Build and Install a Sliding Barn Door

2017-08-31T10:11:36+00:00February 26th, 2017|Doors, Furniture, Popular|37 Comments

Ever since I was a young man-child I’ve wanted a sliding barn door. But because we relocated across the country for so many years, it just wasn’t worth the ASTRONOMICAL price to get a kit (when they first came to market they were about $300 and UP).  Well now that we’ve settled down and prices have come down, enough is enough! Today I’m going to build and install a sliding barn door!


Difficulty:
Beginner


Time Required:
Weekend


Cost:
Under $250

Material Cut ListPurchase ListTools RequiredSafetyRelated Posts
Door Frame:
2 – 1×6 @ 70-1/16″ (left, right)
2 – 1×8 ripped to 1×7.25″@ 38″ (top, bottom)
2 – 1×6 @ 38-1/2″ at 57.5 degrees (diagonal supports)
8 – 1×6 T&G – Cut off excess material AFTER being attached to door frame with circular saw
Header:
1 – 1×8 @ 80″

Lumber
1 – 1x8x8 Pine
5 – 1x6x8 Pine
8 – 1x6x8 Tongue & Groove Pine
Hardware
8ft Sliding Barn Door Hardware Kit
1-1/4″ Pocket Screws
1-1/4″ Brad Nails
3″ Bolts
Accessories
9″ Barn Door Handle
Finish
Minwax Special Walnut stain
Minwax Satin Polycrylic


Build and Install a Sliding Barn Door

The first step before you build and install a sliding barn door is to measure your door OPENING size and decided which hardware kit you’re going to need.

My barn door will be using the 79″ or 6-foot 7-inch kit from Industrial by Design that accommodates a maximum door opening size of 38″ or smaller.

If your door opening size is 47″ or smaller, go with the 96″ or 8-foot kit. If this is the correct barn door size for you, be sure to ADJUST YOUR CUT SIZES as your door will need to be bigger. If there’s enough demand I’ll write-up a door plan for a 47″ opening, let me know in the comments below!

Here is all of the material required to build your own sliding barn door and header.


Set your Kreg Jig to accomadate 3/4″ material. Clamp and pre-drill the center and two side pieces of the 1×6 door frame.


Three holes on each side.


Apply wood glue and push the pieces about to be joined together while lining up the outside edge.


Secure the two pieces using 1-1/4″ Pocket Screws.


Make your way to the other side and repeat the steps from above. If the frame tries to pull in and out of square, use pressure clamps to keep the boards from pushing in.


Measure out the center from the inside of the frame. This is where we’re going to be placing the center 1×6.


Line-up the center on your center marks 1×6 and double check for square with your tape measure.


Secure the center 1×6 to the main door frame.


Cut the two diagonal pieces at 57.5 degrees and 38-1/2″. Because my miter saw only cuts up to 45-degrees, I made the first cut by hand. Next I transferred that angle to the second diagonal piece, took it to my miter saw and lined up the blade with my mark by pulling the board’s edge off the fence.


Pre-drill (3) pocket holes on each side of the diagonal pieces.


Glue…


Before screwing place scrap wood under the front of the frame to keep the front flush. Then secure the pieces together with 1-1/4″ Pocket Screws.


Rip the front and back 1×6 tongue and groove boards to 4-1/2″.


Liberally apply glue all across the bottom face of the tongue and groove board.


Face nail this board to the back of the frame. This will be our “anchor” piece so we can install the rest of the tongue and groove 1×6’s.


Grab a rubber mallet and scrap piece of wood. Hammer the tongue into the groove for a tight fit.


Secure the 1-1/4″ brad nails into the back of the main frame by either face nailing them or going through the tongue. If you face nail, be sure to fill in any brad holes with wood filler. If you have a floor-nailer, now’s a great time to whip that bad boy out to conceal the hardware!


Make your all the way to the end of the piece and face nail.


It’s…beautiful! But HUGE!


Trim the excess tongue and groove boards off using a circular saw. Do this for the top and bottom and sides as needed.

I use a 1×4 as a guide otherwise my cuts will look like a jackson pollock painting. TERRIBLE!


Not very jackson pollocky!


I’ll be using Minwax Special Walnut stain. It’s got a great tone that matches my hardwood floors!


After coating the front and back of the door with stain, I apply (3) coats of Minwax Satin Polycrylic.


Now for the FUN! Here’s everything you need to install one of the (2) casters provided in the 79″ sliding barn door hardware kit.


Set the top of the caster 1-3/4″ away from the top of the barn door.


Use your speed square to keep the caster square to the door and pre-drill through the two holes.


Use a ratchet kit and wrench to secure the nut and bolts. These nuts are supposed to be on the FRONT of the barn door, but I liked how the bolts looked better.


Next up are the plastic bumpers that will keep the door from being bumped off of the track.


Pre-drill and attach these to the top of the door. I centered mine.


Line-up the barn door with the attached casters and pre-drill through the holes on barn door handle…


And attach with the screws provided.


This is my opening. My 1×6 header is going to be 1″ off of the top of the door opening.


Locate the studes and transfer those marks onto your header. If your studs fall 16″ on center, you DO NOT need to use a header. But you can, if you want. It’s your life!


Pre-drill through the stud marks and attach the first side of the header using at least 3″ bolts.


Move to the center of the header and check for level.


Pre-drill through the pre-marked hole and into the far stud.


Attach to the stud. The rest of the bolts should be easy to pre-drill and install now that both sides are secure and level.


Here is the wall hardware for the 79″ sliding barn door kit. It includes (5) spacers, (5) bolts and (5) washers.


The rail needs to be the height of the door PLUS 1-11/16″. This puts the holes of the rail 3-1/8″ center-line from the bottom of the header.


Pre-drill through the barn door header.


And secure using on of the provided bolts.


Move your ladder to the other end of the header, place a spacer behind the rail and check for level. Pre-drill.

Secure the other side of the rail using the provided bolt. Make your way along the rest of the rail to secure the rest of the bolts. You should not have to check for level after this step.


The sliding barn door rail is STRONG and SECURE. I literally did one(hundred and one) pull-ups.


Now the is moment of TRUTH!!! Lift up the barn door and slide the first caster on…


And the second….it’s PERFECT!


The second to last step is to secure the stoppers. These little rubber pads will keep the door from going past where you want it!


Loosen up the top screws a bit with the provided allen key.


And follow me here…


Slide the stopper onto the bar and move it into position. Secure using the allen key.


And last but not least attach the door guide. This is supposed to be secured in the center of the bottom of the door. This way it keeps the door off of the wall and from pulling out too far and falling off the rail.


But because I don’t have a fence for my router I opted to install this in the front for the time being. If you have the proper tools you’ll want to route a channel into the bottom of the center of the door.


And THAT is how you build and install a sliding barn door. This was one of the most exciting builds ever. Well, for me anyway. You may have hated it.


The hardware really does add a touch of class to the rustic barn door.


If you have any questions on the build or install feel free to ask below!


As always thanks for reading and be sure to check out Industrial by Design if you’re in the market for affordable hairpin legs, steel legs or sliding barn door hardware with a lifetime warranty. They were gracious enough to send me this sliding barn door kit and it made my door WAY more awesome than I ever imagined.

37 Comments

  1. americanvintagegoods February 27, 2017 at 6:35 am - Reply

    Wow Rick- great job! I am planning to add a barn door to a kitchen extension. Not doing it myself, but happy to have these DIY instructions just in case!

    • Rick February 28, 2017 at 12:50 pm - Reply

      thank you! hope the install goes well for you and feel free to hit me up with any questions!

    • Ted July 26, 2017 at 1:58 pm - Reply

      Rick, Thank you so much for the step by step, my wife has been wanting a door for our master bath for 5 years, It was way to much work to rip the drywall out and put in a pocket door. The track went up flawlessly, the door you built is awesome but did not go with the décor of our home, so I went to the local big box store and ordered a 36 x 80 door slab that has four opaque windows to keep that natural light flowing. So just wanted to say thanks….you know what they say, happy wife–happy life. If I could give one pointer if anyone else will be using a door slab, order it just a few inches taller then the standard 80. Your headboard and bed frame are next on the list.

      • Rick August 31, 2017 at 10:03 am - Reply

        Hey Ted thanks for the kind words! Glad to hear the door install was met with rave reviews! And great advice re: door slabs. When I was designing the door my initial design was too short for the opening so I had to make some adjustments. Good luck with the bedframe!!

  2. Jeff McNutt February 27, 2017 at 10:53 am - Reply

    Hnnggggg. I need to figure out where to do this. Maybe I’ll just put it on a wall to nowhere.

    • Rick February 28, 2017 at 12:49 pm - Reply

      haha! find a wall!!

  3. Tyler Allred March 9, 2017 at 4:09 pm - Reply

    did you drill that door guide straight down into your carpet?

    • Rick March 10, 2017 at 12:12 pm - Reply

      Hey Tyler- Yes through the carpet and into the subfloor.

      • Tyler Allred March 16, 2017 at 4:55 pm - Reply

        I guess that was a kind of a dumb question…better question is how long were the screws you used?

  4. David Homan March 15, 2017 at 11:36 am - Reply

    I’m almost done with the door and just figuring out the hardware. How much room is there between the door and the baseboard trim? Is that adjustable on the hardware at all or can I just use a thicker header if I need more space?

    I just found the site and I’m really loving it! Keep it up!

    • Rick March 15, 2017 at 11:15 pm - Reply

      Hey David – Glad you’re digging the site, thanks for stopping by! The space is not adjustable on the kit, but you can use a thicker header if needed. The door is about 3/4″ from the baseboard trim and 1-1/4″ from the wall. My header board is 3/4″ thick. Hope that helps and goodluck with the rest of our build/hardware install. Let me know how it goes and feel free to tag me on social media I’d love to see the final result!

      • David Homan April 4, 2017 at 12:03 pm - Reply

        The hardware system that you linked to above does not include the rail. When I looked at it the first time, I thought it did, but I just ordered it and no rail is included. Where do you think I can get the rail from?

        • Rick April 4, 2017 at 12:11 pm - Reply

          Hi David – Are you sure you purchased the correct kit? In the description it states the following, “ONE-PIECE RAIL: One full 96″ rail is included.” Mine arrived in a (very heavy) long, narrow box to accommodate the rail. I would contact Amazon and they should take care of you. Please let me know if you get it taken care of!

          • David Homan April 4, 2017 at 12:14 pm - Reply

            It must’ve been something wrong on my end. It now took me to the right item. I first ordered the extra kit without the rail. I’ve already ordered the right one and will return the other. Gotta love Amazon Prime!

            • Rick April 4, 2017 at 12:18 pm - Reply

              Oh great glad to hear! You freaked me out for a second there! I get pretty much everything through prime, it’s the greatest!!

  5. Lauren L March 15, 2017 at 3:54 pm - Reply

    SO excited for this tutorial. I’ve wanted a sliding barn door for as long as I can remember. Cant wait to build my own. Also pumped for the bonus pull up bar for the hundreds of pull ups I do every day.

    • Rick March 15, 2017 at 11:08 pm - Reply

      LOL! Right? Who knew barn door hardware was so versatile! The door adds so much character to an otherwise BORING dining room, glad I finally went for it. I think I’m going to build a little wine rack/cabinet to finish off the space!

  6. AlZahra Sulaiman April 24, 2017 at 5:03 pm - Reply

    Hi! So happy to have found this amazing guide! I will definitely be using it to build my own. I have one question, how big was your barn door? I want my door to be around 137cm x 220cm. Will the materials list you provided be enough for my barn door? Sorry if it is a silly question, but this will be my first build ever.

  7. Chris May 11, 2017 at 7:24 pm - Reply

    Thanks for the great write up! Question for you: where did you purchase the tongue and groove pine boards? I tried both Home Depot and Lowes and neither store carried tongue and groove boards that were finished (sanded) on both sides.

    Thanks again!

    • Rick May 12, 2017 at 10:11 am - Reply

      Hey Chris! No problem! They were from Home Depot. Here’s a link (input your zip code to see if a store nearby carries them). I had to sand them a bit but not much. Let me know how things work out!

      • Chris May 12, 2017 at 10:23 am - Reply

        Thanks fo the quick feedback. It must be sold as a regional thing as they don’t offer them here in AZ. What they offer is about 1/2″ thick and not suitable for a barn door. I’ll just have to use normal pine wood and skip over the look of tongue and groove. Thanks again!

  8. Jeremiah June 16, 2017 at 11:03 am - Reply

    what guage brad nails did you use?

    • Rick August 31, 2017 at 10:07 am - Reply

      Hi Jeremiah I used 18 gauge brad nails.

  9. David Meredith July 1, 2017 at 6:50 pm - Reply

    This looks great, and we can’t wait to build it!

    Quick question : where does the 1x8x8 go? You didn’t seem to say where you put it in the video, and the text in the instructions didn’t mention where it goes.

    Thanks for the great site – it’s giving us lots of ideas for it bathroom renovations!

    • Rick August 31, 2017 at 10:10 am - Reply

      Hi David, sorry for my delayed response and I apologize for the confusion. That is the header board that the rail is attached to. The width of the board is totally up to you (you can use 1×12, 1×8, 1×6, etc.) as it’s more of a visual element along with providing extra support if your wall studs don’t fall where you need them. It should say 1×8 on the cut list tab but I erroneously put 1×6 (and will update that right now).

      Hope your bathroom reno is going/went well!

  10. Linda August 20, 2017 at 3:12 pm - Reply

    I have the same question as David … where do you use the 1x8x8 piece?
    Thank you!

    • Rick August 31, 2017 at 10:00 am - Reply

      Hi Linda! I apologize for the confusion. That is the header board that the rail is attached to. The width of the board is totally up to you (you can use 1×12, 1×8, 1×6, etc.) as it’s more of a visual element along with providing extra support if your wall studs don’t fall where you need them. It should say 1×8 on the cut list tab but I erroneously put 1×6 (and will update that right now).

  11. Adam Schuler August 27, 2017 at 1:48 pm - Reply

    Rick – Thanks sooo much for this! The wife (my project manager) has been after me to put a door on the laundry room. This was perfect. Very easy to follow along and I only made a couple of minor changes to your design. I didn’t put in the two diagonal pieces and used a better grade pine (we weren’t looking for the rough cut barn door look). It turned out awesome. The wife is the envy of all the neighborhood wives for having such a talented husband and I’m now hated by the neighborhood husbands……haha. Im passing along my secret weapon….You!

    • Rick August 31, 2017 at 9:53 am - Reply

      Hey Adam! LOL! Glad to hear the project turned out great man and thanks for sharing the site! But be careful! I think you’ll find yourself with A LOT less free time now that your talents have been discovered!

  12. Ryan Barash September 28, 2017 at 3:28 pm - Reply

    What actual dimensions is the door you made?

    • Rick September 30, 2017 at 10:49 am - Reply

      Hey Ryan – Take a look in the “material cut list” tab at the top of the post and you’ll find the dimensions.

  13. John Casey December 9, 2017 at 9:48 pm - Reply

    My opening width is 48 1/2″. The closed end will butt into a wall perpendicular to the door. The rail will butt up against the wall. I want a stop to keep the door from banging against the wall so one caster will be closer to the door edge than the other.
    Since the door itself will be 1″ wider to provide some overlap, the door width is 49 1/2″. The total of the opening width and door width is 98″ or 2″ wider than the 96″ rail!!! Plus, the bolts in the rail will not line up with the studs. Does the use of a header move the door outward from the wall more than if no header is needed?

    I’m wanting to build this before Christmas!!!

    Thanks,

    john

    • Rick December 10, 2017 at 12:48 pm - Reply

      Hey John – The header does push out the door an additional 3/4″ from the wall with no ill effects if you properly rout out a channel for the bottom door guide. Since the rail bolt holes aren’t lining up with the studs, a header will allow you to safely attach the rail to the wall.

      If the total rail length is not long enough to accommodate 2x the door width, you’re going to have a door sticks out past the opening. In this case you would have to get a longer rail and cut it down as needed. Hope that helps John!

  14. Joel Reyes January 8, 2018 at 9:24 pm - Reply

    What size of bolt did you use to mount the head board to the wall studs?

  15. Dee Harwood February 26, 2018 at 9:25 am - Reply

    Hi. I want to do this in my dining room leading to the kitchen but I have chair rail and trim around the door. How can this be done? Also the door opening butts up to the corner of the room with maybe a 2 inch area for the header. Would this work?

  16. Steve March 10, 2018 at 2:01 pm - Reply

    Thanks man…. WE ARE

  17. SHAWN WALDROP March 28, 2018 at 5:46 pm - Reply

    Hey Rick – enjoyed watching your YouTube video on this, and stumbled across this site. Between the two, I have been able to adjust it to our needs. Ours is a little more complicated (OK, a lot). I am building bypass doors to cover our sliding glass patio door, replacing vertical blinds. I just couldn’t pull the trigger on $300+ for bypass hardware ALONE. So, I am improvising with some different brackets. And we are adding this to our mobile home/lake house. Which means the doors aren’t standard height. How did you determine the height of your door? I guess I missed that part.

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