WARNING – long and picture heavy tutorial to follow!
Remember my last post and I said I had something BIG planned for this door?
Well that something big was to replace the existing door to leading to our laundry room with this beautiful door and mount it on sliding barn door track. Here is what the door looked like previously (ignore the missing trim around the door – we removed it before I remembered to take the before picture).
The plan was/is to install 2 of these doors in our house. But the price tag was far too high for me to swing…especially for 2 doors. It’s been a while since I checked, but I think the cost would be around $350 per door just for the hardware. After seeing that, I searched E-bay and Craig’s List for a bargain, but never found one.
A friend of mine came over for Super Bowl and I told her what I was looking for. She told me about her neighbor who made his own hardware for a door in his house. I was skeptical so the very next day she went over to his house, e-mailed me a couple of pictures of his door and gave me his contact information. I was blown away how good it looked! So I contacted him and he told me roughly how he did it.
First of all you need to find a door that is bigger than your door opening. Antique pocket doors work great, but unless you get lucky you’ll pay a high price for those. My sister found me 2 doors at an estate sale for $10 each. At the time, I was looking for doors for my desk made out of doors (seen here). But when I saw how nice the doors were (with the hardware intact) and how big they were, I saved them for the barn door project.
I didn’t get a very good before picture did I? Oh well here is one of them in the garage getting ready to be stripped. But first I had to remove the hardware. Isn’t it gorgeous?
While I worked on the door, my husband work on removing the trim around the door, repairing the wall behind the trim, and working on the hardware.
After much debate between the 2 of us as to what we wanted to do about the condition of the wall behind the trim, we finally decided we wanted to go the easy route. Rather than take the time to repair with sheet-rock, we went to the hardware store and purchased a single piece of lattice that was wide enough to cover the opening. We got 22 feet of lattice for $14.74 . We sanded down the wall around the opening, installed the trim and once we painted the wall (and trim) it is barely noticeable.
Here is a list of supplies that we picked up from Home Depot for the hardware that mounts to the door:
(NOTE: this picture was taken before we went back to the hardware store to pick up supplies we didn’t purchase enough of to begin with. But this picture shows what the supplies look like and how they are used in the project)
2 (3″) pulleys – this is a garage door part – $8.98
2 hex bolts (this replaces the bolt that comes with the pulley – receipt doesn’t mention the size) – $2.16
2 (3/8) hex nuts (this fits above bolt) – $.70 and 2 lock-washers to fit – $.40
4 frame anchors – found with the decking supports – $11.92
2 (1 1/2 x 1/4) lag screws – $.42 and 2 lock-washers to fit $.40
8 (1 x 1/4) lag screws – $1.20 and 6 lock-washers to fit – $1.60
4 (5/16) washers – $.48
The first step was to alter the frame anchors to fit the door. Because the thickness of the door was a bit shorter than the length of the short part of the frame anchor, my husband had to grind down the short ends on all 4 frame anchors. Once the correct length is achieved, he drilled 2 holes in the short side of each frame anchor, making sure the holes match up when the frames are assembled. Long screws will go into these holes to help hold the door in place from the top.
2 more holes are drilled into the long side of 2 of the frames to help hold the door from the front. You can see where we drilled these holes in the picture below. They are the 2 holes to the right of the bolt on the left frame (the 2 smaller uneven holes aren’t used).
Here is the hardware needed to install the track to the wall:
6 (3 x 5/16) lag screws – $2.76 and 6 lock-washers to fit – $1.20
36 (5/16) washers – $4.80
For the track itself, you can purchase 1/4″ thick steel at Home Depot. We originally picked up 2 (3 foot) lengths for $8.79 each. We then sent this steel to my brother to weld together to make it into a 6 foot length. However, he instead picked us up some 1/4″ thick steel from Metal by the Foot for less than $6.00 so we returned the steel to Home Depot.
The number of lag screws, lock-washers and washers will depend on your situation. Our steel is 6 feet long. When placed on the wall, there were 6 studs. You may have more or less. We marked the studs on the wall and held up our steel exactly where we wanted it place. We then placed a mark on the steel where the studs were located and drilled holes in the steel.
The washers act as spacers that go between the wall and the steel so that the steel isn’t flat against the wall. I think we ended up using 7 washers on each screw. Here is the best picture I have to explain this (I am looking up from the floor to the ceiling). If you don’t have enough space between the wall and the steel, the actual door hardware will rub against the wall.
Here we are installing the hardware onto the door.
After everything was installed it was time for the dry-run. Which worked out pretty great except we noted several items that we had to go back to the hardware store for. We originally started with 6 washers as spacers but had to add a 7th because the door hardware was rubbing against the wall.
After the dry run, we removed everything and I got to painting. Like how I did the screws?
Here is another picture of the door assembly, this time it is painted and I think all the pieces are there.
Here is the installed track:
And the installed hardware on the track:
Houston…we have a problem. The lock-washers didn’t get painted. So I took the spray paint and sprayed it inside a glass jar. Then I took a small paint brush, dipped it into the paint and did some touch up work.
Next up was the “handle”. I decided to re-install the original door knob on the front…
and the back…
We weren’t able to install all of the handle hardware on the back of the door. When/if you install a knob on the back of the door, you have to make sure that the knob doesn’t stick out too far or it will get caught up on the wall when you go to open the door. We got lucky, because the hole for the door knob in our door was so big we were able to push the knob way in and were surprisingly able to use the original knob. Here is a view from the side…notice how far the knob on the back is pushed in so it can clear the wall.
So here the door in it’s nearly finished glory. Things to notice, you don’t really notice that we slapped up some trim rather than repairing the wall and how beautiful the actual door came out after stripping, staining and waxing it. What not to notice…the boring laundry room (another project yet to be completed).
We still need to add a few things. My husband wants to add a stopper so somebody doesn’t pull the door off the end of the track. We also are looking for a teenie tiny caster (less than 1/2″) to install at the bottom and back of the door (to roll along the woodwork) to help prevent swinging when opening and closing the door. Neither of the above 2 issues are big issues right now, so it may be a while before we get to them.
For a recap, the total for this project was $67.76 (plus a can of spray paint). But if you subtract out the price of the lattice (because it’s not part of the door hardware) and the price of the door itself, you should be able to make the door hardware for under $45. That is a savings of over $300!
I hope I inspire somebody to make their own and I’d love to see the results!!!
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