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1. The direction, left or right, of the swing of a door (when viewed from the side usually considered the outside) or associated doorframes or hardware. A left-hand door has hinges on the left and the door swings away; a left-hand reverse door swings toward the viewer. A right-hand door has hinges on the right and swings away. A right-hand reverse door swings toward the viewer.
2. Of a spiral stair, designates the direction of turn of the stair. Right-hand refers to a stair on which the user turns clockwise as he descends. Left-hand refers to a stair on which the user turns counter-clockwise ashe descends.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.