First of all, a jib door is a different name for a nearly invisible concealed door. A jib door is traditionally designed to blend with the wall. This means that it has the same paint color, wallpaper, decoration, glass panel, mirror, or molding as the adjacent wall.
With Angelbau residential projects, we often see jib doors used as a way to disguise a storage room, pantry, or mechanical room. The architect or interior designer will use a jib door to reduce the number of visible doors within the room, if there are too many or if they clash with elevation.
Probably the most famous jib door is in the Oval Office in the White House. There are in fact four hidden doors designed to blend in with the wall. These hidden passages date back to 1934 when the architect Eric Gugler worked with Theodore Roosevelt on the design of the Oval Office.
When we build a jib door as part of the complete door package for a project, we start with our Dorsis Fortius door. We designed this specific door model to be able to support additional custom panels, including heavy mirrors, glass, or large format tiles. The concealed hinges we use on our jib doors pivot in a way that lets us add up to 1/2" (12 mm) of additional cladding for an inswing jib door and up to 5/16" (8 mm) of additional cladding for an outswing jib door.
Then depending on the use, we work with the designer on figuring out the right opening mechanism. It can be a traditional door lever handle, a recessed flush door pull, or a door pull handle such as the M&T Maximal with a custom insert, a magnetic no-handle No-Ha lock, a push-to-open (push latch) locking mechanism, or a set of integrated magnets. Things get truly interesting with an integrated self-closer.
Not always you may want to have a handless door, especially if you intend to open the door frequently. In that case, we would recommend either a minimalistic recessed door pull or an elegant door pull handle.
Push latch, sometimes also called touch latch or push-to-open door latch, is a great choice for mechanical closets or mechanical rooms. The push latch is embedded in the Dorsis Fortius concealed door frame and allows the door to open outward. A short firm push on the "lock side" of the door will swing the concealed door open.
But what about an inswing direction? In this case, we would look into using a concealed door closer. You would simply walk up to the jib door and push on the door panel to open it. On the interior side, we would place a standard door pull.
If you want to have a truly imperceivable door, you have to work the door lines into the wall pattern. The hidden door will always have thin lines around the perimeter, so you will want to replicate the same lines elsewhere on the wall.