Woodworking Talk banner

1 - 11 of 11 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I do a lot of carpentry projects for our local food bank which has grown into a community food centre, running lots of programs, with a complete commercial kitchen, advocacy office, and food bank offering a self-shopping option. Recently the coordinator asked me if I could make a lockable, wall-hung cabinet for her to hold a collection of tools (they need new tools as well - the little tool kit they now use has a truly pathetic hammer, screw drivers and wrenches).

So I building a wall-hung cabinet out of some spare 3/4' plywood I had in the shop but am wondering which side the door should open onto (I have a choice).

The box itself has a 16" by 24" outside dimension and is 16" deep (and will be quite heavy when tools are put inside). Two inset strips of pine run across the back of the cabinet, top and bottom, so I can hang it flush from a wall and there are several practical locations to put this cabinet in the building where I can attach to studs using lag bolts. This also means I have some choice on which side to place the door hinges. Because the door itself will have two magnetic strip tool bars on it to hold screwdrivers etc., I am using a piano hinge for extra holding power.

As I have a choice of which side the door should be hung from and the locations that are available will readily accommodate either left or right opening, is there a preferred side that most people would find easier to use? I am left-handed so I may have a different perception of this than most people. So, among woodworkers out there is there any advice on putting the hinge on the left or right?

Puzzled.

Thanks for everyone's advice on this. The client loved the idea of the drop down door. But as the health and Safety person at the Food bank also wanted rounded off corners. And since her choice of location meant that the drop down door - without rounded off corners - would have extended past a door frame just slightly when opened up, rounding the corners and cutting a couple of inches off the door at the same time with a bandsaw made a perfect solution. See pix.
 

·
where's my table saw?
Joined
·
28,190 Posts
Most people are right handed

So as a "righty" I would want the hinges on the right. Open the door with my right hand and have full access. I don't want to switch hands and step out of the way to get inside. That's just me. :yes:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,506 Posts
I had this problem once for a cabinet on a side wall of a pantry. I made the door open to the right but the cabinet was also on the right side as you walked in and it made it a real problem because you had to walk all the way into the room turn around and then open the door. Otherwise the door would hit you in face.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
How high is this cabinet going to be hung. At 16" deep door would be a great table top shelf. if you put the hinges on the bottom with cabling on either side, and open it from the top, stage tools or work on it when it is down/openned position. Just make sure you put a positive latch so not to whack some one on the head if it opens on it's own...lol...just thinking out of the box, wouldn't matter if your right or left handed then, give you more work space.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,772 Posts
You are going to get about as many different answers as you get people answering.

The correct people of whom to ask this question are your clients. Which way do they want the door to open. They probably do not care.

George
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
How high is this cabinet going to be hung. At 16" deep door would be a great table top shelf. if you put the hinges on the bottom with cabling on either side, and open it from the top, stage tools or work on it when it is down/openned position. Just make sure you put a positive latch so not to whack some one on the head if it opens on it's own...lol...just thinking out of the box, wouldn't matter if your right or left handed then, give you more work space.

Great idea. I think I will wait to install the door and discuss this idea with the client. Thanks much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,644 Posts
Great idea. I think I will wait to install the door and discuss this idea with the client. Thanks much.
If it was me, I would build the cabinet, then have someone determine it's mounting location. Then determine which way the door should open for ease of use. Regardless, it will be greatly appreciated I am sure.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
26,667 Posts
Which way do you approach the cabinet most often? If you come to the cabinet from the left side I would hinge it on the right and vise versa if coming from the opposite direction. If you come straight at it I don't think it matters. It's like when I build kitchen cabinets, a work station like a sink or range all the doors left of the work station are hinged on the left and all to the right are hinged on the right.
 
1 - 11 of 11 Posts
Top