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Old 08-31-2011, 09:45 PM   #1
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


I just moved into a new house and while the layout is perfect for my modern-ish goals, lots of the details are very builder grade. In this case, all the doors are you're basic 6 panel composite doors.

I looked into buying modern doors with no panel design (a flat, smooth surface door) but they get prohibitively expensive when they're not hollow.
Is it possible to use some sort of putty or other filler to fill in the panels and not have to replace the door?

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Old 08-31-2011, 09:54 PM   #2
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


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I just moved into a new house and while the layout is perfect for my modern-ish goals, lots of the details are very builder grade. In this case, all the doors are you're basic 6 panel composite doors.

I looked into buying modern doors with no panel design (a flat, smooth surface door) but they get prohibitively expensive when they're not hollow.
Is it possible to use some sort of putty or other filler to fill in the panels and not have to replace the door?
No, you cannot fill a hollow core door with putty for a few reasons. The structure won't support the added weight. The interior is honey combed with cardboard for the rigidity, so it's many little compartments, not a big hollow space.
How expensive are solid door slabs?

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Old 08-31-2011, 10:09 PM   #3
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


Ron,

Sorry I may not have been clear enough. I do not currently have hollow core doors. I have the 6 panel doors. I am asking whether i can use some sort of filler to fill in the panel design on the doors. The end goal is to make the door look like the more expensive modern, smooth finished doors.
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:41 AM   #4
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


I've never seen anybody try and "fill" a panelled door. Not saying it couldn't be done however. I wouldn't bother though. Even if you were to get it to a decent finish I doubt it would last over time.

I think the cost of a new solid door would be far worth it than the time you will spend attempting to fill and smooth a six panel door, which may or may not produce a decent result.

Last edited by chrisBC; 09-01-2011 at 01:45 AM.
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:23 AM   #5
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


I do not feel that the filler will stay in place over time. Say the wind blew the door shut, there goes the filler. The recesses on a six panel are pretty deep that I have to agree that the weight of it will not hold over time.

Here is an off the wall suggestion. I just sold six doors on Craig's list. They were circa 1900, solid wood--maybe someone in your area has flush doors and are wanting to replace with 6 panel ones??????????
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Old 09-01-2011, 07:32 AM   #6
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Ron,

Sorry I may not have been clear enough. I do not currently have hollow core doors. I have the 6 panel doors. I am asking whether i can use some sort of filler to fill in the panel design on the doors. The end goal is to make the door look like the more expensive modern, smooth finished doors.
Why don't you just skin them over with a 1/8" plywood or paneling? Just realize, you'll need to move the door stops to compensate for the extra width.
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Old 09-01-2011, 07:52 AM   #7
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


solid doors can be expensive......but how old is your house? solid core interior doors aren't exactly common in average home building today...they are more high end....if the house is old the doors may be worth some money......I have a circa 1920's house with solid oak doors and i imagine if I chose to I would get a decent price.... I like rons idea but you will have to be very exact and be very sure all the edges are glued really tight or they could end up peeling and getting caught.. and you would have move the hinges too or the door would stick out.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:16 AM   #8
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


Cover the doors with wood-grain Formica.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:08 AM   #9
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


I would say pass on filling. Either it will crack due to shrinkage or crack when a door is shut to hard. You can sell those doors for $10 a piece and make some of you money back. Slabs shouldn't be that expensive to buy. If you want flat panel doors you can but them for $20 a slab at any home improvement store. Sure they will be hollow core doors but I am just giving you some ideas.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:28 PM   #10
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


Umjax, Hey There, in your first post you stated that the doors are a 6 panel composite (that means that they are hollow core), in a second response you said that we did not read you correctly---that you had 6 panel doors. As was stated by Organick earlier in this thread solid wood doors are an upgrade and in many houses that I have worked in over the years I seldom see solid wood doors. You would know better than us if the doors are solid wood or not. Most solid doors will be smooth as far as the grain goes, and yes you will see the six panels but you will not see grain. Composite doors have a faux wood grain look to them when they are 6 panel doors.

I have to disagree about adding a skin of 1/4 inch ply over top of what you have now, be it solid or composite. There will be an exposed edge of the plywood that would need to be somehow covered, spackled or whatever to hide the sandwich fabrication of the plywood. If your existing doors are hollow core, granted you could use liquid nails and or other fasteners to attach the plywood---will it hold?????, but then having to change the hinge placement, adding 1/2 inch of thickness to the door (if you do both sides) the door will not set in the jamb properly AND there is the cost of the plywood and time for labor. A flush door, be it hollow or not is a much easier solution and not that much more $$$$$$$.

IMHO purchasing flush hollow core doors in the long run will be much less trouble and get to the look you want. Yes you could spend more for solid wood doors but what would be the reason for that??????? less noise if the kids are to loud???? or whatever. No matter what you do more than likely you will have to mortise for the hinges, drill for the knobs and tongue plate on the new doors. Some work, yes, but not that hard with the right tools.

The filling of what you have now just will not last you, and I would hate to see you down the road.

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Old 09-01-2011, 02:29 PM   #11
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


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Cover the doors with wood-grain Formica.
And how strong would that be if someone knocked on the door in the wrong place.
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:32 PM   #12
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


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Ron,

Sorry I may not have been clear enough. I do not currently have hollow core doors. I have the 6 panel doors. I am asking whether i can use some sort of filler to fill in the panel design on the doors. The end goal is to make the door look like the more expensive modern, smooth finished doors.
Solid wood, raised panel doors are an upgrade over solid flush doors. Whether it's your taste is another matter.
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:50 PM   #13
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


Maybe try and put a solid flush veneer over the front is about the only thing I can think of to make it flush but again this would have to be done with a carpenter that knows what he is doing. Is this for a entry door or interior door?
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Old 09-03-2011, 10:21 PM   #14
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I am no expert on formica, but I think I would explore that with professional advice from a good counter maker. It could definitely give you a high end contemporary look for less. From my experience it's pretty tough stuff.
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Old 09-05-2011, 01:11 PM   #15
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Changing 6 Panel Doors


As mentioned before most of the builders do the 6 panel as an upgrade, flush doors are usually standard. If you want to change to flush panel doors a couple things you need to think about. Have you ever changed doors out before? It's not always pop out the pin and put a new door on with no issues. Measue from the top of the door down to each hinge, also the knob and check to see it the jamb is square. I bet you willl have to buy blanks and cut everything in.
Also filling the door may work try bondo I would not recommend this you will never get it looking right but if you want to spend a lot of time and money give it a try, just be sure you don't close the door to hard it may pop off.

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