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How change vintage locks to two-sided?

Posted by wi-sailorgirl (My Page) on
Sun, Sep 19, 10 at 1:50

We are using a door salvaged from my grandmother's house for a newly added bathroom. It came with a thumb turn on one side and no way to open the lock on the other side. Since this is to be a bathroom door I want it to be openable from the outside, but on top of that, the way the door is oriented in our home, the thumb turn would be on the outside.

I've searched all the restoration hardware places (Rejuvenation, House of Antique Hardware, Van Dyke's, etc.) but I can't figure out what configuration allows for a lock on the inside that is unlockable on the outside. A skeleton key on the outside is fine with me, I just want some mechanism so that someone doesn't get locked in there. I'm planning to replace the door knob and have no problem replacing the lock set if necessary, but I don't even know what to buy.

Any ideas?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: How change vintage locks to two-sided?

Hi Sailorgirl....
How about uploading a picture of that door with the lock shown from both sides.

Sounds fascinating that you are keeping your grandmother's old door. What a tribute to her.

Lately I've become a fan of Lee Valley Tools, but do not know if they have what you want.


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RE: How change vintage locks to two-sided?

In the 20's -40's era it was popular to have the bathroom lockset with a knob & a thumbturn on the inside and a knob (with or w/o keyhole) outside. The thumbturn operated the deadbolt on the mortise lock. These locksets can be regularly found (used) on ebay.
Casey


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RE: How change vintage locks to two-sided?

Thanks for replying!

First of all, sorry for the disjointed original post. I posted it very late at night and should no better because it just barely made sense.

I will take some photos next time I'm at the house working on it (we're currently not living in the house during the "meat" of our renovation but I go out every other night or so to work on it). I did find something from Van Dyke's that I think will work, that will allow me to have a thumb turn inside and a skeleton key on the exterior, but it's not cheap. Mortise locks are kind of a pain, huh? I can see why they came up with tube locks!

This door project has definitely become a labor love. Between the lock issue and the fact that one side of it was so gunked up with layers and layers of paint (although it has been fun uncovering all the old colors, including the original color which is the most beautiful grayed light green) that I had no choice but to strip it. Then, while using the heat gun, I broke one of the panes of glass so now we have to replace that. And of course once I get it all painted I need to put privacy film on the windows (because a clear glass bathroom door is a little too much even for me).

Wouldn't be worth it if I didn't really love the door and it's history but I do so it's a good project to keep my mind off the renovation!


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RE: How change vintage locks to two-sided?

"Between the lock issue and the fact that one side of it was so gunked up with layers and layers of paint (although it has been fun uncovering all the old colors, including the original color which is the most beautiful grayed light green) that I had no choice but to strip it."

Watch out for lead paint.

Lead acetate was very common as a drier and hardener in alkyd (oil) based gloss paint used on trim, windows, and doors.


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