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Serviceable Pocket Door

Reduce effort needed for repairs
  [vote for,

In short: Assemble pocket door frames/casements with easily removed and replaced fasteners. Something like clips that hold trim panels inside automobiles, as one possible example.

Why: Most pocket door casements are held together with any or all of nails, glue, caulk, and painted over. As a result, servicing a pocket door (even simple things like replacing worn rollers) is a lot of work to take everything apart. Sometimes you even need to cut through the wall. Getting everything back together - just as much work.

I have no idea why they’re made the way they are. Even if the things can go years or decades without needed repair, it’s shouldn't be so hard.

a1, Mar 28 2021

Typical pocket door repair https://www.youtube...watch?v=VoOBib-BGk4
just the first couple minutes shows how stupid these things usually are [a1, Mar 28 2021]

Star Trek https://www.youtube...watch?v=FMX9ZAD_h3g
incidents with doors [a1, Mar 29 2021]

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       If it's small enough to fit in your pocket, it won't be very serviceable as a door. If it's useful as a portal through a wall, it won't fit in your pockets, unless you have very large trousers, or unless I'm missing some vital extra piece of information.
pocmloc, Mar 28 2021

       If the house shifts, and is therefore out of level, then you do* have to disassemble/ adjust/ reassemble the door, door frame, wall, and possibly the floor. If the door rollers themselves need servicing, you still have to disassemble/ adjust/ reassemble the door, door frame, wall, and possibly the floor.   

       Bandman's** bedroom pocket door developed a personality disorder, and because we'd have to disassemble the whole side of the cabin to repair it, we simply shoved the door as far into the frame as it would go***, spackled over it, and hung a barn door slider outside.   

       *Unless the seismic activity causing the shift affected structural integrity so as to allow for complete and exciting demolition.   

       **Not Batman, Bandman. Similar, for different reasons. See 'One-Man Rocker Band' idea for more details.   

       ***with assistance of the thumping wrench, as the 8lb maul would be overkill, unless conditions of * above are met.
Sgt Teacup, Mar 28 2021

       // I'm missing some vital extra piece of information // Yes, that piece of information being “what is a pocket door.” If it’s not a known expression in your part of the world, see the linked video. But if you’re just playing for comic effect, do carry on.
a1, Mar 28 2021

       oh, those bloody things. Use barn doors and don't butt the cabinets right up to the wall.
FlyingToaster, Mar 28 2021

       I was imagining a hole in my pocket that could be opened and closed, and wondering how it might be of service.
pertinax, Mar 29 2021

       //I was imagining a hole in my pocket that could be opened and closed, and wondering how it might be of service.//   

       The answer is NSFW.
AusCan531, Mar 29 2021

       My brother and I cut pocket doors into our winter jackets in order to fish change from mall wishing wells with magnets when we were in our teens.   

       Does that count?   

       [+] Barn doors are nice, but they require wall space on one side or the other. Most pocket doors I've experienced were in situations where a barn door could not fit: probably because no one in their right mind would install a pocket door unless there was no other good alternative. If someone made pockets doors that were serviceable and high quality without being exorbitantly priced, they might not be such a bad option.
scad mientist, Mar 29 2021

       A sliding door! Very fancy. Now it starts to make sense.
pocmloc, Mar 29 2021

       Is making pocket doors reliable perhaps the biggest technological achievement of the Star Trek universe? Considering how even the slightest wood warp can render a standard pocket door a squealing impediment to inter-room movement, how did the Enterprise handle even slight battle damage? "The shields are down captain, and every single door on the ship is jammed".   

       Maybe inventing the transporter was just easier than fixing that problem?
bs0u0155, Mar 29 2021

       // doors on the Enterprise // There were crew members on the other side of the wall where you wouldn't see them, pushing and pulling the doors and making a "whooshing" noise as needed. And they still didn't work reliably <link>.
a1, Mar 29 2021

       I just thought of a simpler way to do this. Make the door itself in sections, so you could take it apart to remove without tearing everything else apart.
a1, Mar 30 2021

       [a1], clever solution ^   

       Here at HB, we've formed an elite team of hip, relaxed problem solvers, deployed around the world via the interwebs. You appear to be the newest qualifier. Welcome.
Sgt Teacup, Mar 30 2021

       //Make the door itself in sections,//   

       Maybe you could fit a conventional door into the pocket door? so, if you get trapped behind a pocket door that is stuck closed, you could go and get help.
bs0u0155, Mar 30 2021

       I haven't been stuck by a closed one. Yet. What inspired this idea was a door that stuck halfway closed last week. I think one of the rollers got knocked off the track, as the door was very tilted. Took a lot of work to get it back on track.   

       Door works now but is not smooth. Not sure if I want to fix/replace it or just jam it full open and hang a curtain over that doorway.
a1, Mar 30 2021

       OK now I am up to speed by what a "pocket door" is supposed to be, I can meaningfully contribute.   

       It seems to me that the problem is in the lack of normal doors.   

       Suggested is to make two adjacent doorframes.   

       Two normal doors are hung on special 180° hinges such that they can shut and latch in either of the two adjacent doorframes, each door shutting flush with the surface of the wall.   

       The sliding door runs in the space between the two normal doors.   

       This solves all conceivealbel problems.   

       In normal use, the two normal doors are both shut to the same side, and the pocket door slides between them.   

       A pocket-door preferring user can slide the sliding door and pass through, sliding the sliding door closed behind them. A normal door preferring user can open the normal doors and pass through them, shutting them both behind them.   

       In maintenance mode, one of the normal doors can be opened to access the fiendish mechanism of the sliding door.   

       In prank mode, the two normal doors can be each shut in a different direction. This means that anyone trying to use the sliding door will find a normal door hidden behind it.
pocmloc, Mar 30 2021

       pocmloc, that doesn't solve anything. Pocket doors are used where there isn't space to swing a "normal" door.
a1, Mar 30 2021

       Rollup garage door. Or even roll-sideways.
RayfordSteele, Mar 31 2021

       If there's not space to swing a normal door, how does a human pass through the doorway?
pocmloc, Mar 31 2021

       They simply fold spacetime and appear at a later time in which they've already completed the task on the other side of the doorway.
Usually the issue is some architectural mishap like a toilet that is a bit close to the door swing radius and a hallway on the other side.
You can usually tell spacetime folding home owners by the state of their toilets, which are never clean because they don't bother with them except in alternate timelines.
RayfordSteele, Mar 31 2021

       //the fiendish mechanism of the sliding door.//   

       The only way I see around this is a big weld-in steel structure, otherwise there's just too much opportunity for warp. While we're at it, lets have polished tracks and fully ball raced stepped rollers. We also have to mitigate other failure modes, when people (especially those who lack mechanical empathy) try to move pocket doors, they inevitably apply asymetric forces that can start to rotate the door and make it jump it's tracks. To mitigate this, a large shaft protruding from the pocket side of the door several feet, possibly through an outside wall, to provide extra stability.   

       The other problem with pocket doors, or advantage of conventional doors, is that you have to move the whole mass. A normal door is swinging through an arc and as such behaves like half it's mass to the operator. So, some sort of counterweight system would be the way to go.   

       //Pocket doors are used where there isn't space to swing a "normal" door.//   

       I would suggest a room too small for a door isn't big enough. Although Pocket doors are often used for style reasons. I mean, they don't seal well against noise or draughts and they're hard to make secure, so aesthetics is all that's left.
bs0u0155, Mar 31 2021

       // aesthetics is all that's left. // True. If building new I wouldn't have them. But the two I do have were here when I bought the house, and remodeling to change the existing floor plan is out of scope.
a1, Mar 31 2021

       //those who lack mechanical empathy//   

       Shouldn't there be a shaming pseudoscientific epithet for this group?
pertinax, Mar 31 2021

       Schlemeil? Klutz? Oaf? Lout? Bull-in-a-china-shop?
RayfordSteele, Apr 01 2021

       I didn’t know of the term pocket doors, but now I see. I think you are right +
xandram, Apr 01 2021

       xandram, pocmloc, pertinax - what do you call these in your part of the world? "Sliding door that retracts into a hollow space in a wall" is a mouthful.
a1, Apr 01 2021

       "sliding door" covers all possible permutations, they are rare enough in domestic contexts (and usually cheap and ill-fitting if not broken) that one does not usually mention them.
pocmloc, Apr 01 2021

       I never knew the technical term and guess I just called them sliding doors.Whereas I can see the term pocket door being more accurate. I don’t know what the rest of the people call them. I was thinking maybe builders know this term.
xandram, Apr 02 2021

       Cavity doors/sliders here in NZ. Ha, pocket door, sounds like a cat flap.
And yes they are a pain to service. I agree, large removable top architraves (screwed) that expose the track and bearing mechanisms for servicing and/or door extraction.
wjt, Apr 02 2021


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