Tools for doors


Old 10-27-12, 02:05 PM
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Tools for doors

I'm gearing up to installing five interior slab doors in my house, the jambs will stay.
Can you furnish a list of tools I will need to complete the job.I don't want to buy expensive tools for only five doors. Thanks
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Old 10-27-12, 02:45 PM
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Do you have a router? If so a hinge template and hinge bit with guide will make mortising the hinges easier. You will need a latch installation kit to bore the latch holes with. If you don't have a router, then a sharp chisel and hammer will be necessary, although it will take forever.
Old 10-27-12, 03:38 PM
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Just my 2˘ but I'd replace the whole thing, not just the slab - I hate routing for the hinges, I find it easier to replace the whole unit.

That said, should you not be interested in changing plans, Chandler steered you right.
Old 10-28-12, 04:03 AM
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I would add that a utility knife to score the outline of the hinge will also help if you are cutting out the hinge recess by hand.
Old 10-28-12, 06:37 AM
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If your house is relatively new, you may luck out and the new doors will fit into the jambs without any trimming. If not, you will need a hand plane or power plane. Before you start, take measurements of the old doors and jambs and I mean accurate to a 1/32". Get a framing square and check all 4 corners of the jamb for square. If all is not perfect, you're going to be doing some fitting (this is serious carpenter stuff). Tops and bottoms must be sawed, sides planed. The lock edge should have a slight bevel. I use a combination square for hinge and lock layout. Door hanging looks like a simple operation but it requires some skill with tools.
Old 10-28-12, 07:22 AM
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Unless you are confident that the existing jambs are plumb, level and square I would install prehung.

However, if you are doing just the slab, a router makes things quicker and easier, but I wouldn't buy a router just for doing a few doors. If you already have a router you'll need a hinge mortising kit. If you don't have a router you can install hinges by hand just like jillions were done pre power tools. Here's a YouTube link that might help. All you need is a couple of good chisels, a little practice and some patience.

Most slabs come with the handle/latch holes predrilled. If yours aren't drilled you'll need a hole saw and a door handle template.

BTW - What material are the doors made of? I think we're assuming they are solid wood.
Old 10-28-12, 05:08 PM
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On your new door decide what is the top of the door. Example on a six panel door the small panels go to the top. On a slab door the top may be marked if it isn’t then it will make no difference.
I have hung about 200 doors as a repair not construction. I will try to help you as best as I can.
With your old door in place check the fit. Most fits are OK. Fit is the reveal on the top bottom and sides of the door. With the old door still in place mark it top and back. The back is the side with the hinge pins. Mark the new door top and back this is for your reference it is very easy to get turned around doing this. Pull the pins on the old door and remove all the hardware including the hinge leafs. Do not remove hinge leafs on the door jamb. Measure the old door and cut the new one to that length be careful not to splinter the new door, score the door or clamp a piece of scrap wood on the side where the saw blade leaves the wood.
Set the old door on the side with the hinge mortise up. Line up the new door at the top of the old one. The back of one should be against the front of the other. With a combo square scribe the mortise of the old door to the new door. Now take one of the hinge leafs and trace the hinge between the mortise lines you just drew remember the pins on the hinge go to the back of the door. The hinge leaf is probably marked on the back side from paint or varnish, use this line to guide you when tracing the hinge. An interior door is 1 3/8”The hinge will set about 1 1/4” across the door. Use a router to cut out the mortise if you use a chisel be careful cut only across the grain of the door style or you will split it.
Install the leafs on the new door with only one screw on each leaf make sure to drill a pilot hole for the screw or you WILL SPLIT the door. If the door has 3 hinges , leave the middle one off until you fit the door.
Place the new door in the jamb put the top pin in first then the bottom pin, you may have to adjust the bottom leaf a little tap it up or down to make it fit. That’s why I use only one screw at first. With both pins installed, drill your pilot holes and put in the rest of screws in the top and bottom hinges.
Put a screw on the front of the door where the knob will go, you need the screw to pull the door closed so you can mark the door where it hits the jamb. Remove the strike plate off the door jamb. With a pencil mark the door where it hits the jamb. Remove the door and plane down to the line, take your time. You may have to mark the door 2 or 3 times to get the fit.
With a pencil, mark on the back side door casing, the center of the hole located on the door jamb used for the door lock Close the door and transfer the mark to the door. With a combo square use that mark to scribe a line on both sides of door about 3” long and across the style.
Now find the back set of the lock you are using. A new lock will tell you, if you use the old lock, measure the old door from the edge to the center of the hole. 2 3/8” and 2 3/4 are common sizes. Measure also the size of the hole you will need 2 1/8’’is common.
If the back set is 2 3/8. On the line you drew on the door make a mark 2 3/8 on each side of the door. If the hole is 2 1/8, use a 2 1/8 hole saw, cut half way through the door and finish the cut from the other side do not plunge straight through you will splinter the door. Mark the center of style and drill a hole to fit the door latch use a small as possible hole to fit the latch you don’t have much room to spare. Some latches need to be mortised to fit if this is the case put the latch in the hole and trace the face of it then remove the needed amount of wood and install it. Remember to drill pilot holes. Install the lockset and the third hinge if needed. Now wasn’t that easy?

Good Luck, Woodbutcher

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