A New (Cheaper) Way to do Sliding Doors on Furniture

How many of you love the barn door look?  I know, me too!  

I have a "real deal" sliding door track in my master bathroom 
and I LOVE IT!  
But what about adding sliding doors to pieces of furniture?  I love the look and wanted to do just that...on two media consoles in my living room.  That's 4 doors on two tracks.  I had to figure out the best and cheapest way to get the look I love.


First of all...I followed this tutorial at That's My Letter for adding these sliding doors to a piece of furniture.  The piece Jamie built is amazing and the hardware is the real deal.  Seriously...go check it out.  I did all the same steps and got pretty much the same look so I'm not going to recreate her tutorial in this post.  I'm simply going to tell you how I got the same effect for much less money. 

(Side note: I built my media consoles using this plan from Ana White and Nikki Grandy: Grandy Sliding Door Media Console.  My unit is 66"x36"x19" and made of 2x4's for the frame and cedar fence pickets for the trim/siding/doors.)

While I was getting ready to start this project I did some pricing for the materials I'd need for the sliding door hardware that Jamie at That's My Letter used and here's what it cost at my local Big Orange:

SLIDING HARDWARE (Metal track)
1 - 1" L shape angle bar x 1/8" thick x 72"l (bottom track) $13.00 ea
1 – 1.25" flat bar x 1/8" thick x 72"l (horizontal track) $10.97
4 = 1” x 36” black flat bars for door details (door braces)$6.48 ea.
4 - 1 1/2" awning pulleys  $2.36 ea
3 - #12 x 2 1/2" metal screws $1.50/box
3 - 1" steel spacers $0.97 ea.
24 - 1/4" washers $1.18/pack
7 - 1/4" hex nuts $1.18/pack – need 2
4 - #12 x 1 1/2" metal screws $0.47ea
8 - #12 x 3/4" metal screws $0.40 ea.

 I did choose to add 4 metal bar pieces to the list because I really wanted the black metal pieces on the door to extend all the way down.  But this shopping list ads up to...

$65.31

What?  And I am going to build two of the pieces...

$130.62

Yikes!  That's quite a chunk of change for the hardware on 
a piece of furniture.

So what was I going to do?!?!
...I roamed the halls at Big Orange quite a few times and tested ideas with random items from about every department before I came up with the simplest solution:

>>>Same Design...cheaper materials<<<


What I mean by that is I don't need to come up with a crazy new way to do sliding doors...I need to find cheaper materials that 
LOOK THE SAME and FUNCTION THE SAME as look I want.

So back to Big Orange for this Cheaper 
New and Improved shopping list:

SLIDING HARDWARE (wood track)
2 = 72” lattice boards for rail $0.80 ea.
1 = 72” lattice board for bottom rail guide $0.80 ea.
2 = .5” spacers for top rail used pipe sections...see below
4 = 1” spacers for bottom rail guide used pipe sections
4 = 32” lattice strips for door details 2 lattice boards: $0.80 ea.
4 = .5” spacers for "wheels" used pipe sections
4 = 1.25” hex bolts $0.47 ea.
4 =  0.25” steel cap nuts $1.18/pack.
4 = ~8” black lattice strips for back of door FREE-scraps
4 - .25" washers $1.18/pack
4 = 3” long screws to mount both rails already had


 So for anyone keeping track the grand total is...

$8.24

What?!?!  Heck yes!...$8.24 per media console for the same look!

Here's the two main changes I made that saved me big:

1. Replace all the metal flat bars for Lattice Wood.  This cut down on the cost tremendously and with a few coats of Hammered Metal spray paint ($7) they look great.  I did glue two pieces together for the top track for extra stability. (saved me $45.92)

2. Replaced the metal spacers and wheels with cut up pieces of an $0.80 black PVC pipe (red circles in picture below).  You can find something like this in the plumbing section.  It's 1/2" in diameter and 18" long. It only costs $0.80 and one will be more than enough for both of my media consoles.  Jackpot!  (Saved me: $11.55)



I've had the three kiddos 'testing' the doors all day and everything is working great!  I'm glad I added the lower track to hold the doors back because the kids seem to want to pull out as they slide them back and forth.  

 So I got my sliding door console just like I wanted and didn't have to spend a small mint on the hardware! 

UPDATE:  I've had a few questions about how sturdy this sliding door hardware is...and while I can say it's working great for me (my kids have already filled the console up with all sorts of treasures) I would have to recommend you don't use the wood sliding door hardware with a very heavy door.

Now I just have to Find The Time to build #2!

37 Response to A New (Cheaper) Way to do Sliding Doors on Furniture

June 12, 2016 at 5:48 AM

So happy that I found this! I just finished building an island with storage under and forgot to buy hinges for the doors I have yet to build...now I know why! This is what I really wanted but my wallet did not. One question, do the "wheels" actually roll or do they just slide on the wood?

July 5, 2016 at 12:14 AM

This is a really good read for me, Must admit that you are one of the best bloggers I ever saw.Thanks for posting this informative article.
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July 23, 2016 at 9:46 AM

Thank you for this tip! We were surprised how much the hardware would cost. Is your table the same dimensions as the Ana White original plans? We would love to do a smaller version and yours looks a little smaller than hers? If so, do you have the modified measurements?

September 9, 2016 at 12:17 AM

Such an useful and knowledgeable article.I will use these tips in future. I am looking forward to your next posts.
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September 25, 2016 at 3:37 PM

I don't get how you got your price. At my local home depot the lattice alone was around $28 ($0.90 per LF) I was so excited about this and so very disappointed when i got there.

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