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bofusmosby 05-01-2007 11:06 PM

enlarging a screen door
I recently bought an old screen door from the 1920's for my house, and the door is just a little too narrow for the opening. The way the door edges are angled, the door originally opened from ther other side. Because of the lock mortis, I was wanting to cut the hing side square, and then add about an inch or 2 of wood to enlarge the door, using highgrade epoxy. Then, I was going to cut, or sand the backwards angle on the lock side, so the angle would be correct for the way it will open. Will this work, or will this be destined for problems. The door is an older one, and it is heavier than the new doors found today. To me, this would be a lot easier than having to drill and cut a new lock mortis. One mistake, and the door is history.

I would appreciate any and all feed-back

Thank you


send_it_all 05-02-2007 12:45 AM

It can be done. Depends on how decent a carpenter you are and what kind of tools you have to work with. If you have access to a full sized table saw with the capacity to run the width of the door through it would help you make a straight clean cut. Then, if I were doing it, I would use a biscuit joiner and some exterior grade carpenters glue to add the new piece of wood to the screen. I would use the same table saw to cut the bevel on the opposite edge. You could use a straight-edge and a router or circular saw in place of the table saw, but it would be harder for am inexperienced person to achieve a clean result. There is also the issue of the new pice of wood not matching the 80 year old screen....unless its getting painted.

bofusmosby 05-02-2007 07:39 AM

Thank you for your response.

Yes. I was planning on painting the door. I do have a table saw, but it is one of those small ones, and I believe I would have better luck using a straight edge clamped to the door, and using a circular saw for the cuts. The reason I mentioned the high grade epoxy, I was wanting to use a glue I have used many times before, and when hardened, it is much stronger than the wood itself.

What type of wood should I use of the strip to enlarge the door. The door looks to be pine, so I was thinking of using pine for this.

I do not have a biscuit joiner, so I was thinking of using longer screws for the hinges, so it will get a good bite into the actual door. Do you think this would hold?

As far as the hinges go, I am trying to find the same size hinges that were originally used, so I can use the same hinge mortis'es that are already cut into the frame.

I do have experience with the tools I have. I have also made many many straight cuts using a guide with my circular saw. You are right about the table saw, but with the one I have, I feel it would be a disaster to use this method.

I did notice that on the door I got, the height of the door was enlarged years ago, because there is an extra strip of wood going across the top.

Thank you


Brik 05-02-2007 11:06 AM

See if you can find someone with a real table saw to do the cuts. It will be trivial on a real saw. Biscuits would help with alignment but not really necessary for strength in my opinion. A good wood glue is all you need as long as the pieces mate up properly, no paint, etc. I would use Titebond III.
And a bunch of clamps.
I use these
Bessy K body

Pipe clamps will work too

troubleseeker 05-02-2007 08:55 PM

If the door is pine and that old, I would not waste my time adding a piece of modern pine to it, as it will rot too quickly, even painted. If you have accesss to a salvage yard, I would try to buy some piece of old pine to make the addition out of. I think a straight edge and circular saw will yield an acceptable cut on the door, and you can use your small table saw to make the filler. I (being anal) would run a tongue and groove with my router, but you may not have such bits. In addition to more glue surface, it would really help maintain alignment during glue up. Even with a plain butt joint, a couple of treated deck screws, counter sunk and plugged will add permanent status to the addition; be sure they miss the hinge locations. Your idea of hinge screws that reach into the original door is also good.Two part epoxy is a good glue for this because it has some capability for maintainig strength on less than perfect surfaces.

bofusmosby 05-02-2007 10:10 PM

Thanks a lot guys for the input. What my main concern was, will the repair be suseptable to breakage. I'm not a professional by any means, but I do have the ability to learn just about anything I put my mind to. There are a lot of things I know next to nothing about, because I haven't got there yet:laughing: No, really I learn as I go. I am doing a complete resoriation of my old house. It looks like one of the old southern plantation houses, with the columbs going across the front. If I could figure out how to post a photo, I'd show you. I will be busy for the rest of my life.

Back to the screen door....You know, to increase glue surface, I could put some dowls in the added piece. I do have a jig for that. I have used it many times. As far as wood goes, I have been salvaging old wood when old houses around here are torn down. I have some huge beams, as well assorted pieces of 2" x 4" 's 2" x 6" 's etc. I planned on using old salvage wood.

As far as clamps go, I have a number of clamps for the job. I also liked the idea of the counter-sunk screws along the hinge stile edge. On using the circular saw, I have a deck out back I clamp large-cut items to, so when I make a long cut, I actually walk the cut in one even motion, to eliminate any un-even cut. I also use a jig I made for this purpose.

Does anyone know what is the best paint stripper out there. There must be about 6 coats of paint of this door. I have tried just about all that the local home improvment stores handle, but nothing seems to cut the bottom 2 coats. What a pain.

I really do appreciate your help and advice, and if you can think of anything else, please let me know.

I can not give out advice on this subject, but by profession, I am a TV repairman. I have worked at my present job for 30 years. If you have any questions about TVs, just ask. Now this I might be of some assistance. I know, wrong forum.

Thanks again


send_it_all 05-02-2007 10:39 PM

Sounds like you have a good handle on it..any of the forementioned attachment techniques will work. Countersunk deck screws sound fine to me. As far as paint stripper????? Not really my dept., but I have had some success with aircraft stripper. I borrowed it, so I dont know where to get it. Good luck, sounds like you have plenty of common sense for your project....git r done.

Brik 05-03-2007 08:01 AM

OK - As for stripping.

Heat works well. A heat gun is best but a blow torch will work as well as long as you are careful not to burn the wood.

Where are you located? If you are near me I'll run it through my saw for you.

As for TVs. I have a Proscan 27". Its a CT?169 RCA chassis. The problem is vertical instability which leads to vertical collapse. Found a local repair guy. He re soldered various connections in the vert section and all was fine for a week. Now its same problem. He will try again, at no charge, to "make it right". Should I even bother? I do not want this guy spending a lot of time on his dime because there is not likely a lot of money to be made in this business anyway. What do yo think? Did he just miss a joint and it could be simple?

bofusmosby 05-03-2007 10:33 AM


The set you have is a good one. They used the same chassis for the direct view, as well as the projection sets. It sounds like the tech may have missed a connection. There are a few capacitors that have been know to give problem, but these problems are not intermittent. With it working for a little while before it went out agin DOES sound like a bad solder connection. If it is on his dime, I would let him work on it again. There should not be any more charge if it is a connection.

As far as it being worth it. I would have to ask you what kind of picture does it have. If it has a real good picture on it when working, I would think it is well worth the repair. A lot of the "junk" out there is mass produced in China, with no parts avaliable. Your set is far better than a lot of the new sets today.


Brik 05-03-2007 03:26 PM

Thanks, I'll call him! The vertical collapse is intermittent too. Power cycle sometimes fixes it and it will be fine for hours.

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