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Thread: New to Forum, Looking to make some exterior glass doors.

  1. #16
    Iíve made a few doors including ones like your picture. Loose tenons are superior to dowels, Iíve seen plenty of joint failures in windows and doors with dowels. Also, if you havenít considered it, make the bottom rail wider than the rest of the door. Visually the bottom rail looks too thin if it the same width as the stiles and upper rail. I usually go 1.5-2x the width.

    Iím embarking on a set of doors for my parents that might interest you. I have a bunch of Douglas fir that is not quite 1-3/4Ē thick. Also the grain is not that tight visually, but otherwise itís sound. My idea is to mill the fir to 1-1/4Ē and faced with some 1/4Ē vg Doug fir on either side to get to 1-3/4Ē. Furthermore, the core will be constructed with the horizontal pieces capturing the vertical pieces. The faces will be arranged more conventionally, so in essence I have a bridle joint without having to do any joinery.

    In your case the outer faces will be the two different woods you desire. Expansion rates of dissimilar woods might have to be accounted for but for rails and stiles it shouldnít be too great.

  2. #17
    I've seen failures with dowels ,too. Usually because all the glue is pushed out by the dowel. Buy good birch or maple
    dowel ROD. Make or buy a non cutting dowel plate. You need a plate 3/4 " or 1" ,or over in thickness. Make large counter sink
    on the holes, to easily start the dowels. 1/2 or 5/8 holes , or 1 under. Drive the dowels thru the plate. Put slightly thinned (not much water)
    glue in holes ,on dowels , ends of rails. Clamp. Done this many times. Made thirty something doors for one 5 million
    home. I've written all this before ,perhaps someone tried it ,will say "it worked well" ,there by giving you the go 'head.

  3. #18
    I appreciate all the information guys. I'm hoping to get started in a week or so, and we'll see how it goes. I've found a few companies online that will build/sell stave cores, worst case scenario I guess. But I'm a big fan of DIY, as I enjoy it, and i know the quality. In my area most everything is builder grade, not much custom going on in my area.

  4. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    There's no reason not to make your own stave cores. As long as you can find well dried, straight, plain sawn or rift sawn stock it's a simple process. Cut the staves 1/8" wider than your final thickness, glue up on a flat surface like your bench, then joint and plane to final thickness. Of course you need to add the strips of show wood on each side of the core when you glue it up. In case you haven't thought about it yet, when using a different wood on the inside vs. outside of the door, you need to consider what wood to use for those show strips, especially if there will be a large difference in color. I wondered about it for a long time and then saw a couple of doors that answered my questions. The edge you see when the door is open should be the same wood and same color as the face you see at the same time. So on an in swing door, the hinge stile edge should have the same wood and color as the outside of the door, and the lock stile edge the same wood and color as the inside.


  5. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Los Angeles, California
    I'd make them out of solid oak and use dowels or mortise and tenons for the joinery. Since I have a mortiser, I would use M&T, but I've heard good things about Dowelmaster and strength tests show a double row of dowels is just as strong as any mortise and tenon, beadlock, or domino.


  6. #21
    be nice to show a close up of the failure my old eyes see nothing. the tennon almost seems to pull out and likely I see at last one broken off dowel.

    Sorry but I dont buy it a door will have a tennon of 3 1/4 to 4" if you follow the tennon thing 2/3 depth of the style. Likely a properly sized tennon would be stronger in that test and if the dowels snapped off like at least one there they would not be stronger if longer. He needed to show up a close up of the failures or likely you younger guys can see what is going on in the failures.

    Old guy was taught 3/8" veneer on very complicated stave cores (6" thick Church doors) had to last a long time. Thickness of you veneer might relate to core construction they did extra stuff even on entry doors then much more on those thick church doors. Wish people could come back and visit for a few days from time to time, id set up my camera and make some serious you tubes.

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