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I'm trying to finish a large closet into a makeshift office. I'd like to add a door to the opening to the room. The opening is 32" wide by 73". I was looking for a 30x72" prehung door, but everything seems to be 80" tall, and I don't think trimmable doors are designed to cut off 8".

How do I find or build a door that's the right size?

Thanks!

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  • There are tons of YouTube videos on "how to build a custom interior door" Here is one. youtube.com/watch?v=yThLi5ADdsc ( I love that this guy used 3/4" dowels ) There are tons, so a simpler design can be found if you search. Just make it to your dimensions. The woodworking stack is great for wood working questions. woodworking.stackexchange.com – Alaska Man Jun 15 '20 at 0:16
  • @AlaskaMan thanks. I’ll consider that. I’m hoping to find something easier and less custom for this project if I can avoid it. Thank you. – John Jun 15 '20 at 1:59
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    you can just stuff a 2x4 scrap into the hollowed-out portion if there's no factory wood left. scrape out the cardboard, cover the board with wood glue, tap in place, wait. – dandavis Jun 15 '20 at 4:12
  • I've used the original top rail. Just clean the veneer off it and glue it back in. – isherwood Jun 15 '20 at 12:33
  • More good advice here: diy.stackexchange.com/questions/154635/… – isherwood Jun 15 '20 at 12:36
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Search the internet for "architectural salvage"* in your area. Here you'll find everything from old doors & hardware to tubs, door knobs, shelves, and who-knows-what.

Look for a door that's 32" wide by at least 73" tall. If you're anywhere near a major urban area, you'll probably have several hundred to choose from. When you find the one you like, you've got about a 99.9999% chance of it being made of solid wood so you can safely & easily cut the extra height off. If the one you like is wider, you can most likely cut some extra width off, too. You can cut some from the top and bottom to keep the panels centered, or cut from only one end to re-center the panels (it's entirely possible that someone cut off only one end previously, leaving them off-center).

If you don't have the tools to do the cuts, they'll probably be happy to make them for you for a small additional fee. At the places local to me, I've seen doors with the old lock mortises very professionally filled so you can install modern lock/knob sets on them. They were happy to cut holes for a modern lock set for me, as well. They can probably fill the old hinge mortises, as well, so you can put new ones where you need them if you can't use the existing ones in the door.

While you're there, enjoy looking around at all the amazing things that have been pulled out of old houses. Be careful, though, you may end up buying more than you came for!

*There are other terms for this, too, but they're just not coming to me yet. It's early and the coffee hasn't fully kicked in.

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    It's generally best not to cut much off the bottom as this shifts the door knob. – isherwood Jun 15 '20 at 12:34
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    Good point, and probably why I've seen many where the panels were off-center vertically. If, however, there was a mortise lock on the door, and it will be replaced with a more modern lockset, the mortise will have to be filled and the new knob can go wherever you want it. – FreeMan Jun 15 '20 at 12:54

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