Opinions on Cheap Hinges

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Forum topic by FaTToaD posted 10-10-2012 04:08 PM 1536 views 1 time favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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390 posts in 1986 days

10-10-2012 04:08 PM

Topic tags/keywords: question box hinge big box walnut oak cedar wooden hinge

Well, after a few months off from the shop due to business travel, getting married, etc I finally got back in the shop this weekend and got some real work done. I started off making a few small boxes. They’re nothing special, just something to get the juices flowing again, but I certainly want to complete them. Especially since the wife has her eye on one of them. I’m just not sure what to do about hinges.

Though I love using Brusso hinges, I don’t want to spend ~$30 a box that are nothing more than experiments. When I first started woodworking I used some cheap hinges from the big box store with limited success. Probably more me than the hinges but I’m still a little unsure about going that route.

Does anyone have any suggestions, or opinions, on decent to good cheap hinges? Either for a big box store or online?

Remember, these are heirloom quality boxes. Mostly just scrap oak, cedar, and walnut, but I want them to look nice and work well. I’m not interested in wooden hinges for these boxes, though I hope to try my hand in that in the near future.

Any suggestions, opinions, or comments are welcome!



-- David

12 replies so far

View JT23325's profile


159 posts in 992 days

#1 posted 10-10-2012 04:23 PM

One option you could use is buying a nice piano hinge and cutting it to length to fit your porjects. I have used this method on several ocasions and have even filed the ends for a custom hinge look. you can get up to 24 hinges out of a 4’ hinge . just depends on what you want to do.

-- Jeff, Ability will never catch up with the demand for it. - Malcolm Forbes

View woody123's profile


52 posts in 2151 days

#2 posted 10-10-2012 04:36 PM

I, like you, hate to spend 30bucks for Brusso hinges. I have used the cheaper hinges from HD and Loews but I swagged them before installing on the box. By swagging, I mean that I put them in a vise and squeeze the leafs together so that the leafs are flat together. This way I can mortise them into the box frame and the box will close completely, all the way around. I like JT’S suggestion to use piano hinges instead of the individual ones.

View patron's profile


13320 posts in 2185 days

#3 posted 10-10-2012 05:07 PM

i use these decorative ‘stop hinges’
from lee valley
(they do need to be on flat backs
not overhanging tops)
they stop when the top is straight up
so the weight doesn’t rip them off
when the top flips back

cheap too,41241,41245&ap=1

and some Round Head brass wood screws
(get them in different gauges and lenghts
for wood thickness)

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Loren's profile


7967 posts in 2492 days

#4 posted 10-10-2012 05:20 PM

Barrel hinges have a nice action and small ones don’t cost
that much.


View OggieOglethorpe's profile


946 posts in 955 days

#5 posted 10-10-2012 05:21 PM

View Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist's profile (online now)

Greg..the Cajun Wood Artist

5489 posts in 2153 days

#6 posted 10-10-2012 07:20 PM

I use 1/8” brass rod for pin hinges in my boxes. I figure they cost about 20 cents per box… but what I like best is that they are not visible when covered with a plug… so only the wood box is seen.

-- Each step of every Wood Art project I design and build is considered my masterpieceā€¦ because I want the finished product to reflect the quality and creativeness of my work

View HorizontalMike's profile


6974 posts in 1758 days

#7 posted 10-10-2012 07:28 PM

These are my favorite sites for hardware that won’t cost you an arm and a leg:

-- HorizontalMike -- "Woodpeckers understand..."

View Roger's profile


16256 posts in 1648 days

#8 posted 10-15-2012 08:27 PM

Gr8 answers, ideas, and links.

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe.

View FaTToaD's profile


390 posts in 1986 days

#9 posted 10-17-2012 05:01 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions! I ordered a few different hinges from Lee Valley and this weekend I’m going try a piano hinge. Thanks again!

-- David

View DLawlessHardware's profile


15 posts in 929 days

#10 posted 10-23-2012 04:00 PM

Thanks for mentioning us HorizontalMike!

We actually have an entire section for trunk and jewelry box parts. Great prices and great quality. There should be a lot of stuff you can use in this section.

Coupon code “lumberjocks” will get you an extra 10% off.

-- D. Lawless Hardware

View NiteWalker's profile


2710 posts in 1421 days

#11 posted 10-23-2012 04:54 PM

Dlawless, those are some impressive prices.
I bookmarked your site and will be making a purchase very soon. :)
And props for the LJ discount.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View waho6o9's profile (online now)


5751 posts in 1421 days

#12 posted 10-23-2012 04:59 PM

Maybe make your own like fellow LJer Spalm does.
You can make ones that compliment or contrast your work
and I betcha it will look awesome.

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