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30th January 2017
Timber Garage Doors - The Finer Details Make the Difference

When specifying and ordering any timber garage door the finishing details will make all the difference to the final appearance.

When looking at timber garage doors of any kind one of the biggest mistakes to make would be to not consider the final colour of your garage door and the potential difference this will make with the sub frame surrounding the door panel.

The most basic timber sub frame you can buy is a softwood frame normally finished at 70mm x 70mm for the majority of hinged and up and over doors. This timber will be quite pale and in most cases the timber will be redwood and this will mean a fair few knots in the timber faces.
As most timber garage doors sold are in cedarwood, unless you are painting the door or staining it a very, very dark colour, the softwood frame will not match up with the cedarwood door panel. The trend for some years has been for lighter colours in staining external timber so this could be a major mistake.
The hardwood option for timber sub frames has always been Red Meranti and although you will get a more durable timber the actual timber is a close grained timber and does have a red tinge to it so once more this timber will not match the cedarwood door panel on all lighter and medium shades of staining.

See the 2 examples below of a cedar garage door panel next to a timber sub frame that won't match.

 softwood timber frame next to a cedar door panel
Softwood timber sub frame and a cedar door panel
 Hardwood timber sub frame in red meranti
Hardwood timber sub frame and a cedar door panel

For the majority of timber garage doors the installation is between the structural opening and this may be for so many reasons but does seem the most traditional. Side hinged doors will always be fitted inbetween an opening so the sub frame will always be in view so the frame finish is very important.
Woodrite are probably one of the leading timber garage door manufacturers in the UK and they do offer a solution long overdue to this issue of matching. As cedarwood is not generally ever used as a strutural timber you do not get cedarwood timber sub frames. so how do we match the cedarwood door panel?
The answer is relatively simple using a specially developed sub frame where the front face and return are clad in cedar over a slightly smaller softwood or hardwood timber section. The end result offers either a 70 x 70 or a 90 x 70 size section for single and double size doors but most importantly a frame that has the same finish as the door panel.
Woodrite also offer a very exclusive range of timber door manufactured in Idigbo, an African hardwood with superb properties for use as a garage door, lighter than oak but a graining very similar indeed.

See below how a cedar clad sub frame makes all the difference and an Idigbo sub frame next to an Idigbo garage door panel also matching perfectly. The Idigbo timber can be used structurally so is not a cladding but 100% Idigbo.

cedar cladding on a timber sub frame
Cedarwod clad sub frame next to a cedar door panel
Idigbo timber sub frame next to an Idigbo door panel
Idigbo timber sub frame next to an Idigbo door panel

Steel Sub Frames
Steel sub frames have become the most popular in nearly all up and over garage doors since the Hormann Series 2000 came onto the UK market 13 years ago. A well made galvanised steel box section sub frame does provide the best solution when combined with a door panel also using a steel chassis system, The reason for this is that on all the edges you have steel next to steel so the factory tolerances in the gap between the door panel and the frame are tighter giving you get better security and better weather sealing.
So what colours are the steel frames?  The majority of standard steel sub frames are either white or dark brown powderocat finishes and that has been so for many years now as this tends to offer sufficient balance for any colour of timber door panel next to the frame surrounding it.

See the examples below of steel sub frames next to a timber door panel

 white finished steel sub frame
White finished steel sub fixing frame
 brwon steel sub frame and timber door panel
Brown finished steel sub fixing frame

Another great advantage of the steel sub frame is that in most cases the frame is prefitted with all the operating mechanism and the door panel itself so the on site installation is easier and as mentioned before the factory tolerances are smaller as movement is almost impossible in the door panel or frame.

Think about your sub frame carefully when choosing a garage door as it will make a huge difference not only to the visual appearance but also to the overall performance as well.

The Wodrite Padbury timber door below has a cedarwood timber clad sub frame for a perfect match in graining and also colour when treated.
Woodrite PAdbury with cedar clad timber sub frame

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