Home>Discussions>DOORS & WINDOWS>Exterior Door for Barn
2 posts / 0 new
Last post
Exterior Door for Barn

We have a nice barn on our property. Right now, in addition to the sliding doors, we have two exterior doors. The latter were built from pieces of siding and two cross pieces of wood - not very weather proof.

I'd like to put in "real" exterior doors. I'm thinking steel and hope to tack on the vertical pieces from the old doors so they match the barn siding.

One question - in each opening they kept the (not sure what it's called) sill plate? That is, the 2X6 that sits on the slab that forms the bottom part of the exterior walls. Should I cut this out?

Also, what is the rough opening isn't the right size for a pre-hung door?

I'm reasonably handy with tools, but I wan't to make sure I do this right.

Re: Exterior Door for Barn

I have a lot of experience with barn doors and I cant imagine how you could reconcile new steel doors with a barn door frame without a lot of shim carpentry on the frame. You are apt to wind up with a much smaller door that will never look right.

As for your idea of nailing on similar drip siding you will basically ruin the steel doors since they are not solid wood but 2x2 frames usually with just foam interiors. The nail holes in the steel will eventually wear and it will all come loose. I supposed you could also glue it.

A really good barn door is made from two layers of rabbeted planks with a layer or felt or tar paper in between.
For strength and support you can add a strip of galvanized flashing metal on the diagonal which will keep it from sagging.

The outer layer of the originals was probably some type of dutch lap plank siding so there is your overlap there. By using a rabbet edge or tongue and groove plank on the inside and at an angle to the outer layer you will have a very weather tight door weather wise.

Also for extra anti-sag strength you can put one layer at perhaps 45 deg pointing down so that it is self bracing. Then you dont have to add cross bucks to support it either. If you put the angled layer to the outside and use something like car siding you can wind up with a very decorative chevron pattern door that is strong and totally sealed while maintaining the rustic effect and totally custome door size all in one shot!

Good luck!

Sponsored Stories

TV Listings

Find TV listings for This Old House and Ask This Old House in your area.