I plan to make bifold panel closet doors for 3 openings/entrances. If
one opening is 5 feet wide, I know I don't want the doors to be an exact
30" for each side (or do I?) due to obvious reasons. How much clearance
should I provide? Is there a general guide/rule for door size with
specific opening size?
You need the radius of the door swing (hing end) minimum clearance at
the pivot end. If the panel is 2 inches thick, and the pivot pin is 1
inch from the end of the door panel, you need the distance from the
center of the pin to the corner of the door panel That is about 1.4
inches, plus a little clearance - so say 1.5. That means .5 inch
clearance at the "hinge" end. You need about half that at the closing
end to allow the corner of the door to get around at the end..I like
to keep the gap on both ends the same, myself.
Now, GENERALLY the panels are less than 2 inches thick, so you don't
need quite the half inch IF the pivot is mounted an inch or less from
the edge. I believe standard stock bifolds are sized 1 inch smaller
than the finished opening size..
Double bifolds for a 60 inch opening would need to be a MAXIMUM of
29.5 inches per side, or about 14.75inches per panel if your fold
hinges are properly set in.
On Sun, 20 Oct 2013 21:23:20 -0400, email@example.com wrote:
Absolutely correct! You need a plan and you need to know a little
geometry. If you have the plan and the knowledge you will know
exactly what the perfect width for the panels will be. That assumes a
perfect opening which it probably wont be.
Once you got the width calculated all you need to do is take a wild
ass guess on how much they will grow in humid weather! Subtract the
value of your wild ass guess from your calculated value and you'll be
Oh, wait! What about the hinges? Are they mortised or not? Are the
going to be attached to the adjacent sides of the doors or to the
inside surface of the doors? That decision will also affect the width
of the panels. Aren't you glad you asked?
My advice is worth exactly what you paid for it.
said plus another reason for being a bit narrower than
the opening is to allow the doors to be hung plumb in an opening that is
very likely to be less than square.
I generally hide the gap between door edge and wall with a molding.
On Monday, October 21, 2013 9:02:15 AM UTC-5, Swingman wrote:
Having used my own tried and true method of screwing up first before gettin
g on with things, I can vouch for that advice.
I have installed light weight doors that have several small hinges on them
and have NO foot bolt arrangement. I have installed doors that require you
drill the footer into concrete to secure them. I have installed small set
s that only attach with a continuous rail on the top of the jamb, and have
an "L" bracket at the bottom that is a pivot point for the door hardware.
When I put them in a closet opening a couple of years ago I put a threshold
on top of the carpet in the room to hold the hardware because the client d
idn't want to have his carpet cut. In each case, the hardware is different
on all applications.
Of course, none of that means much if the opeings in question aren't pretty
square. There isn't THAT much adjustment to the hardware no matter the ma
On Mon, 21 Oct 2013 18:51:37 -0500, Unquestionably Confused
I don't like to ask for directions because I've learned that they
usually don't even know which way is up, much less where I want to go.
Even a cop. People will tell me something, even if they haven't a
clue. Not helpful.
FYI, having added\replaced closet doors in several homes and rental propert
ies, I have found bi-fold doors are VERY unforgiving of out-of-square situa
tions. In other words, bi-folds are almost always a problem and trust me it
, ain't easy to make them fit right in most instances. I threw out the last
pair after hacking on them for quite some time trying to get them to have
a decent fit in a bad hole. The sliding mirror doors took 10 minutes and lo
ok fine. I would say build-too-fit is pretty much what is called for with b
i-fold. I have abandoned even trying to use them in any of my rentals even
though they really offer the best access. Of course I buy off the shelf uni
ts and they typically don't have much material or built in capacity to be s
quared up, unlike sliders.
I thought about replacement bifold doors when I was updating three closets,
but elected to go with solid panel doors from HD. Happy with the results,
except June thru September when my perfectly sized doors swell with the pr
ide of my craftsmanship. Spent a lot of time on mortising the hinges, but
should have figured out something for the annual humidity. Very nice fit i
n all but summer where I have to close both simultaneously.
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