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Hinges 101

A hinge is a mechanical device that connects two solid objects, allowing rotation between them. Hinges may be made of flexible material or of moving components. The Old Testament mentions hinges on King Solomon's elaborate temple (likely gold-plated sockets for solid gold doors). Many examples of stone sockets have been found on Babylonian and Assyrian temples as well. A large bronze Egyptian hinge dated to about 760-650 BC, about 15 inches high and 8 inches long, is also thought to have adorned a temple.  

Basic Types - Parts of a Hinge - Mounting a Hinge - Cabinet Hinges

Basic Types

a. - Butt , b. - Tee, c. - Chest, d. Table, e. Screen

Hinges are made in several forms. The most common are the butt-hinge or butt, the two leaves of which are rectangular, as in a door-hinge; the strap-hinge, the leaves of which are long and strap-shaped; the Tee-hinge, one leaf of which is a butt, and the other strap-shaped; the chest-hinge, one leaf of which is bent at a right angle, used for chest covers; the table-hinge used for folding table tops with a rule joint; the piano-hinge, as long as the joint; the blank hinge or screen-hinge which opens both ways; the stop-hinge, which opens only 90°; and the "hook-and-eye" or "gate" hinge.

Parts of a Hinge

1 - Leaves, 2. - Knuckles, 3. - Pintle, 4. - Acorn

The knuckle of the hinge is the cylindrical part that connects the two leaves. The "acorn" is the head of the "pintle" or pin that passes thru the knuckle. Sizes of butts are indicated in inches for length, and as "narrow," "middle," "broad" and "desk" for width. The pin may be either riveted into the knuckle as in box-hinges or removable as in door-butts. Sometimes, as in blind-hinges, the pintle is fastened into one knuckle, but turns freely in the other.

Mounting a Hinge

A butt-hinge may be set in one of three positions, (1) Where it is desired to have the hinge open as wide as possible, as in a door. Here the knuckle is set well out from the wood. (2) Where it is desired to have the hinged portion open flat and no more. Here the center of the pin is in line with the outside surface of the wood. This is less likely to rack the hinge than the other two positions. (3) Where it is desired to have the knuckle project as little as possible.

To prevent spliting the back edge when cuttting the gains with a chisel clamp a scrap length od wood to the back.

The gains may also be cut with a router and a guide, then the corners are cut square with a chisel.

In setting the hinges of a box cover, first see that the cover fits the box exactly all the way around.

In the case of a door, see that it fits its frame, evenly all the way around, but with a little play. To insure a tighter fit at the swinging edge this edge should be slightly beveled inwards.

In attaching a butt-hinge, the essential thing is to sink the hinge into the wood, exactly the thickness of the knuckle. The gains may be cut in one or both of the pieces to be hinged together.

With these matters determined proceed as follows: In the case of a box cover, the hinges should be set about as far from the ends of the box as the hinge is long.

In the case of an upright door, locate the hinges respectively above and below the lower and upper rails of the door. Mark with the knife on the edge of the door the length of the hinge, and square across approximately the width of the gain to receive it. Do this for both hinges. Between these lines gage the proper width of the gains. Set another gage to one half the thickness of the knuckle and gage on the door face the depth of the gains. Chisel out the gains, set the hinges in place, bore the holes, and drive the screws. Place the door in position again to test the fit. If all is well, mark the position of the hinges on the frame, gage and cut the gains, and fasten in the hinges. Where the hinge is gained its full thickness into the door no gain, of course, is cut in the frame. If the hinges are set too shallow, it is an easy matter to unscrew one leaf of each and cut a little deeper. If they are set too deep the screws may be loosened and a piece of paper or a shaving inserted underneath along the outer arris of the gain.

Cabinet Hinges

When selecting cabinet hinges the first consideration is how the cabinets are made, do they have face frames or are they frameless?

Face Frame Overlay Hinges

Hinges for doors mounted over the front surface of the face frame.
Double & Single Demountable Hinges
Double & Single Demountable Hinges
105 Clip Top Statuary Bronze Hinges
105 Clip Top Statuary Bronze Hinges
Non-Mortise Hinges
Non-Mortise Hinges
Variable Overlay Decorative Hinges
Variable Overlay Decorative Hinges
Blum 2-Way Nickel-Plated Face Frame Hinges
Blum 2-Way Nickel-Plated Face Frame Hinges
Surface-Mount Face-Frame Hinge
Surface-Mount Face-Frame Hinge
 
 
 
 
Face Frame Lipped 3/8'' Inset Hinges

Hinges for doors with a 3/8" deep lipped edge.
Salice Hinge and Plate for 3/8'' Overlay Doors
Salice Hinge and Plate for 3/8'' Overlay Doors

3/8'' Inset Finial Hinge
3/8'' Inset Finial Hinge
Surface-Mount 3/8'' Inset Hinge
Surface-Mount 3/8'' Inset Hinge
3/8
3/8" Inset Hinges
 


Face Frame Inset Hinges

Hinges for doors mounted flush with surface of the face frame.
Full Back To Back Wrap-Around Hinges
Full Back To Back Wrap-Around Hinges
BLUM 120 Clip Top 3-Way Face Frame Hinges
BLUM 120 Clip Top 3-Way Face Frame Hinges
Blum Inserta Hinges
Blum Inserta Hinges

Frameless Overlay Hinges

Hinges for doors mounted over the front surface of a frameless cabinet.
120 Blum Clip Top Hinges
120 Blum Clip Top Hinges
26mm Mini Blum Clip-On Hinge
26mm Mini Blum Clip-On Hinge
270° Overlay Hinge
270° Overlay Hinge
 
 

Frameless Inset Hinges

Hinges for doors mounted flush with the front edge of a frameless cabinet.
150 Fully Concealed Hinge
150 Fully Concealed Hinge
Blum 95 Thick Door Clip Top Hinges
Blum 95 Thick Door Clip Top Hinges
175° Fully Concealed Hinges
175° Fully Concealed Hinges
Blum 95 Blind-Corner Hinges
Blum 95 Blind-Corner Hinges
Blum 110 Clip Top Cross-Corner Hinges
Blum 110 Clip Top Cross-Corner Hinges
Blum 170 Clip Top Hinges
Blum 170 Clip Top Hinges
Partial Wrap Around Hinges
Partial Wrap Around Hinges
Blum Bi-Fold Hinge
Blum Bi-Fold Hinge
Invisible Spring Hinges
Invisible Spring Hinges
 

Related Do-It-101 Pages

Building a Router Table 101

Building a Table Saw Sled

Buying a Router 101

Buying a Table Saw 101

French Polishing & Enamelling


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