Wanted - effective way of auto-bolting bottom of side hung door

Hi,
trying to sort out garage door opener for my mum-in-law who is now dodgy on her pins and need an electric scooter thing.
Only place to keep it is the garage, and the doors are huge side hung things, built to allow a caravan through.
An electric opener will fit, but this works on the top centre corners of the door.
There are possible solutions e.g. http://www.amourelle.co.uk/ap2007.htm howevr the real problem is that for a bolt to work the bottom of the door has to shut neatly over the bolt hole. It has to keep doing this over several years.
The doors are very tall and flexible. At the moment they have manual bolts and you pull in the bottom of the door with the bolt then push the bolt into the hole.
It is this 'pulling in' action that looks difficult to automate.
I can visualise a mechanism where an arm will engage a hook then pull the botttom of the door in, but haven't found one yet.
Anyone solved this, or have any brilliant laterally thinking ideas?
TIA Dave R
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them twisting. If you make a frame for each door out of (say) 3" aluminium angle - mitred and welded at the corners, and fixed to the inside face of the door, this should stiffen it up a fair bit without increasing the weight too much.
It the door is stiffer, the bottom will be pulled in automatically when you pull the top in.
Roger
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Leading contender so far. Only down side is the reduction in width of the door opening when the doors are open - 3" off each side where the Al sticks out. Unless you mean dismounting the doors, running a router all round them, then putting the Al angle (would have to be 1" as that is the thickness of the doors) so it formed an overlapping rim all round the doors. This might make them rigid enough Compared to the magnetic catch option, strengthening the doors might be a cost effective alternative. All strategies will have to, when added to the cost of the door openers, come in cheaper than buying a new roller door with built in motor.
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You may be able to accommodate some of it within the thickness of the door, but it is the bending stiffness of the material which is at right angles to the door surface which gives the door its twisting stiffness IYSWIM. That's why I suggested 3" - I doubt whether 1" would be enough.
Roger
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"David W.E. Roberts" wrote | trying to sort out garage door opener for my mum-in-law who is now | dodgy on her pins and need an electric scooter thing. | Only place to keep it is the garage, and the doors are huge side hung | things, built to allow a caravan through. | An electric opener will fit, but this works on the top centre corners | of the door. | There are possible solutions e.g. | http://www.amourelle.co.uk/ap2007.htm | howevr the real problem is that for a bolt to work the bottom of the door | has to shut neatly over the bolt hole.
First I would suggest, if this is possible, keeping one door bolted top and bottom and then using a central horizontal bolt to secure the second door to the first. Or two bolts, one as high and one as low as she can reach.
Secondly rather than using a physical latch would it be possible to use an electromagnetic one - this sort of thing:
http://www.securityengineering.co.uk/deedlock.htm http://www.securityengineering.co.uk/2400series.htm
Owain
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Unfortunately the doors are hung the wrong way - if only one side was to open it would be the wrong one! [This can obviously be fixed by modifying the doors to overlap the other way, but it would result in a garage with one automatic opening door and one manual door, which is not a future selling point :-)] Also, the issue is not to lock herself in the garage, but for the garage to lock itself automatically once she is outside (either off and away on her scooter or back into the house for a cuppa). So the locking system has to work inside the garage whilst she is outside. It also has to have a manual override in case of electro/mechanical failure.

I was getting quite interested until I saw the prices - 200+ working up to 400+. This kind of add-on price would almost justify replacing the doors.

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On something like this, I'd personally go for a magnet lock system.
http://www.dreadlock.co.uk/magnet%20electronic_locks.htm
http://www.secure2000.co.uk/magnetic-locks.html
And a proper gate closer.
http://fp.dsaf9.f9.co.uk/ac/installyourown.htm
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An interesting thought - though they look as though they hold door to frame (single door) or door to door (double door), not door to floor, which is what I really want.. Again the issue may be getting them close enough together to engage.

Unfortunately this isn't a gate - it is a garage door. Different application, different bits. The side operated stuff for a gate isn't suitable. Apart from anything else I need access to the space either side of the garage door, where these openers would have to be situated.
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Now need pictures of the site. Can't advise any more if I can't see the job. :-))
Magnet locks are suitable for any door or window locking system. They don't need mechanical movement on them to keep the door closed. You unlock them by pressing a button to kill the power to them. The ones shown on the site link are rated at 1300 lb holding force, which is enough to keep anyone from opening the door they're fitted too.
By the way, the site links provided are from an installer, so the prices you see there are his prices and not that of an actual wholesaler. The link was only for an example.
Also, the gate opening kit can be bought in single door specification and not just as the whole kit it shows on the site link. The links are only to show what is possible and not as a full guide as to what you need. There are to many variations to show you what is available for this specific job, and the actual prices are very reasonable too.
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<snip>

Thanks again.
Few things:
magnetic catches - happy that they can hold a door shut but not sure about the initial closure. To hold the centre bottom of a garage door shut I would envisage one part being fastened to the floor and the other part being fastened to bottom of the door. To engage, the two parts of the lock would have to be close enough together when the door was closed - and I am not sure what the maximum gap is that they can pull together and engage across. The problem is that there might be 1/2" to 1" gap at the bottom corner of the doors. I think that they could pull shut over this distance, but am remebering the little magnetic catches on cupboard doors which grip well if lined up properly, but will not engage if there is a tiny gap unless you push the door. Something to do with inverse square law, I think. Also interesting as to how to automate this - the magnet should only come on when the door is nearly shut or it is likely to 'hoover' up anything metal in the vicinity (interesting if it is on the swinging door not fixed to the floor). I presume you can have remote control magnetic locking? I couldn't immediately find a radio sender on the web site but I know the door opener system can have an additional button set and auxilliary radio receiver to allow automation of other devices such as external lights. So you could conceivably have two buttons - door open/close and magentic lock/unlock.
gate fasteners - AFAIK these are usually sited at the side of a drive behind the open gate, thus being in unused space. The garage is wider than the door opening (not unusual). 9" gap on one side, 27" gap on the other. This represents useable space - on one side will be the scooter and the charging point. Using gate openers would take up this valuable space. I think this is why garage door and barn door openers are top mounted - to keep them out of the way.
Getting there slowly :-)
Cheers Dave R
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Yes I can imagine her getting hoovered up by the magnet as she tries to get out, and then finding that no controller is within reach. :)
A bit more seriously, with wiggly doors I would think the simplest approach would be to attach the powered pulling arm half way up each door, with a swivel joint where it meets the door, and with the arm attached to the puller in such a way that it keeps a constant downward angle.
Then you can put your lock on the electric closer machine, and not on the doors at all. And since the doors will be held half way up, although the top and bottom can be wiggled a bit, they cant be opened, short of destroying the doors.
Regards, NT
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Nigel,
unfortunately that solution (basically gate opener not door opener) has already been rejected because of the space taken up at the sides of the garage.(see other posts) Door openers are overhead and don't impact on available floor and wall space.
Thanks anyway. Dave R
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But the controllers don't have to be fitted at floor level. The automatic open/close mechanisms are so small, they can be fitted at the top or in the middle of the door. There are also bar types which are only two and a half inches square with a worm drive action that are meant for tight spaces. So you're not stuck with huge big units that take up loads of space.
Search for Dryad, Deedlock or www.ppworld-wide.com to see what else is available. There are thousands to choose from.
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Hi.
It doesnt sound too difficult to modify what was sugested to use flat bar that ends up folded flush against the door when open. Then you're losing a quarter of an inch each side, if thats acceptable.
Regards, NT
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