Y’all, I had such a productive weekend! I don’t have a lot of “pretty” progress to show you, but I got the two side drawers on the vanity cut down, remade, and re-installed with new, shorter roller hardware things. (What the heck are those called? My mind just went blank.) Then I got the vanity all trimmed out, some of the wainscoting installed, the countertop stained just like I want it (after five additional tries since the last time I showed it to you), enough drywall installed the hallway so that I could install the new doors, and the new double doors installed.
Anyway, I want to share specifically about the new doors, because that’s what I’m the most excited about right now! I have a long way to go before they’re finished, but just getting them installed was a huge accomplishment for me. I was afraid it was going to be really difficult, so I’ve been dreading it and dragging my feet on getting started. As it turns out, it wasn’t difficult at all! Here’s what it looks like so far. (So sorry for the dark pics. I don’t have a light in my hallway right now.)
I love how open it makes the bathroom look! And it’s nice that once I get the built-in linen storage finished, it won’t be hidden behind a door. It’ll actually be seen!
Obviously, there’s still lots of work to be done to get them finished. But here’s how I did the basic installation…
Before getting started, I read lots of tutorial online about how to install a door (specifically, one that isn’t pre-hung, since I have plenty of experience hanging pre-hung doors). I found the most thorough tutorial to be this one from Young House Love. I’ll admit that all of that routing and mortising for hinges had me very intimidated.
But then when I was taking the original hardware off of the bi-fold doors, I realized that there were no areas mortised for hinges. They used non-mortised hinges that just install right on the edge of the door. So yes, I took the easy way out. I put the router away, and went back to Home Depot to purchase non-mortised hinges for the doors. I would guess it saved me at least two hours of work…probably more since I’m completely inexperienced with using a router.
So I started this project by removing the original hinges that held the two doors together, and then I marked for placement of new hinges, and installed three hinges on the edge of each door. No mortising required, and my new router is still safely packed away in the box it came in. 😀
Then I placed the doors on the floor next to each other, as they would be installed, using a scrap piece of plywood from my ceiling as a spacer between the doors. I measured how wide they were, and then cut the door jamb accordingly. I used a door jamb kit from Home Depot that comes with the three pieces, and all you have to do is cut the top piece to the correct width. I put the pieces together using wood glue and 1.5-inch 18 gauge nails in my nail gun.
And then I attached The Quick Door Hanger hardware — three on each side aligned with where the door hinges would go. If you haven’t yet discovered this super easy way to install doors, please watch this video, and spare yourself the trouble and irritation of using shims and nails to install doors in the future. 🙂
It took me about five minutes to install the jamb, using a framing square and level to be sure it was going in square, plumb, and level.
Then came the part I dreaded, because I was sure I would mess it up! I measured down on the door jamb to mark the placement of the very top hinge on each side. I used the measurement on the door, plus 1/8 inch to give a bit of clearance at the top. Then using an extra hinge, I marked for screw placement, and predrilled my holes. Remember, the hinges were attached to the doors at this point. So standing on a ladder, I held the door up with one hand (thank goodness these were half doors and were pretty light!), and screwed the hinge on with my other hand in the pre-drilled holes.
With the top hinge in place, I was then able to easily move the bottom of the door into place, mark for screw placement, pre-drill the holes, and screw the hinges onto the door jamb. I didn’t get pictures of the process, because I kind of had my hands full. 🙂
Once the doors were installed, they didn’t line up perfectly, so I did a few minor tweaks with the door jamb (unscrewing the screws holding The Quick Door Hanger hardware, getting it perfectly lined up, and tightening the screws again), and the doors fit together perfectly. The ability to make minor adjustment like that after the fact is one of the reasons I love The Quick Door Hanger hardware so much. You can’t make those minor adjustments with the shim and nail method!
And the non-mortised hinges worked out perfectly! I know I took the easy way out on this one, but I make no apologies for it. 😀 Sometimes it’s nice to give yourself a break and use these products that make life easier rather than creating more work for yourself.
Here’s what the doors look like when they’re closed…for now.
Of course, they’re not finished yet, and the door on the left doesn’t stay perfectly closed on its own right now. I still need to add the stop to the inside of the door jamb, and install magnet closures so that the doors stay perfectly closed.
Also, you might notice that there’s a larger than usual gap under the door. As it turns out, these bi-fold doors are only 79 inches tall, where the other pre-hung doors that I usually get are 80 inches tall. So rather than installing this door so that it would be shorter than the other three doors in the hallway, I decided to install it at the same height, and I’ll add a filler strip or something to the bottom to make the gap a standard size.
And I know that some of you were concerned about privacy issues with the crack between the doors, and wondering how guests would be able to lock these doors. I’ve got both of those issues covered, and I’ll share details when the doors are finished.
But for now, can we just look at how open this is now?! 🙂
So while I definitely have non-standard doors for a hallway guest bathroom, I’m so glad I did this! I think this was the single decision that has had the biggest impact on how this room will look when it’s finished. I love my new double doors!