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Thread: My First Attempt at an Entry Door

  1. #1

    My First Attempt at an Entry Door

    Joined several years ago to ask a question but haven't been active at all. I'm hoping to change that as the knowledge base here seems to be nothing but awesome. Thought I'd share my latest project and my first attempt at making an entry door for my house.

    The short story is I was given quite a bit of maple from a project my company was working on so I figured why not try my luck at an entry door. I realize maple probably isn't the best material for this, but the door is completely out of the elements with a large overhanging entry way. So I went for it and came up with what you see below. I did stave core construction of the rails and stiles and the same method on the sidelight. The panels are two pieces floating to allow movement. I'm in SW Florida so although the inside is relatively steady, the outside temps fluctuate considerably, especially in the hot, humid summer months. The glass is impact glass so we can watch the next storm. Utilized floating mortise and tenons for joinery.

    I didn't take many pictures during the build process itself, but I did have a couple. I ended up making clamps (a bunch of them) to compress the R&S's stave cores during glue up. What I'm really hoping to focus on being more active is the finishing process. I really stink at finishing and am hoping to pick up some tricks of the trade here. I'm just a hobbyist working out of my garage shop so I don't really have room for a spray booth/area which is unfortunate.

    Overall I'm quite pleased with the results. It was a lot of work and took forever being a weekend warrior, but it sure beats the heck out of the builder-grade unit that was on the house for all these years!


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    Last edited by David Lageman; 02-23-2021 at 2:03 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    7,186
    That is a great looking door David. Well done. I never would have guessed the finish was done by hand, looks great.

    John

  3. #3
    Thank you John. It's definitely hand finished after a whole lot of not-so-family-friendly language. I started with a GF water-based stain that I mixed to a beautiful color my bride just loved. However, I simply couldn't get it to blend properly as I applied it and the overlaps just looked terrible. So I ended up sanding it again (thankfully I had only stained one side) and started over. No better success the second time so again it was sanded. Both I and the wood were tired! Gave up on the water-based and went with a gel stain I've had some success with in the past and was able to get it acceptable. Still not perfect, but acceptable. Not the same color as I had blended but close enough to keep both of us happy...lol.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    7,186
    Perseverance usually wins, and your efforts were rewarded even if the color is not exactly what you wanted. No one else knows; they just see that beautiful door.

    You should be able to set up a temporary spray booth in your shop. I use one in my basement shop. It's just 6 mil plastic hung from nails in the floor joists and a paper drop cloth on the floor. I use my DC exhaust fan to vent the booth and blow it out a nearby window. My friend has a similar temporary spray booth in his garage shop and uses a cheap box fan to vent it out the open garage door. Give it some thought. I'll be you can come up with a workable system for not much money. Spraying opens up a whole new world of finishing options and is worth the effort to make it happen.

    Having said that, my favorite exterior door finish is PPG Cetol Door and Window finish. Applied with a good bristle brush it looks like it was sprayed. Very durable, too, and doesn't chip or crack. Can't recommend it more highly.

    John

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
    Location
    NE OH
    Posts
    1,492
    Gorgeous door David!
    --Certainty is the refuge of a small mind--

  6. #6
    I love the idea of a temporary spray booth and will give that serious consideration. I agree...everyone I know that plays with sawdust says spraying is the way to go.

    I neglected to mention that the door was top coated with that exact product, PPG (nee Sikkens) Cetol, applied with a brush. Three very thin coats and that finish actually turned out nice!

  7. #7
    Thank you Paul.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    275
    I’m not moved to comment on projects in general, but when I looked at your door I just said, "Holy cow." (Not ‘cow,’ but you know.)

    That door is awesome in the true meaning of awesome. Wonderful work, David. You should be proud.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Zona View Post
    Im not moved to comment on projects in general, but when I looked at your door I just said, "Holy cow." (Not cow, but you know.)

    That door is awesome in the true meaning of awesome. Wonderful work, David. You should be proud.
    Thank you Tony.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    South Coastal Massachusetts
    Posts
    6,640
    Snazzy.

    That should keep the Zombies out.

    Kudos

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    McKean, PA
    Posts
    13,298
    I'll take one. I need to think about replacing the door to my shop from the house. Very nice work.
    Lee Schierer
    Captain USNR(Ret)

    My advice, comments and suggestions are free, but it costs money to run the site. If you found something of value here please give a little something back by becoming a contributor! Please Contribute

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Matthews View Post
    Snazzy.

    That should keep the Zombies out.

    Kudos
    Quote Originally Posted by Lee Schierer View Post
    I'll take one. I need to think about replacing the door to my shop from the house. Very nice work.
    Thank you both. And yes, no zombies thus far...lol.
    A wannabe woodworker!

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Clarks Summit PA
    Posts
    1,018
    Outstanding, welcoming door David.

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