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Old 01-04-2009, 09:09 PM   #1
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Replacing a knee-wall access door


I'm in the process of insulating my attic and in general buttoning up air leaks and the like... I'm noticing that the existing access doors are warped and are in on the whole, poorly constructed allowing drafts, etc...

I would like to completely replace these with 2x4 framed doors on solid hinges...

The only question I have is, how much smaller than the opening should the door be so it doesn't bind when opening? Also, is there a jig for stamping and chiseling hinge flanges as I always seem to flub those up...

Thanks!

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Old 01-04-2009, 09:13 PM   #2
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Replacing a knee-wall access door


allow about 1" at the width and 1/2" at the height for the rough opening to allow space for the door framing. Allow 1/8" clearance around the door and the jam for proper operation and movement (shinkage and expanding)

Yes simple templates are available everywhere to cut the hinges with a chisel or templates for using a router. (better approach) And simple or professional kits for cutting the door knobs.

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Old 01-04-2009, 09:27 PM   #3
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Replacing a knee-wall access door


I don't competley follow with the allowances for the height and width so lets talk hypothetical for a moment so i can visualize

If I have an opening that is 36"x36" (no jambs and the finish molding is dead even with the opening... remember its existing) and also keeping in mind that the door will open into the room not into the attic... You are saying the the OD of the door (the panel) should be 35-3/4" x 35-3/4" thus allowing the 1/8" clearance... and the framing behind the door should be 35" x 35-1/2" (w x h) keeping the framing vertically center and horizontally tight to the side that mounts to the hinges...

I think thats what you mean?
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Old 01-05-2009, 06:54 AM   #4
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Replacing a knee-wall access door


no, not quite right. I assume you have a 2 X 4 wall with an opening of 36" X 36" The opening is all encased in rough 2 X 4 lumber. This moves too much and twists. So a normal door, which is what you asked about would be mounted on a 3/4" pine frame. The door sits flush with the side it opens too and is recessed on the side it opens from (the attic) since the door is 1 1/4" thick and the opening is 3 1/2" or 4" thick. The size of the frame should be determined by how level and square your opening is. If one side is out of level it would require the top leg of the frame to be smaller. So generally you would allow a 1/2" clearance at the top and 1" clearance for the two side combined to allow for shimming to level and square making the new opening 33 1/2" X 34 3/4" (clearance for making it level plus the 3/4" frame material) Now the door size is 33 1/4" X 33 1/2" But it ma be larger if you make the door jams a bit larger, depends on how level and square your opening is. A stop is placed flush with the door when it is closed on the inside. Stuff insulation or use spray foam insulation into the space between the studs and the door frame. 2 1/4" Trim overlaps the door frame on the outside 1/4"
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