More Door, Gate and Garage Door Information

Most door and gate designs are not new creations, but variations of door, carriage door (garage door) and gate designs that have been the standard in Manor Houses, Castles or Mansions around the world. From the current mass producers, semi-custom, and true custom handmade craftsmen, these designs transcend. Today many of these doors, garage doors and gates look similar, however, one should be aware they are far from equal when it comes to quality, maintenance and function.The definition of a castle (from Latin castellum) is a type of fortified structure built in Europe and the Middle East during the Middle Ages by European nobility. Scholars debate the scope of the word castle, but usually consider it to be the private fortified residence of a lord or noble. This is distinct from a palace, which is not fortified, from a fortress, which was not always a residence for nobility, and from a fortified town, which was a public defense. When a door was designed, it was designed to last forever and help this fortification.

There are many similarities among these types of construction. Usage of the term has varied over time and has been applied to structures as diverse as hill forts, manor houses and country houses. Over the approximately 900 years that castles were built they took on a great many forms with many different features, although some, such as curtain walls and arrow slits, were commonplace. The most consistent of features was how entrances appeared, what materials were used and how they were built - with focus on two things: first impression and fortified security - the same as it should be today.

Although their military origins are often emphasized in castle studies, the structures also served as centers of administration and symbols of power. Urban castles were used to control the local populace and important travel routes, and rural castles were often situated near features that were integral to life in the community, such as mills and fertile land. These changes in defense have been attributed to a mixture of castle technology from the Crusades, such as concentric fortification, and inspiration from earlier defenses such as Roman forts. Not all the elements of castle architecture were military in nature, and devices such as moats evolved from their original purpose of defense into symbols of power. Some grand castles had long winding approaches intended to impress and dominate their landscape. Just as it is today, a long winding gated entrance is always desirable, as well as a grand entrance into your castle (home).

Most designs used today were conceived hundreds of years ago by some of the world's most famous architects and designers working for the aristocracies and the well-to-do of their period. Many of these architects and designers are as well known as Leonardo da Vinci (renaissance architecture) or Michelangelo (baroque architecture), as well as more recently William Morris, John Ruskin (founders of the Arts and Crafts furniture movement in circa 1800 England), Gustave Stickley (founder of the American Arts and Crafts movement in America circa 1900), Frank Lloyd Wright, and Charles and Henry Greene to name a few. All 21st century designs from are built by our master craftsmen using these classic traditional methods. - Custom Furnishings Made in America

Today our master craftsmen build all of our products using the identical methods and materials of the historical period of each furnishing's design conception. At we have raised the bar on high quality custom furnishings, and set a new standard for offering the finest one-of-a-kind handmade furnishings found anywhere in the world.

Whether we build products for your modern dream home or ancient castle, every element is always built to future collectable - antiquity investment quality - standards. All our custom doors, gates, funiture, lighting and furnishings will stand the test of time, and are destined to become a part of your family's appreciating financial net worth, as well as a proud-to-own legacy heirloom.

We Are A "One Stop Shop" - Many of our clients commission furniture for every room, doors, gates, built-in cabinets, lighting and hardware for their entire project. For example: We are capable of starting with your entrance door design style or personalized carved coat of arms, family crest or business logo and bring this design, in a tasteful and elegant way, into your interior and exterior lighting fixtures, entrance doors, interior doors, cabinets, structural elements, entrance gates, or furnishings for every room. Making your home a unique piece of your family's tradition and legacy. Order an Original Work or Limited Edition

wood furnishings mortise and tenon joints

Custom Doors, Garage Doors, and Gates

Order any Door Design, as a Gate or Garage Door - add matching Windows
Order Your Doors Any Size - Any Style - Any Finish

You May Order: The door blade only - a complete entry unit - straight top door - eyebrow arch top or full arch top doors - single door - double doors - exterior doors - interior doors - in any size and style to fit your project specifications.

Door Only - Ready for carving, order any size, solid American domestic natural air dried and time cured timber - exotic natural woods of all species are available - light distress, door blades, hand hewn, pegged, doweled and tenon joined. When ordering "any product" the price includes all design drawings for your approval and your choice of fine hand applied finish.

Order Your Door Installed in a Structural Pre-Hung Jamb - As shown above: Pre-hung in a structural jamb with side light frames, matched to door size. Solid cedar cypress 3" thick structural jamb with 1" thick sealed rabbeted door stop. These jambs are ideal for conventional wood frame homes, masonry construction, as well as for log homes or post and beam construction. This is because all jambs are structurally built, and therefore allow the logs or beams to shrink and contract while the jamb stays straight and plumb. You may order structural jambs any depth to accommodate your log size. When ordering "your door pre-hung" the price includes all design drawings for your approval and your choice of finish.

Pre-Hung Doors include:

  • Rabbeted Stop - All pre-hung door jambs include a rabbeted stop. This 1" thick door stop is a permanent part of the structural jamb. It is created by cutting a dado cut into the jamb, to receive and seal the door in a closed position. This method insures a perfect seal every time. Unlike tacked on door stops that usually shift over time from the pounding force of opening and closing, this stop will remain tight and plum to your door.
  • Weather Package - The weather package is included in all pre-hung doors. Every door ordered pre-hung in a jamb is fitted with high density weather seals installed in the 1" thick rabbeted stop. These double sized weather seals ensure the best protection from the elements. Also, all side light and transom glass is installed and fitted with stops and sealed for long term comfort as well as the very best energy conservation.

Glass Options on Our Custom Doors

Standard glass or artistic glass of all types is available. All solid wood door panels can be fitted with glass. All structural door jambs are also available with glass side lights and transoms.

Clear or Decorative Glass is available: Thermal insulated and tempered clear glass panels from 3/4" up to 1" thick, or non insulate 1/4" safety plate available. All glass panels are also available argon gas filled, low E, or laminated for hurricane codes. Please note, at altitudes of 4500 feet or higher breathing tubes are required, so please specify your altitude to your representative. We offer all types and thickness of glass, and decorative glass samples are available.

Hand Etched or Stained Glass is available: You may have your special art work hand etched into any glass. We also offer all types and thickness of beveled glass, and many colors of art glass, simply ask for samples. Call 1-800-292-0008.

There is Never a Charge for Re-design

Additional Options on Our Custom Doors

Finishes & Textures Available
Every door you order from includes your choice of hand-rubbed fine furniture finishes and/or textures.

Hand Rubbed Furniture Finish - Our finish process includes five to ten coats of hand rubbed, furniture quality, clear oils or water based, non-toxic lacquers. It is applied, cured, rubbed and re-applied depending upon whether your order is Limited Edition or old growth Original work. Every surface of our custom doors are fine finished including the undersides and hidden areas. These doors are built to investment, family heirloom, quality and are finished to be virtually maintenance free and will stand the test of time. You may choose the natural color or from over 400 standard stain colors, or computer color match to any stain color from a sample you provide. Most of our finishes are water based and earth friendly. You may order any single color or texture finish at no extra charge. Read more about our fine art finishes for important details about our finish process: patinas, sealant and wood finishes.

Hand Carved Designs
Hand carving is available for your design choice. For more information about the kind of carving you can expect when you order from, read our hand carving information page. Colorized Carving - You can order any carving colorized. In order to achieve a colorized carving, multiple stain colors are used. The stains are hand applied and blended with an artistic eye to achieve an enhanced natural appearance. Check out an example of a colorized carved door.

Security Grills - Motion Panels - Ornamental Steel Overlays
Motion or stationary ornamental security panels are available. These handmade iron panels are made with independent locks and hinges, to allow them to open to the exterior or interior side. This motion panel will permit easy access to any glass or wood panel behind it for cleaning or maintenance. Choose from the many design options shown on our website, or create your own panel design. All security grills are hand forged wrought iron by our master blacksmiths with your choice of colors in hand applied patina finish.

Hardware - Artistic and Hand Forged - Unlimited Choices
All door pulls are sized to fit your custom door - we have hundreds of hardware designs available. All styles of handles are hand forged and anvil hammered from solid wrought iron. We never use hollow metals or alloys. All welds are blended out of site as though each creation simply grew into its form and shape naturally.

Clavos - Hand forged iron, patina finished clavos available. These wrought iron decorative nail heads can be used on the interior and/or exterior side of door units, and can be made in any size or design of your choice.

All iron is coal fired, hammered by Master Blacksmiths the old fashioned way and patina finished. At, we take pride in our traditional, superior quality workmanship and craft our products from only the finest wrought iron. Our master blacksmiths have been classically trained, and utilize old world techniques such as coal firing, anvil hammering, and hand forging to create the finest handcrafted hardware available anywhere. All of our iron work is hand patina finished by heat, applying iron oxides to achieve a natural patina finish that will stand the test of time. Nothing is drop forged. We create works the old fashioned way using solid, hand forged iron, (drop forging is a poor quality, cast copy of a hand forged work of art). Learn more about master blacksmithing, the kind of hand forged metalwork craftsmanship you can expect when you order custom doors and hardware from

All our hand forged iron is hand patina finished to stand the test of time. All iron parts are hand patina finished the old fashioned way by iron oxide hand applied with high temperature heat. We never powder coat or faux paint our iron. It has been our experience that paint and powder coating methods do not hold up over time. You may choose from many natural iron oxide colors, and all our patina finishes are water based and earth friendly. You may order any single color or texture finish at no extra charge. Every surface of this hardware is finely finished, including the undersides and hidden areas. Each item is finished to be virtually maintenance free and to age with grace to stand the test of time. Learn more about our finishes and important details about our available patina finishes.

Choose Your Heavy Duty Functional Hardware

Hinge Choices:
Unlike most production or semi custom door manufacturers, we offer only high strength hinges that will stand the test of time.

  1. Heavy Duty Pin Hinges - These hinges are finished to match your decorative hardware.
  2. Self Closing, Tension Adjustable Hinges - These hinges can be adjusted from 0-10 depending on the speed at which you wish your door to self close. You may also choose not to set the self closing tension. These hinges are finished to match your decorative hardware.
  3. Interior Door Hinges - These hinges are finished to match your decorative hardware.

Adjustable Tension, Roller Style Door Latch:
The mandatory adjustable tension, roller style door latch ensures that your door will not open in windy conditions even when the lock is not set. The roller pressure to strike plate tension can be adjusted to allow the push and pull resistance to be set at your personal choice. Depending upon the size, your door unit may require more than one of these latches. This style of latch removes the need for levers, knobs, and thumb push hardware that often need replacing, due to use mechanism failure.

Lock Choices:

  1. Heavy Duty Dead Bolt Lock - This special dead bolt lock is built for our 3" to 7" thick doors. It is high strength tungsten steel, and is almost impossible to breech, allowing for the best security available. You may order single cylinder (thumb turn interior) or double cylinder (keyed both sides). This lock is also suitable for most commercial applications.
  2. Mortise Lock - Extra Heavy Duty Lock - This special heavy duty mortise lock is produced by one of the world's top lock manufacturers especially for our extra thick, solid wood doors. This style of lock requires a large mortised pocket to allow for the steel lock mechanism to fit inside the door edge. The mounting plates and locking bolt are also larger than that of a standard dead bolt. This type of lock allows for additional strength and security. It is high strength tungsten steel and is almost impossible to breech, allowing for the best security available. You may order a single cylinder (thumb turn interior) or double cylinder (keyed both sides) lock.

Sweep Choices:

  1. Self Sealing Mechanical Under Door Sweep - This sweep is installed in the bottom of our 3" - 7" thick door, it automatically raises and lowers as you open and close the door, thus ensuring a perfect seal to your threshold every time. This sweep includes an adjustable pressure turn that you may adjust to ensure a precise seal every time. As a side benefit, this type of sweep retracts into the bottom of the door as it opens to clear your interior entrance rug or flooring.
  2. Face Mount Drag and Squeeze Sweep - This sweep is installed on the face of your door and requires extra force to open and close your door. It has been our experience this style sweep does not insure a perfect seal over time.

Threshold Choice - Adjustable Heavy Duty Crush Proof Threshold:
This adjustable saddle threshold allows for a perfect seal when you close your door keeping the weather elements and creatures out. ADA compliant and commercial thresholds available.

Double Doors Require Stationary Door Slide Locks:
Our double doors require stationary slide bolt locks. The stationary door is required to be locked in order to allow the motion door to latch and lock. The strength of these slide locks are important to your security. Most leaver style mortise pins are weak and require very little force to break open. The solution is surface mounted solid steel slide bolts or drop bars.

Slide Bolt Choices:

  1. Slide Bolt - Surface Mounted Decorative Stationary Slide Bolts - Hand forged iron stationary slide bolts to secure your stationary door are built artistically to match your handles or design. This option is your most secure choice.
  2. Mortise Pin - Flush Mounted Leaver Mortise Pins - These pins are mortised into your stationary door to hold it in a fixed position. It has been our experience that this type of pin provides a weak point in double doors, and is not the most secure.

All Door & Gate Engineering Exceeds Commercial & Hurricane Requirements

Additional information on custom doors, gates, furniture, and furnishings: carries on the American Arts And Crafts Movement of the 21st century, in the same way William Morris and John Ruskin (founders of the Arts and Crafts furniture movement in circa 1800 England) inspired Gustave Stickley (founder of the American Arts and Crafts movement) in America circa 1900. Frank Loyd Wright and Charles and Henry Greene (inspired architects of the ultimate cottages such as the Gamble House in Pasadena California) are credited with raising quality standard to its highest level in their day. All of these great master craftsmen also inspired the Marabella Brothers in the early 20th Century (founders of, circa 1913).

Every creative enterprise is always built on a foundation that was laid down by its predecessors. Creative people are also dependent on the groundwork laid down by those who came before them. H. J. Nick, artist and direct descendant of the Marbella brothers, and have built on these foundations and have raised the bar of quality even higher, thus setting a new standard and offering the finest one-of-a-kind handmade furnishings found anywhere in the world in the 21st century. Please contact us with any questions and to order your custom door or gate, call 1-800-292-0008.