# Corner Cabinet Space Calculations and Analysis

davidahnFebruary 20, 2013

This is an attempt at putting some numbers to the age-old question: what do I do with this darned corner?!? I have answered this question for myself, but thought my analysis might be helpful to others pondering this same question.

Methodology:
- Tried to standardize on a 24D x 48W blind cabinet
- Lazy susan & corner drawers required 36 x 36 corner cabinet
Total usable space is calculated based on the interior space of the drawer/pullout
Usable space given is PER TIER and calculated based on the footprint of the box
Multiply usable space by number of tiers/drawers for total storage area
Drawers and pullouts are 22” deep minus 5/8” drawer front/back
Drawer widths are box width minus 3/4” box sides, 1/2” drawer slide clearances, and 5/8” drawer sides
- Your cabinet builder’s specs may vary slightly from my numbers

Shelves & Non Corner Drawers
Plain shelves (not shown) maximize space use (88% of footprint due to plywood box sides and back) but minimize accessibility. The gold standard is drawers (see 'Non Corner'), balancing space utilization and accessibility (only 73% of footprint due to hardware and clearances), but obviously, two drawer stacks are NOT an option for a corner. Space efficiency should be compared to the drawer 'gold standard' rather than plain shelves which are a terrible idea for any deep cabinet, especially corner cabinets!

Corner Drawer
The corner drawer solution (53% of footprint, 73% of non-corner drawers) does have LARGE dead dead space in both corners, and awkward angles all over the drawers. The pluses are: you can store a lot of stuff by having 4 drawers (2728 sq in), and you can have access to ALL of your stuff. 4 corner drawers offer 81% of two 24W drawer stacks, but takes up 12.5% more floor space.

Super Susan
The super susan (60% of footprint, 82% of non-corner drawers). It’s impractical to do more than 2 tiers, and it lacks a certain sex appeal, and stuff can fall off and get lost in the dead space areas. There’s a maximized version of the Super Susan called the Korner King, which looks like it stores a LOT of crap, but it looks like a Frankenstein’s cabinet, an esthetic purist’s nightmare. For those not offended by its looks, functionally it has a lot of broken up pieces of storage of which only about 10-40% of your stuff is accessible at a time.

Custom Corner
My 'custom corner' (narrow pullout, wide side slide), my choice, has the same usable space as drawers per tier (73% of footprint), but a lot less accessibility due to the limitations the corner imposes. I chose it because while we have lots of storage space, I still wasn’t ready to seal off the corner. The large sideways slideout is perfect for items like our 60 and 100 qt pots that wouldn’t fit in drawers anyway (we occasionally cook for LARGE groups). The main pullout would have 3 tiers for more often-accessed items, for a total of 1494 sq in (514 s.i. x 1 full height slideout for big pots, 327 s.i. x 3 for front pullout), a decent amount of storage including a very large, full height side-slide. 2 L + 3 S tiers would give 2009 s.i.

The simplest corner solution, the 'dead corner,' only gives 29% of the footprint in storage, or 40% of the storage of 48' of non-corner drawers. But if you use a 4-drawer stack, you get a lot of functional storage - 1348 sq in, though no room for tall/large items.

Magic Corner
Hafele’s Magic Corner offers that WOW factor when you see it gleaming and gliding in and out with soft-close. But it’s only 536 s.i. per tier (49% of footprint, 67% of non-corner drawers), 1072 total s.i. It could store more, but it’s designed to fit in more applications (21D cabinets, narrower cabinets), and therefore has a lot of dead space.

Thoughts
- Unlike straight base cabinets where there’s clear consensus that drawers are best, corners are ALL about limitations and compromise (and debate, with everyone having their own favorite corner solution that fits their needs)
- Drawers offer the greatest accessibility, and by using 3 or 4 drawers, you quickly make up for less space efficiency over 2-tier solutions. For example, even though the dead corner only offers 29% of the footprint of storage per tier, multiply that by 4 drawers = 1348 sq in, more than the Magic Corner’s 1072 s.i. and almost as much as the Super Susan’s 1550 s.i. with 144 s.i. smaller footprint. Despite the large dead spaces, the Corner Drawer offers a LOT of potential storage, up to 2728 s.i. with 4 drawers, though losing large item capability.
As impressive as the 'Magic Corner' solutions are to demo (I too “ooooh”ed at first), they are extremely costly (about \$900 and up after hardware and baskets) and optimized to fit in shallower cabinets so have more dead space than other solutions.
My custom corner maximizes total use of the footprint area and also maximizes large and bulky item storage with relatively limited access to the inside corner area, while minimizing cost.
- As with marriage, there is no perfect match, only great or poor fits for your needs. If you’re unhappy with your corner solution, either ignore the limitations or find a better solution. Just don’t expect perfection!

Here is a link that might be useful: Korner King - not for me, might be right for you?

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bellsmom

A quick comment. I really like super susans. Keep in mind there is no need to have only two in a corner unit. There could be three.

It all depends on what you will store there. For me, with small appliances stored there, two shelves are most efficient. They are adjustable, and the top shelf has more space above it than the bottom one since larger items like a blender and the Sous Vide Supreme are stored on the top shelf. If I were storing pots and pans or bottled and canned goods, I would want three.

If there were three shelves, the storage area would, of course, increase.

February 20, 2013 at 2:14PM
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annkh_nd

As often as I searched for corner solutions, I never came across Korner King - thanks for the link. Like you, I think it looks like a pain to actually use.

I am putting in lazy susans (on shelves, no center post) in a diagonal corner, and hopefully D-shaped susans, which does increase usable space over the square corner.

February 20, 2013 at 2:55PM
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Iowacommute

Thank you David for taking the time to share this with us! It's nice to hear someone say the decision for your kitchen depends on your preferences.

Im probably going to totally block the corner and have drawers on each side. It just makes sense with my little space and the stuff I have.

February 20, 2013 at 3:37PM
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angie_diy

Nice job, David. I always "threatened" to do this myself, but never took the time. Moreover, you made some refinements (e.g., taking into account hardware and such) that had never occurred to me. A very nice analysis.

I am thrilled with my Super Susan, but if my layout dictated using a blind corner cab., I was planning to do exactly the same as you (and Arlosmom).

February 20, 2013 at 5:56PM
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PRO
Sophie Wheeler

There is the plain L shaped corner cabinet with shelves. It makes the entire corner 100% usable. Accessibility isn't too horrid either if it's a 36" corner so the door can be large enough to get things in and out.

There is also the angled corner cabinet with Lazy Susan. I've never liked it, but it does exist.

The other issue with corners is countertop materials and costs. All of the L shaped corner solutions will be easier and cheaper to do counters for. The angled corner cabinets complicate counters, and increase their expenses. If you are on a budget, avoid them.

February 20, 2013 at 7:57PM
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Sophie Wheeler

There is the plain L shaped corner cabinet with shelves. It makes the entire corner 100% usable. Accessibility isn't too horrid either if it's a 36" corner so the door can be large enough to get things in and out.

There is also the angled corner cabinet with Lazy Susan. I've never liked it, but it does exist.

The other issue with corners is countertop materials and costs. All of the L shaped corner solutions will be easier and cheaper to do counters for. The angled corner cabinets complicate counters, and increase their expenses. If you are on a budget, avoid them.

February 20, 2013 at 7:58PM
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robo (z6a)

What about half moon shelves? Any comment there? I'm debating those vs the hidden pullouts for a 48 x 24 corner.

February 20, 2013 at 8:06PM
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davidahn

@Bellsmom, thanks for pointing out the adjustable nature of Super Susans. Even I was surprised by their space efficiency when I did the math! And a third tier would definitely increase the storage area by 50%, and makes a lot of sense especially if you don't have drawers above them.

@annkh, sorry, I've never liked diagonal corners from an esthetic point of view. To a small degree, it closes off the spaciousness of the kitchen. Functionally they're great!

@IowaCommute, even though closing it off isn't a great loss if you maximize the rest of the kitchen, it KILLS me to know there's usable space being wasted! And I have a 19 x 22' kitchen with 210 sq ft of upper storage, 272 sq ft of base storage, plus 105 sq ft of pantry storage. Why can't I close off 4 sq feet of dead corner?!? It's a sickness, I know. Just look at my drawings; that's not the work of a well person.

@Angie_DIY, see my reply to IowaCommute... I am NOT well. [Help!]

@HollySprings, you're one of the few who like 24" deep shelves, especially in a corner, where the diagonal reach to the absolute back is 34", longer than most people's arms. But shelves do maximize space as I stated above at the expense of accessibility. And I'm with you, I hate diagonal corners.

@robotropolis, I updated my drawings to add a Rev-a-Shelf 39" half moon.

The 39" half moon which will barely fit in a 48" cabinet if you reduce the filler piece from the recommended 3" width down to 2", but it's still not very space efficient, yielding 550 s.i. per tier (48% of the footprint), 1100 s.i. for two tiers. At those numbers, you may be better off blocking off the corner and using a 20" wide drawer base with 4 drawers for 1348 s.i. of completely accessible storage (3 if you want large item storage for 1011 s.i.).

February 20, 2013 at 9:23PM
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debrak_2008

I have none of these. I have an L corner with a half shelf. This works best for me. I keep all our large or odd shaped items there.(apparently I have alot of quirky stuff) Everything is visible when you open the door, no issues getting things in and out. It was also cost effective. Adding a super susan was going to double the cost for the cabinet and not be useful to me.

This thread will be a useful resource for those with corners to deal with.

February 20, 2013 at 9:39PM
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robo (z6a)

Tall item storage is of interest to me (that coffee maker and the asparagus pot have to go somewhere, of course, both can live on their sides but they seem happier upright) so the per tier square inch calculations are super useful! Thank you!

February 20, 2013 at 11:15PM
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annkh_nd

"@annkh, sorry, I've never liked diagonal corners from an esthetic point of view. To a small degree, it closes off the spaciousness of the kitchen. Functionally they're great!"

That's why I'm only putting it on one side of my new U kitchen. It also allows me to put in one more drawer. The upper corners will be L-shaped, to make it feel more open.

We are planning on Cambria countertops - I don't have the bid for that yet, so I don't know how much the diagonal corner is going to cost me.

February 20, 2013 at 11:27PM
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texasgal47

I'm one who is a great supporter of the diagonal corner base cabinet with Super Susans. They hold a ton of stuff with easy access, add extra counter space above, and allow for a diagonal corner wall cabinet above which can contain D-shaped Super Susans plus storage in the corners surrounding the Susans. I purposefully designed everything flush to give the illusion of greater space in my small kitchen but think the diagonals add architectural interest so like the look despite the intrusion into interior space. As has already been mentioned, cabinet selection needs to be determined by specific storage needs and unique requirements of each layout.

February 21, 2013 at 2:35AM
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bellsmom

I prefer pie-cut susans for base cabs, D-shaped ones for wall cabs. Here is why:

A. more square inches.

2. Pie-cut advantages apply only to base cabs:
A. when you rotate a the lower of two susans, more of the rotated contents are visible and in/out access is easier from above than when a D-shape is rotated.
B. Counter work space seems more efficient and accessible.

David:
I want to echo previous thank you's for starting this thread with such valuable info.

Somewhere there is a thread on GW about contractors who will build super susans to fit. If built to fit (with no more than an inch to spare on each side), they are astonishingly space efficient. Usually contractors use susans which are sometimes much smaller than the max. diameter possible.

February 21, 2013 at 10:38AM
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kmmh

Great thread! However, I am unclear what the custom corner is. Could you explain a little further?

February 21, 2013 at 1:35PM
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davidahn

Factors that affect the choice of corner solution:

1. Location. If next to a work center and easily accessible (drawers, push-in susan), it's more likely to be used constantly and for smaller items (spices, sauces, baking supplies, etc.) so more tiers of storage for maximum sq in would be useful. If next to a work center but requires 2-3 steps to access items (gingerly open a 2-piece swing-out door taking care not to bang the next cabinet, then gently rotate the susan so stuff doesn't fly off into the abyss), it will be used less often (if you have alternate storage) or with increasing levels of frustration. In our old kitchen, we are using the corner less and using the less than ideal COUNTERTOP above it as storage. Can't wait for our new kitchen to be done!!!

If far from work centers, the corner will probably be used for large infrequently used items (like robotropolis, and our new kitchen), so fewer taller tiers would be a better choice, and rapid access is less important (2-3 steps to access is fine).

2. Storage Requirement vs. Availability. Excess available storage elsewhere in the kitchen makes space efficiency in your corners less important. Shortage of total available storage means you need the maximum square inches of storage.

3. Do I need all this crap? A whole other issue is the question of do we NEED all the stuff we have, or can we simplify our lives and our kitchen by 1) getting rid of never-used implements and 2) keeping our pantry storage down to a minimum to minimize spoilage, rot, and pests like flour moths.

February 21, 2013 at 2:16PM
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davidahn

@robotropolis: as for tall item storage, rarely used stuff like huge stock pots make sense to put in voluminous corners, but things used several times a week like mixers and coffee machines probably deserve an appliance garage.

Our appliance garages have bifold doors that go down to the counter when closed, and stay open so you can work with the bifold doors held up by Blum Aventos HF lifts. I'll try to post photos later, but I've posted a link to Blum's photos. Just imagine that at counter level.

Our coffee is so important to us both for us and for our guests when we entertain that we have a Miele built-in espresso machine.)

@Texasgal, it would be a boring world if we all liked the exact same things. If there's someone who thought it was great enough to make, there's someone else who thinks it's great enough to buy. :)

@Bellsmom, I think we exchanged some posts when I was looking at a Jako Magic Corner hardware system. I decided against it after doing the math and deciding I would lose too much storage space. Yes, custom super susans do give you MUCH more space than stock sizes, but are still round pegs in square holes. It is a great solution for many people.

Here is a link that might be useful:

February 21, 2013 at 2:34PM
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davidahn

@kmmh, my "Custom Corner" means the one I designed for my kitchen. It is based loosely on the "Shelf Genie" three piece blind corner; see the link below. Mine is basically a two action system that consists of a bank of trays (2-3) that slides out, then 1-2 drawer boxes (1 in my case) that slide sideways toward the space left by the pulling out of the boxes opening rather than outward like most drawers. Incidentally, the dotted lines show the movement (alternate position) of the drawers/trays.

Having a one level pullout and multiple levels for the sideways drawers like the Shelf Genie system makes it easier to access the inside drawers, but forces you to put larger items in the main pullout which is not how I want to use mine; I want my huge stock pots in the corner and out of the way until I want to use them. How to get them out is a whole other matter I haven't fully figured out yet. :) Hook-in removable trays? I don't know. We'll see!

Here is a link that might be useful: Shelf Genie system

This post was edited by davidahn on Thu, Feb 21, 13 at 14:51

February 21, 2013 at 2:50PM
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davidahn

Just had a harebrained idea, very experimental. Wanna float this by you guys to see if it clicks with anyone. I call it the Comatose Corner.

What if like a dead corner, you had a bank of drawers, handy as all get-out like drawers are. [Nobody hates drawers.] But what if unlike the dead corner, you had drawers in the corner that can slide into the opening upon removal of the drawers?

In plan view, this would look just like my "Custom Corner", but rather than a bank of trays sliding out, they would be individual drawers, VERY handy and useful ALL the time. Then on the rare occasion you need to pull out your large beasts, remove the drawer boxes and slide the drawers into your opening.

Obviously, due to the hassle factor, you wouldn't want to resurrect this beast very often, but what if you had large items you almost NEVER use, maybe at Thanksgiving or Christmas, but don't want it taking up space in the kitchen, pantry, or garage?

Another variation of this would be if the whole bank of drawers were semi-fixed and on casters/slides and could simply slide forward, revealing the rarely used, comatose corner.

My rationale is that the less frequent the task, the less onerous the complexity. Any takers? Or is it too much of a hassle to be practical even if it's only several times a year?

February 21, 2013 at 3:05PM
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annkh_nd

So let me see if I understand this: are you envisioning a drawer stack - a cabinet-within-a-cabinet - that slides into the space when the every day drawers are removed?

What about the glides for the every day drawers? To what do they attach, on the side with the hidden drawer cab?

February 21, 2013 at 3:35PM
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scrappy25

thanks for this! Looks like your "custom cabinet" is a version of the infamous "costco corner" by arlosmom. I like the modification!

February 21, 2013 at 3:46PM
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msl511

February 21, 2013 at 4:08PM
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scrappy25

davidahn, have you built your custom corner yet? I've been brainstorming it since it's such a cool idea. WOuld love to see pictures if you did.

February 21, 2013 at 7:47PM
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bellsmom

David
I have read threads by people who do sort of what you describe in the Comatose corner: drawers and in the dead space shelves and on them large bins that can be pulled out after the drawers are removed.
Not as spiffy as a second set of drawers, but I can't see how you could support drawers that pull out of the dead corner. OK, you can put glides on the back wall, but how do you support the front side once it is past the dead space?

I hope this comment is less dense and error filled than my response to your Jako thread! And I love your comment that susans are round pegs in square holes!!! Perfect.

February 21, 2013 at 10:17PM
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angie_diy

Here is Arlosmom's corner solution:

And here is a link to her finished kitchen (which itself only really contains a link to her album:

Here is a link that might be useful: Arlosmom's finished kitchen

February 21, 2013 at 11:54PM
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davidahn

RIP Comatose Corner and Custom Corner... Hello, New & Improved Custom Corner!

I tried to make the comatose corner accessible... I went so far as a drawer bank in an inner box mounted to a Fulterer pantry slide so the whole drawer bank slides out, but access to the inner drawers was blocked by the drawer bank. So I'm pulling the plug on the Comatose Corner. [No one will miss it. :)]

I have no illusions that my Custom Corner is perfect. Its greatest failing is if you have more than 1 tray in the pullout, the upper trays block access to the inner drawer(s). I'd decided on my custom corner, I've been seeking a better solution.

Working on this thread got my imagination going again, and the failings of the Comatose Corner reminded me of a hardware solution where two sets of pullout trays attach to a middle support/slide assembly, and the whole contraption slides sideways. Once the outer trays are pulled out and the whole assembly slides over, the inner trays can be pulled out. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9fV9aFKGXE)

I had rejected this setup because since the opening in a blind corner is less than half the width of the cabinet and pullouts have to fit through the opening, the second pullout ends up small and wastes a lot of space in the inner corner. The quality of the slide motion was also a concern. But now that I'm going full custom, there is another option:

New & Improved Custom Corner

See "Custom Corner," lower right. This is my New & Improved Custom Corner. The dotted lines represent the "open" position of the trays/drawers. Take the Golden Cabinets Magic Corner, make the following changes:
1. Only the outer trays slide out, not the inner, which are now side sliding drawers, allowing the inner drawers to use the full depth of the blind cabinet.
2. The inner drawers and the pullouts will use Blumotion soft-close slides for a quality feel.

Benefits over my previous Custom Corner:
1. Much better access to the inner drawers thanks to the pullout "stepping to the side."
2. Quicker access to the pullout trays thanks to the door being attached to the pullout trays! One less step/motion.

For our kitchen, even though we already have extra height since we don't have drawers over the storage, we'd probably go with 2 pullout trays and 1 inner drawer for maximizing large item storage.

February 22, 2013 at 1:52AM
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davidahn

To all who expressed gratitude, you're welcome. While I hope to help people through their struggles with the ubiquitous and troublesome corners, I am still working through and trying to perfect my own solution as well.

@annkh, great questions, but I've nixed the Comatose Corner. Couldn't get it usable and practical.

@scrappy25 and Angie_DIY, thanks for the Costco Corner mention and photos. Yes, it is a slightly simpler version of my Custom Corner v1.0 [beta]. I think the version built by Shelf Genie is the best version of it (one pullout tray, 2-3 inner drawers) because of unimpeded access to the inner drawers. Scrappy, no, I have not had this built yet. But I believe my Custom Corner v2.0 [beta] is clearly superior.

@Bellsmom, Blum Tandem Plus slides attach at the front and at the back, so the front support would reduce the usable width for the inner drawers, another reason to nix the Comatose Corner. Your post on this thread was spot on. :) One more reason to nix the Coma victim: I can just imagine silverfish, spiders, and moths setting up colonies in that neglected corner.

February 22, 2013 at 2:12AM
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artemis78

Wow--well done! Wish we'd had this when I was designing our kitchen! Ah, well. :)

Another option--we have the Hafele magic corner, but ours is tweaked to allow for a drawer above it. It was a very tight fit, but it maximized functionality for what we needed to store there (b/c we didn't have the option of a susan since we had to use a 41"x24" cabinet, and as much as I loved the Arlosmom solution, it didn't make much sense for what we store there). The drawer limits the height of what you can put on the top tier, but more than makes up for it in functionality (for me, at least!) We also find that the corner unit leaves enough clearance in the cabinet to store tall skinny things in there on their own, too. Some GWers a few years back had custom shelves built for the Hafele pullout to use the full depth of their cabinets, too.

February 22, 2013 at 2:29AM
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davidahn

Artemis, thanks! I hope it helps someone who's in the throes of corner agony.

Yes, Hafele's Magic Corners are awesome, and sexy things to behold in action. I bet your guests are wowed by it! The MC I in particular could have custom shelves built for it... that is a thought.

Here is a link that might be useful: Hafele Magic Corner I

February 23, 2013 at 4:07AM
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annkh_nd

For me it all came down to a choice between accessing the blind corner once in a while, and making the best use of the space on each side of the corner every day. None of the corner solutions in this thread (and there are a lot of great ones!) would provide efficient use of those spaces on a day-to-day basis - in my kitchen.

Ironically, having a small kitchen makes closing off the corner most efficient, since I don't have other places to put the things I want to have in the drawers on each side of the corner.

February 23, 2013 at 12:08PM
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The LeMans pullout brings everything out in one motion (per shelf). No moving one thing out, then the other, as in "Magic" solutions. I got mine on e.....bay from a cabinet maker in Georgia. Latest "II" version, drop shipped form L.A., delivered quickly for \$426 total. Search that site for Arena Pullout.

Nearly the shelf area of the Magic solutions, easier to use.

It isn't just how much could be stored, or we would just wall off the corner and put in a drawer stack (or just shove things back into the abyss, blocked by others). What is important is having excellent access to a reasonable amount of stored items. Mine will be used for taller items, pots, crock pot, pan lids (on edge), etc.

Here is a link that might be useful: LeMans

April 21, 2013 at 12:09AM
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fourten1j

I am also looking at the Hafele LeMans II system... any thoughts on whether it's a better efficient use of space vs the half moon? My cabinet maker has a half moon in my kitchen plan, but I'm curious whether I should ask about the Le Mans II instead...

April 21, 2013 at 1:33AM
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andreak100

FoxCrane - we are using the LeMans II in our kitchen. One of the things that I decided was that the Hafele seemed sturdier and better built than some of the other options I tested at various places. I'm not sure if it's a lot more space overall. I think it also depends on which size you can fit in since it comes in a 15, 18, and 21 in. option.

April 21, 2013 at 9:43AM
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psg007

We have something similar to this in our kitchen (see picture). It holds all our baking ingredients, as well as spices etc... for cooking as it is between the cook-top and sink. I believe this type of solution is common in the UK. I've never seen some of these other things, they seem way too elaborate, wasteful and a PITA to use! Ours is simple and a breeze to access! x

April 22, 2013 at 3:46PM
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annkh_nd

reah, I think Id' have to stand on my head to see what's on the bottom shelf of your unit (the one that pulls out). Isn't it a pain to get the things in the middle of that shelf?

It seems to best possible way to use a corner is to figure out exactly what you are going to put there (small appliances, mixing bowls, baking supplies), and get the system that best accommodates those things. In some cases it will be a lazy susan; in some cases it will be a tricky pull-out system.

In the case of my upcoming remodel, I didn't have anything that had to go into the blind corner that couldn't go anywhere else, so I closed it off, with drawers on both sides of the corner. I will use the drawers every day - much more functional than giving up the drawers in favor of accessing difficult space.

April 22, 2013 at 3:55PM
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msl511

I'm thinking about pie cut lazy (or super) susans vs. the half moon/D shape and I'm thinking that the half moon is actually a more efficient use of space. Please let me know if I'm mistaken.

Consider the L shaped cabinet.

If you use a pie cut, you have 3/4 of a circle of diameter x and you use both legs of the L.

If you use a half moon, you have 1/2 a circle, presumably also of diameter x. You're only using 1 leg of the L shaped cabinet.

Based on David's amazingly generous and helpful calculations, the half moon gives you 71% of the usable space of the pie cut. (I'm not sure why it's not 66%, since assuming the same diameter for both circles, the half circle is 2/3 of the 3/4 circle made by the pie cut, but I will assume this has to do with hardware or something.)

So, the half moon would seem to offer less usable space than the pie cut, BUT you still have a leg of the L available. You can do a drawer stack or a regular cabinet in the space that doesn't have to be given over to the quarter of a circle that distinguishes the pie cut from the half moon.

Actually, now that I look at the pictures again, the space freed up in the 2nd leg of the L, where you can now put drawers, should count towards usable space for all the options that aren't the pie cut susan or the corner drawer.

Or am I missing something or was that all somehow accounted for in the calculations?

May 11, 2013 at 10:56AM
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angie_diy

Ohmigosh. David, I was looking at your calculations to try to answer Marcia59's question. I may have found an error.

For the L-shaped cabinets, it seems that you used, as the footprint, 36" * 36" = 1296 s.i. However, that is not the right number to use, IMHO. Instead, shouldn't you use the footprint of the actual cabinet, viz., 24" * 36" + 24" * 12" = 1152 s.i.? (The two terms represent the run along one wall, plus the remainder that forms the ell.)

This seems only fair, as, in no case, are you planning to use the area outside of the cabinets as storage!

And Marcia, the half-moon and pie-cut shelves in David's calculations have different diameters, as they are going into differently sized cabinets.

May 11, 2013 at 12:45PM
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msl511

I stared at the drawings really hard for a long time and then, as a junior high science teacher of mine used to say "Dawn breaks over Marblehead." I think.

Am I correct that the L shaped cabs for the pie cut super susan and the corner drawers are assuming 24" of cabinet frontage on each side of the corner, while the drawings based on a rectangular blind cab box and which show the other leg of the L only to explain why it's a blind corner, assumes a 12" door? Would I be correct if I said that a pie cut can be based on a circle with a maximum radius of 24" (ignoring real world adjustments for the size of the cabinet box and the need for some space between the edge of the susan and the back of the box), but a half moon can only be based on a circle with a maximum radius of about 12", because you have to get the radius of the circle through door and the door is, in this scenario, only 12" wide? That would leave tons of wasted space inside the cabinet because you have half moon shaped shelf with a radius of 12" sitting inside a cabinet that's 24" deep.

I'm not trying to be argumentative, just to make sure I really understand before I decide what to do with my blind corner.

May 11, 2013 at 2:12PM
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buehl

Interesting thread. I think Angie is right, btw. Math is one of my "specialties", but I never got around to doing the math. One other thing - in individual applications, wall thickness will also play a part, but when performing the calculations in general, you need a "level playing field" to do the comparisons.

Other things to think about: shelf thickness, # of shelves, etc. These will all affect the usable space.

I do think one other option should be added: the option available to those with an "open" back peninsula - a 27" or 30" cabinet turned 90 degrees so it opens outside the kitchen. (The extra 3" to 6" acts as the filler needed on the kitchen side - more on filler later.)

Two big considerations that I think should be added to the discussion:

(1) Can something fall off the shelf?

(2) If it can, how difficult is it to retrieve the fallen item?
...and, can you close the cabinet with the fallen item unretrieved?

Another consideration: How much filler do you need to make a particular solution work? Filler is needed to allow drawers to open past the drawers on the adjacent side - remember that drawer fronts + hardware need to be cleared. Any time filler is added to the equation, it robs other cabinets of space. For example, in a dead corner, you will probably need 2.5" to 3" of filler to allow the drawers/doors adjacent to the corner to open - and that takes away from available storage, even if it isn't in the corner cabinet itself. (Corner susans do not need filler nor, I think, do corner drawers.)

So, while raw numbers may be a "first look", remember that there are other things to consider as well.

But, without David's calculations, we wouldn't have a place to start - so thanks David!

May 11, 2013 at 4:02PM
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angie_diy

Marcia: Kudos for putting on your thinking cap while looking at the drawing, but sometimes it helps to read the text, too ;-)

David wrote: The 39" half moon which will barely fit in a 48" cabinet if you reduce the filler piece from the recommended 3" width down to 2".

I am pretty sure the cab for the pie-cut susan is 36x36 ell, and the cab for the half moon is 24x48 straight.

The radius of the half moon is evidently 18.75", which is not so far from 39"/2. (In some ideal world, it could be 24", but not when taking cabinet construction into account.)

I'm not sure what radius David used for the pie-cut susan. By the numbers (775 s.i.), he evidently used something like 18". I am not sure how large they are in reality. I will go home and measure mine. Perhaps David will chime in soon!

May 11, 2013 at 5:18PM
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davidahn

Angie_DIY, my L shaped corners for susans and corner drawers were based on 42 x 42" cabinets, not 36" x 36", so actually, 1296 is NOT the correct footprint for those, it's 1440 sq in (42 x 24 + 18 x 24). Thanks for pointing that out. I've updated my drawing with the new footprints and efficiency %s:

The susan pie radius I used was 36"; I don't know if anyone actually manufactures a susan that large, but that's what fits in a 42" x 42" cabinet box. A custom cabinet guy would definitely be able to do this. Even the corner drawers are probably optimistic, and most cabinet guys would probably make their drawers a bit smaller than my figures.

Just a reminder, these drawings are mainly class comparisons (drawers vs. specialized hardware, etc.) based on mostly real world examples, but different manufacturers have different specs, of course. The point really is to compare space efficiency of one class vs. another and weigh that against usability.

Cheers!

May 11, 2013 at 11:26PM
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angie_diy

I must say I am still a bit confused. From your first post:

Methodology:
- Tried to standardize on a 24D x 48W blind cabinet
- Lazy susan & corner drawers required 36 x 36 corner cabinet

When/why did you switch to 42x42 (a size I have never heard of?)

Anyway, here are the actual numbers for my super susan:
My 36"x36" cab has a footprint of 1152 s.i. (that is the calculation from above: 24" * 36" + 24" * 12" = 1152 s.i )

My susan has a diameter of 32". The wedge that is cut out of it is less than a 1/4 wedge. The cuts are parallel to a radius, but displaced 4" from the center. This gives an area of 715 s.i. (3/4*pi*16"^2 +the two "extra" strips, very close to 4"*16"+4"*12" = 715 s.i.) Thus, the utilization ratio of my actual susan is 715/1152=62%.

May 11, 2013 at 11:55PM
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davidahn

Angie, I've got a terrible memory, and it's been a while since I wrote this up and even longer since I made those drawings, so I don't recall why I went to a 42" size... possibly to maximize the susan size? Sorry!

May 12, 2013 at 4:11AM
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psyohe

In my previous kitchen I had a corner cabinet with full shelves. I kept 2 sets of seldom used dishes, Tupperware containers, electric skillet, crock pots, etc. in there.

Mine was 100% usable space. I had two 8" doors that opened away from each other. I could get inside easily. The upper cabinet had a piano hinge attached to the 2 doors. I could fold it once and get into part of the cabinet or fold twice to get into the cabinet .

In my new kitchen I got rid of the corner cabinet. I put 3 drawers on the left part of the "L". I can pull those drawers out and stand beside them to get things. My spice cabinet is across from those drawers. It is 8ft tall and 2ct wide and 6+" deep.

I do not miss the corner counter.

May 12, 2013 at 10:05AM
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psyohe

In my previous kitchen I had a corner cabinet with full shelves. I kept 2 sets of seldom used dishes, Tupperware containers, electric skillet, crock pots, etc. in there.

Mine was 100% usable space. I had two 8" doors that opened away from each other. I could get inside easily. The upper cabinet had a piano hinge attached to the 2 doors. I could fold it once and get into part of the cabinet or fold twice to get into the cabinet .

In my new kitchen I got rid of the corner cabinet. I put 3 drawers on the left part of the "L". I can pull those drawers out and stand beside them to get things. My spice cabinet is across from those drawers. It is 8ft tall and 2ct wide and 6+" deep.

I do not miss the corner counter.

May 12, 2013 at 10:06AM
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psyohe

Here is the spice cabinet. I did the same thing on the right side of the refrigerator. I had a 9" deep x 24" wide x 8' tall cookbook cabinet built there.

May 12, 2013 at 10:11AM
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mtpam2

Peke, how much space did you leave between the corner countertop and the spice cabinet? It looks like maybe about 36 - 48 inches?
Also, is the 3 drawer cabinet in the corner to the right of the stove 36" ? I was considering losing a corner also, and wondered how much room I would need to leave to keep access to that corner easy.
Thanks so much

May 12, 2013 at 11:57PM
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vebie

I am so happy I stumbled across this thread in my quest for full use of my blind corner cabinet. I am also obsessed with utilizing every inch of space, and I hate fillers. davidahn's analysis made so much sense to me. I have found a great solution.(I don't know if this is the 'comatose corner' or 'custom corner' he referred to in his diagrams). A company called Slide Out Shelves. This company seems to make the perfect blind corner solution for only \$169.80 per unit. Their address is http://www.slideoutshelvesllc.com/blind-corner-pull-outs.html, and the installation video is on youtube, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qUU_4eP1KFI. I am going to order a second unit for a second shelf for the same cabinet in order to make better use of the space. The second shelf will be adjustable, but I'm sure I will have to watch the weight I put on it. This solution also allows for 4 sizes of door openings, and even a double door opening. I called the company and the representative was lovely. I know there are companies that have a similar product and will come on site to measure the space for a custom fit, but I know their prices are much higher. This is an amazing solution for a more reasonable price. No more diagonal cabinet, no more lazy susan, and no more wasted space! When I have this unit installed I will post photos. I hope I have saved someone from wasting time. It has taken me days of searching and phone calls to uncover this solution.

Here is a link that might be useful: Slide Out Shelve LLC

September 16, 2013 at 2:41PM
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mrspete

You've changed my mind!

I had previously decided that the best option -- meaning, the best of the sub-par decisions available -- was to allow the corner to be "dead" and place a drawer stack on each side of it. I had previously "done the math" and had considered accessibility . . . and I'd decided that the best option was to sacrifice that corner. It isn't all that useful, and I thought it was worthwhile to use the two adjacent cabinets for drawers.

I now believe ArlosMom has the best idea -- pulled shelves behind an open cabinet. I'm not sure I would've "gotten it" if I hadn't seen the picture.

Of course, it needs to be placed beside a cabinet. I see two options in my kitchen:

- I was planning one traditional cabinet, which would allow me to "stand" cookie sheets, muffin tins and similar items. It would be easy enough to lift these out on the rare occasions that the seldom-used items needed to be accessed.

OR

- I was planning a second traditional cabinet, which will hold a lift for my often-used Kitchen Aid mixer. Would this be a better option for the shelves-behind-cabinet option? On the plus side, the items in question would "pop up" easily . . . on the negative side, I don't really want to locate my Kitchen Aid in the corner. I was envisioning it being placed on the end of the island.

Regardless, I think ArlosMom's option is brilliant. I know it's the spot for my punchbowl and . . . well, I don't know what else.

September 16, 2013 at 3:30PM
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robo (z6a)

Thought I would upload a photo of my costco corner to this thread. Thanks to arlosmom for coming up with such a genius, cost effective solution that was super easy for my cabinet maker to understand. This particular cabinet is only 20" deep (wall jog) and it was so helpful to have a solution that could size to any cabinet.

This post was edited by robotropolis on Thu, Feb 20, 14 at 12:27

February 20, 2014 at 12:15PM
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Wildcat12

robotropolis - so when you want to get to the stuff that is in those drawers, you will just have to remove everything that was already in the cabinet, correct?

February 25, 2014 at 11:59AM
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robo (z6a)

Wildcat12, sorry I didn't see this until now. Yes, especially for the bottom pullout. The top pullout clears most of what I have in there. In one cabinet I have a recycling bin which I have to remove regularly anyway. In the other I have cat food, another thing I have to remove every day. In the pullouts I have stuff like outdoor dishes, roasting pan, asparagus pot, paper plates and stuff, and some bakeware we don't use often (tube pan, cookie cutters, etc).

I don't think this is the most efficient corner solution but it's cheap and flexible, which works for me. I also needed at least one cabinet that had a door (not drawers) for cutting board storage etc. so this serves that purpose as well.

March 7, 2014 at 11:23AM
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newfolkways

Excellent! This thread is continuing right when I have my 'big question' about installing a new base corner carousel.
Is it possible to install a 3/4 carousel in a European style base cabinet? Or must I have a 360 carousel with its diagonal door & countertop?
We will be replacing our face frame cab with its pie cut lazy susan in the corner. Presently it stores items used every day for food prep. At 5'6" I can reach into the upper corner cab where I store daily-use dishes.
Has anyone here regretted the loss of reachability when a diagonal door and counter replaces a swinging two panel door mounted to their pie cut susan?
How do folks like their bi-fold corner doors?

March 13, 2014 at 9:30PM
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davidahn

Hi guys, I thought I'd share some photos of my version of the Costco corner/Arlosmom's solution. It's the one I called "Custom Corner", and I believe it's one of the most efficient use of a blind corner cabinet.

Closed:

Door Open:

Straight Drawers Out:

Straight & Hidden Drawers Out (Upper):

Straight & Hidden Drawers Out (Lower):

This solution is best for large bulky items to maximize the space while minimizing the fuss of getting them in and out. It's nowhere near ideal, but I think we can all agree that with corners, we're seeking the LEAST SUCKY solution. :)

David

March 14, 2014 at 2:49AM
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annkh_nd

Hi David!

Your pullouts are cool! But isn't it a pain in the neck to remove everything from the first drawer, to get to the stuff on the second drawer? I would think you'd have to, especially if the things on the second drawer were big (and I can't see putting small things back there). Can you reach on the right side to unlatch the first drawer from the glide, so the whole thing can come out, or do you have to climb over the open drawer?

I like it as far as being able to access the space, but it certainly isn't very convenient. If the things in the first drawers are used often, you are dealing with the inconvenience of door + pullout (or reaching into shelves, if you don't pull them out), compared to the convenience of drawers in that space. The door swing makes it even more difficult to use everything in that cabinet.

My diagonal Super Susan is one of my favorite things in my new kitchen. I know a lot of people don't like diagonal lowers, but it allowed me to put a drawer above it, which is extremely useful (I have a knife insert in there). The shelves are open all the way to the corners, so I can put things on the shelves, beside the turntables, that I don't use often. And because I put larger things on the turntables, I don't have problems with things falling off.

My other corner is closed off completely. I can't access that space in any way, but the drawers on both sides are used every single day, and are so convenient and useful, I wouldn't give them up for anything! I added pantry storage in my remodel, where I keep large things I don't use much. I had a much greater need for functional daily use storage, in the prep and cooking zones, and drawers fill the bill perfectly.

March 14, 2014 at 10:33AM
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litehearted

I'm reviving this thread as this issue never goes out of style!

We just had our new kitchen installed, and we love it. However, I didn't give enough thought to the blind corner.

Basically we are stuck because it is only 18" deep [not the usual 24"], and there's a bank of drawers beside it, so things like the corner drawers, etc. won't work [not that I particular like that option as I think it looks awkward].

They gave us two shelves that are 34" long x 15" deep. The hinged door is 17.5" wide. Filler piece is 2.5".

I'm hoping to come up with some sort of DIY solution. I originally wanted a magic corner, but of course our space is too small. IKEA has a neat solution, but again, our space is too small. I'll share it here in case it helps someone else:

If I figure out something for our kitchen, I will return to post the solution. Thanks for all the ideas above!

July 17, 2014 at 2:17PM
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jakuvall

Might be able to use a wooden RAS half moon swivel/pull unit by cutting down the shelf and replacing the lip. You have to make sure that the metal parts still clear, I think they might but you need to find one and check.

July 17, 2014 at 6:35PM
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litehearted

Many thanks, jakuvall, I will ask hubbie what he thinks, I have no issues with cutting the shelves, if the hardware will work...http://www.kitchensource.com/lazy-susan/rv-halfmoon1.htm

in the meantime, I came up with this:

top shelf - covered brownie pan [which we use to cart stuff to the BBQ] in the blind spot, and Krups Toaster on a tray that we can slide out at the front [place on counter while we toast]

bottom shelf - tall flower vases in the blind spot, and a basket divided with onions/potatoes which we can pull out at the front

May not be exactly the ultimate use of space, however, these items have to go somewhere, and it might as well be there for now...

July 17, 2014 at 6:53PM
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erinatlarge

We have a truly bizarre blind base cabinet in the kitchen we're about to renovate: a standard top drawer, two stacked slide outs that go sideways from the blind right corner toward the opening, plus a cabinet door that opens in the wrong direction and has an internal hinged door with a curved shelf unit on the opposite side that must be opened to access anything.

We think we're going to stick with a single top drawer, similar slideouts from the blind side, put the door on the correct side, and put whatever Elfa drawer unit fits in the front opening. Elfa units are sold by The Container Store in many widths and heights -- any size small enough to fit in the opening will be no big deal to lift out to access whatever nonsense stuff we can't bear to part with but rarely use.

February 25, 2015 at 3:57PM
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