Dor-O-Matic 1690 Rod Adjustment Procedures

01:26:19 PM on 01/03/2012

In follow-up to part one of this month’s blog, “Unlocking the Secrets of Exit Devices,” I will go through the steps to remove, measure and, if necessary, adjust the rods of the Dor-O-Matic (or Falcon brand) 1690 exit device. The steps to follow are based on Kawneer’s “1690 Touchbar Concealed Exit Device Installation Instructions” (Document number 038-283) as posted on the KawneerDirect.com website. I recommend you download a copy of this document before attempting to adjust the device.

In part one, we discussed the symptoms common to devices that are either installed improperly or are out of adjustment. In part two, we will move past the symptoms and focus on adjustment.

Tools required to adjust the exit device are:
- A tape measure in increments of 1/32”
- A Phillips-head screwdriver
- A large flat-head screwdriver
- A pair of long-nosed pliers

Important note: We recommend removing the door from its frame and laying it flat on a table or across a pair of saw horses, with the interior side of the door facing up, prior to attempting any adjustments.

We will keep the primary focus on the top rod. Since locating most exit devices is determined by measuring from the bottom of the door to the center-line of the device, the dimensions for the bottom rod are typically consistent regardless of the overall door opening height. Therefore, it is more likely the source of any malfunctions is due to the length of the top rod. That said, we will also go through the process for adjusting the bottom rod as well.

<- Click here to see exploded view of exit device and part names1690Exit-Device-Explod-view

Disassembly and adjustment

Step #1:

With the door laid flat, and the exit device itself facing up, use a Phillips-Head screwdriver to remove the screws on the top and bottom of the housing cover.  Next, gently remove the cover (it may be necessary to lift the touch-pad to allow the cover to disengage).  If you now turn the cover upside-down, you can use it to hold the small parts as you remove them from the device until it is time to reinstall them.




<- Click on image to enlarge


Step #2:

1690-step2Next, remove the screws at the top of the lock stile to detach the latch mechanism and place them in the cover.   The assembled device operating mechanism will now be exposed and the top latch assembly will be loose.

Click image to enlarge ->

Step #3:

Remove the two brass-colored retainer screws, lift off the pinion gear retainer and the lift arm mechanism (it may be necessary to pull up slightly on the device touch pad to allow the lift arm to disengage).  The traveler that links the top and bottom rods and houses the retractor which operates the cylinder is now exposed and can be lifted out as well.  It is not necessary to remove the pinion gear itself. 


Step #4:

1690-step4Click image to enlarge ->

At this point, the top rod is only held in place by the white bushing and e-ring. Carefully insert a large flat-head screwdriver under the bend in the top rod to prop it up and away from the face of the door and expose the bushing and e-ring.  Gently pry the e-ring off the end of the rod and remove the bushing. You will now be able to slide the top rod assembly out of the top of the lock stile.

For the bottom rod: remove the screws from the face of the lock stile at the bottom, prop the rod up with a flat-head screwdriver and pry off the e-ring and bushing.  The bottom rod assembly can now also be removed.


Step #5:

1690-step5Lay the top rod assembly on its side.  Use the tape measure to determine the distance from the bottom of the rod (where it bends up into the lock stile), to the collar of the latch assembly (where the threads of the rod insert into the top bolt).  For a 7'0" door opening, this dimension should be 34 5/16".  If the door opening height varies from 7'0", add or subtract the appropriate dimension to or from 34 5/16".  If the measurement is incorrect, the rod length can be increased or decreased by screwing it further in to or out of the latch assembly.  For each full rotation, the length of the rod will increase or decrease by 1/32".  Once the necessary adjustments have been made, tighten the lock nut against the housing and it will be ready to reinstall.

The bottom rod should be measured in the same way; however, the rod length, regardless of overall door opening height, should always be 34 1/32”.




Step #6:

Slide the rod assemblies back into the lock stile. Make sure the housing screws and the bend in the rods both face up. Hold the housing against the lock stile and reattach the housing screws.

Step #7:

Align the bent end of the rods with the cutouts in the lock stile and use long-nosed pliers to lift the ends until the flat-head screwdriver can be used to prop them up so they are exposed.  Slide the bushings back over the ends of the rods with the narrow ends facing toward the door cutout and reattach the e-rings.  (Note: If the e-rings do not achieve proper tension against the groove in the rods, they will require replacement.)  Once the e-rings are reattached, remove the flat-head screwdriver.  Double-check to make sure the bushing properly seats itself within the door cutout.

Step #8:

1690-step8aRe-insert the retractor into the traveler. Take care to position the traveler so the bottom rod inserts into the bottom of the slot, then gently move the traveler assembly over the bend in the top rod.  The retractor should also be positioned over the pinion gear.


Note:  The position of the pinion gear within the retractor will affect the cylinder operation in several ways. 

If the “teeth” on the retractor were originally facing one way, and are reinstalled facing the opposite direction - the key will have to be rotated in the opposite direction to operate the device.

If the pinion gear is positioned at the top of the retractor - it will be possible to “dog”, or put the device into a push-pull status with the cylinder. 

If the pinion gear is positioned at the center of the retractor - the cylinder will only allow the device to be unlocked with a key, but the key will not be able to be removed from the cylinder until it is returned to a locked position.


Step #9:

 Position the lift arm under the traveler.  Note that it may be necessary to lift the touch pad of the device to assist with the reconnection.  Position the pinion gear retainer over the pinion gear and align the fastener holes.  Reattach both retainer screws (Important note: DO NOT OVERTIGHTEN the retainer screws).

Step #10:

1690-step10The device cover can now be reattached and its proper function tested.

Prior to re-hanging the door, dog the device touchpad and move the top latch bolt back and forth (it should move freely and the bottom latch bolt should be flush with the bottom of the door).  Next, un-dog the device and trip the top latch into the locked position.  The top latch should remain locked and the bottom bolt should now extend at least 7/16" to 1/2" from the bottom of the door.

Step #11:

Re-hang the door paying strict attention to the required clearances and tolerances.

You should now have a properly installed and properly functioning exit device with no left over parts.





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