Aluminum storefront doors come in narrow, medium, and wide stile configurations.
The stile refers to the vertical pieces of extruded aluminum into which the lock and some of the hinge mechanisms are installed. The aluminum glass door stiles and rails are usually 1-3/4 inches
The terms narrow, medium, and wide refer stiles refer to the width of the extrusion.
· Narrow stile is usually 1-3/4 to approximately 2-1/8” inches wide
· Medium stile is usually around 3-1/2 inches wide
· Wide stile is usually about 5 inches wide.
The rails, which are the vertical top, sometimes middle and bottom aluminum extrusions, are available in sizes from four to 10 inches or more for the bottom rail. When this type of door is discussed, the terminology often defaults to narrow stile, even when the stile is wider.
Narrow stile aluminum glass storefront door lock options can be divided into two options: non-business hours pivoting deadlock (deadbolt) and deadlatch lock during business hours. The traffic control deadlatch provides an additional benefit, preventing the wind or stack pressure from opening the door. Some deadlatches have the capability to hold the latch retracted to permit unrestricted access and egress.
Important: Before making any lock hardware changes to an aluminum glass stile door, carefully measure the thickness and width (stiles) or height of the extruded aluminum doorframe. Door stile width and thickness can determine what door locking hardware can and cannot be used and the available area for lock installation.
The glass panel can be in different thickness ranging from approximately 3/16” to one inch. The thicker the glass, the more support is required to keep it in place. As a result, if the stile is too narrow, the backset of the lock may be too deep. Installing a questionable lock can result in contacting the edge of the glass, causing it to break.
It is important to know how the doorframe extrusion components are constructed. For example, Tubelite doors use steel tire-rod (threaded shaft and nuts) construction at the top and bottom of the doors to hold the stiles and rails together. This method of construction permits the doors to be disassembled, resized and assembled in the field. Other manufacturers weld the corners together.
In this article, we will discuss mechanical and electromechanical lever-equipped pushbutton locks that are designed to be narrow stile glass aluminum door retrofit outside trim. They accommodate the Adams Rite-style deadlocks and deadlatches. They have a narrow and longer footprint to accommodate the width of the stile and to cover most existing door prep.
Lock manufacturers who offer narrow stile glass aluminum, lever handle door retrofit outside trim and complete locks include Adams Rite, Alarm Lock, Codelocks, Kaba Access & Data Systems Americas and LockeyUSA. They are available as mechanical and electromechanical pushbutton versions.
Most of the above manufacturers’ products are designed to retrofit onto a narrow stile glass aluminum door that is configured for an Adams Rite or similar style ANSI mortise deadlatch. Some are designed to accommodate the deadlock. The retrofit outside trim version is designed to take the place of the existing outside trim. The retrofit outside trim measures more than 10 inches to cover any pre-existing door prep