When we made the decision to go with a barn door for our master bedroom, the next step was finding a door to use. Searching online, we found many examples, however, the ones we liked were more than we really wanted to spend.
We wanted a door with a solid core. It needed to be 36 x 84 to cover the opening and meet the requirements for the bracket. After several trips to the Habitat for Humanity Restore ), we found what we wanted for only $13.50.
We bought the top door in the stack. It cost less than the others on the pallet because it was dirty. It was unfinished, which is what we wanted. There was a hole for a door knob, but since it was 44 inches wide, the hole would be cut off when bringing the door to the desired width.
First step was to cut the door from the current size to 36” wide. This was done using a circular saw, with a brand new blade. We sanded it with a palm sander until the grain looked the way we wanted.
The next step was staining. We started with Min Wax Wood Finish in Classic Grey. We applied several coats, but it just wasn’t the shade we wanted.
We went back to the store and got a can of Rust oleum Wood Stain in Ebony. A small batch was made, mixing the ebony with the classic grey. After one application, we had the color we wanted. We had purchased a ‘rough’ piece of stained board from Home Depot to make a design on the door, to give it that ‘barn door’ look. However, we liked it the way it was and decided not to add the design.
Hanging the door had a few challenges. The hardware we purchased for hanging it was TCBunny Country Steel Sliding Barn Wood Door Hardware Antique Style in brown. It can support up to 170 lbs. and fits a door panel width of 36 inches. Our door weighs 70 lbs, so this bracket would work.
We installed the brackets on the wall, according to the instructions. Next, we lifted the door up to the brackets. Since the door is just above the floor, we didn’t have to lift it too far.
We wanted to use as much of the original trim around the door as possible, to keep it the same as the other doors in the hallway and avoid replacing with new trim. Prior to hanging the door, we removed all the trim to make any necessary adjustments. The one piece we replaced was the trim on the left side of the door. We cut a piece of white pine, ¼”thick and 2 ¼” wide. This piece will always be behind the door and won’t be seen. It will be painted to match the existing trim.
The trim on the top and right hand sides of the door were too thick and would be hit by the door when it was closed. These were ripped to approximately ¼” thick using a table saw. It is not noticeable. This picture is showing that the baseboard is just a bit thicker than the thinner trim. Usually, the trim extends past the baseboard. It will look even better when it is painted!
One of our challenges were the bolt heads on the backside of the door. Here is the bottom bolt. The top one is the same, however, it is the same height as the trim.
We wanted to keep the gaps between the door and the wall and trim as small as possible. However, we had to allow space for the bolt heads. The top bolts on the brackets lightly scrapped the wall when sliding the door open and closed. This was corrected by adding a few washers to the bolts where they joined the brackets. This gave it just enough space to slide easily. Just a note here about the bolts touching the wall. We don’t know if this was our error with installation, or a design issue. Either way, we wanted to tell about it and show how it was resolved. We hope that this will be helpful to others who may have the same or similar issues.
After we reinstalled the trim at the top of the doorway, the top bolt heads were hitting it. We used a dremel tool to cut a groove in the trim for the bolts to slide in. When it is all painted, the groove will not be noticed.
One more item on the bracket. There is a stop at the end that is adjustable. It will keep the door from sliding open more than you need. It is currently all the way back so we can access the trim to fnish painting.
The last piece was the track. It was installed on the carper, to keep the door from moving.
This may have been more than you ever wanted to know about installing this type of door. We had fun doing it and learning from the experience. Now, all we need is a few hours to paint the trim!