Funky Applications

Interesting Place for an ASA Strike

I have heard from some code officials that annual fire door assembly inspections aren't feasible because there are too many fire doors, or aren't necessary because the building inspectors and fire marshals already have it covered.  The application below caught my eye on the way into my hotel the other other night.  It's the fire door that separates the wing my room is in from the lobby and the other three wings. The door is in rough shape, most likely because the panic device has been replaced several times and there's nothing left in the door to attach it to.  Someone decided that an ASA strike is just the ticket...they used it kind of like a giant washer.  Not to mention that the replacement panic is not fire exit hardware and is equipped with dogging which allows the latch to be held retracted.

By |2012-01-27T22:08:05-05:00December 30th, 2009|FDAI, Funky Applications|1 Comment

Stainless Steel

Last week I was able to squeeze in one last visit to the Museum of Fine Arts before security became so tight that I wouldn't be allowed inside until I could enter as a paying customer sometime in 2010.  After working on this project for almost 5 years, it gave me a thrill to see art arriving in crates and in multiple pieces.

By |2012-01-27T22:08:05-05:00December 29th, 2009|Funky Applications|11 Comments


I'm having a couple of days of R & R in Burlington, Vermont, but the Doors of Burlington post will have to wait for a day when the weather is less inclement, or at least when I have a designated driver so I can hunt for doors from a moving vehicle. It has been tough to go door hunting when I'm on my own with three kids, a dog, and our two new Christmas kittens. In other words, I've got my hands full and I'm headed off the deep end (in my case, R & R does NOT stand for rest and relaxation!).

By |2012-01-27T22:08:05-05:00December 28th, 2009|Doors & Frames, Funky Applications|0 Comments

Not a Door

The cool thing about writing a blog from my little office within a very large company is that I write about whatever strikes me at the time. Unlike many corporate bloggers, I am not told what to write about and my posts aren't approved before they're posted. I'm grateful that I have that freedom, because I use this forum to teach people about doors and hardware, and my favorite topic - codes related to openings. At the same time, I am constantly learning by answering questions, looking at applications, and researching new requirements.

By |2014-10-08T09:18:31-04:00November 30th, 2009|Funky Applications, Reader Photos|5 Comments

Build Boston

I spent 10 hours yesterday attending seminars (or waiting for the next one to start) at Build Boston, the largest regional convention and trade show for the design and construction industry. There were over 200 workshops and 250 exhibitors, and I saw lots of architect and specifier friends, not to mention enough door and hardware applications to get me through the next week of blog posts.

By |2015-11-11T10:32:59-05:00November 20th, 2009|Funky Applications, Panic Hardware|5 Comments

In Case of Smoke…

I've seen plenty of inventive hold-open devices on fire-rated doors, but I've never seen instructional signage to go along with them!  Coincidentally, I received photos of a chain hold-open and the signage for a chain hold-open on the same day from two different people.  The photos are not from the same facility or even the same country for that matter.

By |2012-01-27T22:09:56-05:00October 15th, 2009|Funky Applications, Reader Photos, Smoke|4 Comments

“Look Out Beloooow!!!”

Just when I think I've seen it all, someone always surprises me.  I received this photo today, and at first I couldn't really tell what was going on.  Then I realized that the pipe has been cut to length to act as a hold-open.  That's a first!  When I asked what was holding the pipe in place, I was told that it's the pressure from the door closers!  I pity the fool who leans against the door (especially if his friend leans against the other one)!  BONK!

By |2012-01-27T22:09:56-05:00October 13th, 2009|Door Closers, Funky Applications, Reader Photos|0 Comments

What’s wrong with this picture?

If you regularly check this site to find out what's new and exciting in the world of doors and hardware, you may have occasionally experienced a server error.  Yesterday I asked the web hosting company to move the site to a more stable server to avoid these errors, which they agreed to do at midnight.  I was very surprised to go to the site this morning and see the website for the Philanthropy Advisors of New York at our URL!  Everything seems to be working now, so thank you for your patience.

By |2018-10-18T11:25:19-04:00September 24th, 2009|Funky Applications, Panic Hardware|12 Comments

Colonial Williamsburg Revisited

During Chip Falcon's Road Trip we visited Colonial Williamsburg, and you may have seen my slideshow of the doors and hardware there.  I received quite a few questions from readers about the hardware at CW, so I sent an email to the Architectural Research Department there and I got a return email from Mr. Kenneth Schwarz, whose title is Blacksmith, Master of the Shop.  Ken has been a wonderful source of information about the hardware at CW, and I'm looking forward to meeting him and hopefully getting a behind-the-scenes tour the next time I'm there.

By |2015-05-20T09:22:43-04:00September 7th, 2009|Funky Applications, Locks & Keys|19 Comments


When this photo arrived in my inbox, I immediately thought the panic was mounted in that position to be operated by someone's foot.  I couldn't quite wrap my brain around the latching/unlatching situation...I really think it's just being used as a pull bar and that there's no strike installed.  On my next road trip maybe I'll swing through Alabama so I can check it out.

By |2015-07-02T10:54:30-04:00September 1st, 2009|Funky Applications, Panic Hardware|5 Comments

Every Door Needs a Stop

Last weekend I opened the door to a sports facility where my son was attending a birthday party, and I saw an interesting (to me) application.  My three friends scattered when they saw me whip out the camera...I still don't know why it's so embarrassing to be seen with someone taking a picture of a door, but it seems to be a universal reaction unless you hang out with other hardware people.

By |2017-05-30T15:59:08-04:00August 24th, 2009|Door Closers, Funky Applications, General Info|3 Comments

Closer Seals

One of my (non-hardware industry) friends commented recently that she's been reading this blog and can't believe how complicated doors and hardware are.  It's true!  There are a thousand ways to screw up a door and I've made my share of mistakes over the years, but at this point I often spot problems from across the room while "regular" people continue to walk through the doors without noticing.

Colonial Williamsburg

Yesterday we decided that there was still too much to see so we can't go home just yet.  We haven't run out of clean clothes, so why not?  We spent the entire day taking in the sights of Colonial Williamsburg, without a thrill ride or water slide in sight.  I saw so many interesting doors that I made them into a short slide show for your viewing pleasure:

By |2018-05-25T11:46:04-04:00August 15th, 2009|Chip Falcon Road Trip, Funky Applications, Videos|2 Comments

Doors of Busch Gardens

Several people have commented that I'm supposed to be on vacation, I should be relaxing, enjoying quality family time, etc.  Well, I just returned from 10 HOURS at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg, Virginia and I am SO TIRED.  But I know I won't be able to sleep if I don't post something for you to look at with your morning coffee tomorrow.

By |2014-05-23T22:04:19-04:00August 14th, 2009|Chip Falcon Road Trip, Funky Applications, Gates|1 Comment

Where's Waldo?

Today we headed north toward Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and on the way we passed through Waldo, Florida.  Apparently Waldo's claim to fame is that it is one of two official speed traps designated by AAA.  The other is just up the road in Lawtey.  Lucky for us, the Waldo police were at Dunkin Donuts and there was a billboard warning of the speed trap in Lawtey (rumor has it the billboards were purchased by AAA), so we made it through unticketed.

By |2012-01-27T22:09:59-05:00August 11th, 2009|Chip Falcon Road Trip, Funky Applications|1 Comment

Cracker Barrel Shocker!!!

There are almost 600 Cracker Barrel restaurants in the United States and I've been to most of them.  Well...not most, but a bunch.  The kids like the food and there's a lot of miscellaneous stuff on the walls that we can use to play, "Who can find the _______?"  When you drop a whole cup of milk on the floor (like this morning) they don't bat an eye.  At least you always know what to expect...every Cracker Barrel has basically the same menu, the same "country store" selling stuff my kids can't live without, the same rocking chairs and checker boards on the porch, and the same entrance doors.

Where's Chip?

For all of you loyal late Friday afternoon and weekend blog readers, here's another opportunity to win something from the Ingersoll Rand prize vault.  This morning, Chip visited the statue at left - where are we?  If you think you know, click here and scroll down to leave a comment with the answer.  I will hold all of the answers until the end of Chip's Road Trip and then choose one lucky winner from all of the correct entries.  If you need a hint, the statue is located at the end of a bridge that leads to a set of *keys*.  Hey wait!  Is that a FALCON on his arm patch??  ;-)

By |2012-01-27T22:10:00-05:00August 7th, 2009|Chip Falcon Road Trip, Funky Applications|5 Comments

Home of the Falcons

When Chip heard that we'd be passing through Atlanta he insisted on visiting the Georgia Dome, home of the Atlanta Falcons. We stopped for a look around, and he gawked at the banks of multiple exit doors, all equipped with Von Duprin 99 devices.  It was a proud moment for Chip, especially since the Falcon 24/25 and Von Duprin 98/99 were designed by the same engineers and share the Ingersoll Rand name.

By |2013-10-29T13:40:59-04:00August 6th, 2009|Chip Falcon Road Trip, Funky Applications|0 Comments

9 Out of 10 Birds Surveyed Prefer LCN

I have a lot of pet peeves - just ask my family.  One of my pet peeves is when I see a door closer on the "wrong" side of a door.  It could be the corridor side of an electric room, the outside of a bathroom, or, like the photo to the left, the weather side of an exterior door.  I just don't understand how a closer ends up on the wrong side of the door, especially when many of them (the one at left included) come packed with all of the parts and pieces required to install it three different ways.

By |2014-10-08T09:24:45-04:00July 29th, 2009|Door Closers, Funky Applications, Reader Photos|1 Comment

Pocket Pivots

I recently received this photo from an architect who wanted to use the Von Duprin Inpact devices pictured here on another museum I'm working on.  I've used these several times when an architect wanted the panic device powder coated a similar color to the door.  As with LCN closers, Von Duprin panic hardware can be powder coated in a multitude of colors (refer to the Tiger Drylac brochure called RAL Exterior/Interior).

Violators Will Be Fined!

When a delayed egress lock is used on an egress door, the codes require signage instructing the building occupant to "PUSH UNTIL ALARM SOUNDS, DOOR CAN BE OPENED IN 15 SECONDS." When the code official approves a 30-second delay, the signage must reflect that increase.  At least the signage on this egress door (yes, there is an exit sign which is not visible in the photo) will keep the person occupied while he or she waits for 30 seconds to pass.  ;-)

Where there’s a will, there’s a way…

I love seeing the inventive ways people install door hardware, and it seems like the product with the most creative installations is the door closer.  LCN thought their stick-on installation templates would take the creativity out of door closer installation, but there are still plenty of inventive installations out there.

By |2014-10-08T09:20:25-04:00July 21st, 2009|Door Closers, Funky Applications, Reader Photos|0 Comments

Rod Guards

I'm a big fan of creative hardware applications like these PVC rod guards on an exterior pair in a high school, but I think they should have considered adding some bottom latch guards.  The latches don't even have their covers!   FYI...Von Duprin does manufacture rod and latch guards - the RG-27, also available as a rod guard only (RGO), a latch guard only (LGO), or an extended latch guard only (LGO-3' or 4').

Moroccan Doors

I have visited 10 countries in Africa, so in honor of the first African country to host a visitor to this website (the 38th country to visit the site!), I decided to post an African door photo from my collection.  I searched through the albums of my trips and found hundreds of photos of elephants, lions, and my fellow campers behaving badly, but hardly any photos of doors!  I will eventually find and post my photo collection called the Doors of Zanzibar, but in the meantime, here are a few shots of the doors of the Hassan II Mosque in Casablanca Morocco.  To give these openings some scale, that's me sitting in front of a GIANT door, beside a door similar in size to the one in the close-up.

By |2012-01-27T22:10:02-05:00July 5th, 2009|Beautiful Doors, Funky Applications|0 Comments

Manual Flush Bolts

Here's a little reminder to make sure you size the top rod correctly when using manual flush bolts on doors that are over 7' tall.  Most manufacturers offer a top rod that is 12" (standard), 24", 36", or 48" long.  In this application, I would have probably specified panic hardware on both leaves depending on the door height and vertical rod capabilities, or an automatic flush bolt for the top bolt, which would be projected by the active leaf.  I'm not a big fan of automatic flush bolts, but a 48" long top rod might not be quite long enough to bring the bolt down to an operable height.  I have also seen hardware suppliers buy threaded rod to increase the top rod length, but at some point the rod gets too long to operate smoothly.

By |2012-01-27T22:10:02-05:00July 1st, 2009|Funky Applications, Reader Photos|1 Comment

Where's the Door?

I'll get back to the long, wordy posts about code questions soon, but in the meantime here's another cool door photo from Paul Goldense of Goldense Building Products. This opening is used by a water authority to access their pumps for maintenance. It's hung with continuous hinges on a channel iron frame.  As an extra challenge, the door is located at the top of a dam. Very cool!

By |2012-01-27T22:10:02-05:00June 9th, 2009|Funky Applications|0 Comments

Electric Latch Retraction?

Well...the latch is retracted and it involves a wire!  As a follow-up to yesterday's post about retrofit dogging accomplished with a tie-wrap, here's a photo from Brendan Daley of Horner Commercial Sales that was taken in a new hospital.  I'm guessing they weren't happy with the lock function so they came up with this ingenious solution.  I especially love the tape on the lever.  Thanks Brendan!

By |2012-01-27T22:10:02-05:00June 4th, 2009|Electrified Hardware, Funky Applications|0 Comments

Retrofit Dogging

I've spent several phone calls this week discussing "dogging" with one of my favorite clients.  I guess it is kind of hard to keep straight if you're not a hardware person.  The term "dogging" refers to holding the latch(es) of a panic device retracted to create a push/pull function.  When the panic device is dogged, it is unlocked/unlatched and you can just pull on the door to open it.  When the panic device is not dogged, it is latched and you need an active trim (like a lever) or a key to retract the latch(es) and open the door.  In either case, free egress is achieved at any time by pushing on the touchpad or crossbar of the panic device.

Time-Out Lock

One of our customers sent me this photo last week.  It was found on a psychiatric facility and to operate it, a staff member must be present and holding the bolt projected via the lever.  I did my best to track down a manufacturer with no luck.  It's possible that it was made in a machine shop or that it is no longer available, but my first thought when I saw it was that I need to buy 3 for my kids' rooms and then find 3 suckers to stand there holding the bolts projected.  ;-)

By |2012-01-27T22:10:41-05:00February 23rd, 2009|Funky Applications, Locks & Keys, Means of Egress|2 Comments
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