Father Son Project (and hidden "Locks")

Have been "commissioned" (read 'Dad, I've got a project "we" can work on.") to build two record (yes, those round vinyl things with the grooves in them) cabinets. The design constraints are: 1. two cabinets because they'll be easier to move than one foot long cabinet 2. can't be wider than the width of his bed (48") beause they'll reside at the foot of the bed a la a blanket chest. 3 . can't be tallel than 30" 4. depth is to be kept to a minimum since there's a bench directly opposite with dual turn tables, mixer etc. 5. Due to space constraints, there can't be a door on the front 6. A clean design in a light colored wood 7. The Kicker - they have to be lockable - but they can't have visble locks.
Started out wanting to do a pull down tambour door, inspired by a recent article about a similar cabinet in Woodworkers Journal or the like. But the tambour door tracks took up too much precious space. Decided on a tilt out front panel. The stumper was criteria #7, a hidden "lock" mechanism.
After playing with ideas for hidden latches it hit me. MAGNETS!
Am waiting for the glue to dry so I can test out the idea - drawing posted to a.b.p.w.
fun stuff this woodworking
charlie b
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Sat, Jun 19, 2004, 10:58am (EDT-3) snipped-for-privacy@accesscom.com (charlieb) says: <snip> fun stuff this woodworking
Now I'm gonna spoil some of your fun. Hehehehe
<snip> 7. The Kicker - they have to be lockable - but they can't have visble locks. <snip>
OK, that's what really caught my interest.
Decided on a tilt out front panel.
I'm a bit confused on that one, seems like that wouldn't work. "5. Due to space constraints, there can't be a door on the front" So, why not a lift up top?
After playing with ideas for hidden latches it hit me. MAGNETS!
OK, I looked at the picture, would seem to be workable.
I'm guessing he has a kid(s). Which is why a lock in the first place. I'm not clear on the no visible lock tho; after all, it's a chest, has to be some way in it. Partial solution would be have it hinge from the front, rather than the back (top that is). I'm thinking a few problems. If the "peg", or whatever you call it has the magnet on it, it'll probably pop out the first time a kid runs a steel toy car over the chest. If you use a magnet to pull out a steel pin, you run the risk of losing the magnet. Plus, the first time a kid sees it opened, betcha he/she'll figure out how it was done.
I would think a possible solution would be a tiny hole, so you insert a stiff wire in, and release a catch from the inside. If you lost the wire, make it so coat hnger wire would work. Again, don't let a kid see you doing this. There's something along those lines, that might work, posted on one of the R/C links. Used to have it saved, but believe I dumped it. I'll post it, if I still have it.
Another possible solution, a catch at the back, at the bottom of the chest, again with front hingeed top.
Deadbold inside, held in place with a powerful spring, and only able to open with a powerful electro-magnet, to pull the bolt back. Wouldn't matter if you couldn't open it during a power failure, because you wouldn't have any power to play the records anyway. That's if you only have something nonessential, like records, in it. Very bad idea if you needed to get inside during a blackout.
My personal thoughts would be a small, inconspicuous panel, hald in position with a rare earth magnet or two, that would take quite a bit of effort to open, so kids aren't apt to run across it by accident. Then, inside, something like a window latch. No problems about opening if the power goes, the latch would keep the door, or top, from ratteling. If it was apt to be lifted by the lip on the top, and the top opens, I'd probably opt for two window latches, and a sturdy hinge. If it's gonna be moved often, I'd think about wheels.
JOAT Use your brain - it's the small things that count. - Bazooka Joe
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wrote:

[snip]
[snip]
Saw the drawing and it looks effective. FWIW ... there is hidden and there is HIDDEN. The magnet idea is good, but how about making it completely invisible? I've seen child-safety latches added to kitchen cabinets that require a magnet to open and there is nothing seen on the outside. They do come with a stick-on so you can see where the magnet needs to be held on the cabinet door/drawer front, though when you hit the right spot a "click" can be heard. It is a strong magnet. Here is a source that I quickly found with a froogle search: http://www.hofshomesafety.com/Cabinetbath.htm
You could try making a version of this yourself with a gravity-fed locking pin and a sweet-spot for the magnet just above the latch-side of the door. To reduce the magnetic requirements, you could drill a hole inside the cabinet over where the ferrous pin would be so the wood would be thinner there so that the head of the locking pin in the locked/down position would not be so far from the outer surface of the cabinet.
For an electronic approach, one idea that just came to mind would be to use a part from a doorbell. Maybe this part exists on its own somewhere, but I am thinking that when you press the doorbell button, on a ding-dong version, it causes a striker (i.e., a pin) to be pulled back and then when you let go the pin springs forward. With a not-too-small battery you could power this thing and build it with parts from the cheapest doorbell from the local big-box store plus some parts from Radio Shack. ("Where you have questions, we have answers, and the answers always are, 'Uhhh, I duuno.'") If you can find the same kind of pin part separately at an electronics source it might well require less amperage, which would simplify things.
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Go to your local auto store and get a remote door locking mechanism. Then you can carry the "key" around in your pocket.
Dick

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Sat, Jun 19, 2004, 10:58am (EDT-3) snipped-for-privacy@accesscom.com (charlieb) claims: Have been "commissioned" <snip>
And, now you can be launched. http://www.rc-submarines.com/id119.htm
JOAT Use your brain - it's the small things that count. - Bazooka Joe
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I hope that your rules are not totally hard.

So you want two units, each 2' wide. I suspect you would benefit from some partitions within each unit to distribute the leaning load. A width of around 8" between partitions would be reasonable.

The records are just short of 12" diameter. This means that you have comfortable room for two shelves.

The depth will need to be around 14" to allow for the record as well as front and back.

A door can be pretty small. Each unit can have a pair of bifold doors so the maximum extension into your walking space will be around 6". A tilt out panel will take more space than that.
Assuming that you have a base assembly with kick panel you could hide the lock underneath the door. I suspect that you are in love with magnets by this time.
Dick
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Richard Cline wrote:

The shelf and the bottom will be stopped sliding dovetails and made of 3/4" honey or black locust. This stuff is incredibley stiff, though a quarterinch center partition might be a good idea.

Actually, an LP in it's sleeve is about 12 1/4" tall and a smidge deeper. Need at least 3/4" above the album sleeve so that's 13" per level or 26 for the two levels. Add a 3/4" bottom. a 3/4" shelf and a 3/4" top and you're at 28 1/4". 1 3/4" for the toe kick and you're at 30".

Will go 15" so so the first level can stick foreward of the over- hanging second level of albums. Will make getting albums out of the bottom row easier.

Bifolds are not easy to lock, especially with a hidden lock. The tilt out panel only needs to tilt out about an inch to lift out and put on top of the cabinets or slip along side.

Hey for magicians it's all done with mirrors. With me it's all done with magnets.
I grew up with a chinese blanket chest on top, drawers below unit that had two hidden drawers in the bottom amongst a carved patterns band near the bottom. If you pressed on the center of the correct flower in the pattern a hidden drawer would pop out. Magnets are a lot easier...
Thanks for the suggestions. The more eyes on a problem the more apt a hole in a solution is found.
charlie b
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