Concealed hinges are an affordable way to revive your existing cabinets and bring in a contemporary style. These hinges are completely hidden from view when the cabinet door is closed. Concealed or European hinges can be installed by using a concealed hinge jig and a router to cut the mounting hole on the door panel. The cabinet-side of the hinge screws onto the side wall or edge of the face board. Once the hinges are installed, they can be adjusted by loosening three screws so the door panel can be properly aligned with the cabinet.
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Things you need
- Concealed hinge mount router jig
- Concealed hinge set, with screws
- 1/2-inch spiral bit with 5/8-inch bushing
- 1/16-inch drill bit
Place the cabinet door panel on a work surface with the inside face of the panel facing up. Mount the router jig to the top of the hinge side edge on the inside face of the door panel. Use the screws provided with the hinge to mount the jig. The top edge of the jig should be flush with the top edge of the door panel.
Insert the spiral bit into the router. Turn the router on and rout the hinge mounting hole by allowing the bushing to ride along the jig. Remove the router from the wood when the cut is complete.
Mount the jig onto the bottom of the hinge side edge on the inside face of the door panel and rout the mounting hole using the same process.
Insert a concealed hinge into each mounting hole. The fit should be snug. Align the cabinet-side arms of the hinges so they are parallel with the horizontal top and bottom of the panel. Fasten the hinges to the door panel using a screwdriver to drive the provided screws into the holes.
Hold the door panel in place with the hinges in the open position. Align the cabinet-side mounts in position on the front edge of the inside of the cabinet side. Mark the mounting holes with a pencil.
Drill a pilot hole at each pencil mark on the inside of the cabinet side using a drill and a 1/16-inch drill bit.
Place the door panel back in place on the cabinet. Align the holes on the hinge mounts with the holes in the inside of the cabinet side. Drive screws through the holes in the hinge mounts to fasten the cabinet door in place.
Adjust the alignment screws on the cabinet-side hinge mounts by loosening them one at a time. One slides in a vertical slot to adjust the vertical alignment of the door panel. The other slides in a horizontal slot to adjust the horizontal alignment. Close the door to evaluate and adjust the door for proper alignment.
Tips and warnings
- Select hinges in a metal finish to match your other cabinet hardware.
- Wear eye protection when working with wood.
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