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Thread: The best laid plans of mice and men.....and a great argument for dry fitting

  1. #1

    The best laid plans of mice and men.....and a great argument for dry fitting

    So I have this little (over 6' long) oak entertainment center I'm working on. In my my design, I thought it would be cool to use European hidden hinges (Blum) on it. There are 4 doors. Two doors near the outside edges with solid oak raised panels and the inner two doors are divided glass behind which will reside the equipment. The two outer doors will hide 3 drawers each and they use full extension ball bearing drawer slides. The two inner doors hide 2 each sliding shelves on the same full extension drawer slides.

    The doors are done EXCEPT drilling for the European hidden hinges. When I bought the hinges, I bought a Teflon setup block for setting up the drill press and the jig for drilling the holes in the face frame. These are 120 Blum face frame clip hidden hinges. I fit and installed drawers in one outer section and decided to dry fit the European hinges. Thanks to good Karma, luck or whatever you want to call it....The hinges won't allow the drawers to come out! The doors fold back in on the hinge when opened. Thus the drawer slide strikes the door. Well's not going to work with those hinges. I researched it at the site where I bought it and it didn't point that minor thing out. I researched the same Blum hinge at another site and it showed that it folds back into itself and the slides won't clear.

    I had taken a scrap piece of oak lying in my cutoff box, drilled it, mounted the hinge then held it place on the face frame to discover this phenomena. So....I didn't drill the doors or the face frame..... If I had drilled the doors with that 35mm hole, I'd be crying right now.

    Dry fitting should be a regular part of building and assembling if you are a rank amateur like me.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Delton, Michigan
    glad you got that implant so you can hear that guy on your shoulder telling you what to check out before drilling
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!
    Good save on not drilling the holes and then checking. I'm sure none of us on here have ever done anything like that . A good reminder and a timely post. I am currently widening the clearance slots for some slides on a project that "the little voice" told me were too close in tolerance when I did it the first time . That'll cost me the whole day .

    Another place that I always do a "dress rehearsal" is the glue-up. I go through every step with every clamp, glue brush, mallet, etc. I then break it all down and stage everything like I am getting set to operate on somebody; clamps laid out in order required, the whole she-bang. Takes glue-ups fro a white knuckle experience to a "just like the last time" sort of a thing. I don't know when dry fitting or staging your assembly steps stops being a regular part of building and assembly. I'm betting never .
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    N.E. Arkansas
    We use that same blum hinge in my shop. We make the drawers 1 1/8's inch narrower than the opening and set it over 7/8's of an inch on the side with the hinge assuming you are using a drawer guide that requires a 1/2" side clearance. If doors are on both sides we make the drawers 1 3/4" narrower than the opening. You get the idea. I do a lot of drawers behind doors on pantries and had to figure all that out some time ago. Sorry it caught you in the trap. Ain't fun cause I been there and done that.
    I once heard that cats and women will do darn well what they please and that men and dogs would do well to accept it and just go on.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    new york city burbs
    the first thing I do before starting any new project, is buy all the hardware and examine it and fit it to scraps pieces of plywood, make scrap stiles, because Im tired of finding out the hardware I ordered wont fit right or isnt exactly what I wanted, after I almost finished the piece.I figured I was the only person ordering hardware only to discover I cant use it.
    Human Test Dummy

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Thomasville, GA
    Been that route on my credenza project. I knew I'd have to shim the drawers out to clear the hinges, so I did some mock-ups of the hinge stiles to check the spacing. In my case, dealing with a curved front has also presented an issue with stile clearances. Ah, the joys of woodworking!!!
    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member and Member of Mensa
    My Weather Underground station

  7. #7
    Oh.....when I 'm done I'll post photos and give everybody a chance to laugh at me. When I point out one little overlooked point in the construction, the family members 4 who visited me will probably think I made a run to Waitsburg to my favorite microbrewery though I haven't been there since before October 13, 2011. In might be time for a beer run.....I'll have to call and see if they have any Scottish ale to make the run worthwhile. It's over 150 miles round trip.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!
    Even one you have clearance, these are cheap insurance against scratches on the doors. I failed to use them on the first pantry I did. Have used them ever since. Guess which install has scratched doors?
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Ken sorry to hear of your problem but could you link to the hinge you using on the web.
    I am not a cabinet maker and as yet have never used a hinge of this kind.
    I would like to learn from your experience and although i have carefully read through your post twice terminology is getting in my way of understanding.
    You mention using and mounting the door to a face frame. Now my understanding if i am correct is this is the wooden frame on a cabinet mounted against the faces of the edges of the cabinet sides top and bottom to finish of the faces. Are you mounting your hinges to this or do you desire to mount the hinge as i have seen in blum pics against the inside of the cabinet side.
    I can follow how slides would intersect with the door if the door edge rotates back with the hinge mounted on the side but do not get the picture in my mind when a face frame is involved.
    I always thought the blum "european" hinges were for use on cabinets without face frames and that was the whole point of their existence and use. Apologies not trying to be corny trying hard to learn and understand. Thanks.

    Sent from my MB860 using Tapatalk

  10. #10

    The Euro hinges are "hidden" hinges and can be used on either frameless or face-frame constructed cabinets. I wanted to build a cabinet that displayed the doors without hinges.

    Here's a link to the source and hinge I used. The doors were made for 1/2" overlay all the way around the opening so I chose the 3/8"-5/8" model: Got to the additional information page and see what installation and ordering information they give you.

    Now here's the installation information from another source:

    On the charts, notice the distance "P" which is the protrusion of the door as the hinge "wraps" back on itself when opened. This hinge would work great for regular cabinets where no sliding shelves or drawers are involved or as Jim Hager does, build the drawer narrower and offset it's mount on one side to allow for the protrusion.
    Last edited by Ken Fitzgerald; 02-23-2012 at 03:06 PM.

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