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Garage Awning

Make that door do double duty as a roof.
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In its simplest form this idea consists of reversing the mounting of the tracks for a conventional garage door so the door opens over the drive rather than into the interior by mounting it on a pergola or other decorative support. To improve the idea further allow the door to rise and ark over into a freestanding awning using supports or cables much as retractable awnings do. Providing a conventional track, that may be switched much as train tracks are, would allow conventional use when the awning is not desired. The unit might be designed to raise into the conventional position then extend to the awning position amending the function of the traditional opener. Turn that expensive patch of concrete into a functional outdoor room, or expand the function of your wood shop, service center or outdoor cafe with the extra sheltered space that you control.
WcW, Sep 08 2008

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       Great idea. I like the implementations where the garage door no longer takes up ceiling space while open. That's good for storing your canoe for easy loading or having garage lighting in the front half of the garage that isn't blocked when the door is open.
scad mientist, Sep 09 2008
  

       The idea actually occurred to me when considering how to make second story bedroom combine with a deck to form a more flexible space. It would be neat to implement this on a broader scale to produce a completely open first story atrium. Newer garage doors have passable R values and aesthetics. The idea didn't fit in my ocean freight container modular so I hope someone else can use it.
WcW, Sep 10 2008
  

       Perhaps the door could support itself in 'awning mode'. By designing a hinge which bends when it approaches the top of the doors parked position and locks into a panel when extended, you could eliminate any braces, supports or cables.
crazyrog17, Sep 10 2008
  

       that seemed simple enough to me. Alternatively you could use collapsible track ala drawer slides. The door goes up then slides out over the drive on rigid collapsible channel rails mounted to replace the ceiling guides.
WcW, Sep 10 2008
  

       I thought about this before and was going to go with a solid door with a couple 2x4's attached to the sides of the face of the door with hinges at the top and a cable or 2 to cantilever the door while opening. Now I think I like the idea of modifying the "normal" type door to optionally be able to open it up outward and vertically.
FlyingToaster, Sep 10 2008
  

       yes, and yet i can find nobody who is doing this. I think if it became in vogue manufacturers would produce them that way.
WcW, Sep 10 2008
  

       I feel a need to point out that swinging (rather than sliding) garage doors do this by default.
MechE, Sep 10 2008
  

       A swinging door- at least what I'm thinking of- is an accordion-style. When it's up, half sticks out, half sticks in. Some have one or two sections. So maybe make a one section type stick out.. farther?
Bcrosby, Sep 11 2008
  

       My parents have one, mind you it's probably 50 years old and suitable for a bomb shelter door, but it's a single piece, hinged near the top with a heavy counterweight above the hinge. When open it projects out maybe 8 feet past the front of the garage.
MechE, Sep 11 2008
  

       [MechE] The garage door style you describe does seem to need no more improvement in this respect. The one piece doors I've seen have a horizontal track a the top, so the top slides back into the garage. The bottom swings forward a bit and ends up sticking out one or two feet. This requires a couple feet of clearance in front of the garage door to open it. It sounds like your parents' door would need quite a bit more clearance to open. Ideally we could have the best of both worlds: the zero clearance requirements of a 4 section door that slides up a track, plus the benefits of having it turn into an awning...
scad mientist, Sep 11 2008
  

       yes, the "canopy" style. Just enough canopy to hint that there might be something to the idea.
WcW, Sep 11 2008
  

       //Ideally we could have the best of both worlds://
I was thinking if you cut the rails at the curve, then you could either slide the door up and inwards as usual, or open the door outwards ("hinged" at top) rails and all... but those doors aren't strong enough laterally to do that without fuss unless the rails included a piece welded across the bottom.
I think we need [MechE]'s bombshelter door, but on rails so you can optionally rotate it into the garage in one piece...
  

       Or you could just suck it up and get an RV canopy :)   

       [+]
FlyingToaster, Sep 12 2008
  
      
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