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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi guys, I have a secondary entry door that is currently hollow and I'd like to replace it. It's 28" so it's hard to find a steel door unless I custom order.

I am thinking the easiest way would be to install a slab door given the jamb and height are also not standard. I am looking at a solid core door, which is basically particle board on the inside and MDF on the outside. I'd like to add a deadbolt, but knowing that it's particle board core I do not know how tough it is. I was thinking of adding a layer of mesh and fiberglass on the exterior side of the door, which I think could beef it up for only $35. Thoughts?
 

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retired framer
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I would just screw 2 sheets of 3/4 plywood together, add 1x2 to both edges and then add the fibergass. Then you would have a secure and fire rated door.
 

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It's an illusion that residential locks are secure. Best you can do is add reinforcing plate (search) for locks and deadbolts. It is a metal U shape channel. I haven't worked with solid core slabs for many years. I don't know which kind or type can be cut-anywhere types. You may have to ask the manufacturer (not the salesman) about how much to cut and the core material and such. May have to plan for best weather resistance.
 

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retired painter
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If you go with a wood door be sure to seal all 6 sides. You don't want the door to absorb any moisture! Custom order doesn't necessarily mean expensive. The big issue is the wait time. I have a custom size steel/glass door from my dining rm to the deck. I don't remember it costing any more than a taller similar door in stock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I would just screw 2 sheets of 3/4 plywood together, add 1x2 to both edges and then add the fibergass. Then you would have a secure and fire rated door.
It's a good idea but I don't have all the tools for it. Thanks.


It's an illusion that residential locks are secure. Best you can do is add reinforcing plate (search) for locks and deadbolts. It is a metal U shape channel. I haven't worked with solid core slabs for many years. I don't know which kind or type can be cut-anywhere types. You may have to ask the manufacturer (not the salesman) about how much to cut and the core material and such. May have to plan for best weather resistance.
Thanks, I will be reinforcing the door with the steel reinforcing plate that wraps around the lock area. I will also add large strike plates, and 3" screws into studs on both strike and hinge side.

If you go with a wood door be sure to seal all 6 sides. You don't want the door to absorb any moisture! Custom order doesn't necessarily mean expensive. The big issue is the wait time. I have a custom size steel/glass door from my dining rm to the deck. I don't remember it costing any more than a taller similar door in stock.
I guess I will have to ask them, I went multiple times and nobody was in that department! Thanks.
 

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I would special order the steel door and have a longer lasting solution with the outdoor exposure it will encounter. I would also consider getting a pre-hung 30" steel door and giving yourself a larger opening. Not that all that much extra work or expense.
 
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