We are finishing up the major work in a bedroom renovation and also we"re now trying to tackle a sort of finicky component: the old trap door in the floor.

For background, we"re on the third floor of a three-story conexecute. Previously, this was a storage room that looked sort of choose a barn. The trap door caused an emergency set of rear-leave stairs. The flooring was rough-hewn pine subfloor.

We have actually set up a new, level 5/8-plywood subfloor and also we desire to keep the stair access for emergencies. Otherwise, the stairs will never be supplied. We are installing 1.5-inch birch hardlumber flooring.

For recommendation, the stairs are in a corner of the room, (unhelpfully behind the ladder in this photograph):

You are watching: How to build a trapdoor in the floor


If you"re looking right down at the opening for the trap door, it looks choose this:


Our vague principle of what we want the finimelted product to look like is this (random photo we got hold of from the internet):

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Here are the nitty-gritty architecture concepts and questions:

1.) Right now, the trap opening is framed in 2x3s. Our idea is to sister an additional border of 2x3s alengthy the inside edge of the trap door opening to administer a bigger lip to assistance the trap door. Will this carry out a solid enough lip for the trap door?

2.) We obviously want to protect against any feebleness in the style and we do not want the door to warp or flex underfoot. The plyhardwood component of the door will certainly need to be around 54 x 24 inches. Will 5/8ths plyhardwood be steady in that size? Should we usage 3/4ths instead? Should we usage 1 inch? Is tright here any kind of specific type of plytimber we need to use for this application? (We would certainly change the elevation of the sistered 2x3s to compensate for any type of height difference in between the trap door plyhardwood and the surrounding subfloor plyhardwood.

3.) We were reasoning of using one single long exposed piano hinge for the trap door, favor in the picture over. Earlier in the architecture, we had actually assumed about making use of fancy recessed soss hinges, but decided this might be also tricky. Is one long piano hinge the finest approach? (It would certainly should be placed along the long side closest to the wall in order to have the ability to open up correctly.)

4.) We"d like to create a picture-frame border about the edge of the trap door itself, partly to prevent an exposed line of cut flooring, and partially just because we think it will certainly produce a nice aesthetic between trap door and floor. We were reasoning of making use of the 1.5 inch birch to make this picture-structure border and I was planning to afresolve it construction adhesive and also facenailing. Will the image structure border be solid enough through this approach? Does that seem prefer the best method to produce a visual border for the trap door?

5.) Ideally, we likewise wanted to construct one more picture-structure border on the surrounding subfloor edges (so, a dual picture structure prefer the one in the incentive photo above). However before, as you might be able to watch from the photo of our trap door opening, the two "wall sides" of the opening have very narrow ledges, of around an inch. We are not quite sure how to finish these. One alternative we thought about is to rip the birch flooring and also facenail and/or glue in location. (I"m not sure if that will job-related.) Anvarious other option we taken into consideration was to attempt rig up something via baseboard and also quarter-round, but I"m worried that could look damaging. Does anyone have suggestions about exactly how to end up these narrowhead ledges so that they enhance the birch flooring and are strong?

We are quite brand-new to home-owning. We are profoundly grateful to you all for your experience and wisdom.