Archive for pocket doors

Second Pocket Door Finished and Installed

Posted in Renovation and Restoration with tags , on July 7, 2009 by Kent

Pocket doorI’ve finally finished and installed my second … and last … pocket door project. This door was originally painted white, and I was lucky that the paint came off as well as it did.

Its a pine door, so I had to be careful to strip, stand, and varnish with the grain because pine scratches easily. Once I got it cleaned up, I found that there was some really good color to the grain.

To finish it up I gave it two coats of polyurithane and put in the hardware (I’d previously cut the hole). What was nice about the hardware set I bought from the House of Antique Hardware was that I was able to call and get a split set.

This door is for a half bathroom, so I wanted antique brass on the outside, and polished chrome on the inside. They were perfectly happy to do that for me.

So, time for another project on my ever growing list. More photos after the jump Continue reading

Pocket Door Project Continuation

Posted in Renovation and Restoration with tags , on June 26, 2009 by Kent

Doweling guideThis second pocket door I’ve been working on gave me a bit of a challenge, but I’ve finally figured out how to do it. Unlike my previous project, this door had never been cut for for door hardware, so I was working with a solid piece of pine.

I know it was too big to put in a drill press, or, at least any drill press I had. I also know I didn’t want to do it free hand because I couldn’t risk drilling in at an angle. There wasn’t enough room for error.

So, in looking over all the possible tools out there, and keeping price in mind, I settled on a doweling guide. You know what? It worked. I still had to do a lot of chiseling and there was quite a bit of labor involved, but this created a good sized hole from which I could continue.

Oh, one other thing … I learned that you really, really need sharp chisels in the right widths. It makes a world of difference.
Doweling guide
Drilled out door ready for chisel

Second Pocket Door Conversion Project

Posted in Renovation and Restoration with tags , , on June 10, 2009 by Kent

Pocket door conversion IIFollowing up on my earlier pocket door conversion is this one. Luckily, I think these are the only two I’ll have to do. I wish I could say the same for refinishing doors.

This door came from Community Forklift because I didn’t have a spare door in the house. Also, because the door needed to be narrower than 2 feet.

The door selected is pine, and as you’ll see, it will have a natural finish.

Two things you really, really, need to keep in mind with pine.

  1. Always work with the grain of the wood. It doesn’t matter if its stripping or sanding, you have to work with the grain. Pine is a soft wood and will easily scratch.
  2. Don’t think you will be able to stain pine easily. The grain that makes it an attractive wood also can differ in how it absorbs stain. Frequently, a piece of pine will not stain evenly.

Pocket door conversion IIBecause of this, if I’m working with pine my intent is either a natural finish or a painted end product.

I’m at the point where my door is stripped. Before I can move forward, I need to cut in the mortise and hardware. This door was unlike the last one in that it has never been cut for a mortise before.

I’ll post more when I figure out how to do that without destroying the door. I sure I’ve worked it out in my head, its the execution that’s going to be tricky.
Pocket door conversion II

First Pocket Door Conversion Project a Success

Posted in Renovation and Restoration with tags on May 26, 2009 by Kent

Space prior to pocket door installationMy first attempt to convert a standard door into a pocket door is finally done. As you’ll see from the images, it turned out great (but of course, I’m biased).

After sanding the door, I stained it with English Chestnut, then gave it two coats of varnish. I was toying with three coats, but decided two would be fine.

We then installed it into the opening already built. For the door hardware, we opted for the Johnson pocket door product as it is something we were already familiar with.

Keep in mind, if you want the Johnson product, you need to go to Lowe’s … the City Home Depot no longer carries it because people kept stealing the parts.

Once the door was varnished, we hung it. Then sealed the wall with sheet rock.

All that’s left is to install the trim and millwork. I have to create/refinish that, but it won’t be until I get my next pocket door refinished and installed. Stay tuned for progress on that product.

Images after the jump Continue reading

Update on Pocket Door Conversion

Posted in Renovation and Restoration with tags , , , on May 19, 2009 by Kent

Pocket Door hardwareSo far, on the current pocket door conversion I’m working on (yes, there will be another … no rest for the obsessed), things are progressing well. The new hardware arrived, and looks like it will work perfectly. I chose the hardware from the House of Antique Hardware, not because it was expensive as some would accuse me of (again, it isn’t that expensive when you price it out), but because of the dimensions.

I searched a lot of vendors looking at hardware that was both attractive, sympathetic to character of the house, AND the correct measurements to accommodate the dimensions of the old doors original hardware. This set works well and you’d never know that the door ever had different hardware when I’m done.

Pocket door conversion after stainingI was also able to finish sanding the door and get a new coat of stain on it. By nature, I’m a lover of natural wood and tend to avoid stain, but all of our original doors have a mahogany stain. I think they’re ash, but haven’t confirmed that yet.

If you’ve ever attempted to refinishing anything from the early Twentieth Century that has a mahogany stain, you’ve already learned two things: 1) Mahogany bleeds, and no matter how hard you try, it continues to bleed. You can never get it all out, and 2) You will have to re-stain whatever it is you are refinishing.

So, since we aren’t lovers of mahogany, I chose and English Chestnut stain. It still has a red tint, but is less harsh than the Mahogany.

I’ll post again then the door is further along.