My bathroom door has those neat old glass doorknobs.
But they are giving us a hard time; either the set screws
are stripped or the "shank"? is that the term" that goes
through is stripped. Whatever the reason, the knobs
keep coming loose. Temporary tightening set screw
Question: Can I put a lever-type knob through the
same hole that the glass doorknob now inhabits?
I'm not skilled enough, or enterprising enough,
to do away completely with the glass doorknob
setup; fill, paint, etc. Then create a whole new
set-up for the lever-type faucet.
Or is there some way I can fix the glass knobs
so they will work?
Hope this is semi-clear.
Thanks for any help.
It depends. The "shank" comes in several sizes (also lengths) but
probably all the current (or last 20 years) are the same. If you take
yours to HD (or a locksmith if you prefer) you can compare the sizes.
If it's the same you can just buy a replacement spindle (shank)
together with two handles. Check also the diameter of the part of the
handle that goes into the door plate. Note though that the replacement
types are not nearly as good as those sold with a full lock set and
plates (like Baldwin). OTOH if you go to Renovator's Supply (check
Google) they have a lot of old fashioned type knobs but the cost is
Sure. Some spindles are threaded and the knobs screw on (these are the
best type) and in this set up the set screw just stops the knob
turning freely. If it's "coming loose" you probably have the other
type which relies on the set screw to hold the knob from pulling off
the spindle. In this type the rotation is prevented by a key (slot and
matching protrusion) on the spindle and knob. Either way the problem
is to replace the set screw or to fix the one you've got so it doesn't
First alternative is to go to the auto parts store and buy a product
called something like "Loc-tite". Basically it's a super-glue designed
to stop screws or nuts turning. You put on a drop and tighten up the
set screw and the only way it'll budge is with a screwdriver (or hex
You'll find that it's very difficult to find a replacement the same
size and diameter of the current set screw so the second alternative
is more complex. Basically take the knob to HD and scrounge through
their assortment of set screws to find one that's just slightly larger
(unless you luck out and find a match). Buy one and note the size.
Then go to the tool section and buy a tap (for cutting threads in
metal) the size of the new set screw. If you correctly size it (just
a fraction bigger) you should be able to just run through the tap
without even boring a new hole. Reassemble and tighten set screw
Thank you, Patrick, for that generous seminar on knob replacement.
I took the coward's way out, and bought a replacement set of
glass knobs (didn't even know they still made them!) and installed.
I could have just bought a replacement spindle, but what the heck;
the old set has been on there for umpty years; also the rose was all
painty and discolored, so got a new set also. Looks way better.
It is the first type you described; the knobs screw on.
It's not a perfect solution, since I detect a tendency to loosen,
even with the new set screw, but trust it will hold up until I get
back from long trip; just didn't want my tenant to get stuck in the
b.r. with no one to help <g> he's a very big guy and the window
is very small. If I get a chance before leaving, will pick up some
Loc-Tite as insurance.
Am leaving a screwdriver in the b.r. just in case the set screw
Appreciate your kind and detailed response.
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