Sunday, January 30, 2011

Dweller on the Threshold

The 42" front exterior door had a very worn down wood threshold originally. Ed later replaced that with another oak threshold. Since the floor was being replaced, and the threshold out of whack due to the uneven surfaces and tilted door, Ed's threshold was also tossed. I decided to look for a more commercial (READ: durable, can take a beating) solution. Even though they are not building vintage or aesthetic, a shallow aluminum threshold was the answer. I ended up purchasing the threshold from AB Supply online. They have a pretty amazing selection of hard to find hardware. The big box stores only sold up to 36" aluminum thresholds, and not a big selection of widths.

Since the limestone sill was slightly higher than the floor, I added an additional strip of walnut to make up the difference. On a great suggestion from Eric, I routed the walnut about 1/16th of an inch to create a groove for the threshold leg to sit. This prevents the piece from sliding in and out, giving it some horizontal stability.

You can't see it in this photo, but I used 'Liquid Nails' to adhere the wood threshold to the aluminum threshold.

Here's the before picture of the door threshold.

You can see the original holes where they inserted some 1/2" dowel pieces to hold the threshold nails. This was the 1896 method before they had masonry fasteners such as Tapcons.

After marking the 4 new holes, I used the MAKITA hammer drill with a masonry bit to predrill the holes for the Tapcon screws.

Here's the installed threshold. I used some 'roll caulk' on the underside of the front part to keep any water out coming from the exterior side. I didn't use any glue (yet), in case I want to be able to simply unscrew and pull up for some reason.

We'll see how it holds up the rest of the winter. Big storm coming Tuesday.

I'll have another post about the 'automatic door sweep' i'm putting on the front of this door soon.

Places for REALLY nice lumber

I've been going to WOOD WORLD at Elston & George since I bought the building back in 2002. They had some great trim I couldn't find anywhere else to match some of the existing. Lately, i've been taking some trips out to Des Plaines to visit OWL LUMBER, since they have a different (and slightly cheaper) selection. Here's my take on both of these specialty shops. Wood World has more unique trim profiles, and very laid back, friendly staff. Owl Lumber has all the standard profiles, but much more rare wood stock at some decent prices. You'll just have to visit both! I plan on using 'finger-jointed' poplar (not pine) for the master bedroom, and I think Owl Lumber will be the place to go.

Photo is of employee counting and wrapping my order.