ANATOMY OF A DRAWER

D

rawer-making consists of three dis­tinct steps: joining boards together to form a box, mounting the drawer in a piece of furniture and installing hard­ware. Each step must be performed pre­cisely if a drawer is to combine grace and strength, gliding smoothly in a piece of furniture while being sturdy enough to bear the weight of its contents.

Although virtually all drawers share the basic features of the one shown below (center), there are an array of variations.

Before making your first cut, consider the options for each step. For example, from among the joints illustrated at right, there is one to satisfy virtually any requirement. Each joint has different characteristics in terms of strength and durability, level of difficulty, and appear­ance and suitability for different types of stock and furniture. You can allow per­sonal preference to guide your selection, but make sure you choose a strong joint to attach the drawer front to the sides.

This is the part of the drawer that endures the most stress.

The success of the drawer-mounting operation hinges on how well the drawer has been put together. Three different methods for mounting a drawer in a car­case are shown in this chapter (below, right) as well as one technique suitable for frame-and-panel cabinets. Although each method permits some adjustment, a drawer out-of-square by a wide margin will be almost impossible to install.

DRAWER FRONTS

ANATOMY OF A DRAWERANATOMY OF A DRAWERПодпись: Flush front: Allows the drawer to fit entirely within the cabinet; also known as an inset drawer.ANATOMY OF A DRAWERПодпись:Подпись:ANATOMY OF A DRAWERFalse front: A separate front is nailed over the structural front; conceals end grain of drawer sides.

Lipped front: A rabbeted front creates a lip that serves as an overhang; useful for concealing com­mercial runners when the drawer is closed; lip per­forms double duty as drawer stop.

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DRAWER JOINTS

Rabbet

For back-to-side joints on most draw­ers; aso strong enough for joining the front to the sides if reinforced with screws or nails; suitable for solid wood or plywood


Through dovetail

Strong, decorative joint
for any drawer corner;

end grain of drawer
sides can be concealed
with false front; appro-
priate for solid wood
but not plywood


Half-blind dovetail

The traditional joint
for connecting the
front to the sides;
conceals end grain of
sides; suitable only
for solid wood


Dado

Can be used to
join the front to the
sides and the back
to the sides; for solid
wood or plywood


Double dado

For any corner of
small, light-duty
drawer; conceals end
grain of sides and
front; suitable only
for solid wood

DRAWER-MOUNTING METHODS

ANATOMY OF A DRAWER

 

Drawer

back

 

Side-mounted

Wooden slides screwed to carcase side panels run in grooves routed in drawer sides

 

Rail

ANATOMY OF A DRAWER

 

dottom-run

Drawer slides on rail and runner assembly. Twin tenons at ends of rail are glued into double mor­tises cut into carcase panels; one edge of runners is rabbeted and fits into groove cut into panels

 

Drawer front

Typically thicker than sides, back and bottom; may be covered by a false front

 

Runner

ANATOMY OF A DRAWER

 

Commercial slide runners

Meta! slides screwed to drawer sides mesh with runners screwed to carcase

 

Drawer side

Joined to front and back with any of a variety of joints; groove shown meshes with drawer slide

 

ANATOMY OF A DRAWERANATOMY OF A DRAWER