I finally decided to take on the task of building barn doors. Until now, and for the past 5 years, our barn has been without doors and doesn't look all that great. The wind carries the rain and snow into the building and the sunlight still wreaks havoc on the rubber tired implements and tractor. Most importantly though, Mrs. Schneider wanted doors. I thought about how best to accomplish this task. The openings are 10x10' and so that effectively ruled out plywood as I would have to piece together sheets or buy special 10' boards. I decided I would try to build a door using 1x6 rough cut spruce in a more traditional type of door. I was worried about weight, but I bought some BIG hinges and went ahead. Admittedly, I am probably the worst carpenter in the world. Nothing I have ever tried to build with wood has worked out terribly well. I just don't seem to have the patience for fitting things together properly. Give me a cutting wheel and a welder any day.
I layed out the boards side by side on the ground until I had the desired width and then snugged them together while screwing braces on the back side in a "Z" shape. To my surprise, and with considerable effort, the door came out square and even! A quick measure and a run with the cirular saw...and then a mighty heave to get it up there and I had half a barn door mounted. I was impressed enough that I duplicated my efforts and got the other half built and mounted in a very short time. The only screw-up was that I ran out of lag bolts to secure the hinges...I thought I had more than I actually did. I substituted a small hinge with wood screws for the time being. The door works well and looks really good in my opinion. I still need to mount a door stop on the header to stop the door from swinging inwards as far as it does, but that will not take long.
I still have two more openings to go before I am done. I will take it day-by-day and when I find some time, I will finish the doors this fall.