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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have to make five screen doors in my shop. The plan called for custom mahogany screen doors but the architect asked if I would use something different than mahogany because she has had trouble with mahogany doors. She suggested cedar.

I have made screen doors with cedar before and I find there are two drawbacks to cedar doors.
1) way to much movement. I made one for my house and it nearly swings by the stops in the winter and rubs in the summer.
2) they split way to easy. Not the most durable wood.

I was wondering how vertical grain fir would be for screen doors. They will be painted although all the exterior doors are VGF so maybe she would like to see clear finish on them.

Any thoughts

Also I need to install bronze screening in them along with the 30 screen panels I am making. Do they make a tool to help pull the screen tight? I had one done by a glazing company and they did not get it as tight as I would have liked. I may just do it myself. Now I am hoping to find a 4'x100' roll under $500 bucks
 

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are they under cover? maybe white oak or spanish cedar?
are the screens going to be put in a panel?

i saw Norm do a screen porch a long time ago and he butted 2 panels together,he stapled the screen to the top of one panel then elevated the 2 ends sort of a shallow v like,he stapled the screen to the end of the second panel removed the blocks and pressed down both ends which streched the screen tight

he stapled off the screening then cut the panels apart
 

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So many of our T&G porch floors are painted fir. They seem to hold up well enough....

if you can seal them up real well after the install I think you'll be okay. They're going to move no matter what though.

I have a funny theory about ext. trim storage...IMO, if we have a porch floor, facia, casing etc...we should store it outdoors stickered and covered, but let it adjust to the exterior rather than sitting dry and warm indoors until install.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
are they under cover? maybe white oak or spanish cedar?
are the screens going to be put in a panel?

i saw Norm do a screen porch a long time ago and he butted 2 panels together,he stapled the screen to the top of one panel then elevated the 2 ends sort of a shallow v like,he stapled the screen to the end of the second panel removed the blocks and pressed down both ends which streched the screen tight

he stapled off the screening then cut the panels apart
Another good tip from Norm.
Thanks, I just might try that technic.

Two of the doors are well under cover, two are somewhat under cover and one is exposed directly to weather. This house is right on the ocean so the wind will blow water everywhere. All the doors will be subject to a lot of moisture.
I have never used spanish cedar but I read good things about it. Is it harder than red cedar?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I decided to go with the Spanish Red Cedar for the screen doors I have to make. I have not used this material before so I was not sure how I was going to like it. The material they delivered to my shop was wonderfull.
IMG_1531.jpg

It cleaned up real nice. Not a bad board in the bunch. With such nice straight grain, I had no trouble cutting the mortise and tennon joints. I inspected my mortising chisle before I started and it did not look all that sharp but it was still a breeze with this material.

How long do you make your tennons for a door like this. I made these 1.5". You think that is to short?
IMG_1534.jpg

This picture is just dry fit. I put them together with West System last night. One of my men worked tonight sanding them. I will then plow them out for the screen and screen stop.
IMG_1544.jpg
 

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Ya, Norms way works great. If the panels are 4' wide I found about a 2" block was enough with bronze screening. If I remember right Norm was using fiberglass screening on wide panels and was using milk creates.

Little story about bronze screening and what you get for that $500.

A friend of mine built a camp on a lake in NH where the mosquito is the state bird.It was in the early '50's and he used bronze screening. Well in the mid '90's he was going to remove the camp and build a year round home. He contracted with someone to cut the old camp in half and haul it away but first he wanted to remove the screening so he could reuse it on the new porch that he was going to be sitting on.

Well he is still sitting there enjoying the value of this product probably more so than any other product that he has come across in his 80 plus years.
 
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