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What Standard Door Prep Looks Like
Standard Door Preparation for Deadbolts
Helpful Terms for Replacing Doorknobs or Levers
Helpful Terms for Replacing your Door Knobs or Levers

In the door hardware industry there is a standard that most knobs and levers are designed for. The graphics below illustrate what standard door preparation is and the basic parts of a door lever or knob. Read further for more explanation of each. If you your doors are prepped in this standard way, most of the hardware that we have listed on the website will fit your doors. Wether you have doors prepped in the standard way, or something different you can benefit from using our door hardware replacement guide at the link below.

If you'd like to learn more about door hardware and what all the different terms mean, continue reading.

Bore Hole and Cross Bore

Bore hole and cross bore. There are two main components in how a door is prepped. The large main hole that the door knob mounts through is called a Bore Hole. The smaller hole that is drilled on the edge of the door is where the latch is installed and is called the Crossbore. Standard door preparation would have a 2 1/8" dia. bore hole and a 1" dia. cross bore. If you have something smaller than this, you might check out our article on Door Knob and Levers for small bore holes.

What is Backset?

Backset Backset is the measurement from the edge of the door to the center of the bore hole. Standard backsets are either 2 3/8" or 2 3/4". Some hardware comes with adjustable backsets that work with both of these sizes. Higher end hardware tyically does not have adjustable backsets. If we ask you for your backset measurement when you add an item to the cart, the hardware does not have adjustable latches. If you have a backset measurement that is different we do have some other options, though available products will be very much more limited. You might check our 2 Inch Backset hardware, or 5 Inch backset hardware from Schlage or Kwikset.


Door knob or lever strike The strike is the piece of metal mounted to the jamb that curves over the end of the jamb facilitating the closure of the door. As the door is closed the spring loaded latch hits the curvature of the 'lip' of the strike causing the spring loaded mechanism of the latch to depress inside the latch cylinder. The is a hole in the center of the strike. Once the door closes far enough the spring loaded mechanism protrudes into the hole in the strike keeping the door closed unless the knob or lever is turned, which retracted the end of the latch to release it. When installing it is important that your strike is aligned properly with the latch for it to function correctly.


Faceplates The faceplate is a small trim piece of metal that surrounds the spring loaded latch on the edge of the door. Faceplates are available in radius corner and square corner. Faceplates are typically 2 1/4" x 1". This standard size is what nearly all new hardware would come with. There are some brands of hardware in the past that have had odd sizes so you could have something different.


Tubular Latch A latch mechanism is the cylinder that is driven through the edge of the door. This is often also called a tubular latch mechanism. The mechanism has a spring loaded latch that retracts to open the door and upon release of the door knob or lever, protrudes to keep the door closed. A tubular latch mechanism for an exterior door often comes with an attached mortise plate, and requires mortising, or some chiseling to be done on the edge of the door for the plate to rest correctly recessed in the door.

The image shows the latch mechanism with an attached faceplare plate. The faceplates not only look nice, they provide added security.


Rosette or backplate The plate or trim piece behind the knobs that attaches the knob to the door. These are most commonly round, but these days are available in many different shapes and sizes. Rosettes are also commonly referred to as an escutcheon or backplate.


Knob or doorknob A knob is generally a round shape, but egg shapes and other forms are commonly used these days. Knobs are used to grab with your hand and open a door. Knobs are made of brass, zinc die cast or other materials.

Lever or Lever Handle

Door Lever A lever or lever handle has the same functionality as a door knob, but has a different appearance. A lever is longer and thinner with a fancier look. Keep in mind when ordering lever handles that you may need to specify the swing of the door so that your lever handles point in the right direction when installed.

Keyway or Key Cylinder

Keyway or Key Cylinder A keyway is the actual key cylinder that is inserted into the door knob. When a door knob is unlocked, the key is inserted into the keyway and the lock mechanism is unlocked as the key turns. Keyways can be removed and changed for security reasons or to key several locks alike. Keep in mind that not all keyways are made a like so when you order different brands, there is a good chance they can;t be keyed alike.

Jamb or Door Jamb

Keyway or Key Cylinder The door jamb is the wood frame that surrounds the door in the doorway. Its important for a door to have a good solid jamb for the door to close against. It's especially important to have a good jamb on an exterior door where a deadbolt will be used. The strike plate attaches to the jamb, and holds the door closed by catching the latch mechanism.

Non-Rising Pin or Non-Removable Pin

Keyway or Key Cylinder Refers to a hinge pin that cannot be removed. Used mainly where security is needed, so that the pin cannot be removed, and door removed from the opening. On exterior doors which open outward, the pin is on the outside of the building. In this case, these pins may be used more often.

Flush Bolts

Keyway or Key Cylinder Flush bolts are most often used on french doors. They are mounted [flush] on the inside edge of a door or door stile. By simply pushing the button on the flush bolt up, a bolt is inserted into the jamb and secures the door closed in the middle. Flush bolts are often used on the top and bottom of french door applications. This allows one side of the french door to be fixed while the other door closes against it; then the fixed door can be easily opened when needed.


Keyway or Key Cylinder Decorative tip that attaches to the top and or bottom of a door hinge pin. Not all hinges can accept finials, you must order hinges that are designed to have them.


Keyway or Key Cylinder A deadbolt is a locking mechanism that mounts much like a door knob. Most exterior doors are locked with a door knob, and also a deadbolt. The deadbolt bore hole is directly above the door knob hole. When a lever is turned, a solid steel cylinder is inserted deep into the door jamb to securely lock the door. Deadbolts are available as single or double cylinders. Single cylinders are keyed on the exterior and have a turn lever on the inside. Double cylinder deadbolts are locked or unlocked with a key from the inside and the outside. Double cylinder deadbolts should only be used in special situations as a single cylinder is much safer in emergency situations.

Dummy Knob or Dummy Lever

Keyway or Key Cylinder Also sometimes called dummy trim. These knobs are used most often on doors with ball catches, or whenever you have a door that is not bored for a complete door knob set. Dummy knobs are usually sold individually and include one knob or lever that mounts directly to the face of the door with screws.

Passage or Hall and Closet Knobs or Levers

Keyway or Key Cylinder Passage knobs and lever are non-locking but they do have a latch mechanism. These Passage sets are typically used on hall doors and closets where no lock is necessary.

Privacy or Bedroom and Bath Knobs or Levers

Keyway or Key Cylinder Privacy locks have a lcoking mechanism, but it is not a keyed lock. Privacy sets are usually used on a bedroom or bathroom where privacy is desired but doesn't necessarily need to be super secure like a keyed exterior door. Privacy sets generally have a push pin on the rosette with a hole on the exterior rosette as well so you can unlock the door in the event of an emergency with a paper clip or hair pin. It is also very common for a privacy lock to have a turn or push button in the center of the knob or lever with a pin hole in the center of the exterior for egress. The type of locking mechanism on a privacy lock varies by brand but is usually one of these two types.

Keyed Entry or Entrance

Keyway or Key Cylinder Keyed entry or entrance sets are usually used on exterior doors where security is a concern. Keyed entry sets have a key cylinder on the exterior. Inside the lock will have a push button or turn button lock. The type of mechanism on the interior of the knob or lever can vary by brand.

Door Viewer

Door Viewer Nope this is not an apparatus that helps you look at doors. A door viewer is a cylindrical viewer with curved lenses on the inside that magnify the view on the other side of the door. Door viewers are available in a various degrees of viewable area. These viewers are easily mounted in the door by drilling a hole at eye level and installing the viewer. Door viewers are a great addition to your exterior doors and increase the security of your home by allowing you to view who is outside before opening the door.

Door Hinges

door hinge Door hinges are made of two metal plates that are attached together with a removable pin. The metal plates are attached to the door and door jamb with screws. Hinges hold the door securely to the door jamb and allow it to swing open and close

Ball Catch

ball catch Ball catches are generally used on closet doors, but can be used in other applications. The way they work is simple: on the top of the door there is a hole drilled and a spring loaded ball is installed which slightly protrudes from the top of the door. On the jamb above a strike plat is installed much like a strike plate used on a regular door, but this strike has a small indentation to fit the contour of the ball rather than a hole for the latch. As the door shuts, the spring loaded ball rests in the indentation on the strike and keeps the door closed.

Skeleton Key Mortise Lock

ball catch Don't settle for cheap imitations. Replace your rusty old locks with our high quality, English-made version. You'll be thrilled with the quality of these exquisite reproductions. Each lock includes a solid brass strike and face plate, 2 steel skeleton keys and mounting screws. All of our mortise locks are keyed alike. Body: W- 3" H - 4" Thickness - 9/16". Face 7/8" x 6"/ 2 1/4"backset. 2 1/4" C/C knob spindle to keyhole. 8mm spindle hole is on the square. We now carry a great line of reproduction hardware from Nostalgic Warehouse. A mortise lock is actually a mechanism box, like you see in the image above, and of the dimensions mentioned in the description. A mortise lock requires special preparations to make it work, you probably don't want to order this type of lock unless you are replacing an older set, or if you can have your door shop custom prepare your doors. As the need for restoration hardware became more and more prevalent, Nostalgic Warehouse met the need with their mortise lock. This great mortise set replaces most old style mortise locks. The great thing about Nostalgic Warehouse's line is that you can also get the old vintage look of crystal knobs or old Victorian style door knobs [with backplates] with standard tubular latches to fit newer standard fitting doors.
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