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Old 10-28-2011, 06:50 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Roll up vs. Sliding doors on a shop?

For reasons I honestly can't explain I like large sliding doors over roll up doors. I'm looking at the option of having a pair of 7' sliding doors (14' wide opening) instead of doing a 12' or 14' roll up door. I grew up around my grandfathers tractor sheds on his sugar cane farm and they all had huge sliding doors so maybe this is just a sentimental thing.

Anyone have some real logic why a nice well build steel sliding door wouldn't work as well if not better than a large commercial roll up door?
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:08 AM   #2 (permalink)
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They are hard to seal up - I've got a barn with ~12' sliders that I need to seal up for the winter. If you built them on some sort of sliding track that integrated to something mounted flush to the ground it might work. IIRC garage door seals work good on the edges.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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slide doors if not on a track kinda trend to blow in the breeze if on a track get shit in the track and become a pia they take up 14 feet of wall space like mentioned hard to seal. over head doors require a higher ceiling, block lighting if door is open, and fairly easy to get a good seal. I went overhead with mine
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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slide doors if not on a track kinda trend to blow in the breeze if on a track get shit in the track and become a pia they take up 14 feet of wall space like mentioned hard to seal. over head doors require a higher ceiling, block lighting if door is open, and fairly easy to get a good seal. I went overhead with mine
I'm talking about doors that would slide on a hanging track and would be suspended from the top. These would be on the outside of the shop so they wouldn't block any wall space or anything on the inside.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I'm talking about something like this.





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Old 10-28-2011, 07:42 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Pros:
1. You like them.

2. They SHOULD be cheaper

3. you can crack them and don't have to open them all the way

Cons:
1.They only connect at the top (so they blow in the breeze)

2. If you have a track at the bottom to firm it up, you have to be concerned about getting crap in it.

3. You have to have the area to side it.

4. No garage door openers

5. After time, it takes a little force to slide them open.

6. I am not sure they are as secure.






I would get the sliding doors based on #1 in the PRO category.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:44 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I think I can figure out a way to keep them secure at the bottom when closed.
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Old 10-28-2011, 07:51 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I think I can figure out a way to keep them secure at the bottom when closed.
lots of times you put synching locks near the bottom of the doors on each side.

Here is a pic of something similar, but I have seen different styles.



While these might not be that good at securing the door from theives, they do a good job of keeping the door tight to the sides of the barn.
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Old 10-28-2011, 08:06 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I was thinking of doing a combination of clasps like that and some large brackets at the bottom which would engage when the doors were fully shut. I think that would eliminate the need to have a bottom track.
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Old 10-28-2011, 08:14 AM   #10 (permalink)
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You use those clasps shown above - one per side post, then you use another locking bar to lock 2 doors together.

Personally - I can't stand sliding doors.

If you don't use a bottom track, the door will slap against the side wall when it is open and the wind picks up.
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Old 10-28-2011, 09:16 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Maybe I'm missing something but my plan is to do a T shaped tab on the bottom inside edge of the door that will either engage a tab when it's fully open or fully closed so that the doors can't flop around in the wind.

I know it would leave me with a small tab at the bottom of the wall when the doors are closed but that's not a real big deal.
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Old 10-28-2011, 09:31 AM   #12 (permalink)
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to keep the doors from flopping in the wind and to secure them when closed, you can also use a pin that goes into a hole in the ground. think something like THIS
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Old 10-28-2011, 09:31 AM   #13 (permalink)
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This is what I'm talking about, obviously way out of scale but looking down from the top of the doors. I'd make these catches out of heavy flat stock and the tab would fit pretty snug in the slot so there wouldn't be a lot of movement even without a bottom track.

black is the wall, red is the door, blue is the T on the door and green is the slots on the wall.

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Old 10-28-2011, 09:35 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Can't seal the bottom worth a shit.
Maybe if you don't get snow, cold weather and rain, they would be OK at best.
Sliders SUCK.
Brand new ones suck, one year old ones suck worse, 10 year old ones REALLY suck.
For an open shed for storage and not mattering what runs/blows/slides under the doors, they are OK, not fine, not great, but OK at best.
Did I mention sliders suck?
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:09 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Can't seal the bottom worth a shit.
Maybe if you don't get snow, cold weather and rain, they would be OK at best.
Sliders SUCK.
Brand new ones suck, one year old ones suck worse, 10 year old ones REALLY suck.
For an open shed for storage and not mattering what runs/blows/slides under the doors, they are OK, not fine, not great, but OK at best.
Did I mention sliders suck?
I don't get snow where I am, if I do I won't be opening any shop doors until March. These doors aren't going to be out in the open, they're likely going to be under a large 12' overhang. It seems to me like a lot of people have trouble with the bottom track on these doors, something I'm not going to have to deal with. I'm also guessing that cheap or unmaintained hardware has a lot to do with it.
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:14 AM   #16 (permalink)
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I like my sliding barn style doors.

Made mine out of 2x3 angle iron. Faced them in Cedar. I made brackets with angle iron and use bolts to pull the doors shut and lock them tight to the building.

I don't open them daily so a a minute to unbolt them is no biggie and they are nice and secure.

Plan is to fill the inside cavity of the angle iron frame with foam for insulation. My slab is higher than the ground outside (gravel driveway) so I made the doors hang lower than the opening.

A couple cut strips of foam insulation seal up the bottom opening in the winter and sandwich between the door and slab.

Sure it takes a minute to open up but it was cheap, takes up no interior shop space, looks good and works for me.

I wouldn't do it on a garage I park a daily driver in, but for my man cave it works great.
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:35 AM   #17 (permalink)
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I have them on my shop. Hardware from Agri-supply ended up being the most expensive part. T11 siding and 1" pink insulation board sandwich. They have slide bars that lock them in place for security and guide wheels at the bottom to prevent sway. I do need to make a metal bar to hold the two doors together for extra security but I have a wooden one in place that works pretty well.

They are a pain to seal. I used felt tack on seals on the sides and that works pretty well. I need to pour a contoured ramp to deal with the gap at the bottom.

You do not want the doors in contact with the ground. They will drag and soak up water.

The best thing about them is that they don't eat into your head room IN the shop! I have material racks and lighting up there that I would not get good use of with rollups.
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Old 10-28-2011, 10:35 AM   #18 (permalink)
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I like my sliding barn style doors.

Made mine out of 2x3 angle iron. Faced them in Cedar. I made brackets with angle iron and use bolts to pull the doors shut and lock them tight to the building.

I don't open them daily so a a minute to unbolt them is no biggie and they are nice and secure.

Plan is to fill the inside cavity of the angle iron frame with foam for insulation. My slab is higher than the ground outside (gravel driveway) so I made the doors hang lower than the opening.

A couple cut strips of foam insulation seal up the bottom opening in the winter and sandwich between the door and slab.

Sure it takes a minute to open up but it was cheap, takes up no interior shop space, looks good and works for me.

I wouldn't do it on a garage I park a daily driver in, but for my man cave it works great.
Got any pictures?
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Old 10-28-2011, 11:01 AM   #19 (permalink)
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If I'm gonna have to open/close the door more than twice a day, then I prefer the rollup door, preferably with an electric opener. To my way of thinking, a shop needs a rollup and a barn needs a sliding door.

Cannonball track is the way to go if you want a sliding door. The square/rectangular track is shit.
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Old 10-28-2011, 11:27 AM   #20 (permalink)
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To lock two sliding doors use the hasp that is a large steel rod and drops into a hole in the floor. One on each door.

A lot of Cold Storage buildings use sliding doors in their freezers. So You can seal a sliding door pretty good.
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Old 10-28-2011, 12:02 PM   #21 (permalink)
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I've often wondered if something like this would work. What if you put a second interlocking rail system on the lower door. The door would be a bit wider than the opening of the shop so that the track would always be engaged and on the closed side you'd have a flared opening on the track to guide the door into place. That would keep the lower part of the door solidly mounted to the wall of the shop while avoiding the problems that come from having a track on the floor.

Kind of like this

inner shop opening is red
track on inside of door is blue
track on outside of barn is black

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Old 10-28-2011, 12:03 PM   #22 (permalink)
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Dad built a machine shop in 1967 in MI's northwestern Lower Peninsula. The main doors are 14' high, and I don't recall how wide. No bottom track, but there's a T-shaped bar assembly set in the concrete where the doors meet. Even in a stiff wind, these doors have not been a rattling problem at all, whether open or closed. I don't recall them ever having come off the track, not even once.

Edit: and even with the couple of hundred inches of show a year there, there's never been more than a short dusting of snow inside the building.

Last edited by ChiXJeff; 10-28-2011 at 12:04 PM.
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Old 10-28-2011, 12:11 PM   #23 (permalink)
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If I'm gonna have to open/close the door more than twice a day, then I prefer the rollup door, preferably with an electric opener. To my way of thinking, a shop needs a rollup and a barn needs a sliding door.

Cannonball track is the way to go if you want a sliding door. The square/rectangular track is shit.
Well I'm certainly not going for an electric opener, I'm just not ballin' like that just quite yet. One of my main reasons for liking sliders is to keep as much ceiling height as I can.
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Old 10-28-2011, 12:21 PM   #24 (permalink)
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I've often wondered if something like this would work. What if you put a second interlocking rail system on the lower door. The door would be a bit wider than the opening of the shop so that the track would always be engaged and on the closed side you'd have a flared opening on the track to guide the door into place. That would keep the lower part of the door solidly mounted to the wall of the shop while avoiding the problems that come from having a track on the floor.

Kind of like this

inner shop opening is red
track on inside of door is blue
track on outside of barn is black

For a single door you can just have a roller anchored horizontal on the floor to guide the door and a catch anchored on the opposite side. The put a latch on the door and wall.
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Old 10-28-2011, 03:16 PM   #25 (permalink)
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We used brush seals on our aircraft hangar doors. looked like these: http://www.precisionbrush.com/stock-...ush-seals.html

I like sliders personally. In some applications they just work better. Easier to secure/lock down and less chance of getting clipped because someone forgot to *fully* open the door.
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