A barn door doesn't really age well. An old barn door shows signs of deterioration such as mold growth on the surface, water spoilage, wood weakness, rust, and creaking hinges. When you see these signs, you know that your old door has got to go. Your animals surely need a better maintained home.
- 8 feet LVL beams (the number will depend on the size of the door to be built)
- Oak/Maple hardwood boards
- Table saw
- Barn hinges
- First, check if the door frame is alright. If the door frame is chipped, broken, or tilted, it should be either fixed or replaced. If you don't fix the faulty frame, you won't get the correct measurements, your door will be built all wrong, and you will face long term trouble while opening and closing it.
- The next preliminary step is to decide whether the doors should open inwards or outwards. Although this step seems a bit unnecessary, it is quite significant, and should not be ignored. If you live in an area with substantial snowfall, it would make sense to have the door open inwards.
- The next step is to measure the door opening. It is always beneficial to have a rough sketch of the expected door with all the measurements. For this example, let us assume that you have a perfectly square 10×10 ft door opening. You should take 2 boards, each slightly less than 10 ft long and less than 5 ft wide. You should leave a little space below the door to account for ground shifts. If you take the perfect measurement, and if there are some shifts in the level of the ground due to climatic changes, then the door will get jammed. The slight difference in the widths will be accounted for by the door frame and hinges.
- Cut the LVL boards to your required measurements. LVL stands for Laminated Veneer Lumber; it is a processed lumber that is lighter but stronger than actual lumber, and can withstand most weather conditions. Put one nail to the board. Once you have completed the door, nail the other side to the board. Repeat this process with the other door as well.
- Once the doors are ready, fix the hinges to them. Space them out, one at each end and one at the center. Drill the holes into the door for the screws. You're going to need a couple of people to help pick your door up. Pick it up and nail the hinges to the boards. Keep in mind whether you decided to open the door inwards or outwards before nailing the hinges in. Use 2-inch galvanized nails. The nails will have to be of a good quality because you're going to be using them on some pretty heavy-duty stuff. Besides, they'll also be exposed to some rough weather, so make sure they are galvanized.
- Don't forget to screw a latch onto your door. Attach a bolt to the door to keep it closed.