Frequently Asked Questions


What types of geared continuous hinges does SELECT offer?

SELECT has many types of continuous geared hinges. Concealed (full mortise) hinges are applied to jamb and door edge, half surface hinges are applied to jamb and door face, full surface hinges are applied to door and frame face and half mortise hinges are applied to the door edge and frame face. There are also wide throw and swing clear models available. Models can be viewed on this site or in our SELECT catalog.

How does the geared continuous hinge work?

The SELECT geared continuous hinge is designed with a geared joint instead of a pin, so each rotating surface turns only half the distance as a pin hinge for the same degree of opening. Each of the gear leaves operate in rolling contact with each other. The continuous geared concept decreases vertical wear, lateral wear and stresses, essentially eliminating door sag.

What hinge lengths does SELECT offer?

The hinges may be ordered in all of the standard door heights such as  83"2108 mm, 85"2159 mm, 95"2413 mm and 120"3048 mm. SELECT hinges are normally 1"25 mm shorter than the actual opening height to allow for variations such as carpeting and thresholds. Custom lengths available, up to 168"4267 mm. Once cut, most hinges become handed and the six-hole pattern should be placed at top of the door and frame. Please see Toilet Partition hinge section in SELECT's catalog or on this website for length information on the SL60/62.

Is any maintenance required with SELECT hinges?

Each hinge is pre-lubricated with a permanent dry-graphite coating on all moving surfaces. This lubricant will last the lifetime of the hinge, requiring zero maintenance.

What makes SELECT's hinges different from its competitors' hinges?

As the market leader, SELECT was the first to:

  • Offer hinges completely anodized after machining, providing longer life.
  • Offer individually packaged hinges, and include fasteners inside the package.
  • Develop a patented 3-hour fire rating, without fire pins or studs.
  • Consistently template hole patterns, saving installation time and cost.
  • Pair-match geared leaves (with serial numbers) during machining and anodizing, providing an accurate fit that distributes the door load over the bearings.
  • Apply lifetime lubricant on all hinges to increase performance and reduce future maintenance.
  • To introduce the 85"2159 mm hinge length as standard, otherwise 95"2413 mm hinge was required to be cut.
  • To be geared to ship in 48 hours.

Customers experience quick response time on quoting, order processing and product shipment. 98.6% of orders are shipped in 48 hours, with 59.5% of the orders shipped in 24 hours. SELECT challenges any customer to compare our product and service with any other brand of continuous hinge.

Members of the SELECT team will be happy to assist you with geared continuous hinge inquiries.


Design Features


What makes a SELECT hinge long lasting?

SELECT hinges are made from an extruded aluminum alloy that is treated for toughness and durability. The hinge utilizes the entire height of the framing system and door along the entire length of the door edge. Our SL11HD concealed geared continuous hinge has surpassed more than 25,000,000 cycles in ANSI-approved, physical endurance testing at Architectural Testing, Inc. in St. Paul, Minn. That's 10 times beyond Grade 1 cycle count. From independent testing facilities and in-house cycle testing, SELECT hinges have outperformed other hinges.

SELECT hinges exceed the ANSI/BHMA A156.26 2021 Grade 1 standard for Continuous Hinges. The SELECT hinge test passed requirements for a 150 lb. door at 2,500,000 cycles with 0.02 inches or less in vertical wear and 300 lb. door at 1,000,000 cycles with 0.02 inches or less in vertical wear. Included with vertical wear and cycle requirements, the SELECT hinge passed Grade 1 abuse test requirements. Grade one abuse test (two blows of 60 lb./ft. + two blows of 90 lb./ft. + 2 blows of 120 lb./ft. + 2 blows of 150 lb./ft.) completes the ANSI/BHMA 156.26 2021 Grade 1 standard.

Why does a SELECT hinge have geared construction?

The geared construction allows smooth rotation of the continual axis. The continuous joint provides strength along the full height of the door. The SELECT geared hinge construction maintains alignment through a true centerline.

A pin & barrel (butt) mortised hinge installation forces a single hinge to absorb virtually the entire load. The door and frame cut-outs are fabricated separately, altering proper load distribution. Until the most severely stressed hinge shifts its position under this heavy loading, the other hinges do little to carry their share of the load. After this settling, however, the hinge pins will no longer operate in a single centerline.

The loss of a true centerline further increases the stresses placed upon the knuckles and pins, fasteners and reinforcing plates. Installations thought impossible for proper door operation (as on bowed frames equipped with doors warped in an opposing plane) can be salvaged by a SELECT geared continuous hinge.

How can plastic bearings compare to ball bearings?

The thermoplastic resin used in SELECT hinge bearings is a time-proven bearing material with a low coefficient of friction. The thermoplastic bearing has excellent lubricity, maintains stability in moist environments and has chemical resistance to most oils and greases.

Another advantage of these solid bearing blocks is complete surface contact and load sharing between each bearing used in a SELECT hinge. In addition to bearings, the continuous grip design of knuckle-free construction displaces kickback energy and load weight.

Stresses imposed upon a ball bearing can easily exceed its design limits. Indicators are knuckle or pin bending, misaligned hinge forced out of line by warping frames or doors, or concentrated loads imposed by poor cut out locations. Ball bearings are vulnerable when this weight and stress is forced on a single ball, producing a flattening effect on the bearing ball's surface or cracking the bearing. Failure is more common where corrosive action accelerates the above conditions, such as on exterior doors.

Why does the hinge have so many bearings?

Standard duty hinges have 16 to 18 bearings (depending on length), spaced at 5-1/8"130.18 mm intervals. Heavy duty hinges have 32 to 47 bearings (depending on length), spaced at 2-9/16"65.09 mm intervals.

SELECT has earned a reputation for producing a superior product capable of handling a variety of site conditions. SELECT designed these bearing slot intervals to provide optimal support given the conditions under which a hinge operates.

SELECT's factory-spaced bearing locations under precision manufacturing promote uniform vertical loading on each bearing.

Stresses such as abuse and environment, as well as door weight and cycle frequency, determine the number of bearings required to evenly distribute the full load of the door over each bearing. This, in effect, prevents premature failure of any one bearing.

What weight door can be used with a SELECT hinge?

SELECT hinges are designed for use in high-, medium- or low-frequency applications with doors weighing up to 1,000 lb.454 kg. Site conditions or the environment can adversely affect the hinge application.

Frequency of use, door weight, abuses and environment should be factored. These conditions are directly correlated with the longevity of the hinge and its performance.

SELECT hinges have endured a number of school and other commercial applications under high-frequency, high-impact conditions, under loads much heavier than promoted as normal conditions and continue operating. Typically, heavy duty (HD) hinges are specified in high-traffic applications or for door weight exceeding 200 lb.91 kg.

Are frame reinforcements necessary with a geared continuous hinge?

The SELECT hinge does not require frame reinforcements, unless the frame or door is less than 16 gauge. A SELECT hinge applied to the full length of the door and frame reinforces the entire system. Frame reinforcements are placed behind the top cut-outs to support the fasteners used with knuckle hinges. These steel plates do not distribute the load.

Is the geared mechanism vulnerable to foreign objects, dirt or dust?

No. The performance of the geared structure is unaffected by foreign material. The SELECT hinge has been tried in time by objects placed in gears or driven through the joint. The construction is highly resilient and continues operation after defacing or damaging. The full-length gear design and continuous joint is impervious to localized damage.


Uses and Installation

Is the door swing restricted?

No. A SELECT hinge will move 180 degrees as required. The only exception is the SL62, which is a self-closing Toilet Partition hinge.

Where can the SELECT hinge be used?

SELECT hinges are designed for new construction or retrofit door applications.

What types of fasteners are used with the hinges?

There are several different types. SELECT provides 12-24 x 3/4" self-drilling, thread forming 410 SS Phillips undercut flathead screws as standard (with sexnuts and shoulder screws for the door side as standard for full and half surface hinges). 12-24 x 1/2" thread-forming screws, wood screws, panhead tek and long shoulder screws available on request. Steel Rivnuts and Torx® security screws available at extra cost.

Can these fasteners be purchased at a local hardware store?

No, these are special fasteners. All of the fasteners are made of corrosion resistant materials. The 12-24 x 3/4" self-drilling, thread-forming and the 12-24 x 1/2" thread-forming screws are made of 410 stainless steel with an undercut head that allows a greater length of thread on the screw. The shoulder screw is a 410 stainless steel and the sexnut is an aluminum alloy. Only SELECT steel Rivnuts are to be used with fire-rated SELECT hinges.

Does SELECT have a charge for screws?

SELECT will only charge for standard screws when they are ordered without hinges. Screws come packaged with each hinge. SELECT provides self-drilling, thread-forming screws (with sexnuts and shoulder screws for the door sides of full and half-surface hinges), unless otherwise requested.

Thread-forming, wood, panhead tek and long shoulder screws are available at no extra cost. Steel Rivnuts and Torx® security screws are for specialized applications and will have an added charge.

How are the frames and doors prepared for the fasteners?

Self-drilling, thread-forming screws drill and thread the hole with one operation.

Thread-forming and wood screws require a pre-drilled hole of a specified size to allow for the correct percentage of thread required for the most effective holding strength. Drill using a #13 (.185") or 3/16" (.188") drill bit for metal. For wood, use a 5/32" (.156") drill bit.

Both applications require the use of a center punch before drilling.

Can a SELECT hinge be used with a standard door and frame?

Depending on the door and frame, SELECT hinge models are designed for most standard applications. Retrofits may require different hinge models than new openings. Contact SELECT's customer service department for more details. Information is also available in SELECT's catalog and on this web site.

Does the door and frame manufacturer need to customize the frame?

No. The frame manufacturer can eliminate the mortising cutouts and hinge-reinforcing plates. The frame for a geared continuous hinge is actually less expensive to make. A frame manufacturer may offer frames either with or without pre-drilled holes. SELECT can provide template patterns to the supplier for matching fastener locations.

How can a SELECT hinge be used with a wood door and/or frame?

If the carpenter is aware the SELECT hinge will be used on the application, additional clearance should be allowed while setting the frame. If necessary, wood doors can be cut back on-site and in less time than setting mortised hinges.

What is a leaf flange?

It is the continuous metal strip on the frame leaf and/or door leaf formed during the extrusion process. The flange provides alignment and locates depth of door and frame. The flange enables the hinge to be straight and square to the frame and door. The flange decreases the amount of preparation time spent measuring alignment, inset or flush mount.

Does a SELECT geared continuous hinge take longer to install?

No. Multiple door and frame cut-outs and measurements are known to be difficult and time-consuming in new construction or retrofit applications. A SELECT hinge omits the need for cut-outs on the frame or door.

Prior knowledge of clearance for the opening is important in selecting the correct hinge. Clearance information such as square or beveled-edged doors, frame opening, and total clearance required (lockside clearance or possible irregularities) should be considered.

Is a SELECT hinge handed?

No. All standard length SELECT hinges are symmetrical from end to end and may be simply inverted for use on either side of the frame. Customizing a hinge, adding electrical preparations or cutting to length will make most SELECT hinges handed.

What is an advantage of a non-handed hinge?

A non-handed hinge can be hung on either side of door and frame. Also, customers have specified strike bolt preparation on both sides of the frame and used a SELECT hinge to cover the unused hole. This method allows less frame inventory and doors to be reversed at any time, without a frame change.

Wood doors can be ordered with the strike bolt bore on both edges of the door. This allows the installer to bore for the mortise lock after the hand has been determined at the site. This system can provide a new dimension of flexibility that avoids costly errors.

How can the door be removed with a geared continuous hinge attached?

The SELECT hinge design is tamper proof and the door can only be removed from the secure side.

Doors can be detached by removing the door leaf screws on concealed hinges. Doors attached with full and half surface hinges can be removed detatching the door cover (by loosening the door cover set screws) and then the thru bolts from the inside.

Can the SELECT hinge be used for exterior applications?

Yes. The SELECT hinge may be used in any hardware application and is a first choice where weatherproofing is essential. The anodized aluminum construction and geared leaf provide security and resistance to corrosion.

Can SELECT hinges be prepared for electric applications?

Yes, electric modifications are available. SELECT recommends consulting SELECT's catalog or SELECT's engineering or customer service departments when ordering electrical modifications for availability and customization.

ATW - (Accessible Through-Wire) Allows continuous power through the hinge and is concealed in the hinge. Operates with 12-24 volts AC/DC @ 3-6 amps per conductor. Can be supplied with 4, 8 or 12 conductors. Available on concealed hinges (excluding SL38 and SL71).

EPT - (Electric Power Transfer) A section is removed from each geared leaf to clear the power transfer unit mounted in the door and frame. Available on concealed hinges (excluding SL38 and SL71), half mortise hinge, half surface hinges. Available on SL40 wide throw hinge and SL41 swing clear hinge with SELECT engineer approval.

CTW - (Concealed Through-Wire) Allows continuous power through the hinge and is concealed in the hinge. Operates with 12-24 volts AC/DC @ 3-6 amps per conductor. Can be supplied with 4, 5, 8, 10 or 12 conductors. Available on concealed hinges (excluding SL38 and SL71) and the SL57 full surface hinge. 

EMS - (Exposed Electric Monitor Switch) Requires only one monitoring switch per hinge. Operates on 120V AC @ 250 MA 30 W maximum. Available on concealed hinges (exluding SL71), SL40 wide throw hinge and SL41 swing clear hinge.

CMG - (Concealed Adjustable Magnetic Monitor Switch) Uses non-continuous current to monitor a door's status. 22 gauge wire with 14" leads. 28 volts DC. Available on concealed hinges (excluding SL38 and SL71), SL40 wide throw hinge and SL41 swing clear hinge.

AP - (Access Panel) Hinge leaf panels are created to allow for easy access to electrical components while preserving gear cap's appearance. Available on concealed hinges (exluding SL71).

RP - (Removable Panel) Removable hinge leaf panels are created to allow for easy access and service of electrical components without removing the door. Available on concealed hinges (exluding SL71) and the SL57 full surface hinge.


Fire Rating

Does cutting the SELECT hinge lose the fire rating?

No, field cutting is acceptable and does not void the UL rating.

What is the fire rating of a SELECT hinge?

SELECT has a patented process, with UL listing, to provide a positive pressure 3-hour fire rating. SELECT's patented process eliminates pins or studs and is approved for positive and negative pressure. The patented 3-hour process requires no additional installation effort in the field. Not available on SL38, SL71, SL77 and Toilet Partition hinges.

All SELECT hinges (except the SL71, SL77 and Toilet Partition hinges) are 1-½ hour fire-rated for positive and negative pressure. Hinges modified by SELECT retain their fire rating.

Fire-rated listing applies to a minimum of 16 gauge hollow metal frames and swinging single or pairs of fire doors, including double egress, with a maximum size of 4 ft. wide and 10 ft. high, installed in masonry or drywall.

Is there a charge for SELECT's fire rating?

The 1-½ hour fire rating has no upcharge. There is a small upcharge for three-hour fire rating.

Where is the fire label located on a SELECT hinge?

On continuous geared concealed SELECT hinges and continuous geared half mortise SELECT hinges, the fire label is located on the door or frame leaf approximately 3 ft. from the top or bottom. On continuous geared full surface SELECT hinges and continuous geared half surface SELECT hinges, the fire label is located under the door cover.  The door cover can be removed by loosening the set screw from the side of the door leaf cover with a 5/64" Allen wrench and then sliding the door leaf cover off.



Will the aluminum finish corrode?

No, the SELECT hinge has an anodized finish to protect it from corrosion. The anodized aluminum has an oxide film that penetrates the metal, leaving an extremely hard surface resistant to corrosion.

Unfinished metal risks corrosion. Metal frames and doors present no problem due to anodization or use of primer or paint.

What finish is available from stock?

Clear (204R1) and Dark Bronze (215R1). Many hinges are also stocked in Black (315AN).  Contact SELECT to inquire about other custom finishes such as champagne or matte gold. Custom paint colors are also available.

What is anodizing?

Anodizing is an electro chemical process. Extruded aluminum products are immersed in a solution under controlled conditions. An electrical current passes through the solution to produce an aluminum oxide film on the products being anodized. The oxide film penetrates the aluminum pores, leaving an extremely hard surface resistant to corrosion. The oxide film will grow to a specific thickness at a determined voltage. The thickness of the oxide film generates colors. This voltage controlled growth means the integral color is voltage controlled as well. Anodizing is stated to be an environmentally friendly metal finishing process. For more information on anodizing, visit the Aluminum Anodizers Council web site.

Does SELECT offer custom-painted hinges as well?

Yes, but (except for Bone White gear caps up to 95"2413 mm) not from stock. SELECT uses Kynar 500, a two coat resin-based system. Kynar 500 resin-based coatings have outperformed other coating systems in Florida exposure (45 degree South) tests for 10 to 17 years.

A paint code and/or paint sample is requested to provide the best match for the paint color. The gear cap as well as the leaves and screws may be painted easily (pre-assembly). Additional lead time is required.


Others claim their hinges are the best. We prove it. Our geared continuous hinges have resisted more brutal testing than any. Read more.

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