All original period doors were made of wood. Unfortunately many of the original doors have been replaced with plastic doors. Unlike the new PVCu sash windows, new PVCu doors do not look anything like the original timber doors. Although they provide good insulation and are draught proof they are aesthetically wrong.
It is possible to have a secure, well insulated, draught proof wooden door, and the first impression of a well painted front door with brass door furniture is well worth the periodic maintenance required.
Original Front Doors
If you are lucky enough to have the original door on the house, it is worth giving a complete overhaul to the door, frame, and fanlight.Work needed, will depend on the condition of the door and can vary from just a new coat of paint to completely dismantling the door and rebuilding.
Below is a typical sequence showing the rebuilding of a
Remove door, hinges and door furniture.
Drill out mortise and tenon joint wedges and dismantle all door components.
Reconstruct the door, replacing any warped or rotten parts and any split panels.
Insulated panels, faced in wood, can be installed.
Glue all joints, replace and glue wedges.
Replace any defective panel mouldings. We can supply panel mouldings identical to the original.
Apply one coat of primer, two undercoats and two coats of gloss.
Clean, oil and refit hinges.
Re-hang door and fit new or existing door furniture.
The door will now be as good as it was when the house was built. Draught proofing can be fitted if required.
Above are the before and after pictures of a front door we have rebuilt. The glass was removed and the door rebuilt as original, as described above.
New or Replacement Front Doors
A new front door can be made in exactly the same style as the original. If the original door is missing then a copy can be made of an original neighbouring door.
It is sometimes possible to obtain a replacement door from a reclamation yard. It may take time to find the right style door and it will need adjusting to fit the existing frame.
Fanlights are the window above the front door, so called because many of the grand houses, such as 10, Downing Street, had the window above the door in a fan shape.
Originally single glazed, many will have the house number or name written in gold leaf on the internal face of the glass.
We can provide new double glazed fanlights with the traditional gold leaf name or number sign-written between the two pieces of glass.
To the right is a picture of a recent fanlight that we made and fitted. The number has been sign-written and gilded onto the rear of the outer piece of glass prior to the forming of the double glazed unit. This gives a authentic traditional appearance with all the benefits of double glazing. We can provide numbers or names in many original period lettering styles.