The aviation community is remarkable in the sense that we find ways to do things better and sometime more efficient. The innovations that are to come are going to blow our minds. Human ingenuity coupled with the age of computers and the endless supply of data available to us in our homes. That information however can be the “fake news” if you’re not verifying and this is true with the niche market of hangar doors. All totaled there are 17-18 or so manufactures of doors (or they so they claim). Just because a company sells a product does not make them a manufacture of said product. Verify the claims. If you google earth a company and see the building and its 5,000 square feet, they probably don’t make the product and in fact you may be dealing with a broker and not the factory. Hangar doors are like purchasing a custom fitted suit, you want to go directly to the tailor right? So don’t be surprised by that fact. additionally what happens when the suit has an issue? Do you want to be handed off to the tailor who is not supporting his products?
The next thing I want to point out is there are many types of doors; sliding hangar doors, top hung rolling, bi folding, tilt up canopy, tilt hydraulic and single panel hydraulic. The interesting thing about all of them they all have their place in the aviation industry and beyond. I want to point out however claims can be sometimes miss leading. Case in point the Higher power hydraulic door claims it is a “stand alone” door. What most would think is the HP door doesn’t need to be connected to the building, and that is absolutely the case. However they infer that is amazing and we believe. Sadly the architects think they don’t require to be welded or bolted. You could try it but I would bet HP Doors would void your warranty when the storm comes and blows it over. Additionally the video is misleading because the portion that the cam rolls on is not braced. This will move if not connected, but they don’t advertise that.
No one advertises the down sides, Schwiess Hangar doors has lift straps, they are nice and they perform well. So what is untold and not amazing there? They are not UV resistant and exposure from windows and the door being open can cause photo derogation. So what is the big deal? Its not, but you should know the facts.
Hydraulic doors single panel like Well Bilt Hangar Doors manufactures uses domestic manufactured cylinders by reputable manufactures for its hydraulic hangar doors. But what do you do when the seals are blown or rotted? And the fact is hydraulic seals wear and fail. Well you have to take them out and have them repaired. We don’t see this often but it does happen and it is expensive. More than replacing a cable or a chain.
The point is to do some homework! All of the companies are trying to earn your dollars that you have worked hard for. All of the products have unique challenges and offer a variety of options. Ask lots of questions to the supplier, get references, you only have yourself to blame if you are not happy.