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Thread: Bending/Fitting Strap Hinges?

  1. #1
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    Bending/Fitting Strap Hinges?

    I'm not finding a ton of good information about installing strap hinges on things like chests. (Though a few blanket chest projects had some good pictures).

    Aside from a Schwarz blog post showing the use of a metal jaw vice and a hammer, and one guy using a Lee-Valley bender thingy (which didn't look easy at all to use)... what are folks methods and madness for this?

    On my tool chest build I mortised out the thickness of the strap, then (per instruction in the video) made a further notch at the back of half the width of the hinge (barrel/round part, not sure what to call it). But it seems to seat too low. Guess I'll find out if it is going to work when I Get the top attached to the long part of the hinge later this week.

    2020-07-12 20.56.33.jpg 2020-07-12 20.56.37.jpg 2020-07-12 20.56.49.jpg
    Last edited by Erich Weidner; 07-12-2020 at 10:01 PM. Reason: pics

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erich Weidner View Post
    I'm not finding a ton of good information about installing strap hinges on things like chests. (Though a few blanket chest projects had some good pictures).

    Aside from a Schwarz blog post showing the use of a metal jaw vice and a hammer, and one guy using a Lee-Valley bender thingy (which didn't look easy at all to use)... what are folks methods and madness for this?

    On my tool chest build I mortised out the thickness of the strap, then (per instruction in the video) made a further notch at the back of half the width of the hinge (barrel/round part, not sure what to call it). But it seems to seat too low. Guess I'll find out if it is going to work when I Get the top attached to the long part of the hinge later this week.
    For me a metal jaw vise and a large crescent wrench or a hammer works for metal bending.

    One common name for hinge mortises is hinge gains.

    If you haven't finished assembling the top, it might be easier to mark and cut the hinge gains before putting all the pieces together.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  3. #3
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    Whelp. Following the video's directions I notched out for half the barrel (as in illustrations above.
    This ended up like this... 2020-07-13 18.59.22.jpg

    So, either this hinge is defective, needs bending, or I need to sink that barrel all the way down in the chest back?

    Thoughts?

    PS I can see I need to shift the lid back a bit as well.

  4. #4
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    So, either this hinge is defective, needs bending, or I need to sink that barrel all the way down in the chest back?
    Can you sink it into the top?

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Can you sink it into the top?

    jtk

    Yeah, that was the part of the video I must have overlooked. But by the time I figured that out I'd already just make the cutout for the barrel deeper. Still couldn't get the back edge to align.
    Noticed the video had me put a 30 degree bevel on the back to match the case. Still couldn't get it to line up. 2+ hours of fiddling with it and making swiss cheese of area under the strap with hole after hole. Fortunately they are all hidden by the strap. Eventually I recruited the wife to help. With the two extra hands, and her being smarter than me, we got it lined up. Holes drilled. Drat, still a bit off, but I'm calling this good enough and on to the next steps.

    2020-07-13 22.05.36.jpg 2020-07-13 22.05.46.jpg

    And now for some beer.

  6. #6
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    It looks okay in the photos.

    It also is part of the experience of learning.

    Installing hinges can be very tricky. My hinge work hasn't been without many errors.

    jtk
    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

  7. #7
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    When I made my version, I decided to make my hinges. Add variations in the hinges to the complexity of laying these out.toolbox2.jpgToolbox 4.jpg

  8. #8
    Look up "cranked" hinges - bent differently so all screws are inside the chest when closed.

  9. #9
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    Hinge installation in general can be/is problematic Erich. Not applicable to this situation, but the cheaper the hinge - the worse it is for a clean, accurate installation. I realize that it was a hassle getting there, but as Jim said, it looks OK from here and it is a tool chest. When it comes time for hinges on a nice piece of furniture, look for the better quality hinges and avoid the typical lower priced big borg products. I too use a metal working vise and hammer to bend hinges when it is required. I use a thin lined felt tip to mark out a line where I want the bend to occur and line the mark up square to the edge of the vise jaws.
    David

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