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Cellar bulkhead lock

redlead's picture

Gentlemen, thanks as always. I have a customer who wishes to have a couple of children sleeping "down cellar," but wants to have them able to come and go via a bulkhead to the outdoors that locks from within, but can at any time be unlocked with a key from without. There is a separate egress, so I would like to do this and am not concerned about emergency exit. Does anyone make this hardware? Any ideas?

(post #61552, reply #1 of 6)

   Put a door at the bottom of the bulkhead/cellar stairs with regular lockset.

(post #61552, reply #6 of 6)

Mike D, Mongo, Mike Smith & Jeff: Many thanks for the bulkhead thoughts for locks. You're so right. Leave the Bilco unlocked and see to security with the cheapie entrance at bottom of steps. I wanted to slap something on and we know how often that flies as in never. Jim

(post #61552, reply #2 of 6)

What Mike said.

Bulkhead doors are not weather tight, air tight, or mouse tight.

But an inexpensive exterior door set into the foundation wall can be.

There are 10 kinds of people in this world; those who understand binary and those who do not.

(post #61552, reply #3 of 6)

Bilco makes a key type lock for their steel basement doors. Check their website,

(post #61552, reply #4 of 6)

bilco's lockset is fine.. but it can only be unlocked from the outside..

and if a bilco type door is locked from the inside ( by the throw-bolt).. then it can't be unlocked from the outside..


 you really are limited to putting a door at the bottom of the stairs that has a regular lockset...

Mike Smith   Rhode Island : Design / Build / Repair / Restore

Mike Smith   Rhode Island : Design / Build / Repair / Restore

(post #61552, reply #5 of 6)

had a job once trying to solve a similar request from a landlord that owned a bunch of rowhouses ...

ended up with standard bilco doors over the hole ...

and an exterior Stanly door ... the cheap metal ones ...

at the bottom.

The existing doorways were only about 5 ft heigh ...

so I simply cut the doors and the factory jambs off at the top.

re-dado'd the jambs ... cut and reused the factory weatherstripping around the top ...

I cut the tops long ... fitted/glued/clamped/foamed in the new pt filler at the top ... then lightly scored the metal at the top .. at the correct measurement .... and rubber malleted the metal so it folded in tight and met with a nice even seam down the center.

caulked ... primed .. painted.

They looked like factory shorties and have hald up just fine after many wet/cold winters.

Took no time at all .... tested one ... then went production style.

Like all old basements around here ... the old block walls were close to a foot thick  ... so the top of the door was well out of any weather ...

the Bilco's kept out lost of the snow and such ... the Stanley's kept out the critters and thieves ... no knobs ... just deadbolts.


Buck Construction, llc   Pittsburgh,PA

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