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Thread: Hand Plane Cabinet Hinges?

  1. #1

    Hand Plane Cabinet Hinges?

    The hand plane cabinet shown below is my first cabinet making attempt. The inset door with a glass panel still needs to be installed but I'm having a hard time deciding which type of hinge to use. I put together a sample european style hinge and a butt hinge and it seems the former has some advantages, especially with my limited skills. The only problem I see with it is it takes up some unsightly space inside. I like it's adjustability and easier install though. The butt hinge sample didn't go well and I can see it will be difficult to fit properly. Since this is my first cabinet build and most of the wood used was left over scraps and undesirable local lumber yard plywood would it be better to go the easier european hinge route or tough it out and get some experience with the butt hinge?

    The hand plane cabinet design is by Craig Bentzley and obtained from Woodcraft magazine. It seems like it is capable enough but my original plan was to wall mount it above my work bench. Unfortunately it will be too high to reach some of the planes so it will probably have to sit on the bench. I may make another one with better materials with a slightly different design so it can be wall mounted.

    Projects 001.jpg
    Last edited by Steve Mathews; 01-19-2022 at 6:09 PM.

  2. #2
    I forgot to mention the small space immediately above the drawers seems oddly small and ill suited for any practical storage. I would probably eliminate it on my next go around.

  3. #3
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    Very nice looking cabinet. I would not want to give up bench top space for a tool cabinet. Butt hinges might be a bit fiddly, but they fit this style of cabinet. mark and chisel carefully. Try a practice run on some scraps. A shop tool cabinet is a great project to try this on. I would not recommend European hinges for this project, too modern for a hand tool cabinet.

  4. #4
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    Since this is my first cabinet build and most of the wood used was left over scraps and undesirable local lumber yard plywood would it be better to go the easier european hinge route or tough it out and get some experience with the butt hinge?
    Something a teacher said to a classroom of students back in the early 1960s has stayed with me over the years. In discussing organizing homework they said to do the hardest parts first. This way if some things ended up being rushed, they would be the easiest things.

    With the hinges, you will likely learn more by installing the butt hinges on this project. It should be easy to hold the door in place with shims top & bottom. Then mark where you want the hinges to be and transfer the hinge dimensions to the door & frame.

    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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    Butt hinges could also be a reason to acquire a router plane if you don’t already have one.

  6. #6
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    Hi Steve,

    Have you considered a brass piano hinge? That would be very easy to install and very sturdy. Also the look would be classy.

    Regards, Andre

  7. #7
    I also debated this and settled on brass piano hinges. At first I thought they could not support the weight of the fully-loaded doors, but I was wrong. They are incredibly strong by spreading the load across the full length (vertical) of the hinge. Pic attached. Don't mind me, I can't seem to find any other pics at the moment

    11.6.jpg

  8. #8
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    My counsel is to install the harder hinge now to get the experience so they come out even better next time.

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Andre Packwood View Post
    Hi Steve,

    Have you considered a brass piano hinge? That would be very easy to install and very sturdy. Also the look would be classy.

    Regards, Andre

    No, I didn't consider a piano hinge. Would they have to be mortised like the butt hinge? I used a couple of piano hinges for the till, which raises to access the area behind it. These were not mortised, just surface mounted.

    The plans called for H style hinges that are surface mounted. That might be an option to consider again.

    As mentioned before I did practice the butt hinge install on some scrap wood. It didn't turn out well. The gap between the mock up frames was uneven and if translated to the actual door would've looked terrible. I used marking gauges, a chisel and a router plane along with guidance from a Rob Cosman video. I should probably practice more and try to get this right but wanted to get done with the project.

  10. #10
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    The butt hinge is a better learning tool. The continuous hinge is stronger.
    ~mike

    life in a mud hut

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve Mathews View Post
    No, I didn't consider a piano hinge. Would they have to be mortised like the butt hinge?
    Hi Steve

    No absolute need to mortise the hinge, but surface mounting would leave a gap between the door frame and the carcass. If this is objectionable because of dust getting in, you could stick a strip of felt or other material around the perimeter of the back side of the door. I can't tell from Norman's picture above if he recessed the hinge, but his construction made it much easier to do than yours.

    Regards, Andre
    Last edited by Andre Packwood; 01-20-2022 at 2:16 AM.

  12. #12
    I took the doors off of mine within a few days of loading it up. Too aggravating.

  13. #13
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    As mentioned before I did practice the butt hinge install on some scrap wood. It didn't turn out well. The gap between the mock up frames was uneven and if translated to the actual door would've looked terrible.
    Often this can be corrected by installing a shim under one of the hinges.

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

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Koepke View Post
    Often this can be corrected by installing a shim under one of the hinges.

    jtk
    I've even used cardboard, hardboard, and just paper to do so.
    ~mike

    life in a mud hut

  15. #15
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    Lost me at glass doors for a piece of shop furniture.

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