Building European Cabinets

Building European Cabinets


European cabinets basics is the first thing you must learn before you move on to the next step. There are basically two styles of cabinets to consider when starting out.

You have the European cabinet (frame-less style) and you have the frame type cabinet. One of the big advantages of European cabinets is when you open the doors on a cabinet, you have a clear opening with no face frame to obstruct entry. There are pros and cons to both styles which really boils down to a preference as to which style is for you.

The European Cabinetphoto-premier-oak-kitchen-cabinets

The European cabinet is built as a frameless cabinet. It is sometimes referred to as the 32mm system. The system has been around for years in Europe and slowly worked its way to North America.

The 32mm system is a system that is used throughout the construction of the cabinet. A series of 5mm holes 32mm apart are line bored down the front side and the back side of the end gables, inset 1 1/4″ from the outer edges.

All of the hardware for European cabinets are made to fit into the 32mm system. The hardware used is generally Blume hardware which comes from Europe.

All the hinge mounts, drawer runners and shelf supports all fit into the line bored 32mm system. This makes building a cabinet very simple once you understand the 32mm system.

How To Get Started

Getting started line boring the holes is very critical to ensure that all the hardware fit in their proper location. For a small do it your self-shop, I recommend building a line boring bar with 32mm hole spacing and set in 1 1/4″ from the edge. This will ensure you get all the gables drilled the same.

Of coarse Blume has a beautiful Mini Press to not only line bore but also drill the 35mm holes for the hinges in the doors and insert the hinges. I used this press for 25 years of building cabinets (loved it)




The video below will show you in detail the 32mm system.



Omer Charest

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