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Old 05-13-2014, 01:08 PM   #1
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


Hey all. I've DIYed plenty of big and small projects around this 100 year two flat in the city, but for some reason I'm having a little trouble getting the old noggin fired up these days. Maybe I've inhaled too many solvent fumes or too much lead paint dust (or one too many celebratory beverages after project completions ). Whatever it is, I could use a little creativity here.

We've got an old two-car garage which snaps up to the west side property line, and a concrete pad that extends from the east side of the garage to the neighbor's garage (35 foot lot). I have large swinging gates accessing the alley from the concrete pad. The garage door faces the alley, but the garage itself is only wide enough to squeeze two cars in through that door. The garage is plenty deep though. I can easily fit a couple motorcycles / etc. in front of the cars.

I'd like to be able to get motorcycles in and out of the garage without having to move the cars. I'm not talking about little mopeds however,

so the people door is not going to work. I need something wide. The trick is that this door has to work for the motorcycles and a regular entrance, so a small overhead door isn't going to work. Here is what the access door looks like right now, from outside and inside.





The cars are parked just past the strike side of the door, so it would not make sense to expand any openings toward the alley; my only option is really to expand it back towards the house. Of course the previous DIYer more or less followed the pitch of the roof when extending the garage, so I think a normal height door would interfere with the roof support joist etc.

I'm sure this is an easy one, like I said though, I'm just not particularly creative these days! Any ideas from the gurus?

DISCLAIMER: I know the garage is butt-ugly, but it works fine and is not in the budget for a full demo/rebuild (which I would much prefer to do - just not this year). So "build a new garage" isn't an answer at the moment! A "temporary" one or two year solution is fine.

Thanks for reading!

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Old 05-13-2014, 05:16 PM   #2
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


What about something like this double entry door? http://www.homedepot.com/p/Unique-Ho...specifications

You check locally with someone that sell or installs. Maybe they have one with damage that would work out for your garage.

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Old 05-13-2014, 06:21 PM   #3
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


How wide is the door now? How wide does it need be to fit the bikes in?
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Old 05-13-2014, 07:44 PM   #4
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


Quote:
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How wide is the door now? How wide does it need be to fit the bikes in?
Ayuh,.... I've got a 4'er that Big bikes are driven through somewhat regularly,...
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Old 05-13-2014, 08:04 PM   #5
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


Quote:
Originally Posted by RegeSullivan View Post
What about something like this double entry door? http://www.homedepot.com/p/Unique-Ho...specifications

You check locally with someone that sell or installs. Maybe they have one with damage that would work out for your garage.
Rege, thanks for the link. My first thought was something along those lines, but check out the roofline from the interior photo above. It angles down in a way that I don't think would allow a second door at that height.

Quote:
Originally Posted by joed View Post
How wide is the door now? How wide does it need be to fit the bikes in?
Right now it's a standard 30", and ideally I'd like to have 48" or so to let the big dogs in and out comfortably, i.e., a big bagger or Beatrix here on the right...

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Old 05-13-2014, 08:12 PM   #6
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


A temp 2 year solution?
Store bought double doors will be pricey and they're always a pain in the ___ to secure.

I would widen the entrance to 4 feet and laminate 2 sheets of 3/4 ply together and you have your door. You can decorate it with trim if you want so it doesn't look like a slab (Make a couple of neat diamond shapes or what ever with a bit of wood trim.) Change the hinge swing so it opens out. If you really want it opening in then at least rehinge it so the new hinges are on the striker side (the slant in the roof on the existing hinge side will most likely cause some height complications on a widened door).

I would hang it on at least 4 hinges (it'll be a heavy door).

Last edited by Bob Sanders; 05-13-2014 at 08:14 PM.
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Old 05-13-2014, 08:54 PM   #7
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


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A temp 2 year solution?
Exactly. I want the bikes in there now, but the garage will be replaced hopefully within the next couple years. A new garage is not first in the list of "big project" priorities.

Maybe some kind of custom 18" panel door, if I could pick up a couple used or overstock matching doors, cut one down to size, then hinge them to swing out. The panel would have to be secured with a simple floor and overhead bolt, like for a gate...

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Old 05-14-2014, 04:22 PM   #8
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Old 05-14-2014, 04:23 PM   #9
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.






.....

Last edited by ron45; 05-14-2014 at 04:29 PM.
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Old 05-14-2014, 05:08 PM   #10
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


My thoughts were along the same lines as Ron I believe they come as small as 36" wide.
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Old 05-14-2014, 06:52 PM   #11
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


Whatever you do I would be concerned about security so you don't get ripped off. Therefore some cheap folding door etc may not be such a good idea.

A rollup steel door may be a good idea and then you can re-use it in the new garage. Don't want to invest a lot in a temp door and throw it away IMO.
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Last edited by yuri; 05-14-2014 at 06:54 PM.
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:04 PM   #12
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


OK, thanks for the ideas Ron and ToolSeeker, but like I said, this is not a long term solution since the garage will be replaced within the next few years. And like I showed (1) the door can only go in one spot on the garage and therefore must do double duty as a people-access door, and (2) I have to work around the pitch of the extended roof.

Yuri, yes I am concerned with security. While this ain't the ghetto up here, it sure as heck ain't Mayberry. The only idea I could start to wrap my head around was a sort of double door arrangement, with a smaller say 18" door that stays locked via bottom and top bolts. In this scenario, the standard door would have to strike/latch onto this one. I'd have to reinforce it somehow to make it a bit more stable/secure than it sounds. I couldn't imagine how a folding door would work there.
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Old 05-14-2014, 07:33 PM   #13
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


Not sure how you keep your bikes from getting stolen now but I imagine it is pretty easy to roll them up a ramp onto a pickup. Same pickup could have a chain on the hitch and yank off a door. Just Sayin.
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Old 05-14-2014, 08:51 PM   #14
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


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Not sure how you keep your bikes from getting stolen now but I imagine it is pretty easy to roll them up a ramp onto a pickup. Same pickup could have a chain on the hitch and yank off a door. Just Sayin.
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Old 05-14-2014, 10:48 PM   #15
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Help! Need an idea for a motorcycle garage door.


What is the problem with a 4' door?

If the roof line is a problem, you could build a custom door which is 6' tall or 80" tapering down to 6' or whatever.

You could also have a "barn" door which would slide on an overhead rail and could be locked with a hasp and padlock.

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