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Thread: For the wife: Front door mat

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    North Virginia
    Posts
    268

    For the wife: Front door mat

    The Wife asked me to make a welcome mat for our front door that was based on something she saw in a home catalog a while back. During a visit to a local hardwood dealer (Vienna Hardwoods) I found some surplus 3/4" x 2" Ipe slats. There were about a dozen of them, all about 4 feet long - they were undoubtedly left over from some past project and just thrown onto the "random pile" in the yard. They turned out to be perfect for this job, and quite inexpensive.

    I got home and laid out a plan for a mat that would be 28" wide by 18" deep - using seven horizontal slats and four vertical slats. I constructed the mat using half-lap dados, all cut by hand (backsaw, chisel and router plane). I ended up regretting this decision because Ipe is *really* tough stuff - I had to resharpen several times during the project. Anyway, I glued up the pieces using a little West Systems epoxy and locked them together with short bronze boat screws. I didn't put any finish on the Ipe because I wanted it to weather naturally.

    The wife was pleased!

    TedP

    20171104_155634.jpg
    20171104_155648_001.jpg

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    46,127
    Very interesting and beautiful looking. Stunning color, even.

    Just curious...what keeps it in place so it doesn't want to slide on the hard surface it live on?
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
    Looks real good ,and will be around a long time. I would try to to add a brush,maybe in some of the openings.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Location
    State College, PA
    Posts
    236
    I am intrigued by this and wonder how well it works compared to a more traditional mat.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    So Cal
    Posts
    2,042
    That's pretty cool Ted
    Aj

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    North Virginia
    Posts
    268
    Jim - The mat is fairly heavy, about four pounds (good old ipe!). When first placing it out front, I used a rasp to ensure that it sits level in front of the door. With all eleven staves touching the rough concrete, there is a lot of wood-to-concrete contact. It stays in place remarkably well by itself.

    And Jay, it doesn't work like a traditional brush or fabric mat. With those mats, you are scuffing your feet to dislodge debris. On this mat, you have to stomp your feet to dislodge the debris, which then falls into the spaces between the staves. It took me some time to figure this out, but combined with a carpet mat inside the door, it works very effectively. We sweep under the wooden mat a couple of times a week.

    Mel - great idea. I've been thinking about building a separate "boot brush" to mount at the side of the porch. These are really good for aggressively cleaning out gunk from your shoes!

    Thanks for the comments/suggestions, guys!
    TedP

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Carrollton, Georgia
    Posts
    1,547
    Quote Originally Posted by Mel Fulks View Post
    I would try to to add a brush,maybe in some of the openings.
    This seems like a good idea. Maybe a brush mat could be cut with a dado head to remove the slat areas. It seems tricky and possibly expensive, what with the likely requirement of resharpening the dado head. This could be a commercial prospect.

  8. #8
    One thing that might work is to get some rubber cove base, not the real stiff plastic, and bend them into a "U" shape .
    then put one screw through each piece and into to wood. That would get the often missed heel-sole juncture! Sometimes you can get it cheap at a Restore.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Dickinson, Texas
    Posts
    5,531
    You sure blew me away, terrific design.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Long Beach CA
    Posts
    43
    Nice duckboard!
    I love those things, Iíve built many over the years for darkroom sinks, door mats and most useful: something to stand on while removing your wetsuit on a beach parking lot.
    Good work, they are more time consuming than you would think.

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