Iron Doors Glossary

Iron Doors Glossary and Common Terms

Wrought iron doors can make your home a showplace. Whether you choose iron front doors, iron gate doors, or simply select magnificent wrought iron door hardware to beautify a traditional entrance door, your Valley home can rise in curb appeal, value, and security with durable, fashionable iron accents.

When shopping for iron doors, here are some terms you may encounter:

Anneal: To heat and then slowly cool glass or metal so the material is stronger and internal stresses are reduced or eliminated.

Arc welding: A process by which metal parts are fused together at the molecular level using heat from an electric arc.

Astragal: A vertical bar that seals between two doors.

Back jamb: Interior wood surrounding a door.

Bar: A section of extruded, rolled, or stretched metal that can be square, rectangular, round, or hexagonal.

Bore: A hole cut in a door or the door jamb to allow for hardware.

Bottom rail: A door’s lowest rail.

Bottom weather seal: Weatherstrip between door and floor.

Brazing: Joining metal parts together through high heat by soldering with a brazing alloy, usually copper, nickel, or zinc.

Buffing: Polishing or creating a luminous finish using power tools, fabric, and mildly abrasive wax.

Burnishing: To polish metal by rubbing.

Cap: A device used to plug or close off the end of a post, tubular rail, or the top of a tubular pipe.

Carbon steel: An alloy of steel mainly composed of the element carbon.

Carburizing or case hardening: A process by which iron or steel is heated in a carbon-rich environment to harden the surface of the metal.

Casting: A process in which liquified metal is poured into a mold to create a product.

Cast iron: An alloy of iron and carbon that produces a firm, brittle, non-malleable metal.

Center post: A vertical upright between two doors, providing extra strength against the wind.

Chamfer: To cut back to make a symmetrical, sloping edge.

Classic door: A traditional, clean, and simple design on the doors with rectangular, square-box, or arch design elements.

Clavos: Oversized nailheads, generally square, round, or raised pyramid shapes, used to decorate rustic door designs.

Clearance: The area around a door available for proper installation.

Cold-finished steel: Steel cold-drawn or cold-rolled through dies, producing a better surface finish and other improved elements.

Cold rolling: A metal forming process in which metal is passed through heavy rollers without heat.

Colonial door: A square-type door with two lights, or windows, on either side.

Contemporary door: A modern or minimalist door with a flush surface, simple panels, and a clean design.

Corrosion: Metal decay through corrosion, such as rusting.

Cotter pin: A thin, split wire that holds by flaring through a hole.

Craftsman door: A door design that follows the design elements of the Arts & Crafts style, noted for clean, sharp edges, a dentil shelf, and a bold look.

Cylinder: Lock mechanism.

Deadbolt: A locking mechanism using a key on the outside and a thumb-turned bolt on the inside.

Dentil shelf: In a Craftsman-style door, the horizontal profile that mimics square “teeth” along the intermediate rail across the door.

Door casing: The frame surrounding the door opening.

Door closer: A mechanical use of a spring to quietly close a door.

Door frame: An enclosure for a door.

Door header: The top of a door frame.

Door jamb: The door frame’s sides.

Door size: The finished measurements for a door.

Drawing: A metalworking process whereby metal is pulled through dies to modify its finish and change its size or shape.

Drawings: Technical drawings used by architects, engineers, and craftsmen, depicting architectural and structural plans.

Emboss: To impress a raised pattern into the material, such as sheet metal.

Embossed door section: A decorative, raised design in a door.

Embossed panel: A door panel with a raised design.

Extrusion: A process of producing long, straight metal pieces by forcing heated metal through an opening in a die.

Fabricate: To form, construct or assemble metal products.

Ferrous metal: A metal composed mostly of iron.

Flat: A rectangular bar whose width is greater than its thickness.

Flush bolt: A bolt or rod mounted flush in a door to lock the door in place.

Full light: A glass insert that runs the entire height of the door.

Galvanizing: Coating metal with zinc to protect the metal.

Gauge: The thickness of metal, or a wire’s diameter.

Genuine wrought iron: A corrosion-resistant, low-carbon material used to create decorative and secure doors, fences, and other ironware.

Gusset: A metal plate used to strengthen a line or angular joint between pieces of metal.

Half light: A glass insert that spans the upper half of a door.

Hammering: Artistic denting of metal.

High-strength, low-alloy steel: Steel resistant to corrosion.

Hinge: Hardware that attaches a door to the jamb and allows it to swing open and closed.

Hot-dip galvanizing: Applying a layer of protective coating over common iron-bearing metals by dipping the metal sheet into molten zinc.

Kick plate: The protective plate on the face of the door along the bottom rail; also called a toe board or toe plate.

Malleable iron: Iron cast in sand and annealed, it flexes slightly when cold, allowing for resilience and shock resistance.

Mold: A hollow form used to contain molten metal to make a casting.

Mullion: The vertical element forming a division between door panels.

Muntin: A thin strip of metal separating and holding pieces of glass in a grid system of lights.

Non-ferrous: Metal without iron in it.

Plate: A flat sheet of metal with sufficient thickness — at least 0.18-inch thick — to make it self-supporting.

Privacy glass: Opaque or diffused glass used in a door or in sidelights to let in light (and colors) but without clarity

Quenching: Cooling heated metals through contact with a cool solid, liquid, or gas so that the metal is tempered or hardened.

Rail: Any horizontal element on a door, such as the top, bottom, and middle, known as the lock rail.

Rustic door: A Mediterranean, Old World, Spanish hacienda or Tuscan Italian door notable for its heavy look, use of clavos, and a speakeasy. Often accented with elaborate ironwork.

Saddle or threshold: The raised member of a doorframe beneath a door.

Screen: A wire mesh or a perforated panel used to allow light and air to enter but tending to limit vision.

Sheet: A long, thin, flat piece of metal.

Shop drawing: A drawing of a potential piece of ironwork prepared by the fabricator, but less accurate than a blueprint

Speakeasy: A door viewer, or small door in a door, through which a homeowner can look to identify visitors before opening the door.

Specifications: The requirements that a particular constructed piece must adhere to, including measurements and standards.

Stile: A vertical framing member of a door.

Strip: A long, flat, thin piece of metal.

Swing: The direction that a door opens; the two types are in-swing, in which the door opens into the home, and out-swing, in which the door opens outward.

Tack weld: Welding done in a series of small spots, capable of holding metal parts in place while they are assembled and awaiting a continuous weld in final assembly.

Tempering: Heating glass, metal, or another material to a high temperature and then cooling it to improve the hardness and strength of the material.

Template: A pattern used as a guideline for cutting, fabricating, or welding a piece.

Three-quarter light: A glass insert for the upper three-fourths of the door.

Ransom: A light (window) above the door.

Tubing: A section of hollow round or rectangular metal.

Upsetting: Forging in which the cross-section of a bar or rod of metal is thickened in a small area.

Weathering steel: A group of high-strength steel alloys that provide lightweight, corrosion-resistant durability.

Weatherstripping: Material used to seal around a door to prevent water and air from infiltrating.

Welding: Using heat and pressure to join two or more metals, alloys, or parts into a single metal or piece.

Welding rod: A metal rod or wire used to bond two or more metals during arc or gas fusion welding.

Wrought iron: Wrought iron can refer to a low-carbon, tough, malleable iron alloy. It also can refer to a type of metalwork using mild steel for elaborate ornamentation.

Iron Doors Arizona

To continue your iron door education, contact us at Iron Doors Arizona. We have built and installed beautiful iron doors from Scottsdale and Paradise Valley to all points in Arizona. We look forward to showing you how we can improve the look and security of your home. Give us a call at (602) 497-2974 for our Phoenix, AZ showroom or at (520) 639-6477 for our Tucson, AZ showroom.


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