There is one thing we have lots of and that is ugly exterior doors. Most of them are toast but a few can be saved with a bit of imagination. As a case in point, the front door to the old barber shop was as ugly as they come but remained structurally sound. The existing mortise lock was repairable, despite having been kicked in at some point, and the frame was still square… mostly. The one real problem it had was that the plywood on the lower panel had become unglued.
Even though this fit with our look of “Ghost Town Revival”, the old plywood was likely to trap water inside the door leading to further decay. So, looking around at salvaged materials, I hatched a cunning plan.
The first step was to carefully remove the old plywood panel.
There was wood molding holding the panel in place on the inside of the door which I removed with a chisel. This allowed the panel to come out while leaving the molding on the exterior of the door intact. Once that was done, I salvaged some tongue and groove boards from the original saloon wainscotting.
With a bit of cutting and scraping, the boards were reading for their new task.
Once tacked in place, I applied new trim to the back of the door to hold the boards in place.
With priming and paint, the tongue and groove boards will really make the door look nicer.