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Posted by Steven in Colorado Springs, CO on 11/9/2013

Well this took a ridiculous amount of time, but at least it went faster than the first door.

The trickiest part about this second door was working out how to install is such that the two doors would work together. The issue here was clearance, as in the doors clearing each other. It's something I hadn't thought about until I was installing the first door.

See, most French- or barn-style doors are relatively thin. This means that they can meet flush against each other in the center and when you open one it cleanly clears the other door as it opens. 

However, these doors are 8" thick. I did that deliberately for the insulation value--I figured after going to all the trouble of building the Shed with 9" ICFs for their mass and insulation it would be silly to just put a basic thin frame door on the opening. That kind of thickness makes it more problematic when you intend for them to be flush against each other, as you won't be able to open them... the inside edge of the door facing the opposing door will swing out slightly during the opening process and hit the other door. This in turn will prevent it from opening at all.

After a bit of thought I realized I could make the first (primary) door normal and square, then make the second (secondly) door slightly wedge-shaped to accommodate the swing of the first door. This required some pretty careful measuring of course, and I ended up dry-fitting and testing the first door (and marking the arc it made swinging across the threshold) several times before finally cutting the second door.

There were many mistakes along the way, and I measured multiple times to make sure I was cutting correctly, but by the end of the day I finally had the second door frame complete and mounted. There's a slightly larger gap between the two doors than I'd planned, but I can take care of that with a combination of insulation foam and a good overlaying astragal (that's what you call the piece that overlaps the two doors to cover the gap between them). The second door will be locked into place with upper and lower bolts since I won't always be opening it, but that doesn't affect the general design.

I've still got to cut the plywood and such now, but the basic framing is now done. Unfortunately between work and a predicted storm in the next week or so I may not be able to get to that in the near future, but rest assured it's next on the list!

Good progress... not fast enough, but good.

Steven in Colorado


You can see the two door frames here, though the new door has opened slightly on me. I think this will work well.

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