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Hinge Location Jig

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Transfer hinge locations from door to carcase with marksmanlike accuracy.

Mounting hinges on an inset cabinet door is a straightforward process. You lay the door on your workbench, locate the hinges where you want them, and screw them in place. If they need to be mortised, you mark the outline of the hinge leaf with a knife or chisel. But how do you accurately transfer the hinge locations to the carcase or to another door? Project building Chuck Hedlund faced this situation not once, but four times when making the built-in bookcases featured in the April 2001 issue of WOOD magazine. To solve the problem, he devised a single-use jig. Here's how to make your own.


Cut a 2-1/4"-wide, 1/4" plywood rail 3" longer than the door you are hanging, and two 3/4x2-1/4x2-1/4" plywood stopblocks. then cut four 1/4x3x3" plywood index blocks for each hinge. Glue and clamp the stopblocks to the rail at one end, as shown above. Now, temporarily remove the rail.

Stick small pieces of double-faced tape to the door next to the hinges. Adhere index blocks to the door, snug against the hinges, as shown below.


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