Blum Tandem Slides

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Forum topic by rockindavan posted 05-28-2012 06:21 AM 3331 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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299 posts in 2813 days

05-28-2012 06:21 AM

So I have spent the last month debating what drawer slides to put in the cabinet for below my workbench. Originally I was going to use side mount Accuride 3832SC drawer slides, but I have read some unfavorable reviews of side mount soft close drawer slides. The Blum Tandems have always been in the back of my mind but sacrificing the extra space below has always been a concern. Lately I believe the sacrifice will be worth it.

All the drawers will be hand cut dovetails; hate to cover them up with side mounts. The opening will be for 4 drawers which is 13 2/4”. I would like to know what the size of the metal sides are for the slide mounts. My smallest drawer right now only has about a 2” opening. With the 9/16” clearance on the bottom and 1/4” on the top, along with the 1/2” for the slide, it leaves little room for the contents. May be hard for anyone to visualize.

So I would like to know-

How big are the side mounts for the slides?
What is the minimum drawer bottom thickness?
What length slides for a cabinet depth of 18 3/4”?
Are they worth the sacrificed space?

8 replies so far

View killerb's profile


150 posts in 2575 days

#1 posted 05-28-2012 10:15 AM
Will give all the information you need. Its hard to say from you description above what you are exactly saying?
Are you putting 4 drawers into a space that is 13 and 1/2” tall? I would just do wood side mounts and be done. Little drawers like that will have nothing left with under mount glides.

-- Bob

View rockindavan's profile


299 posts in 2813 days

#2 posted 05-28-2012 04:22 PM

Their info doesn’t quite answer my questions, or I can’t find it in the several pages I have looked through.

Particularly the drawer bottom thickness and the height of the side mounting plate.

You are right on the 4 drawers in a 13 3/4” opening. I’m aware its a small space, and most people would just put some side mounts and be done. The drawers will be used for measuring tools, chisels, pencils and random small tools. I think it will be fine to have the top drawer only an inch or so deep. I have spared no expense in making it all solid wood and no screws or nails for the structure, so I’m willing to work around the Tandems if it means I will feel better about it when its done.

View lieutenantdan's profile


176 posts in 2483 days

#3 posted 05-28-2012 05:07 PM

Get the ones plus Blumotion. My entire kitchen has them. Best you can get.

-- "Of all the things I have lost in life, I miss my mind the most."

View Charlie's profile


1100 posts in 2463 days

#4 posted 05-28-2012 07:38 PM

The Blum Tandem undermounts require a 1/2 inch recessed bottom in the drawer. The thickness of the drawer bottom can be whatever you want. Blum Tandems have a couple different models in the same LENGTH depending on the thickness of your drawer SIDES. The tandem also requires 9/16 clearance at the bottom. So with 9/16 clearance AND a 1/2 inch recess, you’ve already lost 1-1/16 PLUS you lose the thickness of the drawer bottom. Using a 1/2 inch drawer bottom, your 1 inch deep drawer will use 1 + 1/2 +1/2 + 9/16 or 2-9/16 of vertical space. There’s also a bit of clearance required ABOVE the top of the drawer side so you can lift the drawer to remove it and put it back in. So a drawer with 1 inch of usable interior height is using right around 2-3/4 inches of vertical space.

This isn’t peculiar to the Blum tandem. Most undermounts have these same requirements. You could FIT 4 drawers in that space. Like 2 at 2 and a half inches and 2 at 3 inches… something like that. It would be tight and you’re wasting 4×1-1/16 or 4-1/4 inches just to the recess and bottom clearance.

In this particular case I think the side mounts would give you far more usable space.

View GUYnMT's profile


1 post in 2375 days

#5 posted 05-28-2012 09:19 PM

I used 32 pair in our kitchen and love them. It’s hard not to slam non soft close drawers now. People think your mad about something.
But I would not use them in the space your talking about. For the minimal amount of weight your talking about, I would make hardwood side runners.
Btw I used 1/4” for my bottoms.

View 404 - Not Found's profile

404 - Not Found

2544 posts in 3146 days

#6 posted 05-28-2012 09:47 PM

Soft close in a side mount drawer runner is disappointing. You are not wrong. I used some for a project in my kitchen and I ended up taking out the mechanism with a pair of crocodile pliers..
Soft close is nice, but do you really need it in a workbench?
If it’s all made of wood, I’d go with a grooved drawer side and beech/hardwood runner. You’ll end up with bigger drawers and this arrangement is surprisingly strong (I use mine as the Deadman all the time without issue).
If you are dead set on soft close undermount, check out the ones made by GRASS. They are adjustable in every plane, front/back, side/side, height front/height back. They cost less than the Blums as well (from Häfele).

View rockindavan's profile


299 posts in 2813 days

#7 posted 05-28-2012 09:58 PM

I thought about wood runners, but if I’m going to use the drawers a bunch, I want the drawers to function smoothly for many years to come. I wish it wasn’t so dang hard to get the undermounts out of my head now, whether or not this is the best application

View BenBarclay's profile


1 post in 1006 days

#8 posted 02-17-2016 11:40 PM

Hi – please get those undermounts out of your head. Yes, they have a sexy feel on big drawers, but they are completely inapproriate for your application. If the drawer slide weighs more than the drawer, is when you are headed wrong.

For little shallow tool drawers, you can come up with a wooden slide system that will feel just as good, last just as long, and preserve a lot of much needed space. Check out . Over the years, I used the Accurides to keep costs down, Blums in kitchens etc., and the wood slides even on dressers, anywhere a client wanted the ultimate.

Just use very hard wood (maple is fine), for your sliders and tracks. Some times I used U channels and square pieces, sometimes I cut a channel in the drawer side, sometimes put an L slide under the bottom corner. For what you are doing:

P L E A S E use wood.
my two cents

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