Mount Door Knocker in a Hollow Steel Door

This charming cast iron door knocker didn’t come with mounting hardware. I learned through this process how to mount a door knocker in a hollow steel door.

BTW: Here is where I found this cute vintage style cast iron door knocker.

Gotta say, going into the project, I didn’t know much!! When the door knocker arrived and I saw it didn’t have any mounting hardware with it, I was really racking my brain to figure out the right way to mount it in a hollow steel door. Screws, that would work great in a solid wood door, wouldn’t hold in the thin steel layer of the door, there wouldn’t be enough thickness for the screw to grab onto. This door knocker has some weight to it. With some research, I found the right hardware for mounting it… never would have guessed the name of the bolt on my own!

There is a very special type of mounting hardware for this type of project. Get ready it has a pretty strange name!

It’s called a sex bolt, and has 2 parts.

The male end is the actual bolt, this is is a phillips head.

The second part, the receiving part, is called the barrel. It is threaded to hold the bolt. The head of the barrel I used for the door knocker is a flat flange type of head. It’s meant to look finished because that part will be visible from inside the door.

It can also be called a barrel bolt, or connector bolt. Sex bolt is a weird name, but searching for it online, ‘sex bolt’ is what gave the exact type of hardware results I needed for this door knocker in a hollow steel door project. The other names led me to one half of the combo or electrical supplies.

To install the door knocker in the hollow steel door, I carefully marked where the mounting holes of the door knocker were on the door and drilled through the door with the appropriate bit sized for the barrel part to fit inside the door.

The last step was to tap the barrel bolts into place, from inside, and put the bolts through the door knocker into the door catching the barrel receiving end of the sex bolt and tighten to firmly hold the door knocker in place.

The inside of the door has the two flat flange heads of the barrels, (which I’m thinking I might paint green to blend with the door?).

Did you see the post I wrote about with the snafu on that green paint? Here it is if you missed it.

The outside of the door has the 2 bolts of the barrel.

Here is the link for the sex bolts I ordered to mount the door knocker in a steel door. I had to be sure the length of the sex bolt matched the width of the door with a little extra for the thickness of the door knocker. These are for 1 3/4″ doors and they worked perfect!

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Here are some more handy carpentry tips I’ve told you about:

Did you know that I am an interior (including some exterior) decorator? Here you can find more info: Frame and Frills I do e-decorating consultation, via online from my office to your home!

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