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Posted by Steven in Colorado Springs, CO on 10/2/2016

I spent some quality time with my new door today and sussed out a couple of things, I think.

If you recall from my last post I'd gotten one side into the frame and was busy doing some minor repair work on the other (active) half before putting it up. I actually finished off that work the weekend following that last post and put the door in, but didn't feel things were far enough along to warrant an update post. You can see a picture of the doors prior to my work this morning below.

The door on the left was actually set pretty well though it was a bit tight in opening and closing, while the right-hand door opened/closed fine but (as you can see) wasn't lined up properly. This type of annoyance was one I had hoped to avoid but it's pretty common in double doors like this (which are basically very heavy French doors) and I had resigned myself that I needed to do a round of tweaking on the set screws to fix it.

This morning the first thing I did was to carefully everything for level and distance across every dimension I could think of, and I finally found two things:

  • The left-hand door shouldn't really have been that tight, and it was too close to the frame especially along the top. This indicated that either the frame screws at the top needed tightening a bit and/or that the side set screw might need a bit of loosening (so as to lower the door slightly).

  • The right-hand of the door frame was not set properly; it was a good half inch "in" (as measured from the outside) from the left-hand side of the door frame so the whole thing wasn't really set in the hole square and true. It would need to be adjusted a bit, which might actually make a difference with the left-hand door set as well.
So after a good lunch I set about making this right. I debated whether or not to remove the right-hand door but ultimately decided against it for the time being.

The first thing I actually did though was to tighten the screws of the cross braces. In looking over the door I noticed that they weren't as tight and snug as they needed to be, and having those set properly would just give me more room to adjust things on the frame itself. I spent about an hour tightening these screws, which was somewhat more difficult than it should have been since the door was there in the way--I ended up mostly using an offset Phillips screwdriver (kinda looks like a long "S") to snug things up.

Once that was done I tackled the door frame being out of square. To fix that I ended up removing the two set screws on the right-hand side (one down by the second hinge and one up into the right-hand cross brace). I then (very carefully) used a 3-pound sledge to nudge it into place, being very careful to cover the head with cloth and not hitting very hard at all. Thankfully it did indeed nudge into place nicely, and I quickly set a new screw in there to hold it into place against the cross brace. After another round of measuring everything everywhere I could think of, I called it good and got the hinge set screw into place.

With that all done I didn't have a lot of good light left, but I tightened and checked every which way I could. The left-hand door now sits much better than it did, with no tightness or drag on the open/close at all and a mostly uniform gap all the way around between the door and the frame. The gap is slightly tighter along the bottom below the lower hinge, but I'm unsure why....everything looks straight and level and I can't find any issues there.

The right-hand door remains a bit problematic however. The lower part of the door swings cleanly but the upper part still leans too far out and hits the left-hand door. I can "fix" it by lifting the door into place but of course then it rides pretty hard on the threshold. I think I need to tighten up the set screws on that side some more and (possibly) add another set screw above the third hinge to provide another control. Since it was getting colder I decided to wrap things up, get the tarp safely covering everything, and called it a night; I'll look at it more on Tuesday.

Right now I'm assuming I don't have to actually move the hinges on the right-hand side door, though I really should measure them and make sure I'm not chasing something silly here (I could certainly see how the door could have been made with the right-hand side hinges slightly lower than the left-hand side ones). Maybe I'll be able to do that tomorrow (Monday).

But overall good progress was made! I'll figure this out and I hope sooner rather than later since it's starting to get a bit chilly at night.

Can't wait for this door to be done though... It's certainly taken plenty of time and energy (even without the two month broke-my-truck delay).

Steven in Colorado


The door before I made my adjustments this morning

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