Handmade walnut screen doors
While building a screen door may seem totaly unrelated to the making of shutters, I find occassionaly working on these types of projects brings several benefits to our business, that other wise could be easily overlooked. First is keeps us flexible in our thinking and procedures, so that we do not become too heavily dependent on habit nd procedures, so that we never even consider if there could be an alernative method that we should be considering. Second, it hones the skills and talents that woodworkers often lose or weaken by being to focused on using machinery and faster methods, that do not always bring about better quality. Third is specialty projects allow us to expand into areas of working with existing customers on projects that would have been a missed opportunity, and this certainly allows too for greater exposure to our business.
Earlier I posted on our Facebook business page that we were making two screen doors from walnut lumber, and I believe we had at that point only cleaned up the rough lumber when I posted the first article. After sizing the wood to the correct dimensions, we had chose which boards would be used for specific parts. We then resumed working on the doors, and intended to finish them over the next few days. Over the next few days we cut each piece to exact size, mortised the stiles and cut the tenons on all the rails. Then we glued and assembled the second door. No nails, no screws or any other fasteners, just old fashioned mortise and tenon joints, which are extremely strong and durable.
We later completed the walnut screen door project by delivering and installing the doors in Tallahassee on a Wednesday afternoon. he dalays in the making of these doors was due to the fact that we worked on them, in between our interior shutter orders. This time time for the planning and execution of each step, as this was the first we had ever built this type of door. As far as I know, this could be the first set of screens with triple centre rails that has ever been built. As least I was not able to uncover any information that would suggest otherwise. I was pleased with the finish and the fitting of the doors, my compliments to Lee Suber on doing the finishing, making of the components and the assembly of the doors to the target size.
The homeowner was very pleased with the doors, their appearance, and also the way they blend with the existing exterior doors. I was also relieved at the way the three center rails line up with those seen in the doors immediately behind the screens, and the adjoing doors on each side. Whew!!!!!!