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 In Techniques

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They’re a sure sign of good craftsmanship, but are almost invisible.

Small and discreet, knife hinges lend a tidy, refined look to your project. They’re ideal for a small cabinet if you want the hinge hardware to virtually disappear.

Knife hinges are also a hallmark of good craftsmanship. Precisely laying out their mortises takes patience and a steady hand. You’ll be using some classic hand tools, such as a marking knife, a marking gauge, and a few sharp chisels. There are no short cuts, and practically no room for adjustment once the mortises are cut.

Knife hinges go undercover when installed—you can barely see them. They’re perfect for the type of cabinets whose hardware shouldn’t distract from the piece’s design or the beauty of the wood.

Don’t let me scare you, though. If you follow the steps outlined below, you really can’t go wrong.

There are two styles of knife hinges: straight and offset. Straight hinges are used for overlay doors. Offset hinges let a door swing out farther than straight hinges, so they’re used for cabinets with inset doors.


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