Drawer Guides and Drawers

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Forum topic by Jim posted 02-21-2010 05:05 PM 1242 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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38 posts in 3046 days

02-21-2010 05:05 PM

Hope this is right place for this question. I’m building a chest of drawers/changing table for a friend. While I have some experience at these things I have really never given much to what is the proper “professional” drawer guide to use. I have used the side mount roller type from Lowe’s but they are a pain to line up especially with the drawer fronts inside the face frame. I have also used the slick plastic tape and that seems to work well as it seems a little easier to get a good aligment but there are no stops if a kid pulls it out too far.

For this project there will be no frames to divide the drawers so I have to use side mounts. There will be three drawers about 35” wide and about 18” deep. Two of the drawers will be about 10” high and one will be 6”.

My friends are going to first stain it, then paint it and then beat it up and scrape some of the paint to make it look old. I refuse to be a witness to that process. This leads to my next question. I don’t mind taking the time to dovetail the drawers (with a PC dovetail jig) but it seems like a waste of time since it will be painted. I’m thinking just using dado cuts on the ends of the drawer sides will work just fine. I think lap joints is the proper term? Does that sound okay for this project?

Any advice on a good way to get it done right the first time and professionally would be appreciated.

-- JimT

4 replies so far

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 4002 days

#1 posted 02-21-2010 05:22 PM

Making an applied front is one way around getting a good fit after the slides and dwr are installed. Also you can engineer a swiveling block mounted with a screw at back of the drawer for a stop. Ive had good success at making furniture drawers work wonderfully where formica applied to bottom of dwr sides slides on formica strips mounted in carcass.

I’m a believer that cabinets have hardware for slides, furniture does not.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View ND2ELK's profile


13495 posts in 3770 days

#2 posted 02-21-2010 06:12 PM

I use KV8400 drawer slides for most of my cabinets. I get them from Woodworkers Hardware and they are on sale till the end of this month. 800-383-0130 I use baltic birch for a lot of my drawers and use an interlocking dado. Thanks for asking.

God Bless

-- Mc Bridge Cabinets, Iowa

View bladeburner's profile


88 posts in 3083 days

#3 posted 02-21-2010 06:54 PM

I lay cabinets on their back and shim to level. Attach the front screw loosely and the slides align themselves.
I also like the slick tape and have been using it for a couple of years. Seems to wear very well… far!

View Waldschrat's profile


505 posts in 3432 days

#4 posted 02-21-2010 08:19 PM

check out Hä or they have some good quality drawer guids that are mechanical and take some beating. I reckon that you want mechanical guides and not wood guides, because of ease of installation.

If you are using Mech. guides, there is no need to dovetail the drawers. That is actually only needed when you are using wood guides, because they do not open or glide as well as ball bearing guides.

Wood guides of course are an option too, but require more time.

-- Nicholas, Cabinet/Furniture Maker, Blue Hill, Maine

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