For Short Doors
1. Expose fresh wood. Saw off a smidgen of the rail you want to make wider. This exposes fresh wood and ensures a good glue bond. To make sure the cut is straight, Tom clamps a straightedge to the door and uses it to guide his circular saw.



2. Measure for the filler strip. Place the door in its opening, then shim it to the height you want the doorknob to be. Measure the gap between the rail and the doorway at the right and left sides, at the top and the bottom.

3. Cut the filler. For the filler piece, use stock 1/4-inch thicker than the door. Cut it to a width equal to the biggest gap in Step 2 and 1/4 inch longer than the door's width. Drill pilot holes through the edge of the filler for the screws that will hold the filler to the door. For filler pieces more than 1/2-inch thick, counterbore each pilot hole so the screw heads will be recessed at least 1/4 inch.

4. Glue. Place the door on sawhorses, and stick the filler strip to the edge of the rail with polyurethane glue or yellow wood glue.



5. Clamp. Make sure the faces on the filler sit 1/8 inch above the adjacent faces of the door. Then drive deck screws through the pilot holes and into the door.



6. Sand it flush. When the glue cures, belt sand the filler piece flush with the face of the door. Smooth the wood for painting, either by hand or with a random-orbit sander. Once painted, the joint between door and filler will be invisible. On a filler piece less than 1/2-inch think, remove the screws.



7. Fake the Joint. The joint where the rail and stile intersect is evident on most wood doors, To disguise your repair, extend the joint line across the filler piece by scoring it with a utility knife. Use a square to guide the knife.

Ask TOH users about Doors

Contribute to This Story Below