How Would You Lock It? Access Door Problem

Take a look at the door below. Your customer has asked you to make it access controlled. What solution would you recommend?

Describing the opening: Frameless glass rolling door (it rolls closed via track on top). No lock or reader is currently installed. Customer will use door to segregate medical records from a waiting room, and access is needed about 2 times every hour during business hours. Opening should be closed/locked the rest of the time.

They should get a new door as they have to follow HIPAA Privacy Rules and possibly a few more rules and compliences (Security Rule & Privacy Rule) like PCI Complinace if they have any Credit Card information stored in the files. (If this is the US.)

If this was not Medical Records and just a salesmans office...Then maybe a Wedge-Lock or a new rail that could lock with access control. Glass Doors are tricky, you should probably consult with a Locksmith first.

Hello Jeremiah:

Neither HIPAA nor PCI forbid the use of glass doors, if that's what you're getting at.

Do you have a link on Wedge-Lock?

Here is a link.

Maybe not on glass doors, but even with a lock, that room is not secure. I'm guessing an access control type of device lock will just work for minor pulls. Something tells me that the back of the door would swing out a little creating a gap since their is no guide on the floor unless one was put in. I have a similar door in my basement. They are only meant to keep a toddler out.

Even for the Wedge-Lock...the existing glass may be too low already to be able to use it.

You can use a mag lock. It won't be the most clean install but you can epoxy the armature onto the glass with the right brackets and have it close against the magnet.

Any other suggestions?

This is a real design problem on this actual door, and I'll share what was actually proposed/selected once a few more ideas rattle through.

Here is some shots from a similar install that we did except we had glass on both sides. You can epoxy the armature to the glass and install the magnet on the wall.

How/what is the sound like with all that vibrating glass?

Thanks for the pictures, Carl!

Here's a big hint for what solved the door problems above:

Can anyone identify this device? How many do you think were used?

What did you they do to ensure that the door got closed so that the lock(s) would engage? If someone opened the door and then did not close it all the way when they left, (easy to see happening with that type of door), then your their access control is negated. Did you they install an automatic closer of some kind? Something like this.

The top rail is spring loaded so it returns closed. In the picture, there is a small tab that holds the door open if the door opens past a certain width, but that was ground off to make room for the 'armature' piece of the lock.

Door position is a small limit switch on the 'closed' end of the rail. The controller is setup up to keep locks 'unlocked' until 1 second after the limit switch is tripped.

Normal RTE pushbutton and PIR are used on the inside of the door.

{EDIT: Just to be clear, this wasn't a project I was involved with.}

We have a bunch of those kind of sliding doors around our offices. I didn't know they were available spring loaded so that they close automatically. Learn something new every day.

The inside rail tube has a spring, and there is a slot cut along the top where the wheels of the door chassis ride inbetween the spring wire loops.

I'll try to get approval to take a picture of the door now. It would help describe what's going on better than my words.

It seems to work well. The door is very rigid when locked. You'd have to break the thing to get through it. The laminated glass is pretty heavy, so it would take more than a crowbar and an attitude to get around it when locked.

The laminated glass...

So the glass is machinable, not tempered?


No, it's not machinable. It just has a poly coating that keeps everything in one piece if it cracks. It still cracks!

As long as the glass has not been annealed/tempered and its thicker than 1/4" (as the crow flies, not nominal ;), you can drill holes thru the thickness, it's not usually a problem if you use diamond carbide bits and keep it 'slow' and 'wet'. The poly coating is good to keep the drill bit from walking when you start.

Youtube people can do more than holes, but then they're better than me at everything...

I'm not saying you're wrong or right, but I will say there is no trade person I've ever met willing to drill glass doors... glazers, door guys, framers... no one.

Beyond that, unless a lock comes with a glass bead kit, I'm not sure the door would not break over time anyway. Usually stuff like patchblocks and CR Lawrence catalog hardware like Jeremiah linked needs to be cut in at the fabricator, not in the field.

...there is no trade person I've ever met willing to drill glass doors...

Prudent, proper, professional and therefore preferred. Yet not hard to believe considering your state's tough anti-'slammer statutes:

Oklahoma Population:

Residents: 3,850,568 Trunkslammers: 0

Alabama, on the other hand likes them so much they named a cocktail after'em.

A cabinet lock? maybe 2?

It surprised me too. Kind of "Well, that's one way to do it" type of experience...

That's a cabinet lock

They're not particularly strong, so I'm guessing you used more than 1.

Indeed, they used four. Three in the 'closed' position, one for holding it in the 'open' position.

I specify those a lot. We do a lot of sports facilities and I put those on pharmaceutical cabinets in the Trainer's Offices or Treatment/Rehab areas. I've also used them on file cabinets where a corporate client stored their patent files. Never though to use them on an actual door. Pretty creative solution.

I would use either of the two locks below designed specifically for sliding doors from FSHLocking.


and more for auto doors..


These locks are a combination mag lock and mechanical locking hold up to 680kg (1500lbs) check them out

They also make this V-lock for those Evil frameless 180deg swing glass doors and I used these on a job in the Phillipines where they love those doors.....

Those are really interesting options, Syd. Thanks for sharing them!

No probs Brian...FSH have some very interesting new locking technology for strikes, mag locks and delayed egress. All part of their eco range and draw very little tech and the FES90M uses a motor instead of a solenoid. Its very cool.. haven't used any yet but I like FSH products now I'm back in Integration.

Syd, does the surface mount imply epoxy, like Carl's armature above, or its own adhesive, or?

Install an SDC or similar electronic bolt lock behind the glass at the edge of the door. When the bolt is in the lock position it will prevent the door from sliding to the right.

install the electro bolt in a horizontal orientation so that the screws that secure it are not accessible when the door is closed.

At the bottom of the door install a roller switch which will only allow the lock to engage when the door is fully closed.

place a roller guide against the glass to prevent someone from pulling the door outwards to bypass the lock. The guide can be purchased from cr Laurence

We have done this once in the past. It can take a lot of fine tuning, time and patience. But if your customer is trying to keeps things economical a mag lock with a glass mount kit, although unsightly might be the way to go.

That's interesting. If I understand what you're suggesting, the bolt acts like a slide stop when it is thrown.

Hi Rukmini,

The MEM1982JM series has an optional surface mount kit. The picture above shows the lock and the kit in the one picture. As you can see you can mount with fixings for a wood or metal sliding door and like Carl suggests use epoxy for glass. Of course if you're hell bent on drilling the glass go ahead - the holes are there! Oh and these locks donot come with epoxy.

I realise some people have suggested drop bolts here. They are great when you first put them in but after a while doors become miss aligned for various reasons - weight being one of them. The first thing to stop working is the drop bolt and then you'll have issues aligning the door up.