when opening into the room).

Now this raises a number of questions in my mind!! :!: :!:

Not least of which is that the door appears to be one of these hollow white engineered jobbies. It looks like one, it sounds like one and it weighs like one. :cry:

So, what will I find when I cut it in half - will I be able to do anything with it? or is this a complete no-no!!

This feels like a bag-o-worms to me

Thanks for any realistic suggestions :lol:

Dave
 

AndyT

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I think you are right to be doubtful! It sounds like a project doomed from the start. If you do cut down a hollow door it will be next to impossible to make it stand up.
If you want to help, and she insists on a bi-fold door, I suggest that you buy one designed to be like that - B&Q list them on-line at £55 to £65 - but they look just as awful as the one you describe!
 

Sportique

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Hi Andy,

yes, you are confirming my fears.

However, she has declined my suggestion of bi-fold, she wants them to be centre opening, and I have so far been unable to trace such doors on t'net

Dave
 

AndyT

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Well, you could still buy the bi-fold and just remove the (cheap and nasty) surface mount centre hinges, then hinge each half. Ideally you'd want a pair of rebates down the centre, but for this sort of job a nailed-on strip of wood to cover the gap would probably be enough!

That will leave you with the problem of how to hold two tiny little doors closed, without something as annoying as putting bolts on one side. Not an easy one, and I suspect whatever you do will look a bit odd.

Any scope for just making the door open outwards? (not if it would knock people down the stairs...)
 

Jacob

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Open them outwards instead?

If you cut up a hollow door you might be able to insert a batten into the edge. I've done this in the past. Then made good and covered it up with a hardwood strip all round.
 

Sportique

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Andy - this is a "bijou" apartment and the said bedroom door opens into the main room - I have suggested simply re-hanging to open the other way but that was rejected because of a glass cupboard!

I'll think about the idea of re-hinging a pair of bi-folds.

Jacob - my thoughts exactly. I had planned to fit new stiles on the exposed edges, hopefully setting the exposed hollow edge of the panels into suitable grooves in the new stiles and joining the new stiles and original muntins(?) with dowels. But again I suspect the muntins are not solid! I would fit the doors so that the original stiles carried the hinges and the new stiles would then be in the centre - probably rebated as Andy suggests.

But this still leaves me with concerns over the stability of the whole structure.

Thanks for all the suggestions.

Dave
 

Phil Pascoe

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A bit of 2"x2" and some 6mm ply, or even hardboard and make two new ones - at least you will have the reinforced parts where you want them.
 

Steve Maskery

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Hollow doors like this have limits as t how much you can trim them without affecting their structural integrity.
BUT
When you understand how they are constructed, Jacob's idea of inserting a solid strip to make a new edge becomes perfectly feasible. I've done it myself when such a doo needed to be shortened by more than was allowed. Perfect result.

It's just another thankless task on which we are expected to perform miracles!
S
 

Paul Chapman

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Steve Maskery":1aigk8ad said:
When you understand how they are constructed, Jacob's idea of inserting a solid strip to make a new edge becomes perfectly feasible. I've done it myself when such a doo needed to be shortened by more than was allowed. Perfect result.
I also had to do a job like this once and, like Steve's, it worked out OK. The material filling the door was a sort of cardboard, in a zig-zag pattern. A rubbish door really but that's what they fit these days.

How well such a modification will work depends on how the door has been made and you won't know that until you cut it. To be on the safe side better get the customer's assurance that you won't be held responsible if it doesn't work.

Cheers :wink:

Paul
 

No skills

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I've also done some modification to doors like this for a friend, putting in new bits of timber is possible with care but not a nice job.

What I would suggest (and what I would do if I had to modify one again) is building a new timber framework for the door size/s you need and then remove the pressed skins from the old door and cut it to suit the new frame/s. There will be some glue and rubbish to clean off the inside of the skins but some sharp chisels should do away with it.

JMO
 

Sportique

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OK guys, thanks for all your help and suggestions. =D>

I have chickened out of modifying the door! :)

Found that I can get doors at Holden's of suitable size (eg 1'3" and 1'6") which I can fit as a pair - this not only solves the problem but offers an advantage (in this case) of being slightly offset, thus narrowest can have a flush bolt fitted, leaving the wider one for entry/exit (she is a slim person! or is that being non PC these days? :oops: ). Friend seems ecstatic!! But I haven't fitted the doors yet :shock:

A great forum, thanks to all ...

Dave
 

Bradshaw Joinery

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I personally would use a rollerball catch in the top of each door, pita to open a bolt each time, especiallly if its a flick over flush bolt. And unless you have one top and bottom having a latch into a door only secured at the top will be a little wobbly.
 

Sportique

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Olly,

thanks for that - I agree, but my friend intends to leave the narrow door closed (except if moving furniture etc) and simply use the wider one for entry/exit.

However - the new complication - :evil: is that she wants to hinge the wider door off the "semi-fixed" narrow door!!! Rather like a bi-fold door but without the track and also allowing one door to remain closed if/when required.

This I can do, (mental note: make a strong job of fitting the flush bolts), but - yes there's always a "but" - I now have some worries over the longevity of this arrangement. I shall go ahead and see how it all works ... :|

Thanks again for all the help

Dave
 

AndyT

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Perhaps a small one of these would be suitable....





:lol:
 

Bradshaw Joinery

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Surely hanging one door off the other will not solve the problem of having a full door open into the room when you open both? unless it can fold around the wall or something?
 

jaywhoopee

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Sportique":3t8vg044 said:
Andy - this is a "bijou" apartment and the said bedroom door opens into the main room - I have suggested simply re-hanging to open the other way but that was rejected because of a glass cupboard!

I'll think about the idea of re-hinging a pair of bi-folds.
I did something similar with our bathroom door - I first cut it down by more than the width of the frame both sides (frames were re-glued into the cut down door), then abused it further by hanging it only from hinges fitted to the relocated frame, not using the supplied rail.

I did a series of blog posts at the time and (touch wood) it's still fine.

http://aggravatedwoodbutchery.wordpress.com/2012/01/30/bifold-door-part-1/

HTH
 

Sportique

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Hi Jay,

thanks for that - I have read your blog - very interesting, well done, I like the finished job. Its very close to what I have in mind.
Thanks

Dave
 
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