Access Control for the new Hive13 @ 2701SG

A 100+ year old building presents some challenges. One of these is implementing access control for Hive13 third floor doors.

The building owner has asked for our help with electronic access controls. His contractor quote for installing what would be our front interior door begins at $10,000.
Why you may ask? Because the door frame is steel, the wall is poured concrete and the suppliers want to rip it all out then install a modern door frame.

One way to do this is to buy a second hand door, weld hinges to the frame and mount it so that the door swings into the hall way.

The door could be wood, steel, CNC routed MDF like our signs or practically anything.

It should keep clear of the sliding the fire door on the inside of the Hive13 space and work with electric access control

It’s an interior door. It’s the introduction to Hive13. It will get used alot.

Anyone have ideas on how to solve this challenge?

Anyone interested in taking it on?

Post your answers here.

Need more information? Want to take measurements? Just ask. We can get you in.

I’m willing to help as time permits. Some experience with access control, welding. How soon does it need to be completed? Are there fire code or insurance requirements?

Their access control company has never installed the electronic lock in a steel frame? It takes a Dremel and a drill bit. They need a new access control vendor.

My current thinking for the front door is to add a garage door opener to the sliding fire door.

The cost to power the door and also make it RFID access compatible in the future is less than the cost to add a door, panic bar and release.

The Genie model includes a keypad to mount in the stairwell. It has digital end stops, photosensors and a bump sensor to keep it from closing on someone. There are two remotes that we can mount inside the space to make opening the door easier.

There is enough room between the wood frame and the door to mount the closer. There are spare 2x8’s to hang the motor end from. The two nonstandard parts of mounting are the end of the track on the right and the drive arm mount on the door. Both of these will need to be fabricated then bolted in place.

Besides it’ll look cool to have a self opening door. Kinda steampunk and star trek at the same time.

Door sketch 3.jpg
Genie ChainDrive 550 Garage Door Opener

I like Daves door idea it sounds pretty cool. Couple of thoughts I had: 1 if we loose power can it be opened from the inside? (I would assume so) 2. how loud would this be? could get rather distracting if every entry and exit is half as loud as a normal garage door. 3 could also be a bit slow.

On a somewhat related note what is the plan for exterior access control and the alarm? Is the keybox a permanent solution or a stopgap?

Fair questions.

Long term the building will have a building wide RFID access control system. Hive13 members will have a main entrance door at the street level of the front staircase.

In the future, Hive13 plans to have a doorbell camera with remote release to admit guests without running down three flights. In order to make that work the street door is being replaced along with installing the access system. In addition to our own street door, Hive13 will also have access to the Receiving Dock door and Docks.

Until that time, keys and lock boxes are the temporary solution. (All plans have been delayed by COVID-19)

  1. As with a garage door, if the power goes out, there are two possibilities. a) Use another door. b) Release the door for manual entry on power failure. (a little more complex to implement but doable.)

  2. The model is described in reviews as quiet.

  3. Just how fast do you want a 300 lb automated door to move? It only has to open 35 inches. (40% of a garage door opening.) Though it has safety features, I don’t want some star trek snapping door to take off any body parts. Just chill for a few seconds.

Clay, the issue is most likely that these are not typical doors. There's no latch of any kind, so an actual locking mechanism would need to be fabricated specifically for this site.

That said, I wonder if they'd cut us a break on rent if we can build a neat lock system for the doors in this building? :wink:

I had an idea for this door after speaking with Dave the other day, there's a couple spots we could mount a catch arm on the door that hooks over the brackets securing the closed door to the wall. Simple to automate with a solenoid, and you can just lift the arm to exit with the power out.

I’m kind of out of the loop on this. Are we just worrying about access through one door?

I’m kind of out of the loop on this. Are we just worrying about access through one door?
No, there are six doors and elevators total.

The current goal here is something to just prevent easy access from the stairwell with an easy to lock / unlock method. There’s still five more to tackle, only one of which we need to be able to unlock from outside.

Retrofitting fully functional locking physical doors on our new space affordably is a fun mental exercise, but every direction it goes starts to explain why the quote was $10k to just get er done.

Dave has scoured the building and found a period accurate solid wood metal clad door that almost fits the metal doorframe. Just need to turn it upside down and shave about 1/2" off of it. It will look great, be straightforward to set up with an electronic strike, and I think is the right long term solution but will take skill and labor to do well.

Me, being far more lazy and driven by immediate gratification, latched onto the idea that the existing fire door could be cleaned up a bit, the track greased, and we just add a simple slide bolt to secure it from the inside. Completely sufficient for this door for now and we move on to figuring out the other five entrances that also need to be secured before we can actually prevent people randomly wandering in. Once that’s done, we can circle back later to get Dave’s original, far better and fully featured door working.


Ok, just saw this timely random door/gate YouTube and had to share the link:

The first one is good, but most in the 11 minutes are variants and lame. However, check out the one at the 6:40 time stamp. It is REALLY GOOD and worth the look. I think we could do it. It has a Raiders of the Lost Ark vibe.