Festool Owners Group

GENERAL DISCUSSIONS => Member Projects => Topic started by: dlu on June 18, 2022, 11:03 AM

Title: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: dlu on June 18, 2022, 11:03 AM
I'm trying my hand at building a set of carriage doors for my shop. They doors go in an opening 96" wide and 84" high and are divided into three panels, each about 32" wide. To reduce the room require to swing the doors two of the panels are to be hinged together (like a bifold door). Each panel will weigh about 100 pounds.

My original plan was to use four heavy duty butt hinges per panel and to space them out evenly. But, a few days ago I saw a similar (but two panel) set of doors in a door maker's display where the hinges were arranged with three hinges in the top third of he door height, with a fourth hinge at the bottom.

So, I'm wondering, are there advantages to putting most of the hinges near the top? It does seem like that would provide more fasteners to resist the load on the upper hinge(s) -- which I assume are taking most of the twisting load of the doors.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: Holzhacker on June 18, 2022, 11:28 AM
I've installed quite a few big wood, steel heavy doors or high use doors over the years. As much as I like regular hinges I won't even install them anymore on big, heavy or high use / abuse doors.
It took some getting used to but I really like, and have had excellent performance, from the aluminum continuous hinges. They hold, the load gets distributed well.
The only caveat being you have to buy the good ones. They tend to run a bit pricey. Once installed though its a one time expense. Can't cheap out and go for the lesser / cheaper off brand ones. I tried that a couple times and it didn't work out well. They were thinner allowing for too much flex.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: rst on June 18, 2022, 01:17 PM
I've been using continuous hinges for 40 years as a commercial/ industrial steel and aluminum entrance sales and repair and as locksmith
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: rvieceli on June 18, 2022, 01:27 PM
@Holzhacker and @rst any recommendations as to brands and how to size?

Ron
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: rst on June 18, 2022, 02:12 PM
There are several but my go-to is Roton, they make one for any circumstances.  I stock around 10 different in aluminum and bronze.  Mayflower Sales/Quality Hardware.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: demographic on June 18, 2022, 02:49 PM
Prettty standard for 54mm thick hour rated firedoors to have one hinge 150mm down from the top, another 225 up from the bottom and either one centred between em or close to the top hinge if its got a strong closer fitted.

Thats with decent 100mm ball bearing fire hinges.
Been back those doors years later and theyre still fine.
Can't say Ive ever weighed those doors but I'd be stunned if they were less that 100 Lbs.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: Crazyraceguy on June 18, 2022, 04:30 PM
Look into the spacing recommendation that SOSS hinges provide in their instructions. They sound very similar to what you are saying. They have put a bunch of engineering into the point of supporting the weight of the door.
I don't remember it exactly, but it's based on percentages of distances from each other.
The "old fashioned" thing of putting a 3rd hinge in the middle of a door is not intended to support the weight of the door. It is actually there to control the potential of the door to bow one way or the other.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: scholar on June 20, 2022, 09:45 AM
I did a similar thing with some bifold wardrobe doors in some awkward spaces. I don’t remember seeing or following any Soss guidance on hinge spacing, but the pictures [see post #6 in the thread linked below] illustrate what I did (the perspective is funny, but the 4 hinges on each pair are actually in line which was a design choice that may have influenced the spacing at the top given the sloping ceiling).

https://www.ukworkshop.co.uk/threads/bi-folding-wardrobes-doors.134958/

Obviously different to your carriage doors, but size and weight-wise, the example may be relevant/helpful.

Cheers

Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: Crazyraceguy on June 20, 2022, 05:59 PM
This is how SOSS says to do it. I have followed their recommendations up to the point of 5. I've never put 6 hinges on the same door.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: dlu on June 22, 2022, 01:29 AM
...It took some getting used to but I really like, and have had excellent performance, from the aluminum continuous hinges. They hold, the load gets distributed well.

Alas, I've already bought hinges (heavy duty 5x5 Hager ball bearing butt hinges) -- I got them from Trademark Hardware. I'd been looking at the continuous hinges on their website, and asked the salesperson about them, but they didn't seem to think my doors warranted them. Now, I'm wishing I'd asked here first  :-[
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: demographic on June 22, 2022, 12:32 PM
The doors on the local hospitals x ray room only have four 4" ball bearing fire rated hinges and the doors are lead lined.l
Yer overthinking this.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: dlu on June 22, 2022, 12:34 PM
The doors on the local hospitals x ray room only have four 4" ball bearing fire rated hinges and the doors are lead lined.l
Yer overthinking this.

I've been known to do that... Thanks for the data point -- are they equally spaced?
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: demographic on June 22, 2022, 05:46 PM
The doors on the local hospitals x ray room only have four 4" ball bearing fire rated hinges and the doors are lead lined.l
Yer overthinking this.

I've been known to do that... Thanks for the data point -- are they equally spaced?

I honestly can't remember but I do know they were a four man lift.
Even the backmolds were leadlined as well.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: smorgasbord on June 22, 2022, 07:49 PM
This is how SOSS says to do it. I have followed their recommendations up to the point of 5. I've never put 6 hinges on the same door.

Just seconding the SOSS recommendations here. I built a 42" x 90" entry door and used 4 SOSS hinges with their recommended locations. 20 years later and still no issues.
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: dlu on July 28, 2022, 04:02 PM
Just follow up, the doors are hung and looking pretty good. I used four 5" Hager heavy duty ball bearing hinges on each door panel. I spaced them using the SOSS layout mentioned above. No sign at all of sagging and the center section is solid and stable.

The accusations of over-thinking and over-engineering were probably fair  :)
Title: Re: Hinge Positions on Heavy Doors
Post by: Crazyraceguy on July 29, 2022, 06:55 PM
Cool, glad it worked out for you.