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Thread: Plumbing a door - Overkill?

  1. #1
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    Plumbing a door - Overkill?

    I've never seen Tom Silva do it this way

    You might have read in my floor replacement thread that some of the new doors I'm installing are giving me a lot of grief. The rough openings are, well, very rough.

    I never dropped the bucks for a 6' level so I try to get by with my 4' - which is fine for 90% of the stuff I get involved in. However, a tough door install really calls out for a 6'. Not wanting to run to the Borg and drop $40+ (cheap) I came up with this idea.

    I ran a plumb line through the hinges knowing that if I could get it centered in all three hinges the door frame should be plumb both sideways and front to back. Made sense and it seems to have worked.

    I wouldn't think for a minute that I was the first to think of this. So, anyone else ever use this method?
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  2. #2
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    GENIUS!!!
    Jason Beam
    Sacramento, CA

  3. #3
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    Great idea.

    Back when I was doing construction inspection, it always amused and amazed me that nearly everything that gets built, from a shed to a highrise building, to a highway, relies on two very simple tools...a string and a bubble level.
    When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro. - Hunter S. Thompson
    When the weird get going, they start their own forum. - Vaughn McMillan

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  4. #4
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    Hey Rennie, just carefully rip yourself a very straight 6' board (78" would be even better) and tape your 4' level to it. Voila'....6' foot level. Double sided tape works good too.

    Using a longer level allows you to not only get the hinges plumb so that the door hangs properly, it also allows you to get the jamb straight using your shims, giving you an even reveal between the door and jamb.
    Thanks, Mark.

    Custom Bonehead.

    My diet is working good. I'm down to needing just one chair now.

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  5. #5
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    You know, that's danged smart! Never would have thought of that myself!

    But it wouldn't work in my house. That would leave the door plumb to the world... but nothing in my house is plumb to the world... So the door would look crooked!

    Thanks,

    Bill

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Lantry View Post
    You know, that's danged smart! Never would have thought of that myself!

    But it wouldn't work in my house. That would leave the door plumb to the world... but nothing in my house is plumb to the world... So the door would look crooked!

    Thanks,

    Bill
    Too bad you live 2400 miles away - we could tour each others home to see who could find the most crooked room.
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  7. #7
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    Hey nice work Doesn't sound too crazy... actually I have heard of some general contractors wanting the carpenters to do this instead of using levels. But this is on some of the premium commercial commercial jobs...probably like law offices n such. Never seen anyone actually do it, but if you think about it, you can't get more accurate than that... especially compared to someone eye-balling a bubble inbetween lines. Just takes a little more time, but hey if it's your house and your work, why not make it perfect!

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rennie Heuer View Post
    I've never seen Tom Silva do it this way
    I ran a plumb line through the hinges knowing that if I could get it centered in all three hinges the door frame should be plumb both sideways and front to back. Made sense and it seems to have worked.

    I wouldn't think for a minute that I was the first to think of this. So, anyone else ever use this method?

    Yep, sure have........many times, (til I FINALLY got tired of waiting for the thing to stop spinning or swinging in the most gentle Breeze) so a couple of months ago bought a 6 foot level.

    What you might be surprised at though, is where I bought it. I shopped 5 or 6 builders supply stores, and three Borgs, checking ever 6 ft level they had for straightness, and level accuracy in both horizontal and vertical planes and NONE had an accuracy that gave me any satisfaction, (especially for the price they were asking). On a rare stop to pick up a couple of sale items at Harbor Freight, as kind of a quirk, I decided to see just how far OFF their levels were, and MUCH to my surprise, the third one I picked up met ALL my test criteria with flying colors, and it Looked just like the High Dollar ones I had been looking at elsewhere, but was dirt cheap in comparison. I have been very pleased with it, and it sure sped up framing three walls and a door on my current project.
    Last edited by Nancy Laird; 09-24-2008 at 02:12 AM. Reason: Fixed quote tags

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rennie Heuer View Post
    Too bad you live 2400 miles away - we could tour each others home to see who could find the most crooked room.

    ...And they all lived together in a little crooked house



    ps: nursery rhyme...
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Norman Hitt View Post
    I shopped 5 or 6 builders supply stores, and three Borgs, checking ever 6 ft level they had for straightness, and level accuracy in both horizontal and vertical planes and NONE had an accuracy that gave me any satisfaction, (especially for the price they were asking). On a rare stop to pick up a couple of sale items at Harbor Freight, as kind of a quirk, I decided to see just how far OFF their levels were, and MUCH to my surprise, the third one I picked up met ALL my test criteria with flying colors, and it Looked just like the High Dollar ones I had been looking at elsewhere, but was dirt cheap in comparison. I have been very pleased with it, and it sure sped up framing three walls and a door on my current project.
    Norman,

    Would you list your test method here? I have a HF within lunch time striking distance and it might be worth my while to check them out.
    Thanks!!
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