Butted Frames Rough Opening Sizes

Date:Sep 30, 2019

The variety of existing wall anchors available from SDI Members allow Standard Steel Door Frames to be a reliable option for existing wall, structural steel wall framing or retrofit installations utilizing a butted to wall application.
In order to make the installation successful, careful consideration shall be given to all tolerances involved and that
sufficient clearance is figured to allow for them.
It has been “customary” to allow
1⁄4" clearance around the frame perimeter when establishing rough opening sizes or
when figuring non-standard overall frame sizes. Although this dimensional requirement does not appear in Industry
publications, it is based on the following:
• Both SDI 117-00 and ANSI/NAAMM HMMA 861-00 recognize a + tolerance in opening width and height. (There
is a –
1⁄3" opening width tolerance that seldom is at issue).
• Both of these documents recognize a ±
1⁄3" tolerance in frame face dimensions.
• The overall frame width tolerance is a “non-critical” issue, therefore it is not addressed in the above Documents.
• Both ANSI/NAAMM HMMA 861-00 and ANSI/DHI A115.IG-1994 recognize a ±
⁄" installation tolerance for
vertical plumb.
Frames will “fit and function” if made to these dimensional tolerances and installed within tolerances. There is, however, relatively no assurance that the substrate (walls) will be of suitable size or alignment.
We therefore recommend that the rough openings for these cases be
no less than ⁄" larger on all 3 sides than the
“intended” overall frame size. (Example: 3070 standard frame = 3'-4
3⁄8" x 7'-2 ⁄"). The installer carries the responsibility for shimming and aligning as necessary. Gaps are normally sealed as part of the installation or caulking/painting
process. Architectural Specifications are to be consulted to determine the appropriate sealant material to be used
at fire door or smoke control frames.

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