Tuesday, March 19, 2013

the Front Door

We saved all the small projects for the end... Like fixing the front door hardware, painting the entry, and the list truly doesn't end. While home on maternity leave I was ambitious to get lots of these small things accomplished. Little did I realize that it would be in half hour blocks of time, and how much fun it is to just hang out with my little lady!

Cut to the chase, the front door hardware never really worked, and had been hacked many years prior to us. The only thing securing us from the outside was a dead bolt, not original to the house.

While my parents were here and keeping the Bean occupied, we took the door hardware apart and started the quest to get it working again. First stop, Rejuvenation. They were wonderful and explained to me what was broken, and how they didn't have the resources to fix it. Dang it!

Problem 1: the thumb latch on the exterior was broken and needed a new tab braised (welded) on to engage the mortise again. Luckily, there is a machine shop (Gilbertson Machine) a few blocks away and I was able to get it repaired for less than $100! They were great and had it back to me the next day!

Problem 2: the door hardware on the inside of the door was crap. And coincidentally, all hardware was on sale at Rejuvenation the weekend we were there. Score! A new doorknob and plate were purchased to match the rest of the house, as we slowly update all our faceplates, hinges, etc.

New Knob and Dead Bolt, latch

Problem 3: we can't lock the door other than the dead bolt. After searching the salvage bins at Rejuvenation and coming up empty, I stopped by Old Portland (who recently moved nearby) and they had an identical mortise to ours, but with a thumb latch to secure the door. Hooray!

Problem 4: the thumb latch only secures the door from the inside. What about a new key to lock the door from the outside? Enter, Atlasta lock on NE Grand. I took the mortise to them and in less than five minutes and $15 later, I was on my way home with a new cylinder and lock to operate the door!

Thumb Latch repair, New Lock Cylinder Installed

Problem 5: the previous homeowners drilled through the front face plate to put a doorknob in when the thumb latch broke. So I'm still on the hunt for a brass finial of sorts, to cover this part up. Big bummer, if you ask me...

 Just need a brass finial to cover the hole drilled

So how does it all look? It only took us 4.5 years to get the front door hardware working.

PS: Don't look to closely at the door itself, it needs a lot of work... More to come on this!

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