Don't feel bad, with all the doors I've built and installed, and to meet
all sorts of requirements, it can still be a daunting task sorting
through the myriad of hinge options.
Take it in bite sizes.
Since I often have to buy hundreds of hinges for a project, I do my
research based on what is spec'ed, narrow my choices down, then buy one
of each type and do a trial installation using this:
With a simple use of some scraps, you can test your samples for
suitability - face frames hinges on the front, frameless casework on the
The ability to conveniently, and inexpensively, do a test installation
on scraps gives you a real world test of installation issues, clearances
and adjustability ... and therefore suitability for the project, without
the danger of spending money on something unsuitable for the job.
Websites, like Blum's, also has some good general info to get you in the
My kitchen doors are 3/4" thick and are 1/2" overlay. That means they stand
out from the FF by 3/4" and overlap them by 1/2" on all four edges. If
something is spilled on the counter top, nothing will get into the cabinet
because the counter top protrudes about 1/4" more from the FF than do the
cab doors. Additionally, it has a drip edge which means the bottom edge
slopes upward toward the back. Water doesn't run up hill.
Thought he was talking about concealed hinges causing a 3/4" thick door
to stand off an additional 3/8" off the face frame when closed ...
particularly noticeable on the hinge side of the door.
I do see that occasionally myself. Some hinges are worse than others
with this "standoff", depending upon how many planes can be adjusted
with that type/style hinge ... usually the cheaper ones are the worst
Also see it when a DIY'er has added new hinges, with different hole
location requirements, to an existing door. Couple that with a limited
adjustment hinge, and you they often end up with insufficient adjustment
to get you where you need to be.
Looking at a run of cabinets from the side, where the doors stand off
the face frame, is not pleasing to the eye.
That's another reason why I make it a practice to buy a test pair of new
to me hinges so I can mount them in the shop before I buy enough for the
That said, IME most cabinetmakers will settle on a particular Euro
concealed hinge with which they have had previous success, and are
forever reluctant to get out of the comfort zone.
Unfortunately, I do too much retrofitting of existing cabinetry to have
that luxury, therefore often end up in the same state of cornfusion OFFW
was expressing. ;)
I've used many types of hinges but never the Euro type. I like full overlay
doors and for those I use self closing, partial wrap hinges like these (but
not necessarily Amerock)...
True, the hinge shows but I don't find that objectionable. Also true that
they don't offer the range of adjustment of most Euro style hinges but I've
never needed anything except up<>down and they do enough of that for me. If
I were a commercial cabinet shop I might well change my mind :)
If you were to have a light on the inside and it was on with all the
doors closed, and drawers, would the light radiate from around the
edges like there was another world inside it? (like the horror
I'd agree with you fully here, except you haven't met my wife. She
would kill me for saying this, and she would deny everything, of
course, but she is challenged when it comes to judging distances,
angles, or anything associated with it.
For instance, take your counter, and drawers, she would be setting a
cup on the counter half full of coffee, and would hit the edge of the
counter and spill everything down the face of the cabinets. Same thing
if she had a pan of water off the stove that she would put temporarily
on the counter.
Even her step mom would tell you that you could put a coffee table on
one wall of a gymnasium and have her walk across the gym diagonally
and yet somehow she's bump into the coffee table. While she has come
to grips with doing that, she still does it. LOL.
Her eyesight is fine, and I can make 3d photographs and she see's them
fine, yet she appears to see anything on a flat plane in the real
Yes, she is a natural blond. ;)
She could empty a 5 gallon jug of water on the counter and all would wind up
on the counter or floor, none in tha cabinets or drawers. Unless there was
a full gale blowing in the kitchen.
Now, if the liquid were tossed AT the face of the cabinet it could run in
but only from the from the top edge; if the door/drawers were inset, it get
in from the top, bottom and both sides.
Providing you are making face frame cabinets:
What I often do on base cabinets that are in a corner, or will obviously
have clearance issues with doors and adjoining hardware, is to simply
use a wider stile on the offending side.
You can use a spacer, but the wider stile gnerally solves any clearance
Example of the wider center stile when I design and build a blind corner
Making this stile wider gives you wiggle room, both when installing a
run of base cabinets to fit a certain distance, as well as wiggle room
for any extra clearance you may need for doors and drawer hardware.
This specialty cabinet was made a little different than I usually make
them, but the idea is the same.
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