Overview of modern sliding doors

We got curious: what are sliding doors? What are they needed for? But before telling what their advantages and disadvantages are, you need to understand what kind of interior doors exist in the world. It turned out that by the way of opening the doors are divided into three types: swing, folding and sliding.

Sliding door from the Matsitelli factory (Italy). Fiorentina model

We deal with swing doors every day. Such doors are suspended on hinges and open either towards themselves or towards themselves. They are my “thorn in the heel”. Because in my house, if the door in the room is open, it is already impossible to walk along the corridor.

Folding doors – a gift for originals and lovers of exotic in the interior. They consist of individual sections connected by steel springs attached to the hinge bars. As it turned out, I admire them almost every day on the bus and trolleybus when I go to work (these are the same accordion doors). Their main disadvantage is that they practically do not protect against noise..

Sliding doors, or, in other words, compartment doors. And again I had an association with transport. They can be found on long-distance trains and in a subway car. Only in the metro, both halves of the door go together inside the wall, while in the compartment car the door slides along the wall outside. *

* Of course, the analogies with a bus and metro doors are somewhat arbitrary – after all, there are pneumatic doors. And the interroom we are talking about are mechanical.

Their obvious plus is that they do not take up extra space when opening. This is it, I thought, one of the best inventions of mankind. But it’s not that simple. They also have their disadvantages, however, there are also advantages..

There are also sliding partitions. I could not name the cardinal differences between them and the compartment doors. The main fundamental difference: if the doorway is closed, then this is the door, if the whole room is partitioned off, this is a partition.

What kind of “Kit” is this?

A sliding door does not exist by itself. It consists of several items included in the kit. In instructions in a foreign language, this concept is defined by the short word kit, which in translation from English means “set”.

The set primarily contains:

  • door leaf (that is, the very “body” of the door);
  • door frame;
  • a set of guides (or, in other words, a mechanism for sliding doors, with the help of which the door is suspended in an existing door frame from the upper guide rail);
  • handles and other fittings for sliding doors;
  • cassette (may or may not be included).
  • “Why do I need all this? Maybe you can do without something somehow? ” – I thought out of the eternal Russian habit of saving. It turned out that there are no unnecessary things in this “sliding economy”. If you missed something in the “kit”, nothing will work for you, here every bast is in a line.


    Firm “Longi”, Italy. Aluminum and engraved glass. Double-leaf sliding door

    Usually sliding doors consist of several sheets (there are usually no more than eight of them), but they can also be of one. If you decide to cover the doorway, huge as the Kremlin gate, then you will need all eight canvases. How much the whole structure will cost, it’s even scary to count. But in an ordinary average apartment, one canvas is enough.

    As I was told, any door leaf can be hung, that is, made sliding. With one exception: if the top of the door is made in the form of an arch, alas, you will have to say goodbye to the dream of a sliding door. (Even my wild imagination was not enough to imagine what the top rail would look like in this case.)

    We remind you that there are only four types of door leaves in the world:

    Firm “Henry Glass”, Italy. Frosted glass single leaf sliding door

    1. Cloths from combined materials. The basis is bars of inexpensive wood species (for example, pine), as well as fiberboard or chipboard (fiberboard and chipboard). From above, the base is pasted over with veneer of valuable wood. Price from 220 to 1200 $.

    2. Cloths made of solid wood (solid wood) are slightly more expensive: from 300 to 1500 $.

    3. Canvases made of wood and glass. Price 900-1500 $.

    4. For sophisticated and whimsical taste, there are glass sheets with aluminum edging available for sale. It’s clear that I fell for just such canvases. Moreover, glass, if desired, can be ordered matte, transparent or colored. Price from 1000 to 1700 $.

    If you are not yet ready to pay so much for a beautiful piece of glass, you can buy simpler doors – from fiberboard or chipboard. It also makes a good sliding door. The main thing is that all other “door” elements are correctly selected.


    Sliding door from the Matsitelli factory. The Quanita model. White frosted glass, tanganika or solid coniferous wood, covered with walnut veneer

    The doorway has nothing to do with the shoebox. Why the experts call it that is a mystery, the door frame looks more like the letter “P” in shape. In fact, this is a structure that is inserted into the opening, and the canvas is already hung on it. Made a box of solid pieces of wood. It is clear that the box will not hold from scratch, so they attach it to the doorway with glue or screws.

    But the case is not limited to one box: the set also includes such a thing as platbands – decorative strips. They frame and decorate the doorway. The most interesting thing is that they do not belong to the box, but they do not exist without it. By the way, it must be borne in mind that the price for a sliding door should include the cost of the door leaf, frame and trim.

    Now I propose to figure out that there is a set of guides.

    Rail kit (sliding door mechanism)

    Without this kit, the door will stand in place, like an idol. How, one wonders, can a sliding door be opened and closed if there are no rails (in other words – profile guides), rollers, a stopper and a stopper? The answer is no way. These are very important parts of our kit. And their installation must be taken seriously..

    The stopper and stopper fix the door and prevent it from leaving the wall too far (set the maximum distance to it). The stopper is attached to the floor and the stopper is attached to the wall from above.

    Cutaway mechanism

    There is one more rule: when choosing a mechanism, it is imperative to take into account the weight of the door. For example, for a door weighing 40–75 kg, a mechanism with two rollers will come down, but for a door with a weight of 75–120 kg, “all four wheels” are needed. Therefore, we give advice: do not save on the mechanism. Here the logic is simple: the more expensive the door, the more expensive the mechanism. It’s like buying a six-hundredth Mercedes and putting a Zhiguli engine in there. No benefits, only troubles and headaches.

    And we do not recommend buying the mechanism yourself: if you make a mistake, all responsibility will go to you personally. And if the purchased door will not drive well on the unsuccessfully purchased mechanism, then, of course, there is no one to blame but yourself. Therefore, it is better to take the trouble to the company where you decided to purchase the canvas. And if suddenly something goes wrong, the firm will be to blame. From her and ask in full for marriage.

    Honestly, the prices for the set of guides pleased me more than the canvases. You will need to pay from $ 30 to $ 250.


    In fact, under the foreign and obscure phrase “fittings for compartment doors” we mean door handles. But note: handles for ordinary swing doors are not suitable here! The main difference is that they do not protrude beyond the edge of the canvas, so that the door can freely “enter” the wall.

    Typically, these handles are sold with the door leaf, but they can be made to order from the catalog, especially if you need handles with a lock.

    But that is not all. The accessories include another interesting device that resembles a hat-cylinder. It is mounted on the end of the door leaf. Hooking on this “hat” with your finger, you make the door slide out of the wall.

    The average price of handles without locks is $ 40-60, with locks – about $ 60.


    Cassette “Glissmaster”, Italy. For sliding doors that extend into the wall, complete with aluminum rail

    It may or may not be included in the gentleman’s door set. It all depends on your desire. But if you want the sliding door to go into the wall, experts advise using a metal frame (cassette). To understand what it is, remember the videotape and the box into which it is inserted. Now imagine that the videotape is a door leaf and the paper box is a metal frame. The price of a frame for a door consisting of one leaf is from $ 470.

    Suppose you decide not to save money and “pack” the door into a metal frame. To do this, it will be necessary to destroy part of the wall, alas, raising all the neighbors to their feet. But there is no other way. A cassette and a set of guides are installed in the gap. Then the “injured” place, as a rule, is sewn up with drywall. If everything is done correctly, then the door will go like clockwork..

    And what if you don’t want to spend money on a cassette? There will be the following: you still break the wall, install a mechanism for the door to travel, and again sheathe it with drywall. A legitimate question arises: “So why do we need a cassette?” We answer. Firstly, the cassette makes it easier to install, and secondly, the door in the cassette is more difficult to knock out or twist.

    Think for yourself, decide for yourself…

    Now let’s calculate the losses and weigh the pros and cons. After all, the main thing for us is to understand, acquiring such a door, whether it is good or bad for our life in everyday life and whether we need it in general?

    So, I was warmed by the thought that with the help of compartment doors in my apartment (larger than the size of the fabulous Thumbelina) I would increase the useful area of ​​the room. It will become more spacious. In addition, sliding doors are good in a cramped corridor so as not to accidentally crack someone in the forehead. These are their obvious advantages..

    But a sliding door lets in light, smells and sounds much better than a swing door, because considerable gaps form between the door leaf and the frame. So all the smells from the kitchen, the light from the corridor, conversations and music from my brother’s room will almost unhindered enter my nine-meter “cell”. And further. The prices for sliding doors are higher than for ordinary hinged doors. These are the cons.

    Move on. I wondered if it was possible to rip the compartment door off its hinges, sorry, “from the mechanism”, and how much effort it would take. I’m not an old girl yet; various young people often come to visit. It happens that the handsome Mitya, master of sports in rugby, appears in our cheerful company. Healthy as a closet, and strong as … I don’t know how who. In general, he is a kind person. But it happens, after the nth glass, his heroic soul demands freedom, and the poor fellow can pull my new door at himself, confusing it with the usual, swing door. And here it is very important: will she withstand his onslaught?

    Alas and ah. The door sales staff did not give me hope. They honestly said that not only the narrow-minded Mitya, but also a person with a less heroic physique, could knock a compartment door. But at the same time, the experts reprimanded me: they say, what are you, girl, calling such mischief-makers into the house? I promised to think about it. And it was also comforting that it was easier to knock out the door that was moving along the wall than the one that went into the wall. And then, with all the foolishness, you can break down almost any door – including swing doors.

    What other troubles happen with sliding doors? They can start to rattle, move unevenly, in jerks, they can generally get jammed. And in all this, by the way, the sliding mechanism will be to blame. Therefore, we remind you once again that you need to choose it with special care, not forgetting to check the warranty period with the seller.

    The best pasta and doors – in Italy

    But the mechanism is a mechanism, but still I want the door itself (that is, the canvas) to be beautiful, solid and last a long time. As we have already said, an ordinary door leaf is suitable for a sliding door, the main thing is that it is of high quality. There are many door manufacturers on our market. Most of all Italian. Then there are Finnish, German and Russian companies.

    If you think that the choice is scarce, and want to know where the doors of other countries are, we answer. We also sell Swedish, American, English doors. But they are few. The fact is that some Russian firms have purchased Western technologies and are molding the same doors from fiberboard and particleboard. And very good.

    But why did Italian coupe doors become the leaders in sales? And I decided to conduct a journalistic investigation and find out what the secret of their popularity is. At the first stage of the investigation, two conflicting versions emerged. In one company (which sells Italian doors) I was told that the Italians, they say, have long been the legislators of the “wood” door fashion. Another company (which, of course, has nothing to do with Italian products) sarcastically noticed that Italian doors, they say, are very expensive and in order to sell them, an extensive advertising campaign is needed. (On the other hand, who got in the way of good quality advertising when?)

    But I decided not to stop there and go further. As a result of my survey of “door” firms and companies, the list of favorites looked like this:

    1. Italians (they really have a long tradition of making wood products, including doors);
    2. Germans (very good, competent equipment, but the cost of goods is higher than that of Italians);
    3. Spaniards (the quality of doors, perhaps, is inferior to Italian and German, but prices are quite acceptable for the average consumer).

    As you can see, the championship still remained with Italian firms..

    Several stories from the “life” of Russian doors

    And what about “door-building” here, in Mother Russia? I have already managed to make sure that prices for Russian doors do not bite at all (the most expensive solid oak door costs $ 300–500), and their design is decent. “Beauty!” – I was patriotically delighted for our domestic door. Wait a minute, what about the quality of our products??

    Employees from the Macitelli representative came to the rescue. They gave me several instructive and very eloquent examples “on the topic.” Here is how it was. “For about six months we have been selling painted white doors from Smolensk. About three months after we sold them, buyers came running to us and nervously said: “They began to crack and do not open.” Fearing for our reputation, we immediately stopped trading in such doors. True, in fairness, I must say that it was 5 years ago. Now our manufacturers have begun to make doors much better, although, alas, there are still fewer bona fide Russian firms than we would like “.

    There was one more case. “Six months ago, my friend decided to order a Russian door made of 5 cm thick solid oak. I tried to dissuade him. But he really liked her, and my warnings were in vain. Two months passed: the door cracked and cracked so that a business card could be pushed through the slot. Now it stands as a dumb reproach that you need to listen to the opinion of professionals “.

    And then we remembered the past. I was told that earlier in Russia they made products from classy wood. When we were in St. Petersburg, we visited Menshikov’s palace. There is the only wooden staircase that has survived to this day. The tree is in perfect condition – not a single crack. Why? There were no drying chambers at that time, so the tree was dried naturally for 10-15 years, impregnated with natural resins.

    Hence the conclusion: it is necessary to dry better. Today the drying technology is different. The tree is cut down, dumped somewhere under a canopy, and it rots. What has not rotted – hurray! – into the dryer. A good drying chamber, by the way, costs more than tens of thousands of dollars. Who can afford such equipment today? Without this drying chamber, you can not start talking about quality at all. In short, if the wood has not undergone the required processing for several years, then the door from it will surely crack. Although at first outwardly, it may look perfect. It’s a pity, but it turns out that in 95% of cases, Russian doors from the array will crack sooner or later. The only question is in time and in the size of the crack.

    Array or what?

    Let’s digress from the topic a little and for a while and find out if this very array, dearly loved by our consumer, is so good. Like most Russians, all my life I believed that solid wood doors are by definition better, because, first of all, as they say, they are environmentally friendly..

    What we pay for?

    But back to the sliding doors. So what are we paying for? I have already said that there are two ways to purchase a mechanism for a sliding door: by contacting a company that sells mechanisms at retail, or by purchasing a door leaf immediately along with the mechanism.

    If you chose the first method, you can calculate your expenses yourself. But if you order a sliding door, relying on the choice of the company, you will have to face a price riddle here. You will be billed for the purchased kit as a whole. The fact is that the price is calculated not in Russia, but in the country from which the order will be delivered. So the price for each component will not be told to you for anything. And not because of harm – most likely, they simply do not know her.

    I explain with examples (all prices, of course, are approximate). Let’s say you chose a $ 900 door leaf. But for a sliding door you have to pay much more: $ 1548 (when moving into the wall) and $ 1300 (when moving the door along the wall).

    As you can see, the difference is significant – $ 648 and $ 400, respectively. What does it include? Let’s figure it out.

    $ 648 includes:

    $ 470 – cassette with mechanism.
    $ 178 – box set for sliding door into the wall.

    $ 400 includes:

    $ 80 – mechanism price,
    $ 320 – the cost of changing the door leaf and frame (that is, turning the door from a swing door into a compartment door).

    Unfortunately, I have not been able to find out exactly what these changes are. Representatives of firms in every possible way dodged a detailed story, arguing that buyers, they say, are not interested in such nuances. You are mistaken, dear, very much even interested. If I pay money, and not small, I would like to know why. So you shouldn’t be shy.

    In both cases, add to the original price the cost of services for the delivery of the door leaf and accessories, for installing a cassette with the destruction of a part of the wall and plasterboard sheathing ($ 200-250). Add a markup (20-50%) for the production of non-standard size sheets (we are talking about a door consisting of one sheet, and I’m afraid to stutter about six). Now count.

    What can you save on?

    If you are a wealthy person, then you can well complement and decorate the interior of your mansion with a sliding door of, say, six paintings. And if you don’t have much money, but you really want such a door, then you can still save some money on the purchase. We give help:

    1. A standard door is cheaper than a custom door.
    2. “Blind” door costs less than a door with glass.
    3. You don’t have to buy a cassette – this is also saving.

    And the last thing. If, after all the calculations, you still want a sliding door, then in no case do not deny yourself anything! Moreover, your life with a sliding door will be like this:

    1. The interior of the apartment will become even more sophisticated and individual.
    2. A little more space will appear in a small apartment.

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