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Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Fitting Pocket Doors

I have been performing the final test fit of the pocket doors. There will be a total of four pocket doors in the boat:

  • fwd head/v-berth
  • fwd salon/fwd head
  • main salon/aft cabin (tunnel)
  • aft cabin/engine room
Pocket door closed

Pocket door open
The door mechanism is fairly simple. The pocket doors will glide on upper and lower slide bearing strips of UHMW plastic riding on slotted aluminum extrusions attached to the bulkheads. The lower UHMW bearing has a 'T' cross-section which slides within the lower aluminum slot. The upper bearing is sort of trapezoidal shape which slides captive in the upper aluminum slot. The upper slides are designed to be removed for servicing, along with the pocket door, without the need to cut or destroy anything (except possibly some trim).
Lower slide bearing
Care and patience must be taken to set the upper and lower extrusions parallel and within one eighth of an inch of the height of the door. Too short an opening and the bearings will compress giving resistance and a door difficult to slide. Too tall an opening and the lower bearing risks jumping the track and rattling loose in the pocket.
Upper slide bearing
These are temporary doors, made of 3/4 inch MDF, in order to get everything set. Final door material will likely be determined by choice of interior decor. Having these doors in will help give an accurate feel for the final interior space of the boat.
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