How Do You Build a Barn Door?

Building a sliding barn door involves preparing the track, making hangers and mounting the door on the track. Building a barn door takes roughly a day and requires barn wheels, a 6-foot by 1/8-inch steel flat strap, a 6-foot by 1 1/2-inch by 1 1/2-inch steel-angle iron, 5/16-inch by 1-inch carriage bolts, 5/16-inch by 1 1/2-inch zinc lag bolts and washers, 5/16-inch by 3-inch zinc lag bolts and washers, a 1-inch by 6-foot tension rod and a 36-inch by 6-foot, 8-inch door.

  1. Prepare the tension rod

    Measure the width of the door. Cut the building tension rod to 1 inch in length, bending the ends so that the wheels stop. Tack a 1-inch weld at every foot on the back of the rod.

  2. Create a channel

    Measure the desired depth of the track. The door should fit snugly to the wall when rolled in. Punch holes at the following spots along the steel-angle iron: 6 inches, 2 feet, 4 feet and 5 1/2 feet. Drill the holes to a 1/2 inch diameter.

  3. Prepare the studs

    Mount the track to the studs in the wall. Locate the studs along the width of the track. Place three bolts equidistant in the door header and one bolt in each of the studs.

  4. Cut the flat strap for hangers

    Calculate the amount of horizontal leg needed with the following formula: depth of the wall trim plus the door thickness, minus mounting surface to wall. Add the needed lengths of horizontal leg for each hanger and add 2 inches. Cut the flat strap into four pieces at this dimension.

  5. Make the hangers

    Clamp the flat strap into a vice, marking 1/16 inch above the jaws. Use a sledgehammer to tap the strap near the jaw while pulling until a 90-degree angle results. Repeat this procedure for the second bend. Drill a 1/2-inch hole at the top for the wheel. Use the 1/2-inch bolts to attach the wheels to the hanger.

  6. Mark the track

    Level the wall-mounting track to the necessary height. Mark the height on the track.

  7. Mount the track

    Drill into the studs at the marked height, and loosely bolt the track to the wall. Locate the pre-drilled track holes, and complete the drilling. Level the track, and secure it with the correct bolts. Use 1-inch carriage bolts to attach the angle iron and top rail to the wall angle. Lay the wheels on the track.

  8. Attach the door

    Drill 1/2-inch holes in each pre-cut strap. Level the wheels, and then use the 5/16-inch bolts to attach the straps to the door.