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Thread: concealed hardware for ceiling panel

  1. #1

    concealed hardware for ceiling panel

    I have been tasked with building a hinged panel with concealed hardware for access to hvac equipment in an attic as well as air exchange for the same gear. The shop I am subbing for supplied me with three Sugatsune 3D hinges (think small Tectus hinges, very nice) and for the latch a couple of fairly substantial magnetic touch latches. Unfortunately the touch latches are not strong enough to keep the panel up and we need to rethink that before proceeding. The panel will be about 37" x 42" of 3/4" mdf and I estimate will weigh about 25 lbs once a wood grille isinstalled in about 1/3 of its area. I feel it should have some type of positive catch as there is a possibility for injury if the panel drops free unexpectedly. Here is one possibility https://www.leevalley.com/en-us/shop...c-secret-latch. Any comments or suggestions?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2007
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    NE OH
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    How about making the smaller grill (or part of it) operable somehow (maybe using the latches you were supplied) and then use that opening to reach in and release a sturdier positive latch?
    --Certainty is the refuge of a small mind--

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
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    Does the door have to open down into the living space? Could it instead open up into the attic? It would have stop molding of some sort so that it can never fall down where there are people to whack.

    With this approach you could also include weatherstripping on the door or stop molding, which would be sealed by the weight of the door. I'd expect that weatherstripping would be good between living space and attic space -- in Vermont.

  4. #4
    Paul and Jamie, thanks for the suggestions. The hatch does have to swing down as it meets and is gasketed to an hvac duct above that is the size of the grill. It should be weatherstripped at the perimeter, which shows a 1/16" reveal to a thumbnail beaded frame. The idea of swinging upward is too sensible, plus weatherstripping visible above a stop would be unacceptable to the designer.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2014
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    Northern Florida
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    I used hidden magnetic catches very similar to those to keep a child out of some drawers in a bedroom years ago. They were OK, but that was about as demanding an application as they seemed suitable for. Then there's the issue of keeping track of a "key" that looks like a bottle stopper and making sure those concerned won't forget where to apply the key.

    The part of the opening taken up by the duct will not be useful for access. What about making that part fixed and have a smaller access panel, which would not need to be gasketed?

    Sounds like you're at the mercy of a designer who knows he/she won't have to implement what he/she designed.

  6. #6
    "The part of the opening taken up by the duct will not be useful for access. What about making that part fixed and have a smaller access panel, which would not need to be gasketed?"

    The design won't allow for that- the access panel is a flat panel with the grill glued in and surrounded by a moulded frame to match the frame and panel work in the adjacent rooms. Thanks for the suggestion- practicality is only one small part of the project.

    It has been decided to use the concealed magnetic catches supplemented by a gas shock stay support- with any luck no one will get beaned by this thing. The instructions will be in the householder's manual as well as on the heel of the boot.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Sounds like a good job for the "touch catches" used in RV's and boats. They function a lot like touch magnetic catches but, use a mechanical strike and catch for a secure hold. Here's a cheap version to get you started in the right direction if you want to check them out.
    Take me to the hotel - Baggage gone, oh well . . .

  8. #8
    Thanks, Glenn- we may use something like that. It would eliminate the need for a (easily misplaced) magnet to open the panel.

  9. #9
    Late to this... fastmount? Or Starhanger? Starhanger zero's maybe.
    Sometimes I just want to look at pretty pictures,... Thats when I go to the Turners Forum

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