The Benefits of An Access Control Test Door

Author: Brian Rhodes, Published on Jun 08, 2018

Security system dealers can benefit from having their own access control test door both for demonstrations and training. Inside, we explain the advantages of using a 'test door', how it was purchased, and include a list of reports that feature the test door.

This report includes:

  • Why This Door Was Selected
  • Who It Was Ordered From & How Much We Paid
  • IPVM Members Helped Us Decide
  • Door Leaf and Door Frame Overview

Why We Chose This Door

During access testing, using standard sized components like readers, locks, hinges, strikes, and door switches is an important criteria to test for fit and function. Despite the door leaf itself being smaller than typical, door prep for locks, hinges, and other devices is the same full scale size as a typical hollow metal steel door.

We purchased our door from a Curries Door dealer, a division of Assa Abloy. Despite being small and table-top sized, the door was a stock part number. Price including freight to us was ~$300 USD for a grey primer covered door and stands. The cost of hinges, locks, and topcoat paint was not included in that price.

Feedback is that most commercial steel door manufacturers have a selection of their own 'demo doors' for dealer showrooms or tradeshow booths, so the order needed no explanation nor required special pricing.

Steered To Buy With Member Feedback

IPVM members provided feedback on what they wanted in a test door. Suggestions were clear: do not base test findings on 'approximate' doors with non-standard dimensions and construction, but rather seek out a 'cut down' real door that mounts in a real frame, with standard cutouts, hardware preparations, and real alignments.

In the sections that follow, we break down the details of our test door with short videos. The image below provides an overview of the door and the attributes we discuss:

Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox
Get Video Surveillance News In Your Inbox

Test Door Overview

We chose this model based on a number of factors, including:

  • Real World Specifications: A cut down door grants the ability to test EAC components constrained by realistic dimensions.
  • Common Type: A hollow core steel door is the same type used throughout modern buildings.
  • Rough Dimensions: Our test door measures 2'x3'x1.75"; this standard thickness is key in hardware interface with frames.
  • Rigid: Unlike a wood door, our steel door is ideal for mounting a range of EAC components according to manufacturer's specifications without damaging the mounting surfaces.

Watch the video below for a short overview of our test door:

Door Leaf Detail

Key points about the door leaf itself:

  • Hollow Core, But Not Hollow: Like every steel door, our hollow core door is made up of sheets of steel welded together, but the middle contains stiffeners and insulation. This can complicate running cables inside the door.
  • Mortise Door Prep: Our door is fabricated to accept standard mortise locksets. This allows us to test 'standalone' access hardware and otherwise test with hardware with the most demanding alignment specifications.
  • 18 GA Steel: Our door is built with ~0.05" thick skin. 18 gauge steel is fairly thick compared to budget doors constructed using 24 or 26 gauge material. The most strict specifications call for 18 gauge thickness, and our door provides a good platform to estimate the labor required to install or mount hardware to a very secure opening.
  • Righthand Reverse Swing: The direction a door opens - or 'swing' is a key feature when specifying hardware. Our door has a 'right hand reverse' swing, one of the common orientations.

We discuss these points in the video below:

Frame Detail

Key elements of the frame include:

  • Frame Profile: While the shape of frames vary in the field, typically based on the style of wall they are mounted into, our test door uses a "Double Rabbet" profile used in most types of stud and masonry construction.
  • Factory Welded: There are two basic frame types: Factory welded, or Knockdown. Knockdown frames come to job sites in three or more pieces and are mechanically assembled into openings. Our 'Factory Welded' frame is fabricated at the factory and shipped to the job in one piece, and usually is installed before or during the time the wall is built.
  • Strike Box/Hinge Mortar Shields: Our door is built with these feature, added to protect components hung on the door from seeping mortar. These features can simplify or complicate cabling access components.

The video below captures details of a seldom covered element: the steel door frame.

IPVM Test Door Reports

Our test door is prominently featured in several guides, including door-centric posts not typically part of access manufacturer instructions:

The door itself is the focus in those guides, but the test door remains a valuable piece in other component and access hardware testing as well.

Comments (16) : PRO Members only. Login. or Join.

Related Reports

Multi-Factor Access Control Authentication Guide on Dec 10, 2018
Can a stranger use your credentials? One of the oldest problems facing access control is making credentials as easy to use as keys, but restricting...
Top 2019 Trend - AI Video Analytics on Dec 10, 2018
160+ Integrators answered: What do you think the top industry trend will be in 2019? Why? AI / video analytics was the run-away winner with...
Cybersecurity Insurance For Security Integrators on Nov 29, 2018
Most security industry professionals carry insurance to cover themselves in the event of a general loss. However, most are not carrying cyber...
Startup Qumulex Aims For Unified Platform, Adds Infinias Access Founder on Nov 29, 2018
The startup founded by former Exacq executives, Qumulex has hired Wayne Jared, founder of access control manufacturer Infinias and most recently a...
HID Product Configurator Examined on Nov 26, 2018
HID is widely used. However, figuring out all the different configurations of features for a final credential or reader part number can be a real...
Openpath Access Control Tested on Nov 20, 2018
Big investment in access startups is uncommon, but Openpath has recently attracted $20 million doing just that. The company has limited security...
Arcules Cloud VMS Tested on Nov 19, 2018
Arcules is a big bet, or as they describe themselves a 'bold company', spun out and backed by Milestone and Canon.  But how good is Arcules cloud...
Directory of Video Intercoms on Nov 13, 2018
Video Intercoms, also known as Video Door-Phones or Video Entry Systems, have been growing in the past decade as more and more IP camera...
Beware Amazon Go Store Hype (Tested) on Nov 13, 2018
IPVM's trip to and testing of Amazon Go's San Francisco store shows a number of significant operational and economic issues that undermine the...
Axis 2N Intercom Tested on Nov 08, 2018
Axis expanded its video intercom business buying Czech-based 2N in 2016. Despite competing against owner Axis' intercoms, 2N recently registered as...

Most Recent Industry Reports

The 2019 Video Surveillance Industry Guide on Dec 10, 2018
The 300 page, 2019 Video Surveillance Industry Guide, covers the key events and the future of the video surveillance market, is now available,...
Multi-Factor Access Control Authentication Guide on Dec 10, 2018
Can a stranger use your credentials? One of the oldest problems facing access control is making credentials as easy to use as keys, but restricting...
Top 2019 Trend - AI Video Analytics on Dec 10, 2018
160+ Integrators answered: What do you think the top industry trend will be in 2019? Why? AI / video analytics was the run-away winner with...
AV Tech Company Profile on Dec 07, 2018
Taiwanese manufacturer AV Tech's revenue declined ~70% since 2012. Planning a comeback, AV Tech spoke to IPVM about their opportunities and...
Ubiquiti $79 Flex IP Camera Tested on Dec 07, 2018
U.S. Manufacturer Ubiquiti has released a 1080p, integrated IR IP camera, selling it directly for $79, making this one of the least expensive IP...
Infinova's Xinjiang Business Examined on Dec 07, 2018
As pressure mounts for companies to stop doing business in China’s Xinjiang region amid a severe human rights crisis, IPVM has found Infinova sold...
Akuvox Intercom Profile on Dec 06, 2018
Akuvox, a Chinese manufacturer of VoIP products, is expanding heavily into Video Intercom products with disruptive pricing targeted for commercial...
Sublethal Camera Gun Examined on Dec 06, 2018
Sublethal is a South African company that manufactures a remotely-controlled, camera-enabled gun called the Boomslang, which is Afrikaans for tree...
UK ICO Denies IPVM GDPR Complaint Against IFSEC, Decides Each Exhibitor Responsible on Dec 06, 2018
The UK Information Commissioner's Office (ICO) has denied IPVM's complaint against IFSEC for misuse of facial recognition. Each Exhibitor...
VMS Live Monitoring Shootout - Avigilon, Dahua, Exacq, Genetec, Hikvision, Milestone, Network Optix on Dec 05, 2018
Viewing live video is the first interaction and most common task most users have with a VMS. Who does it best and worst? Who offers the most...

The world's leading video surveillance information source, IPVM provides the best reporting, testing and training for 10,000+ members globally. Dedicated to independent and objective information, we uniquely refuse any and all advertisements, sponsorship and consulting from manufacturers.

About | FAQ | Contact