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Rattle-free Doors

When building and assembling raised panel doors, I’m always careful to account for normal expansion and contraction of the panel in the frame. The precaution involves leaving a small gap between the edges of the panel and the bottom of the frame groove and then allowing the panel to “float” in the groove without glue. But this technique can lead to another problem. As the panel shrinks in dry weather, the loosened fit can cause it to rattle as the door is opened and closed.

The fix I came up with is very simple and effective. Before assembling the door, I put small dabs of silicone caulk in the bottom of the groove and allow it to dry. Once the door is assembled the caulk cushions the panel in the frame, both keeping it centered and rattle-free.

Have a nice weekend,

Ted Raife
Editor, Woodsmith

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