Even though I risked being called a weirdo by my colleagues, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try to learn more about the 5″ wide edge channels that are sometimes required on fire-rated wood doors with concealed vertical rod exit devices.  When these channels show up on the jobsite without warning, architects tend to be less than pleased.  The interesting thing about these doors is that although they have the channels and fire exit hardware, there are no visible labels on the doors or frames.  It’s possible that the door label is on top, although the concealed closer channels take up most of the real estate up there.  We explored ways to check the top of these super-tall doors, but it will have to remain a mystery unless we can sweet-talk our way onto the lift they use to change the lightbulbs.

So, back to my question…some combinations of door manufacturer, rating, and concealed vertical rod exit device manufacturer require the channels, others don’t.  I’d love to compile some sort of matrix to show these combinations, but the information is hard to find.

I found a VT Industries chart here, which notes on the 20-minute pages that doors with concealed vertical rod devices require the 5″ channel, but there isn’t a similar note on the 45-, 60-, and 90-minute pages.

I also found an Eggers bulletin here, stating that the edge channels are not required for Category A pairs up to 8′ x 8′

Here’s one from Algoma Hardwoods, which seems to show the 5″ edge channel for all ratings and all exit devices except one.

If you have any information from other manufacturers, or modifications to the information above, let me know!


As I said yesterday, there are a lot of beautiful design details here at the hotel and conference center.  I love these light fixtures.  To get an idea of scale (think HUGE)…the wood panels look to be about 4′ x 8′.

P.S.  For those of you who noticed the plunger stops and oversized undercuts, two brownie points for you.  🙂

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