Nothing says barn like a big, rolling barn door. The right door can be beautiful. It can capture the light and throw it deep into the aisle. The door is the first thing you touch when you arrive at your barn, and the last thing you touch when you leave. The barn door keeps the rain out and the heat in. So it’s worth spending some time considering how it’s designed.
Manufacturers – Barn doors may be handmade or purchased. While you may find a reason to build a custom door, first look at the manufactured products. You might just find exactly what you’re looking for! Many manufacturers also allow for customization in size, shape, materials, hardware, glass placement and configuration. You may even be able to customize the placement of glass “mullions” or dividers.
Materials – Barn doors are made primarily of wood or metal. The material you choose should harmonize with the rest of the materials in the barn. If you find something you like, consider purchasing windows that are made by the same manufacturer, or at least made of similar materials. This will unify the look of your barn.
Shape and Size – When sizing your door, consider the height of your barn, the vehicles that need to be driven into the barn and the proportions of the door. Doors should be at least nine feet wide to comfortably drive through. You may consider designing the door so that it is almost the full width of the aisle for optimal traffic and air flow. For a beautiful look, consider ordering a door that is much higher than strictly necessary. This can give the inside of the barn a cathedral feel.
For wide openings, two rolling doors are more practical than one. It’s easier to lock two doors together than to lock one door against the building.
Hardware – Barn doors may swing or slide. Large doors typically slide. For exterior barn doors, the top side of the roller track should be protected to prevent it from getting gummed up with leaves and debris. Interior doors can have exposed rollers, if you prefer that style. You can also consider using rolling doors in other spaces on your property if you like the look.
Hardware for your barn door is typically purchased from the manufacturer of the door. If you’re building a door yourself, consider purchasing the hardware from a barn door manufacturer. There are many available styles and finishes. However, if you’re inspired by something specific, you may be able to get custom hardware made locally. Beautiful hardware will add elegance to your barn that you will appreciate every day.
The well-designed barn door is one that distinguishes your barn as uniquely yours. It’s worth the effort to plan the design, from the size to the hardware. Work with your designer or barn manufacturer to craft a door that best suits you.
Heather E. Lewis, AIA, NCARB is a principal at Animal Arts, an architectural firm that has exclusively designed animal care facilities since 1979. Heather’s primary area of expertise is the design and management of equine and large animal projects. She is also highly experienced in the streamlined management of animal shelter projects. Heather was the Project Manager for the country’s first LEED Platinum animal shelter designed for the City and County of Denver. Heather speaks regularly about the design of large animal facilities at such conferences as the Veterinary Economics Hospital Design Conference for the Central Veterinary Conference and the American Association of Equine Practitioners Annual Conference.
Image Source: http://www.classic-equine.com/posts/loft-doors/
Original Source: http://blog.classic-equine.com/2014/04/the-barn-door/