door hinges "tight"

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Old 04-28-08, 09:53 AM
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door hinges "tight"

I installed a wooden door in my son's 60 year old home where I had to mortis for hinges in both door and jamb. My son had cut the width and height of the door to make it fit. I used a Vermont American hinge mortising Template and my router and that went fine except my height measurement were a bit off so resorted to chisel to make the adjustment in the jamb and will do a "fill in" for gap. After we got the door in the jamb (hinges did not have a removable pin so that made it hard to hold the door, position the hinges and put in screws in jamb so hubby had to do the holding) the bottom hinge is tighter than the middle hinge which I would call just right, and the top hinge is a little tight. I know a lots of things can make this happen (door not square, jamb not square, mortis too deep or shallow) but what is an easy cure for this? Should I put a "shim" under some of the hinges for adjustment and if so, which ones and on the door side or jamb side? This is a heavy wooden door and we put three 4" hinges on it which I thought was a little over kill but that is what they bought. Also I did put the top and bottom hinge the same distance from bottom/top of door since that is the way our prehung doors are but directions I read indicated you should put bottom hinge further up. Just want to know the "why" of that recommendation and if that would cause the "binding" problem with the lower hinge. In my gut, I feel that that bottom hinge needs a shim under the jamb side.

Also I will be doing this again but the next time will just be replacing the door. I know it would be easy to mark where the new door mortises will go from the old door but I love the way the template and router does over chisel and hammer (a slow go). Since the template is off set so you use a bushing to guide your router bit, how can you get the template exactly positioned to where it should go before you cut. Eyeballing it is not very accurate. Any little handy hints from more experience door handlers will be appreciated since this is my first door to hang using my router and has been 20 years since I helped my hubby do one with chisel and hammer.
 
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Old 04-28-08, 03:19 PM
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Try loosening all the screws on all hinges by 1/2 turn and then one by one slowly re-tighten. This will cause a slight re-alignment of all the hinges and should relieve your over-pressure on the one hinge.
 
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Old 04-28-08, 04:10 PM
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Three 4" hinges are standard for basic exterior doors. They are normally solid doors and heavy, hence the hinges. Very heavy custom doors will require more or stronger hinges. Keep in mind that these hinges usually need to work for 15-100 yrs, depending on the construction.

As suggested above, it may only take a slight misalignment to create a bind. Start with that suggestion. Unless the hinges are on the outside(outswing door) there is no need for non-removable pins, install hinges with removable pins. Makes things so much easier. Now it is time to shim, maybe with paper, be something thicker. Trial/error should finally give you a door that works OK.
 
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Old 04-28-08, 05:43 PM
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Question

Originally Posted by samiamaquilter View Post
I installed a wooden door in my son's 60 year old home where I had to mortis for hinges in both door and jamb. My son had cut the width and height of the door to make it fit. I used a Vermont American hinge mortising Template and my router and that went fine except my height measurement were a bit off so resorted to chisel to make the adjustment in the jamb and will do a "fill in" for gap. After we got the door in the jamb (hinges did not have a removable pin so that made it hard to hold the door, position the hinges and put in screws in jamb so hubby had to do the holding) the bottom hinge is tighter than the middle hinge which I would call just right, and the top hinge is a little tight. I know a lots of things can make this happen (door not square, jamb not square, mortis too deep or shallow) but what is an easy cure for this? Should I put a "shim" under some of the hinges for adjustment and if so, which ones and on the door side or jamb side? This is a heavy wooden door and we put three 4" hinges on it which I thought was a little over kill but that is what they bought. Also I did put the top and bottom hinge the same distance from bottom/top of door since that is the way our prehung doors are but directions I read indicated you should put bottom hinge further up. Just want to know the "why" of that recommendation and if that would cause the "binding" problem with the lower hinge. In my gut, I feel that that bottom hinge needs a shim under the jamb side.

Also I will be doing this again but the next time will just be replacing the door. I know it would be easy to mark where the new door mortises will go from the old door but I love the way the template and router does over chisel and hammer (a slow go). Since the template is off set so you use a bushing to guide your router bit, how can you get the template exactly positioned to where it should go before you cut. Eyeballing it is not very accurate. Any little handy hints from more experience door handlers will be appreciated since this is my first door to hang using my router and has been 20 years since I helped my hubby do one with chisel and hammer.
sometimes the door may have to be trimmed/adjusted at the bottom, hence the diff. in hinge location.(my best answer)

remember to always allow clearance for the door on ALL sides as they are probably going to be painted. the lock side of the door should have about a 5 degree bevel on it to the outside(in-swing door) to allow for the square edge to clear. i have seen people buy a door that had the 5 deg. cut and install it wrong giving "hinge bind".
you didn't say if the jambs were replaced or not. if not, the jamb may be bowed/warped causing the binding of the hinges.
 
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