Pocket doors are beautiful, but they're expensive and challenging to retrofit to a home. Instead, make a beautiful, handmade Sliding Pallet Interior Door. It'll eliminate the issue of small rooms and door clearance issues!
Here's my step-by-step tutorial with pictures of each step to help you build your own Sliding Pallet Interior Door!
Tools & Supplies Needed:
- Eye, hand & arm protection
- Reciprocating saw with wood/metal blade
- Circular Saw or Table Saw
- Cordless drill
- Cordless impact driver
- Punch or Nail Setter (to remove nails - optional)
- Straight Edge for marking plywood
- Random-orbit sander & 60 to 80-grit sandpaper
- Tape measure
- box wrench(es) / socket set
- Stud Finder (optional)
- Paint or sponge brushes
- Scrap clothes for applying stain
- Wood glue
- Wood filler (optional)
- Polyurethane sealant
- Paint (either to match your trim or to blend to wall tone)
- Sliding Barn Door Hanger Kit
- 1/2" (or adjust as needed) sheet of quality plywood
- Wood screws (ensure not too long to penetrate pallet wood + plywood piece!)
Step 1: Beginning your Pallet Interior Door - gather clean pallets
Locate and obtain quality pallets that are mostly intact and clean. If you're not sure the pallets you have are safe, check out our Pallet Safety article! First, find some usable pallets. Refer to our Pallet Safety page if you're not sure you should be using them or not.
Step 2: Separating your pallets with a Reciprocating Saw
Using a reciprocating saw with a metal blade, cut between the joint of the pallet planks and stringers. Be sure to use eye, hand, and arm protection. When completed separate out the quality pieces from those that are not able to be used. Remove the deck boards using a reciprocating saw. Optionally, you can remove the nail heads or not. If you do, you can use a nail setter/punch & a hammer. Next, start sanding!
Step 3: Cut plywood to the size of your Pallet Interior Door
Use a thin sheet of maple, pine, or oak plywood to attach the planks to it. Using the plywood will ensure privacy if there are any gaps in the wood due to warping or bending. Stain the plywood the same color that you plan to use on the pallet wood after cutting it to the dimensions needed. If this door will divide two rooms, use a good-quality, attractive-looking piece of plywood.
Step 4: Cut pallet deck boards to width for your Pallet Interior Door
Cut the pallet pieces to the width needed for door opening. Sand them with 60 or 80 grit sandpaper. Be sure to sand the front and back so that the stain and glue both have clean surfaces to be applied to. Sand your boards down to the smoothness you desire. If you prefer it more rustic; that's fine!
Now that you've prepped your boards let's start building!
Step 5: Installing the pallet deck boards onto the plywood
Place horizontal pallet pieces down on the plywood, applying wood glue to the back of the planks. Ensure a 90-degree angle is maintained after each plank is placed with a square. Glue the boards down in place. Check for square FREQUENTLY! Notice the previously-stained plywood. Use a good quality wood glue for this job.
Step 6: Trimming out the Pallet Interior Door
Cut and place 1"x 6" border pieces in. Secure with screws, being careful not to extend the screw beyond the back of the plywood. Once the 1x6 pieces are secured, carefully flip the door on its face and place screws from the backside to ensure a tight fit of all of the boards that have been put in place. Install your trim/border boards in place with screws. Pre-drill to prevent splitting the wood.
Complete the trim boards.
Step 7: Securing everything in place on your Pallet Interior Door
Turn the door over to its back again. Measure cross pieces and secure with a screw on each end and in the middle. If more securing is desired, you will secure from the back side to hide the extra screws placed. Begin adding your cross pieces to the door.
All the cross pieces are done!
Step 8: Stain it!
Stain the door using a foam brush for hard to reach joints and a cloth for surface applications. Allow to dry and repeat another coat. Seal the entire door (front and back) with 2-3 coats of polyurethane. Stain or paint your door any way you choose.
Step 9: Install the header board & rail system to hang your Pallet Interior Door
Install painted header board. Ensure an adequate number of studs are used to secure the header board as this will carry much of the weight of the door. Install the door track per the instructions. Install the slider hardware. I previously painted the long trim board beneath the slider rail. Be sure you find studs to attach this piece to the wall as it supports quite a bit of weight.
Step 10: Install rollers to the top of the Pallet Interior Door
Installing the hardware for the door hangers/sliders. Follow the manufacturer's directions.
Step 11: Hanging up your Pallet Interior Door!
Hang door and install remaining hardware (bumpers, floor guides, privacy hook). My completed Sliding Pallet Interior Door! I think it looks great, and it's practical!
Now for some decorating - make yourself a Garden Hose Basket!