Building kitchen cupboards. Drawer slide advice requested.

Page 1 of 2  
The foundation was poured by a contractor in the summer of 02. I've done almost all the rest of the building myself with help from my son and friends.
Below is a link to some photos of the place.
http://www.granite.mb.ca/~lorence /
I retired last year and moved in to a somewhat unfinished interior.
Good enough for an old bachelor and a few critters but not quite complete in the eyes of my new significant other.
I'm about to start the kitchen cupboards. I've done a few small cabinetry projects in the past with reasonable success. This will be the biggest I have ever attempted.
I've drawn up the plans, have the time, wood, tools, ambition and just enough knowledge to make me dangerous.
I am considering ordering drawer slides from Lee Valley. They have several choices with a significant price difference.
Having been a Lee Vally customer for many years I believe their products are of good or better than average quality. I have no doubt that their cheapest drawer slides will be adequate for the job I'm doing or they wouldn't sell them.
What makes the top end slides worth the extra money?
Are the Tandem plus slides
http://www.leevalley.com/hardware/page.aspx?c=1&pU149&cat=3,43614,43616&ap=1
that much better than these?
http://www.leevalley.com/hardware/page.aspx?c=1&pP508&cat=3,43614,43616&ap=1
Are the Blumotion dampers on Tandem slides worth the additional ten dollars a pair.
I could drive into town and get slides at Home Depot for a lot less but I doubt they will give me a lifetime guarantee.
I really don't know what to expect with these products. I have limited experience with them other than to say I have opened and closed drawers with sliders. I have also opened and closed drawers without sliders.
Any advice would be appreciated.
LdB
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Let me say first I am not a cabinet guy, I build furniture but much of my work over the years has been done in cabinet shops and I have used slides on my own projects and had side work and comissions where I also used them, All that to say, I am no expert.
The two links you show are for two very different things. The expensive Tandems are undermount slides. They are totally hidden and haev some more enginerrng and a few more complex parts. The others are pretty much the industry standard of what I see mounted in all cabs standard being built today. For folks that pay for dovetailed drawers, they like the undermounts so you don't see the slides.

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I built my house and cabinets 20 years ago. I didn't make the drawers and simply installed cupboard doors over the openings. Worked fine until a woman moved in recently. I have been busy making about 60 drawers since. Home Depot slides were fine for me.
My slides were good for 75 pounds. The slides you are considering carry 100 pounds. They also are full extension where as mine are not. The Tandem Plus slides have only a 3/8" gap at the sides compared to a more normal 1/2" gap. They would not be my choice for a face frame cabinet which is the type of cabinet I build. The lifetime guarantee may not mean much.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
I don't know what you think you will get out of a lifetime warranty or why you will need one, but I don't think I would worry much about that. I would look for slides that 1) work well under load when installed, 2) are finished (epoxy, chrome, etc.) so they don't rust and can be cleaned, 3) affordable and 4) easy to install.
Check out this recent thread. It has hinge and slide information and links on it.
<http://groups.google.com/group/rec.woodworking/browse_frm/thread / b0c00327207133d2>
Robert
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Maybe he's optimistic about living (and never moving) for a long, long, time. :)

Yup, all good suggestions. And something else that I'd look into if it was me, are self closing drawer slides and soft close drawer slides or a combination of both. Nothing peeves me off more than cracking a body part on the corner of a drawer that I'd thought I'd shoved hard enough to close.
They're fairly new technology within the last few years as far as drawer slides go, but technology marches on.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
LdB wrote:

They move heavy loads smoothly. You don't need them. ___________________

You don't need one. __________________

Do yourself a favor and buy your slides here... http://wwhardware.com/catalog.cfm/groupid/Cabinet%20Drawer%20Slides Both KV and Blum are decent brands.
There are two basic types of slides...those with ball bearings and those with acetal rollers. Both require rather close tolerances in drawer to opening width but IME the latter are a bit more forgiving. I think their action is smoother too. I'd suggest the Blum 230M... http://wwhardware.com/catalog.cfm/GroupID/Cabinet%20Drawer%20Slides/CatID/Drawer%20Slides%2C%20Epoxy%20Coated%20Roller%20Bearing/SubCatID/Blum%26%230174%3B%203%2F4%20Extension%20Epoxy%20Coated%20Slides
Those are side mount but are "L" shaped...the bottom of the "L" goes under the drawer side which means you don't have to worry about mounting the slide parallel to it.
Full extension is nice but not often truly necessary. Ditto self closing. Ditto "stay closed" (if the drawer is level it isn't going to open by itself). ____________________
The real keys in having drawers that operate smoothly is having the case and drawer slides parallel and the correct amount of space for the slides. That slide space has a 1/16" tolerance so you might want to consider making the drawer widths undersize by 1/8 - 1/4 and shimming the slides to fit. That works really well if you have a way - like a drum sander - to easily make shimming strips to a needed thickness.
And if you want maximum utility from the drawers, partition them. Preferably with moveable partitions. An easy way to do that is to set a 3/16" dado blade at 45 degrees and cut opposing "V" grooves in each drawer side. Strips of 1/4" ply with the ends sanded to a matching "V" will then fit nicely and be moveable.
--

dadiOH
____________________________
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

You can normally trust products from Lee Valley however you can also trust products from other manufacturers also. If you can find Blum, KV, or Accuride you should be sattisfied. Ther are other fine brands however these typically are in the affordable range and easily found.

Smother action, other features like self closing, soft closing, extra weight capacity, positive tracking.

Better? "Maybe" they are under mount IIRC so your drawer can be built wider and they are probably self closing and soft close. None of these make the slide better however they are very nice features.

Regardless of brand the soft close features are kind of a cool feature and pretty much guarantee that you will never hear a drawer slam shut regaudless of how much effort you use to close it.

I have not installed as many slides as some people however I have probably installed a couple hundred over the past 20 years. I have never had a "full extension" drawer slide fail regardless of features.

For kitchen cabinets I would advise slides. Because they are easy to install, I prefer "full extension" side mount slides. Because they hold the drawer closed, self closing full extension side mount slides are nice. Because they keep the drawer from slamming, self closing with soft close, full extension side mount slides are even nicer. If you don't want to see the slides, the under mount disappear and they allow you to have a drawer that is approximately 1" wider than the side mount style slide. Typically however with Full Extension side mount slides you cam make the drawer deeper, front to back than normal because you can open the whole drawer as opposed to 2/3's extension slides. With that in consideration the loss of 1" in width for the side mount slide is recovered and then some in the form of a deeper drawer.
One thing to certainly watch out for would be the ball bearings. I have seen plastic or nylon ball bearing on the cheaper slides. Try to stay with steel ball bearings.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
LdB wrote:

The self-closing full extension slides close fairly abruptly and noisily. Probably not necessary for most purposes. For a more direct comparison to the TandemPlus in side-mount slides, take a look at these:
http://www.leevalley.com/hardware/page.aspx?c=1&pa080&cat=3,43614,43616&ap=1
I'm considering these in my own kitchen because I'm retrofitting existing drawers and the undermount slides require additional height, making the existing openings a bit short for the desired contents.

The damped slides are really sweet, especially if there are going to be people (kids or careless adults) that like to just bump the drawer with a hip to close it.
Chris
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Chris Friesen wrote:

These were an addition on the last page of the catalog. I may not have seen them without your message. They seem to have all the features of the more expensive slides.
I'll have to decide on side or bottom mount slides. I bought a dovetail jig for this project. I hadn't concidered using bottom sliders to show off the woodwork. I suppose that when you do the work you have the right to show it off.
A few responses picked up on my interest in a lifetime warranty. I build things to last a lifetime and then some. Building to code is the minimum I will accept. With a bit of maintenance this house will be standing a few hundred years after I'm gone. I intend to build a set of cupboards that will last as long as the house does. Some of you may not agree with that philosophy but it has done well for me.
Thanks to all that responded. You helped getting me on track.
LdB
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"LdB" wrote

On the practical side, ... just be aware that under mount slide systems most often require more precision in drawer building.
IOW, it is good practice to decide upon and buy your slides _before_ you build your drawers, then pay _very_ particular attention to the required drawer dimensions in the spec sheet.

Don't look now, 'building to code' _is_ building to 'minimum standards'. :)
With a bit of maintenance this house will

You'll do alright then ... I expect all the kitchens I build to outlast the houses they go in, even though I try to build the houses they go in with the same attitude that I build the kitchens. :)
<However, don't expect today's buyer to appreciate that philosophy ....> :(
--
Karl ...
Cell 281-414-0127
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Oh my, oh my.
The voice of experience is being heard there, eh?
I am gun shy enough the last time I actually made a cabinet with a couple of drawers in it I bought the slides and built a test drawer and opening.
Once bitten, twice shy.
Robert
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Yep ... the shop dummy here once made a half dozen nice dovetail drawers and I ended up having to cut them down in height by 5/8" just to get them to work with the already purchased, expensive, under mount slides.
Helluva way to treat dovetails ...
Tried to fire the SOB, but every time I looked in the mirror, there he was again.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 10/22/08
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
"Swingman" wrote

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Har! You make me laugh buddy. Instead of trying to fire the guy next time, tell him to go have a drink on me. :)
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Ouch!
> Tried to fire the SOB, but every time I looked in the mirror, there he was

I know the feeling. Every morning's shave I see that ugly sombitches mug, no matter how hard I try to run him off. But he keeps telling me that he MUST be just about at the end of making all the mistakes that can be made.
Noting the volume of same, I am inclined to agree. He should be on the other side of the curve any day now.
Robert
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Damn! Are those sole inserts still working that good that you are looking in the mirror more often? LOL
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Swingman wrote:

My wood is from a local sawmill. It's still piled up in the garage. I will start feeding it into the machinery by new year. I will be ordering the sliders this week.

Sadly there are many that believe code is too much, too expensive and unnecessary. They are the tarpaper shack crowd that inspectors love so much.
I have one for a neighbor. Truly an amazing man. He actually undid work ordered by the the inspector, after his place finally passed inspection. He said it was a waste of lumber. World class redneck.

The container ships keep get larger and larger. These days quality is only skin deep.
All the best of the season
LdB
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

...and apparently doesn't value his personal time very highly, either...codes are simply standards (UBC, Uniform Building Code, was one, but it is a part of the Legacy codes that comprise the International Code Council where the IBC, International Building Code, was developed and now constitutes the code most approved by US state governments. Whew...and that ain't all, there's another player in the code wars NFPA, National Fire Protection Association, that at this time is kinda the Beta vis a vis VHS...head hurting now...) that allow structures to be built in a more-or-less uniform way and can get very "local" depending on where your building. *Always* pays to check because municipalities are trump in many ways...
cg

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Tue, 16 Dec 2008 20:05:42 -0800, Charlie Groh

'International' - as in just the USA? The Wikipedia entry on the IBC seems to think so.
Residents of the USA often call ISO or IEC standards 'European' despite them being used in over 150 countries worldwide - including the USA. Why? probably because they think 'it wasn't invented here' except ANSI along with many other National Standards Organisations had an input.
FFS why did they not call it the USA ***National*** Building Council or sling the word Federal in there or something? Maybe it's yet another case of 'World Series' syndrome.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

...Heh!
cg
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.