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Types Of Sliding Doors

  • Designs
  • Types of mechanisms
  • Types of locks
  • Advantages and disadvantages
  • Some recommendations for the care of sliding doors - the pencil case

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Interior sliding doors are in great demand. Now with "pencil” profiles. A special box in which the sliding door is hidden.

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Before you decide what mechanism will be used when installing the sliding door, it is important to decide on the type of structure itself. A variety of models are offered, among which you can choose the most appropriate, taking into account the area of the room.

The most popular option is swinging doors. They have a long history and an extremely simple principle of operation. The door is mounted on hinges and opens in a certain direction. These models have been in use for centuries, but their main drawback is that the open position takes up quite a lot of space.

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For this reason, the inner room sliding systems of the “pencil” type that became very popular. Because when opening and closing a sliding door it does not take up much space and does not affect nearby surroundings (such as banging into walls).The following types of sliding doors are the most well known, based on the type of design: single and double systems, radius and folding.

A single door is the simplest model. Such systems have one leaf, which, moving along the guides, is usually retracted to the right side (the direction of the door movement can be chosen individually).

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The double wing profiles have two flaps, which open up to both sides according to the elevator principle. The flaps of these two models in the open position are located along the wall or can go into specially built grooves, which can be added during construction. In this case, it will be a closed-type system that usually must be built-in.

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Doors of radius type are perhaps the most creative and innovative for the design of the apartment. The presence of such a profile will give the room a rather refined and non-standard look. Their main feature is, as a rule, a semicircular shape. In this design, there are no straight lines, and all angles are smoothed. It is recommended to install a door-case of such a model in rooms with a contemporary design, perfectly complements it. The radius profile is also suitable for small rooms because the lack of right angles will make
the room more spacious visually.

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And finally, the folding type. Open these doors on the principle similar to an "accordion". Sometimes it is also called the "tram" mechanism, as the opening system resembles a design in a tram. This profile consists of panels of the same size (10 15 cm), otherwise opening the door will be problematic. In turn, systems of folding type can be presented in the form of a “book”. That is, the design consists of only two panels, and when opened, part of the door folds in half. To save space, folding-type structures are a very suitable option.

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“In the production of doors-cases, various materials are used. Pencil systems can also be made of glass.”

Types of mechanisms

After the principle of operation of the structure is chosen, it is necessary to pay extreme attention to its sliding mechanism.

They can be divided into the following categories.

  • Suspension mechanism is the simplest, and therefore quite reliable. Such a mechanism is able to withstand a large load. Polymer rollers move on the bearings. As a result, the door opens easily, smoothly and silently.

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  • Barn type. Usually, this mechanism is used when the interior of the room is designed in a loft-style (when more vintage elements are incorporated into a modern room) or retro. The design, in this case, has an old or rustic look, and the mechanisms themselves are left uncovered. This design operates based on a system of two large metal rollers.

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  • The telescopic mechanism is used on systems with two or more leaves. The mechanism itself is quite complex and is used much less frequently than the usually suspended mechanism. The doors are suspended on a parallel system of guides and are connected by a special system of synchronizers, such that, when you open one door leaf, the second opens automatically. The same principle of operation implies asynchronous mechanism.

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Types of the locking mechanism

We should also consider the locking mechanism of sliding doors. It is necessary to pay attention to the material from which it is made, as well as to some types of locking mechanisms.

They can be represented by the following types.

  • Harpoon mechanism. Mainly installed on single-leaf, and more rarely on double-leaf structures, the flaps of which move to the wall. The mechanism itself is fixed on the door, and the reciprocal plate is attached to the wall. When the door closes, the tongue of the mechanism enters the opening of the slat, ensuring the slabs do not move.

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  • Push-button mechanism. Such a model is used, as a rule, only on double doors. The option of a push-button mechanism is well suited for mirrored or glass doors. In this mechanism, there is a special rod, which rests on the second door and does not allow it to open.

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  • Magnetic mechanism. The main advantage of this mechanism is its small size. In this case, the fixation of the door is ensured by the magnet. However, when choosing a locking mechanism, it is worth remembering that a magnet has a tendency to demagnetize quickly, especially if the weight of the structure is not taken into account and the agent has too much load.

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Ways to open the case door are listed below.

  • Mechanical. The most common and easiest option. The door opens in this case with the application of force to it.
  • Auto. It requires an electrical connection or can sometimes run on battery power. The principle of operation of this method is to respond to an object approaching the door, and automatically turn on the opening mechanism. This type of opening design is often found in large supermarkets and offices.

It is necessary to allocate a number of major components that are included in the foam system.

  • Door leaf;
  • Penal sliding system;
  • Mechanical latches and motion stops;
  • Fittings (includes a set of wheels and door handles);
  • Cassette.

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Advantages and disadvantages

Reviews of buyers who purchased the door-case, as a rule, the most positive.

The following advantages of a sliding-type system were noted.

  • Significant savings in indoor space;
  • The door-threshold not taking up too much space;
  • The door does not close by itself and will not slam with drafts;
  • No noise when opening.

Some cons of the sliding construction were highlighted.

  • More difficult installation process;
  • More expensive installation;
  • Low noise insulation (if you choose the system of the correct thickness, then this disadvantage can be avoided; you can also choose a special gasket from felt);
  • Retractable rollers may deteriorate over time, so you should pay special attention to the sliding mechanism when choosing or have a set of spare rollers. 

Obviously, the advantages of sliding case doors more than compensate for their disadvantages.

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Some recommendations for the care of the door-pencil case

In order for the sliding door to last for a long time and there was no inconvenience in its operation, it is necessary to take into account a number of rules for caring for the system.

  • Avoid high humidity in the room, as the door material can deform from it;
  • Avoid debris in the guides and sliding mechanism;
  • Periodically clean the sliding structure with a vacuum cleaner;
  • Watch out for wear on the sliding mechanism.

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If you follow the installation recommendations, the foam system will work flawlessly and will last a long time.

The installation of the door-case can be formulated as follows.

  • To install the sliding structure the wall must be flat. This will ensure the correct operation of the sliding door and will avoid distortions.
  • Each sliding system is accompanied by a scheme for its installation, which needs to be followed precisely during self-assembly.
  • At the first stage, it is especially important to make accurate measurements for future design. When calculating the length of the guide rail, it is worth remembering that it should be equal to twice the width of the doorway.

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  • It is necessary to accurately calculate the width of the case. If the cassette is narrow, it will constantly interfere with the smooth opening of the door.
  • The space between the door and the floor should not exceed 5 mm, otherwise the sound insulation will decrease. Incorrect measurements are the most common mistake when installing sliding systems.
  • It is necessary to take into account the lifting capacity of the sliding mechanism since the door leaves have different weights, and the mechanism must be selected individually for each.

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  • Door-case should be installed on the already finished floor and made to the wall.
  • If the structure is installed to the supporting wall, then a frame should be fastened to it, which is sheathed with plasterboard. When finished, putty is to be applied on top, where it will be painted or wallpapered.
  • After installation of the door-case, the following materials are usually used for its finishing: plasterboard, plywood, plaster.

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The sliding door model "case" is an excellent choice for owners of small apartments, because this system allows you to save a large amount of storage space. An important aspect when choosing a door-case is the sliding mechanism. Penal designs look creative and give the room a certain modern style. The main requirement is to correctly and precisely install the sliding system and carefully monitor its careful operation.

1 comment

  • Hello. Thank you for such a well written and technical description of the many different door types. There is only one thing I’d like to know more about as for my own projects. The counterweight system and how to properly and proficiently employ one set of counterweight to assist a wood top hung roller sliding door. I designed something different. Something that’s quite frankly a brand new design that came to me in my sleep. It’s a system that’s center mounted to the door itself. I’ve designed a pivot point in the center of the door with a round counterweight a half inch wide by 9" in circumference and weighs 11 pounds. On the other wide off the door is a vertical slot and a lever that protrudes only an inch. When you pull the lever down it pivots the ‘rail’ the round counterweight sits upon and said weight rolls to the edge of my 38" door, applying the counterweight balance to a cable hooked to a pulley opposite of that edge and then mounted to the edge where the weight has rolled to, effectively putting force to draw the door to that side. When you push the lever all the way up the rail then pivots in the opposite direction which of course adds the counterweight to that side and effectively opens the door. I would love to share my invention with you as soon as I finish my prototype. Thank you very much for your time.


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