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Old December 18th 09, 12:29 AM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which are
not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice brass
knobs to use.

I had absolutely no idea about this nonsense. I just wanted to slap a
nice brass door knob on the door, but no, some idiot decided that they
would make door locks with insufficient spring strength.

Anyway, I deduced, from the catalogue, that the unit fitted was a Union
"2295" 2 lever mortice sash lock: about the cheapest damned thing possible.

We therefore need to change it for a different unit with a decent
spring, but I've had to email Union to ask which unit to get, as the
catalogue isn't explicit as to which ones take unsprung handles/knobs.

Needless to say, the various units are all different sizes. There are
dozens of models. At least it's possible to get them with the same
backset/centre measurements, but the positions of the bolts, the sizes
of the faceplates, etc, are all different.

What's the likelihood I'll have to tell the builder he'll have to get
new doors because the old ones can't be modified to fit a different
sized unit?

Michael

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Old December 18th 09, 01:18 AM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:
Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which
are not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice
brass knobs to use.


Did you actually tell him (or the architect) what you wanted at the planning
stage?

I had absolutely no idea about this nonsense. I just wanted to slap a
nice brass door knob on the door, but no, some idiot decided that they
would make door locks with insufficient spring strength.


Perhaps you lack sufficient knowledge and information to know that there
are different types of locks and latches - and if you didn't tell the
builder precisely what you wanted fitted on each door, then the fault is
yours and you are the "idiot" that carries the blame!

Anyway, I deduced, from the catalogue, that the unit fitted was a
Union "2295" 2 lever mortice sash lock: about the cheapest damned
thing possible.


If the builder is not told otherwise, other than a simple mortise latch,
this is a standard fitting on a bedroom door - simply to give you some
privacy when there are children in the house.

We therefore need to change it for a different unit with a decent
spring, but I've had to email Union to ask which unit to get, as the
catalogue isn't explicit as to which ones take unsprung handles/knobs.


Why e-mail Union, when you could simply ask your builder to tell you the
differences between the different types of lock?

Needless to say, the various units are all different sizes. There are
dozens of models. At least it's possible to get them with the same
backset/centre measurements, but the positions of the bolts, the sizes
of the faceplates, etc, are all different.


You are simply making a mountain out of a molehill - almost all mortice
latches and locks will have sufficient spring pressure to operate a simple
door-knob setup - unless the knobs are rather heavy, and something will
usually still fit anyway with minor adjustments.

What's the likelihood I'll have to tell the builder he'll have to get
new doors because the old ones can't be modified to fit a different
sized unit?


Unless you told him exactly what you wanted at the planning stage (or he
fitted something contrary to your instructions), the builder is entitled to
charge you for any extra works - including the cost of new doors and locks.
As a matter of interest, all doors can usually be "modified to fit a
different sized unit" fairly easily by a skilled carpenter.

So why not talk to your builder about the problem, tell him precisely what
you require and then let him sort it out - in almost all problems of this
type, new doors are not needed [1] as locks can generally be found to suit
the housings.

[1] With the exception high quality of polished doors, as any making good
can be difficult to hide.



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Old December 18th 09, 08:34 AM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:

Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which are
not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice brass
knobs to use.


I'd say they are either very cheap mortices, or, more likely cheap
knobs.
I had the same earlier this year. Even though a pair of knobs was 10
(trade price), they were rubbish. Looked good, but nowhere near smooth
enough. I changed the mortice for a much better quality one, and it was
still the same. Changed the knobs for a 25 pair, and they were fine.

What's the likelihood I'll have to tell the builder he'll have to get
new doors because the old ones can't be modified to fit a different
sized unit?


I'd tell you it wasnt possible to do that unless you wanted to pay for
them. If you supplied the knobs, I'd tell you they were no good, and
you'd need better quality knobs.
Most mortices and locks can be changed without damaging the door surface
anyway.
Alan.
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Old December 18th 09, 02:17 PM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:
Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which are
not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice brass
knobs to use.

I had absolutely no idea about this nonsense. I just wanted to slap a
nice brass door knob on the door, but no, some idiot decided that they
would make door locks with insufficient spring strength.


It's not nonsense. If you have too strong a spring pressure, then young
children and old people have difficulty operating a lever-type handle
and absolutely no chance of turning a knob.

Obviously, you've never come across this before and the builder has
reasonably assumed that you will have sprung handles, which the vast
majority of domestic handles are.


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Old December 21st 09, 08:51 PM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Unbeliever wrote:

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:

Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which
are not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice
brass knobs to use.


[snip]

You are simply making a mountain out of a molehill - almost all mortice
latches and locks will have sufficient spring pressure to operate a simple
door-knob setup - unless the knobs are rather heavy, and something will
usually still fit anyway with minor adjustments.



No, that simply isn't true. The modest friction within the knobs (which
are small ovals, not heavy handles) appears to be far too much to return
the knobs after release. And it's clear from the literature, having now
looked it up, that some units clearly state that they are appropriate
for sprung levers/knobs only, others for unsprung ones.

It's also very simple to observe that all the old mechanisms in the
house have much stronger springs than the new ones and they were
perfectly comfortable with those knobs.

I'm just baffled as to why anybody would want to move the springs from
within the latch mechanism to within the handle itself. That's the
design decision that "made a mountain out of a molehill", as it
instantly -and obviously - means that various old handles which are not
sprung cannot necessarily be used with a lock that is only for sprung
handles.

I mean, the latch has to have a spring anyway, so the end result is that
for sprung handles you have *two* springs (or three, if both handles of
a pair are sprung) rather than just one.

Michael


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Old December 21st 09, 08:54 PM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

A.Lee wrote:

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:


Our builder has, much to my annoyance, fitted a mortice sash lock on a
new bedroom door and two bathroom locks on two other new doors which are
not capable of supporting unsprung door knobs. We have some nice brass
knobs to use.



I'd say they are either very cheap mortices, or, more likely cheap
knobs.


I doubt they were cheap originally (whenever that was). For a start,
they have a screw-on rose so that the fixing screws are hidden. You
don't get those for 10, as far as I can see.

Michael
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Old December 21st 09, 10:22 PM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

A.Lee wrote:

I had the same earlier this year. Even though a pair of knobs was 10
(trade price), they were rubbish. Looked good, but nowhere near smooth
enough. I changed the mortice for a much better quality one, and it was
still the same. Changed the knobs for a 25 pair, and they were fine.


Funny you should talk about duff knobs. After writing my previous reply
to you I then went to fit the two thumb turn locks (on 5mm spindles) to
the bathroom and toilet doors. They were the only ones I could get in
Cambridge, from Ridgeons, this afternoon. Almost 15 each. Brass, but
not stylistically matching the knobs. They are made by Dale.

Good enough until I find better? Apparently not. They weren't even made
properly and I had to ream out the hole in one of the roses so that the
thumb turn - which itself was deformed - would fit properly. Two
identical units and one them had two glaring faults.

Quite unbelieveable. Four noddy bits of brass and a steel square
spindle, and they can't even make it correctly!

Michael
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Old December 21st 09, 11:04 PM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Michael Kilpatrick wrote:

I'm just baffled as to why anybody would want to move the springs from
within the latch mechanism to within the handle itself.


Maybe, but it's absolutely standard. Every handle I've ever removed from
a door has had a spring in it.

Pete
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Old December 22nd 09, 12:02 AM posted to uk.d-i-y
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Default Door latches/locks for unsprung door knobs

Pete Verdon wrote:
Michael Kilpatrick wrote:

I'm just baffled as to why anybody would want to move the springs from
within the latch mechanism to within the handle itself.



Maybe, but it's absolutely standard. Every handle I've ever removed from
a door has had a spring in it.

Pete



Well, OK, let's distinguish between knobs and handles. At least for
handles of any substance there's more of a physical reason why you might
need a spring.

However, it doesn't take long looking at door knobs online to see that
there are a plethora of unsprung door knobs available.

Furthermore, it's very easy to find "unsprung door handles" online.

Some of the only sprung knobs seem to be those such as the (cheap) ones
the builder bought a couple of to show me. They came in pairs which are
both sprung. Together they are horribly stiff - and that's when combined
with a catch with the weakest spring possible. Obviously you notice the
stiffness more with a round knob than with a lever.

If you put one of those cheapo sprung knobs together with one of my old
unsprung brass knobs on the other side, you get something which is about
normal in terms of spring weight (and that's with the weak-springed
mortice lock that the builder fitted, not a heavily-sprung lock).

Michael


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