Douglas Fir

Material List:

– (1) 36” solid Douglas Fir door

– (1) brass deadbolt

– (2) 10′ long 6” baseboard

– (2) 10′ long  trim molding

– (3) brass hinges

– (1) tube construction adhesive

– (1) small box of 2” torque screws

Tool List:

– tape measure, pencil, tri square, chisel, chalk line

– cordless drill with torque bits

– drill bits

– whole saw set

– circular saw, table saw


This was possibly the most ridiculous idea ever. I installed a 36” solid Douglas Fir hardwood door on my bus. How do I begin? Hesitantly, I removed the door handle sway bar, and unbolted all the locking mechanisms. I couldn’t find any easy way to remove the doors properly, to save them, so I opted for the angle grinder and removed them within a few cuts on the hard-wheel.

After the doors were completely removed I put a sanding wheel on the angle grinder and lightly sanded the frame that was to be the door jamb.

I laid the 6”  poplar baseboard on the table saw and cut two at 6’7”.  I secured the boards to the frame, building my door jamb, with construction adhesive and 2” torque screws. I had to pre drill the holes to get through the framework. The door is 1 3/4″ thick.  I cut the trim boards the same lengths and installed them so that there would be a door catch. I fastened them with the air powered staple gun.

I marked the door for the hinge assembly just the same as I had with the interior door. After making the lines I neatly chiseled them out about 1/8” deep. With the 2” torque screws I fastened the hinges. Marty and I then set up the door and placed it in the frame. The door fits moderately well. I marked the hinges on the door jamb and chiseled the out as well. Once the hinges were screwed in, the door is mounted.

I realized the door had a resistance in opening and closing properly. I had to take the door back off, and with the belt sander buzz the inside hinged edge down. It took a bit of time to adjust the door properly, but with enough patience and persistence, the door is now installed, opening and closing perfectly.

On the other end of the door jam I marked the lines to where the deadbolt would be sliding through and the door catch. With the cordless drill and the proper bits I cut out the holes for the locking mechanisms. Once this was finished, I mounted the deadbolt and standard lock. The door is now lockable from the inside with the deadbolt, and functions with much ease.

The door needs to be protected from the elements as much as possible. Once the door was installed I then took my portal sander and generously sanded the entire door, inside and out, and all the edges. With the same Spar Polyurethane I used on the counter-tops, I put three coats on the door throughout the next few days. This sealed up the door with a thick base, making the water impenetrable. The door cases had slight openings on the outside of the bus, where it met the frame. I neatly worked silicone in the

cracks, sealing up any chance of future water damage.

Making It All Work

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