So I have a little house and would love to use pocket doors all over it. It seems the Johnson hardware 1500 series doors with the ball bearing rollers have great reviews and slide like butter. So I'm going for those. I'm thinking of just buying the hardware though to frame out my own 2x6 walls.

A few concerns I have are noise, the ability to run shower plumbing, and tile in the bathroom against the door and having a wobbly wall.

I'm thinking of constructing the doors as in attached image. There is a 2x6 top plate and 2x2 bottom plates on each side of the door. 2x4 (or maybe 2x2 if it would be solid enough to allow for more insulation) studs on each side of the wall. 1" rigid fiberglass boards between studs on each side for sound control. 1/4" underlayment backing on each side in the door cavity. This leaves me with 3/16" of space on either side of a 1.375" solid core heavy door. Where needed I should be able to run the plumbing between the insulation for the shower. My thinking is this should control the sound and be very sturdy as not do break/crack a tile installation.

What do you guys think? Am I missing anything here?enter image description here

  • 2
    Insulation won't do much for sound in this situation. You can barely run electrical in a typical pocket door frame--I don't see how you'd be able to run plumbing at all. If you want to put mechanicals in the wall, then consider not putting the door in the wall and use a barn door instead.
    – DA01
    Commented Sep 24, 2014 at 20:53
  • Thanks. No room for an exterior one. This isn't a typical pocket. I have 2x on its side so have a 1.5" gap in the wall to run 1/2" pipe through. Don't think that would work?
    – michael
    Commented Sep 24, 2014 at 22:32
  • well, what's the difference between building a really fat pocket door wall vs. a normal wall with an exterior barn door? I suppose in your situation, you're really building two walls sandwiched together. If that works for your needs, I suppose it works. That said, I really don't think the insulation will gain you any benefit here. Might just want to skip that part.
    – DA01
    Commented Sep 24, 2014 at 23:34
  • @DA01 Thanks, I'll take that into consideration. One side has cabinets coming into it and the other side has a built in desk on the wall so that is why the barn door idea won't work although I think that would be optimal if there was room.
    – michael
    Commented Sep 25, 2014 at 0:34

2 Answers 2


If you don't have an issue about the door being centered, you can use the clips and "studs" of the pocket door kit on one side and use the 2X4s on the or ripped to size to allow you to do what you need on the other side. Here is a couple of sketches I made a while back showing the method of construction for a pocket door in a 2X6 wall. This way of doing this helps keep the studs straight and sturdy. The sketch also shows a 1 3/4" door, but there is no reason that it could not be an 1 3/8" door.enter image description here enter image description here

  • Great drawings. I think you may have answered or responded to probably every question I've had on this forum. Thanks!
    – michael
    Commented Sep 25, 2014 at 22:58

3/16" is an awfully fine clearance for a pocket door. Unless the door is moisture-proof, the door is going to bow (and therefore jam when moved) whenever there is a humidity difference across it such as when there is a shower in use.

That is a completely unacceptable place to run plumbing. Heck, getting 3/4 inch galvanized pipe crossing each other inside a 2x4 wall is a challenge and not something a mechanical inspector wants to see unless the circumstances are truly difficult.

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