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Parts of a door frame

Posted by Adrian
February 12th, 2013

Parts of a door frame

If you have ever been around a builder or in a timber yard or a DIY store you may of heard some terms that you are unsure of there meaning or what they are. You may think a door frame is just that, simply called a door frame. Well, you’ll be wrong, there are many parts that make up a door frame and I will explain them below.

A door frame is typically made out of wood for internal door frames, both hard and soft woods are used, hard wood such as oak is more expensive than the cheapest option of pine. External door frames can be made out of wood, metal or plastic, this will depend on the type of door you have. In this post I am talking about an internal soft wood door frame.

Parts of a door frame

Door frame

An internal door frame is commonly made out of softwood such as pine, it is smooth planed timber and is known as a door frame, a door casing or door lining. It doesn’t matter what you call it, they are all the same thing. The frame comes in different depths to suit different wall thickness. The door frame is made up from several parts, a head, legs or Jamb, a sill or threshold and door stops. The frame is then finished off with a moulding called an architrave.

The door frame set

If you bought a new door frame you would buy a door frame “set” which includes all the parts to build the door frame, the set will have a head, two legs or jambs and door stops, you do not get any architrave in the set and will have to be bought separately. I will explain each part of the set below.

Door frame – head

The head is the top of the door frame, it allows to two side members of the frame, the legs/jamb to fit into a grove. The door frame head has grooves cut into it at two widths allowing you to choose the width of opening, if the inner groves are used the wood sticking out beyond the frame, known as horns, can be sawn off.

Door frame – legs / jambs

The door frame upright parts are called legs or jambs, in a finished frame one side has the hinges screwed into it and the other side has the door lock keep fitted to it. Some frame legs are rebated so a door stop isn’t required as the rebate makes the stop.

Door frame – door stop

The door stop is a thin piece of wood that is fixed to the inside of the leg / jamb, it’s job as the name suggests is to stop the door. With out a door stop the door can’t be halted and would rip of it’s higes. If the leg / jamb has a rebate a door stop isn’t required.

Door frame – sill / threshold

The door frame sill or threshold is the horizontal part at the bottom of the legs / jambs, this isn’t normally found in interior frames but can be seen on external door frames. It’s purpose is to give the frame rigidity and to help channel the water away as it runs off the door. It’s also the part you carry the bride over once you are married.

Architrave trim

Architraves are decorative mouldings. Not bought in a door frame set, these are bought separately as they come in different sizes and styles and can match your moulding on the skirting boards.

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