Drawer Construction Wood Options

Hardwoods like cherry or fine maple are expensive. On a big project like a full-wall entertainment center, the added cost of building solid-cherry drawers could add up to hundreds of extra dollars. Using a less expensive, but equally suitable, wood is a smart way to go. 

Compatibility

Plywood for most drawers is 1/4 inch thick but can be 1/2 inch thick on large drawers. You can find these materials in many different types of hardwood so that one or both of the outer veneers can match your drawer boxes and/or fronts. However, not all wood species are available in veneer plywood.

Matches 

 For example, combining a dark hardwood front with a lighter-colored wood like poplar for the drawer box can really highlight the joinery and workmanship. Contrasting wood colors look particularly good with joints like half-blind dovetails.

Drawer Bottom Boxes

Real hardwood plywood, which is made entirely with thin plies of real hardwood. Conventional plywood has inner plies of various softwoods, even if the outer veneers are hardwood. In general, more, thinner plies make for stronger, flatter panels. For birch plywood, you can’t go wrong with Baltic birch as a choice.

 

 

Pros and Cons of Drawer Slides

1. Wooden Slides

Conventionally, drawers usually slide on wooden runners; strips of wood interlocked into horizontal rails at the cabinet’s face. In cases where a drawer won’t be guided by the sides of a cabinet — for instance, when the cabinet’s face frame extends into the drawers opening — the runners are equipped with leads to stop the drawers from sliding to the right or left and binding when they are closed.

Qualities of wooden runners

  • They work terrifically when the drawers fit well. With fine furniture, they are the benchmark, not because it takes skill to make drawers snugly fit but not so snug that it is hard to open and close.
  • They don’t need additional monetary investment outside of your labor, while mechanical slides will cost installers.
  • They enable your drawer’s front to function as a completed face; no additional face needs to be applied.
  • They allow the joinery and drawer sides beam without interference by metal equipment.

However, wooden drawer slides are far from ideal in many respects.

  • They do not allow to fully extend: When installers pull the drawer out to a specific point, it can sag and maybe even fall out of the opening.
  • Well-fitting drawers can stick in locales where humidity deviates considerably from season to season.

For a while now, cabinetmakers have mechanical slide hardware accessible to them, the features that have improved gradually. Nowadays there’s a crazy amount of options provided by many manufacturers such as Blum, Accuride, Knape & Vogt, and more.

Mechanical slides have a couple of benefits over conventional wooden runners, even if they don’t have the pristine that comes with piston fit drawers. They are quiet, run smooth, and enables installers to pull a drawer fully out without risk of it tipping its contents all over, or even worse, falling totally out and getting damaged.

2. Side Mounted Ball Bearing Slides

Side mount ball bearing slides like those manufactured by Accuride are budget-friendly, reliable, and durable. They come with a large variety of optional features, among them a decent; extra-heavy load capabilities; specialty slides for file-type drawers, lateral files, etc.

They are extremely easy to install— installers can install them just about anywhere installers want, mounting the supports to the cabinet sides or using mounting brackets to attach hardware to the front and back of the cabinet— and only impose one restriction on the dimensions of the drawer: The width of the drawer is required to be at or just a little under the specific width between the slides once they have been installed. Outside of this, installers could use these slides on drawers that are more deep or narrower than the slides, conditional on its application. The matter of how the drawer bottom fits into the drawer is of no concern — even it’s even at the bottom surfaces, fitted into slips, or sliding into slots in the drawer’s front and sides. While this adjustability might not sound so impressive in theory, it may be a life saver in uncommon situations where installers need the combination of budget friendly price, fully extendibility and adjustability in drawer design that likewise hardware might allow.

These types of slides enable the drawer to be removed easily by disengaging its lever. In replacing the drawer, slide it diligently into position — if the parts aren’t aligned correctly, it may damage the slides – -then push until there is a click. Then pull it out and close it all the way to check the fitting.

Adjustability: Prior to installers installing the set screws, the slides can be adjusted up and down additionally to forward and backward positions thanks to grooves on each piece: the piece that goes on the drawer and the piece that goes into the cabinet. Many drawers can also be equipped with screwdriver adjustable cams.

3. Undermounted Self-closing Slides

Cabinetmakers are accessible to kinds of slides that mixes full extension and pristine, silent operation with close to complete concealment. The Blum Tandem is the most commonly known type, but when other fabricators saw how favorable new designs were with fabricators and their clients, they started designing their own types based on their concept.

In lieu of the slides being silent, pristine running, fully extended capability, and concealed; when fitted with the correct locking devices they provide a new area in adjustability over previous types of drawer slides hardware. Installers may move the drawer faced up or faced down, forwards or backwards, angle it up or down, or place it side to side; a joy when installers are handling inset drawer faces. However, these components come with many strict specifications:

There are specific dimensional specifications: Drawers need be just the correct width and depth to fit certain slides. These and other requirements are laid out in easy to read guides provided by the hardware fabricators.

There is no way to install the drawer bottoms wherever installers wish. It is required to have a 1/2″ recess enabling the drawer sides and front will be on top of the runners. Along with these specifications, installers are required to drill some holes in the back of the drawer for the mechanism to tilt.

Since the placement of the slide’s hardware is in a fixed position in relation to the drawer’s sides, installers are required to be more precise in the position of the hardware in the cabinet than the installers would do with side mounted ball bearing types. Installers are also required to leave more height space than using side mounted types, which may take up space, depending on other components of the cabinet’s design.

As in the case with the side-mounted types, there will be some of space on the sides of the drawer with undermounted hardware. This clearance comes out to be about 5/16″ on either side. In many cases installers will want to put on a cabinet face.

Drawer Boxes

If you’re looking for the best quality cabinet drawer boxes at the best prices there isn’t a better source than Drawer Connection.  We give you your choice of wood and only source the highest quality raw materials.  All of our fabrication is high precision and made to last.  Whether you’re choosing a solid wood with a dovetail joint or a melamine with a dowel joint, every single drawer box is built to last!

How to Install Bottom-Mount Drawer Slides

Installing Bottom-Mount Drawer Slides

If you are updating your bathroom or retrofitting new cabinetry, deciding on the right drawer slide can be daunting. With so many options to out there; mount, extension type, slide length, limits on weight, and finishes, how do you know which one to choose for your project? In this post we will discuss one of the most popular, bottom mount.

Tools You Will Need:

  • Safety Glasses
  • Saw
  • Screwdriver or Drill
  • Tape Measure
  • Pencil
  • Chisel
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • Level
  • Combination Square

*Warning*

When using with power tools, always wear safety glasses to help protect your eyes from debris.

Why Choose A Bottom Mount Drawer Slide?

Using this mounting method allows you to have your drawers almost the full width of the drawer opening—minus 1⁄8 inch on each side, giving you more storage space than with other types of slides.

Using one slide (around $8 to $20 per pair) in the middle of the drawer keeps hardware costs down.

When you use one slide for each drawer, it reduces the weight-carrying volume to less than half that of a similar drawer that has two slides. (Single bottom-mount slides typically rate for 25-pound volume.) For the mounting screws to take hold, you will need to make your drawer bottoms 1⁄2 inch thick, or possibly add a space if you are using thinner bottoms. A lot of bottom-mount slides are 3⁄8 inch thick but leave 5⁄16 of an inch underneath your drawer bottom for mounting. The additional 1⁄16 inch provides clearance between the sides of the drawer and the face frame after being mounted.

Attach To The Drawer First

  1. For drawers that are inset, align the slide adjacent with the front of the drawer and positioned across its width. If your drawers will have a front overlay, notch the drawer box, so the slide sits adjacent with the drawer boxes front face.

Cut a notch for the slide at a minimum of 1/8 inch wider on each side, to the drawer bottoms depth. Then using a chisel, take out the waste.

  1. Center the slide and fasten it with screws at the back and the front.

With one screw retaining the front of the slide, using a measuring tape, measure from the drawer side to be sure that the slide is parallel and centered.

Add The Cabinet Mount

  1. Install the slide to the front of the face frame, attaching it with one screw. For drawers that are inset, first, attach a mounting block 3⁄4 inch thick inside the face frame in which you can screw the slide.

Be sure to mount the slide 1/32 inch back from the front of the face frame. You may need to angle the screw a little bit to keep clear of the above frame.

    1. Attach the slide to the back of the cabinet using a mounting bracket, make sure it’s square to the face frame. If your cabinets have a dust frame, you can mount the slide to it rather than the back.
    2. To aid in supporting the drawer, add self-adhesive or nail-in glide pads to the face frame where the drawer-side bottom edges are allowed to pass.

Glide Pads

Glide pads not only stop the drawer from rocking on an individual slide, but they also make drawer operation smoother.

Nationwide Drawer Slide Supplier

If you have broken drawer slides, or are maybe starting a new cabinetry project, or are just remodeling your kitchen or office, Drawer Connection has the widest selection of drawer slides in Phoenix. We have soft close, push to open, self-close, and many more quality options that keep your drawers opening and closing smoothly. Visit our site to get started or call us today at 877-917-4887.