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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    Default Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    One of my workers punched a hole in the masonite panel of an 8' paint grade Arts & Crafts style pocket door after it was installed. The rails and stiles are wood. Any suggestions on the best way to repair the damage so the repair is not visible after repainting?

    I was thinking Epoxy but any sanding would likely dig into the masonite more than the Epoxy. I don't think it is practical to take the door apart to replace the panel, but I could be wrong.

    Any (constructive) suggestions would be appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Dec 2006
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    Cut out the section and glue in a piece of masonite patch with a wood cleat behind it.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    edit.. sorry re-read your post. I thought it was a hollow door

    I have use spray foam before to fix doors (hollow 6-panel masonite)that my tenants kicked in. I never really bothered to make it look nice after, but I would imagine if it is a flat panel it would be easy with bondo or quickset drywall compound.

    What I did was drive a series of screws along the crack to push the peice back out flush. The screws will bottom on the other side of the door pushing the cracked peice out. Pull on the screw as you drive it in so it doesnt go through the other side. Once everything is flat again, drill a small hole and shoot in some low expanding foam to support the cracked peices. You will have to drill a few spots to make sure you get it all supported. The next day take out the screws and finish with filler.
    Last edited by scott_w; 10-17-2008 at 08:10 AM.

  4. #4
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    Sep 2004
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    Assuming solid MDF panels

    The first thing I would try to do is glue the existing piece back in place. Try to get a clamp on it somehow. If it's near the edge use a deep bar clamp with flat cauls w/ wax paper to keep the glue from sticking. If the repair is near the middle you may have get creative with the clamping, pipe clamp and wedges, drill a hole and use wire like a tourniquet ... , then bondo then sand.

    If you don't have the piece, or there is no way of clamping it using a router and template route a square hole with a 45 degree bevel. Then make a patch with a corresponding bevel. I would glue with a combination of carpenters glue and cryo or hot melt as a clamp, then bondo, then sand.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    It is a single thickness masonite panel. Good suggestions, I think I will reglue and clamp it, then bondo any depressions, then use a plane to level any high spots.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    What about removing the sticking on one side, popping out the panel entirely, installing a new one, and making new sticking to replace?

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    It is an Arts & Crafts style door and the rails and stiles are milled with a slot for the panel so I'd have to get a whole 8' stile loose and I think I'd destroy it doing so. I think using a plane to surface the patch may be the trick...

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    I would be careful with Bondo. Prime whatever surface you apply it to first. Try to tool it as flat as possible just as it "goes off". Sanding it flat later is torture if it's more than a tiny area. Sanding a hard area flat in the midst of softer material is also difficult. Maybe there's a better material than Bondo, something you can skim on with a drywall knife rather than glop on. Or maybe there's a way to skim the Bondo flat and in plane as you apply it. I wonder if placing wax paper over and then tooling would work?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    Quote Originally Posted by David Meiland View Post
    I would be careful with Bondo. Prime whatever surface you apply it to first. Try to tool it as flat as possible just as it "goes off". Sanding it flat later is torture if it's more than a tiny area. Sanding a hard area flat in the midst of softer material is also difficult. Maybe there's a better material than Bondo, something you can skim on with a drywall knife rather than glop on. Or maybe there's a way to skim the Bondo flat and in plane as you apply it. I wonder if placing wax paper over and then tooling would work?
    I use Bondo on MDF quite a bit. You are correct, if you glop the stuff on it can be a pain to sand and you can gouge surrounding surfaces if your not careful which leads to more bondo and before you know your door looks like a 74 Pinto. The way I do it I use drywall tools, everything from a putty knife to a trowel with 3" and 5" being the most used. I keep the bondo flush to slightly below the surface and sneak up on the finish in 2 or 3 coats if necessary. This way you minimize sanding. The final coat can be glazing putty, if you aren't good at trowelling and sanding bondo, which is much easier to sand, but shrinks like crazy and leaves red dust everywhere (I sand it with a ROS with dust collection)

    The tools I use to sand it are a mini grinder with 80 grit green 3M disks and a ROS with 60-120 automotive paper, it doesn't clog as bad. In this case I would just use the ROS. I mainly use the mini grinder on hollow metal.

    The nice thing about Bondo on MDF is it makes an invisible patch, the texture paints just like MDF. One other thing I do when patching a panel like this is even if one side can be sanded flat without bondo I will skim coat with Bondo or glazing putty and sand it down so it paints the same.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    What about "skinning" the panel with a thin birch veneer on both sides? Since it is paint grade you could get it cut very close to the rails and stiles, then finish this transition with a tiny bit of painters caulk?

    Dave has a great idea with removing the panel. Cut out the profile edge that is holding the panel in and remove the panel. Put in a new panel and make up new trim to trim out that openning. Similar to what you would have with a glass french door. This would work great if you could find the same/very similar profile. I think someone else on the forum did this recently.

    scott

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    If it was my house and I found out someone had done a patch job on my doors after his careless employee had screwed it up I'd be pretty upset. If it were me I'd replace it- whether you replace the door or just the blown panel is up to you, but a patch job is out of the question. In order to replace the panel and get a "new" door you would need to disassemble it- and that can be difficult with the new glues on the market. The wood will fail before the glue. Save your reputation with the HO and the builder, and replace it. Take it out of the guys pay.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    The last answer is the best answer.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Repairing Masonite Door Panel

    Quote Originally Posted by Unforgiven View Post
    Take it out of the guys pay.
    I believe that is illegal to do.

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