Due to a growing interest in sports and recreation in people of all ages, it’s not surprising that more and more communities are building gymnasiums, ice rinks, live music spaces, indoor and outdoor arenas, sports and fitness complexes, park buildings and training facilities. And of course, these structures often need large, securable openings to facilitate the movement of equipment, vehicles, seating, supplies and other large items. Further, opening up a portion of a wall might be desired or even necessary to create an adaptable indoor/outdoor space—a concept that has been used by many restaurants/bars and pet-friendly venues that wish to separate their space from the outside elements in colder, inclement weather and to secure it when the business is closed, but also desire the option to open up the entire space when weather conditions permit.  The most space-efficient and versatile solution in all of these cases is to choose commercial-grade metal roll-up doors for recreational buildings.

Light-Duty v. Heavy-Duty:

The first consideration, based on the activity the building is accommodating, is to decide on the level of use and durability the doors will need to withstand. Light-duty commercial doors are suitable for buildings that receive low traffic and aren’t subject to harsh conditions. As a low-overhead solution, these metal roll-up doors are made of 26-gauge galvanized, Grade-E steel with ribbed corrugation. Specialized for light-duty use, they commonly use 9 ½ -inch drums instead of the standard 12-inch drum, thus requiring less headroom during installation.

Alternatively, heavy-duty commercial doors include full-sized features such as a 12-inch drum and deep engagement guides, creating greater durability and stronger, longer-lasting performance. Also made from 26-gauge galvanized, Grade-E hard steel, these doors operate with ease under heavy-duty use and are wind-rated to protect against extreme wind events.

Components Make a Difference:

Beyond these basic considerations, there are several details to pay attention to in order to match the needs of a recreational building with the right metal roll-up door.

  • Saddle clamps are commonly used to install and hold the axle drum assembly in place. This is a critical component, since the door’s metal curtain will roll up around the axle and drum. A single-piece saddle clamp bolted to a structural steel bracket facilitates easy tension adjustments as compared to two-piece saddle clamps. They also aid in ensuring the long-term durability of the doors, while keeping them easy to install.
  • A spacer is used to align roll-up door components and keep things operating properly. Spacers designed with one-piece aluminum-forged construction will resist corrosion and only require three bolts to install.
  • Door guides help keep the door curtain in the track and can define the starting and stopping points of the door operation. Some advanced door guides are available on heavy-duty doors to greatly reduce the need for guide maintenance and replacement. They can typically be used on doors up to 10 feet tall.
  • Electric motor operators are designed specifically to work with metal roll-up doors. Compared to manual, chain-pulled operators, motor operators increase the ease of day-to-day operations. They should always be considered where frequent door opening is needed or where conditions require high-speed operation.

Other options for metal roll-up doors for recreational buildings include insulated doors, vision panels and additional safety features.

To learn more about the details and components available to specify the best roll-up doors for recreational buildings, contact your local DBCI representative.