Drawers for kitchen cabinets and the like

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  Steve Giles 6 months, 3 weeks ago.

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    Paul has made his preference for recessed doors and expertly fitted drawers amply clear — especially here:

    Aesthetically, most may agree that recessed doors and drawers with tight tolerances look elegant and exudes quality. But, smooth running, soft-close, full extension drawers that can take a ton of weight look very practical and extremely useful for kitchen cabinets (or large drawers in dressers). But I don’t particularly like the look of either “Euro-style” or face-frame cabinets, the latter being worse from a user’s point of view.

    Is it possible to make drawers without “an inch of crawl space around” and “metal runners” that Paul despises and still have them run smooth with a load of utensils and/or cans and bottles in them? Or is there a middle path that combines the use of good hardware with graceful looks of the kind that Paul teaches?



    Mike Goodwin

    Using Mr. Seller’s methods, you shouldn’t have any issues with the drawers handling the utensil load, as long as you pay close attention to your tolerances. Cans and bottles could be more problematic depending on drawer size and load.

    Wood on wood runs smoothly, particularly with a little wax on the contact surfaces, but, won’t match steel and ball bearing runners. It really depends on what you consider to be tolerably smooth.

    I would note that steel and ball bearing (or wheel) runners are prone to failure over time. 20 years is a good general lifespan estimate. Wood can last hundreds of years.



    @mike003 Thanks for the comment.

    I’m probably never going to make kitchen cabinets but planning on a chest of drawers and was wondering given that none of the drawers I’ve made so far slide that well. Not surprising given my skill level — just have to get better at it, I guess.



    Steve Giles

    I made a pine chest of drawers a couple of years ago (and posted a thread about it on this forum). I went for wood-on-wood traditional drawers.

    I had NO experience of making wooden furniture at the time, but worked slowly and carefully, working out any problems as they arose.

    Two years later and I’m amazed how smoothly the drawers slide. I don’t recall if I used furniture polish or a wax candle to lubricate the drawers, but it worked whatever it was.

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