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Old 04-30-2012, 03:47 PM   #1
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Spinning Closet Pull


I have some bi-fold closet doors that I want to change the hardware on. I got a new knob and made sure the screw was long enough to get through the door but not too long (even have a nut between the door and the screw head to make sure its snug). I have a tight fit of the knob on the screw, but the whole piece (the knob, nut, and screw all together) spins inside the hole I reused from the old hardware. Any suggestions on how to make the knob snug? I was imaging some sort of backplate might do it, but I can't seem to find anything online. I'm hesitant to drill a new hole because I'm not sure I'd be able to patch up the old one in a way that would make it not noticeable.

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Old 04-30-2012, 04:02 PM   #2
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Spinning Closet Pull


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Originally Posted by bitter View Post
(even have a nut between the door and the screw head
That will do nothing.

Get a screw longer than the width of the door, and put the nut on the back side of the door. The door should be between the screw head and the nut.

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Old 04-30-2012, 04:06 PM   #3
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Spinning Closet Pull


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That will do nothing.

Get a screw longer than the width of the door, and put the nut on the back side of the door. The door should be between the screw head and the nut.
Thanks for the quick response! That explains why the nut was not helping, but having a nut on the outside face of the door doesn't seem particularly pleasing aesthetically... would a washer achieve the same result? Maybe that would be less visible behind the knob/pull.
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:12 PM   #4
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Spinning Closet Pull


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Originally Posted by bitter View Post
Thanks for the quick response! That explains why the nut was not helping, but having a nut on the outside face of the door doesn't seem particularly pleasing aesthetically... would a washer achieve the same result? Maybe that would be less visible behind the knob/pull.
I might be misunderstanding you. Is this a knob where you screw in the screw from the back side? Is the screw head on the back side of the door?
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Last edited by Jay 78; 04-30-2012 at 04:15 PM.
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:19 PM   #5
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Spinning Closet Pull


Hm. I guess I'm having trouble describing it.


The screw goes through the door into the knob. The knob and screws are separate pieces.

Edit: Well my attempt at some ascii art did not work. The knob and screw are separate pieces. The knob is on the outside of the bifold door. Then comes the door, then the nut. The screw goes through the nut, the door, into the knob.

Last edited by bitter; 04-30-2012 at 04:20 PM. Reason: ascii art attempt fail
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:21 PM   #6
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Spinning Closet Pull


So, the nut is not part of the assembly - you are just using it as a spacer? Sounds like your screw is too long.

[Knob]-[door]-[nut as spacer]-[screw head]

^^Is this correct?
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:25 PM   #7
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Spinning Closet Pull


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So, the nut is not part of the assembly - you are just using it as a spacer? Sounds like your screw is too long.

[Knob]-[door]-[nut as spacer]-[screw head]

^^Is this correct?
Correct. I guess I'll try a short screw, but I thought the nut would have done the trick. I originally measured the width of the door and the length of screw that could be driven into the knob. I found a screw that was exactly that length and when it still spun, that's when I went for the nut.

If anyone has any other suggestions I'm all ears, otherwise thanks for the suggestion for a shorter screw.
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:30 PM   #8
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Spinning Closet Pull


Post a picture if you can.

If the problem is your screw being too long, then the whole works shouldn't just spin, it should push/pull laterally a bit. Is this happening?
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Old 04-30-2012, 04:33 PM   #9
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Post a picture if you can.

If the problem is your screw being too long, then the whole works shouldn't just spin, it should push/pull laterally a bit. Is this happening?
No, not pushing or pulling laterally. Unfortunately I am not home but I will post a picture once I have a chance to take one.
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:08 PM   #10
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Spinning Closet Pull


When i've had this happen, I use washers as spacers. It's easier than cutting the screw down. Grab a few from the hardware store and use just the number you need to make the screw tight into the knob.
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Old 08-27-2012, 06:28 PM   #11
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Spinning Closet Pull


Hmm, it appears I am having the same problem describe by bitter but alas no solution was ever posted. It also appears that bitter's explanation and problem was never fully understood.

I have the same exact problem. I have bifold closet doors in several rooms that had old ugly brass knobs installed. We are replacing them and have had minimal luck.

The issue is NOT too long of a screw, which can be easily determined by a) using a shorter screw or b) some sort of spacer like bitter used. Instead of a nut I had a washer and to space it even more I stacked about 6 washers.

The problem is that no matter how tight I screw the screw into the knob, with little force the knob just spins freely in the hole. There is no back and forth motion (indicating a too long screw) it just simply spins. I can see the screw head spinning on the washer.

It would seem the intent of the design (for newly installed bifold closet doors) is that you drill a hole about the size of the screw being used and simply screw it down. The clamping action between the screw head on the back of the door and the knob on the front keeps it fixed. Kitchen cabinet doors work this way and I have other bifold doors that don't seem to have this problem but there are no differences in design.

I could use other tricks like getting everything in place, filling it with glue and then tightening down the knob and then hope it holds but the door is hollow so not sure how this would work.

Very confusing, maybe the hole is simply too big, but again it seem like the clamping action should do the trick. Any further suggestions would be greatly appreciated. I have a bunch of closet doors with no handles and my wife is mad!
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Old 08-27-2012, 06:55 PM   #12
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Spinning Closet Pull


I found something online called knob secure.
looks like that will work ( or if you find something similar locally like a plastic sleeve the length same as door thickness or something you can cut or grind down.

for something more permanent, put some epoxy on the back side of the knob before you screw it in. use epoxy made for the materials ( pull and door ) you have. keep in mind this is permanent. you may want to add washers and test fit before using the epoxy.

Last edited by bbo; 08-27-2012 at 07:02 PM.
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:11 PM   #13
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Spinning Closet Pull


No need for an epoxy, simple Tite Bond II will work.
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:19 PM   #14
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Spinning Closet Pull


Thanks for the quick responses, bbo, I will have to research this Knob Secure thing a little more as it does appear to be intended for this type of issue and actually makes replacing the knob later a possibility.

Joecaption, Im not sure how your solution would even work. The bifold door is hollow what are you bonding too with your Titebond (wood glue) solution? Even if i put the screw in, pumped a bunch of glue in and then tightened down the knob what does it adhere to, it would just ooze into the door? Seems in a short amount of time it may be spinning freely again as there is little surface area for the bond to hold.
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Old 08-27-2012, 07:29 PM   #15
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Spinning Closet Pull


If the screw is bottoming out in the knob it will not tighten sandwiching the door. grind some off the end of the screw or get a shorter one. If it tightens on the door take it apart, put some blue locktight on it and reassemble.

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