Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

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Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby purplehouse » Thu Nov 18, 2010 1:54 pm

A couple of areas of trim around the interior glass of our 100 year old front door are falling off. At some point the glass cracked and the previous owners tryed to seal with silicone but we think excessive humidity in the house created condensation on the window then rolled down in to the trim and slowly rotted it out.

I have been told I can replace the glass oval but the window guy would be unable to replace the trim around the interior. My usual carpenter is really busy. We live in a rural location so carpenters are at a minimum. Is there a source I can purchase a oval trim kit?

I am overwhelmed by this problem because I don't want more damage to happen to our beautiful door!

Any ideas or resources would be much appreciated

http://www.flickr.com/photos/54201398@N06/5187753912/
http://flic.kr/p/8UqAuS
http://flic.kr/p/8UqAv3
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby sooth » Fri Nov 19, 2010 11:10 pm

I would suggest that you wait until your carpenter can get to it. I would say that you need a new custom made curved moulding (in oak) that would either need to be steam bent, or laminated.

If you really can't wait at all, and you feel quite handy, you should be able to make a curved moulding fairly easily, but you need a good quality table saw (preferably something with a zero-clearance fence - for safety reasons), with a push stick (absolutely necessary for this). Optionally a small planer would be nice, but not 100% necessary (though it would do a much nicer job). You will also need a router and sand paper, wood glue, small finishing nails, chisels, etc.

What you need to do is cut an oak plank into thin strips (maybe just a hair thinner than 1/8") using the table saw. Cut as many as you need to make-up the thickness of the moulding. So if the moulding is 1/2" you would need 4 strips @ 1/8" or 5 slightly thinner ones.

Make a cardboard template using the door (make it fairly accurate). Then make a jig so that you can bend your moulding around it. Make the moulding at least 6" longer on each side. Put glue in between all the layers of your sandwich, then clamp it around the jig (making sure that you don't glue it TO the jig). Let it dry overnight, un-clamp, scrape excess glue, trim, route, sand, and then fit it into your door (you may need to use a chisel to trim the ends of the old moulding in the door for a clean fit.

This is a pretty quick explanation, so if you plan to do this and need help, feel free to ask.
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby Andy in NH » Sat Nov 20, 2010 8:09 am

Actually it appears that the original trim was made from one large board, cut and shaped to a pattern. Fairly typical. The problem is that many times when doing this you end up with cross grained trim which is very weak. You can see this in the picture of the right side trim . The best solution is to make several pieces of trim so that the slope of the grain (relative to the long axis of the piece) stays fairly minimal.

It would likely be best to wait until your carpenter has some time. When I have fabricated custom curved trim I make a template and then a final base template out of MDF before mounting the subject wood and running it through an elliptical moulder (like aWilliams & Hussey). I always make the pieces longer and then trim to fit. The process is very expensive for short runs but can provide an exact reproduction. With patience and skill you may be able to do this with a bandsaw and router.
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby jade mortimer » Sat Nov 20, 2010 10:20 am

i say make a template and send it to casey (sombriel)!!

the responses here are excellent and informative...unfortunately, i don't think your average carpenter can replicate an oval for your door...if your carpenter is above average, you are very fortunate...now that you have feedback from members, you will be better informed to have a discussion with your carpenter...

hope it all works out for you......
...jade
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby sooth » Sat Nov 20, 2010 1:24 pm

The added problem with simply making a curved cut in a large board is that it will not flex easily, and it's incredibly hard to get a nice even thickness throughout the length of the moulding. Also, it involves a hell of a lot of sanding. The problem with making a curve out of many shorter sections is that you have a lot of joints, which you would want to keep to a minimum since this is an exterior door.

The curved moulding (glued up from thin strips) gives you an incredibly strong (and flexible - to a degree) moulding. It also winds up being a uniform thickness. It's also not very difficult to make from scratch, but it's time consuming.
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby Sombreuil_Mongrel » Sat Nov 20, 2010 3:14 pm

If I had to make this I would rather laminate it, as SOOTH said. I would use a stack of veneers to get to the thickness, and use the door as the form, making a complementary caul to get the inner surface of the curve. Then flatten the back on a jointer if need be, rip it to thickness on the tablesaw, and use a router table for the round-over on both edges. There you are.
It's not too hard to do it from solid (I recommend two-pieceing it) but more prone to breakage. When sanding the curve, I make a sanding block from the cut-off and glue sandpaper to it. Instant contour sander.
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby Andy in NH » Sat Nov 20, 2010 8:29 pm

Most of my work is restoration of old sash (like Jade) and I make the needed millwork as required when I can. On a private residence you can do what you please, but on many projects I need to stick with orginal methods and materials as closely as possible.

Couple of things to point out. In the pictures of the door, I see water staining/discoloration and no bedding compound for the glass. If you don't protect against water intrusion, no method of repair will last. There should be some type of bedding or caulk used aournd the perimeter of the glass once the final repair is made. Also, as for making the trim, I usually do not sand much at all. I use shapers and moulders (yes - this is equipment several steps above what average homeowner uses) to make clean cuts with a minimum of fuss. As for shorted segments being outside - I always seal end grain before assembly so that really is not an issue.

The photos below show a sample of some moldings made for an arch top window and then the process of making the arch top itself for a replacement sash. Note the picture with the tennon trimmed and pegged and see how the grain slope is minimized. In this case I used three segments instead of the original two and used better joinery for a much stronger window. Final installation photo is at the end.

Curved trim
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Three segments laid out over MDF guide base. The segments are cut and then fastened to the MDF base, which is then flipped and used with a flush cutting bit with top bearing in the shaper table (with a router adapter in this case).
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After trimming, the piece has been flipped back over. The trim bit is visible.
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A floating tenon is installed.
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Tenon has been pegged and trimmed. Note relatively low slope.
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Finished arch sgment. The MDF base was still attched as this went though the molder, maintaining the curve without any interaction on my part (sorry no pictures). A rabbeting cutter was used in the shaper to make the glazing rabbet. Next step will be final assembly and glazing.
Image

Finished window installed in a clocktower.
Image
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby purplehouse » Tue Nov 23, 2010 1:18 pm

Thanks to everyone for your responses. Not sure we have anyone as talented as several of you in our area!

Sadly it looks like the damage is even worse. I noticed the exterior part of the door on the other side of the damaged area is now starting to come off. It has been 10 degrees for several days and the wood has really expanded to the point of being able to see through cracks to the outside..not very efficient heat wise.

I guess I will be looking for a new door..I feel like I am mourning an old friend.
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby moonshadow317 » Tue Nov 23, 2010 8:00 pm

Instead of getting rid of your door why not put some glazier points to hold in the glass and glaze around the edge of the glass. Once the glaze sets you can use some acrylic artist paint and an artist brush to paint the glaze to match the wood door.
Karen
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Re: Replacement trim around oval glass light in exterior door.

Postby sooth » Tue Nov 23, 2010 8:22 pm

I agree, a small crack would not be a good enough reason for me to scrap a nice old (original) door. And the modern crappy doors that are available now won't be nearly as well made or sturdy as your old door. To get a comparatively made door in solid wood would cost several thousand dollars.

If you're that concerned with air tightness, I'd consider installing a glass storm door on the exterior, which would also protect your door from further damage from the elements.
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