Return to the Kitchens Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
drawer box construction (bottoms)

Posted by sumac (My Page) on
Thu, Mar 21, 13 at 10:39

Okay, I know there are a ton of posts, and I've read them all...
but none of what I've read discusses the actual construction of the drawer box, other than dovetailed joints.

Looking at the construction specs of quite a few different lines, I see that the most common seems to be dovetailed joints with a fully captured 1/4 inch bottom. Which seems a bit flimsy to me compared to what i have now. My Kitchen Craft drawers are 5/8 construction front back sides and bottom. No they are not dovetailed but pinned and glued (kitchen craft is not constructed this way any longer unless you do the metal side upgrade) They have held up well for 18 years and seem very solid compared to everything I look at in the showrooms (1/4 inch fully captured bottoms)

I also see two lines that offer metal sides with 5/8 front and back with either 3/8 or 5/8 bottoms (one of which is an upgrade the other standard). Again not dovetailed but pinned or doweled.

So my question is: Is the thicker bottom construction really more sturdy as it seems to feel to me, or is the dovetailed joints with a fully captured 1/4" bottom actually the better construction? All are rated at 75lbs BTW

It's just nearly impossible to compare apples to apples when it comes to the construction of cabinets these days!!!


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: drawer box construction (bottoms)

Part of the issue is material- metal sides with typically have particle board bottoms- in that application it needs to be thicker. Possible your existing drawer bottoms are too.
As a rule 1/4" bottoms are adequate with dovetail joints. I have never seen one fail, never. That said, some brands will upgrade a drawer box bottom. I use that mod occasionally on wide drawers (over 30") that will hold heavy things. I don't do it because I'm worried about the bottom failing, rather to cut down deflection which can over stress drawer glides and their attachment.
My top end brand which is built using 1" thick frames only uses 3/8" bottoms.
And I guess to answer your question: I almost never sell the metal sided boxes, don't show them in the studio...
my personal preference is wooden dovetail drawers but that's simply an anachronistic affectation :) I'd confidently sell either, typically no cost difference.


 o
RE: drawer box construction (bottoms)

My DH does drawers with 1/4 inch bottoms and for large drawers, he uses what he calls stretchers to reinforce them.

You can see the stretchers on the bottoms here

Here is a link that might be useful: Stretchers on drawers


 o
RE: drawer box construction (bottoms)

1/4" is more than enough for most drawers. We do put some hot glue on the back and add some screws for extra support but we have not had one fail. If someone is going to be storing something really really heavy then we have done them out of 3/4" but it very rare.

Travis Alfrey
Pinehurst, NC


 o
RE: drawer box construction (bottoms)

Thank you all for your opinions. This forum is the best place on the web to get information, and I for one am very grateful to all those that take the time to respond.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Kitchens Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here