Finding the right style of doors for converting barns and farm buildings into habitable accommodation can prove challenging. Renovating and converting existing residential properties to give them the look and feel of a barn or cottage can also throw up some design problems – particularly if sliding doors have been specified.

Wherever possible, original woodwork should be retained but it is inevitable that new doors and windows will be required when converting a farm building into a domestic residence. Unfortunately, most sliding doors on the market tend to be modern in appearance and don’t lend themselves to a heritage or rustic setting.

Frames and doors used in farm buildings are typically robust and ‘agricultural’ or even industrial in appearance. In many cases, thinner, modern domestic joinery can get lost in this situation. It will also change the overall aesthetic of the building. In addition, the hardware used on rustic style doors is usually cast iron or cast iron style. Where original ironmongery is retained there can be a mismatch between old and new.

The proportions of domestic joinery can also be ‘out of place’ and have a negative impact on the aspect of the building. Often, barns will have doors that are non-standard sizes and which are sometimes sliding. The retention of large exterior sliding doors can maintain the agricultural aesthetic of barns and conversions. Matching the interior doors in barns that feature rustic wooden sliding doors is critical in producing a complete design package.

Delivering a bespoke rustic sliding door solution with the appropriately sized sliding door gear has been an issue faced by architects, joiners and builders. To meet this demand, PC Henderson  ( – for which Toolfix Joinery & Construction Supplies is a distributor – has developed a sliding door gear system designed specifically for barn conversions.

The Henderson Rustic 80 sliding door gear range is designed for barn conversions and period properties. It enables joiners, builders, architects, specifiers and self-builders to create quality conversions in keeping with their agricultural environment or to design and build new homes with a unique rustic feature.

The kits feature exposed cast-iron-effect black powder-coated steel straps that fasten down the front of the door to support a rustic finish. The barn door style hangers run along a flat bar track on smooth nylon bearing wheels for smooth, quiet operation. The easy-to-install kits come in two metre and three metre sizes and are rigorously tested to 100,000 cycles.

The kits, which are designed for timber doors each weighing up to 80 kg, contain two hangers, two door stops, a floor guide, a flat track, track wall spacers and all the fixings required.

Anthony Burt of Toolfix said: “Customers looking for a rustic finish to their conversion or home refurbishment projects have found it difficult to source sliding door gear that is appropriate for a rural or heritage setting.

“Cost effective and well-designed Rustic 80 sliding door gear delivers a high-quality solution. It is economical, well-designed and easy to fit and allows joiners and self-builders to maximize interior space while remaining faithful to the agricultural heritage of the barn or building that they are converting.”

Toolfix stocks an extensive range of Henderson products. Call on 08001 613 613 or visit to find out more.

Henderson rustic door gear