Where to put file drawer in 30-inch cabinet?

jenswrensMarch 18, 2013

I am building a 3-drawer-stack 30" wide cabinet in the new office area. One of the drawers (deepest one) in this cabinet will be a file drawer.

Logic tells me the file drawer should be the lowest drawer of the stack. My aging back, knees, and eyes tell me that the file drawer should be at the top of the stack or at least in the middle, for better and easier access to daily use of files. (If it's not easy to use, my own experience tells me I won't use it, at least not effectively.)

The three drawers are 6", 11.5", and 12.5" tall. The big drawer is rated to hold ~100 lbs. The cabinet will be bolted to the wall studs, with a wood counter on top.

Where should I put the file drawer? Top, middle, or bottom?


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I like my file drawers in the middle. Pencils, staples, stamps and other small things in the top drawer. I think it would be harder to maneuver the files in and out of a top drawer, and also harder to look down into the files if they're up on top.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 7:51AM
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I'm building in file drawers in my pantry wall, and they in the middle drawer location.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 8:54AM
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Do you have the option to do 5", 12.5" and 12.5"? That would give you both symmetry and two filing options (maybe current in the middle, and older in the bottom?)

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 9:06AM
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If you prefer the look of the different height drawers, files will fit in the 11-1/2" drawer, provided you use side-mounted slides. Or the Blum metabox file drawer.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 10:49AM
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My file drawer (in a desk) is in the top position and I like it there. I means I don't have to lean over as I turn in my chair to file things. On the other hand, I don't think I'd want any other drawer below it, except for another file drawer. I bought a metal two-drawer file for my office closet where older things get archived, thus keeping my one desk file drawer uncluttered with old things. I do prefer the smaller drawer (pens, rulers, etc.) on top.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 12:31PM
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Thanks everyone! This one little decision has been holding up my project for a whole day. Waffle, waffle, waffle. My decision-making skills seem to be getting worse and worse as I get older and wiser, for some reason. (Overthinking, I guess.) Ha - and I think I'm going to be able to build an entire house... pthfff

Well, I may be able to with the help of GW. :-)

So, I'm going to put the small on top, file in middle, and the other drawer on bottom. That seems to make the most sense. At least for this minute. I could change my mind in 5, but I'll try to resist. Otherwise, I'll never finish!

Curious about the metafile drawer. Have to check that out. Thanks!

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 1:18PM
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