Author Topic: Drawer Bottoms  (Read 17863 times)

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Offline grbmds

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Drawer Bottoms
« on: July 15, 2014, 05:49 PM »
Has anyone used 1/4" hardboard (Masonite?) for drawer bottoms. These drawers are for workshop benches, not quality furniture. It seemed like I could save a little money over using 1/4" Baltic Birch plywood.
Randy

Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline roblg3

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #1 on: July 15, 2014, 06:10 PM »
hardboard is pretty weak.it's basically heavy cardboard.  not even as strong as mdf.  and if it gets wet it's trash.
Rob Gardner
Operator
RL3 Enterprises

Offline jacko9

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2014, 06:13 PM »
Hardboard will sag with time at 1/4" thickness, I would use plywood.

Jack

Offline Brandon

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2014, 07:01 PM »
1/4" melamine might be a good option
Also, regardless of what you use, you can glue a couple rips of ply in the recessed area underneath for extra support

Offline rst

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2014, 09:05 PM »
1/4" hardboard and masonite are not the same beast, hardboard is only hardened on one side and is essentially stiff pressed paper. 1/4" masonite is hard to find as it was no longer manufactured here due to environmental concerns.  Masonite is tempered all through the sheet and is quite hard.  It mostly is found only through industrial users.

Offline SRSemenza

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2014, 12:44 AM »
Yup, I'd skip the hardboard  for drawer bottoms.  You don't necessarily need to go with Baltic birch  for shop drawers though. Have a look at other types of plywood that might do the job for less.

Seth

Offline John_

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2014, 01:48 AM »
You want TEMPERED hardboard

Hardboard is also known as high density fiberboard which is stronger than medium density fiberboard (MDF).  "Masonite" is a brand name.  Tempered hardboard is coated with linseed oil and then baked which increases in strength, water resistance, etc

I commonly use 1/4" tempered hardboard in door panels and drawer bottoms and I get it at my local lumberyard

Offline roblg3

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2014, 06:19 AM »
luan is pretty inexpensive.and reasonably attractive.
Rob Gardner
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RL3 Enterprises

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2014, 07:43 AM »
Thanks for all the suggestions. I would use tempered hardboard which I think is reasonably strong. Aesthetically, of course, it would be better to use Baltic Birch, just because it is consistent with the rest of the drawer even though no one except me would know. I may look for luan (plywood I assume), but I found the Home Depots and Lowe's around where I live generally don't have much of a selection except whatever is used for construction. I can get other at either the Woodcraft I go to (which has a great selection of high quality wood) or another, non-chain woodworking store. Both are an hour away and I was looking for a fast solution as I realized I don't have any 1/4" Baltic big enough for 2 drawers (actually 4 or 5 because I will be making 2, maybe 3 more). On a positive note. . . I was very happy with Domino results. It was fast once I got through the initial hesitancy of the tool being unfamiliar to me and the results were great. I haven't glued it yet, but the fit was unbelievable and square and that was only using marks and the cursor to locate the mortises in all pieces.
Randy

Offline elfick

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2014, 09:33 AM »
my only concern, assuming these are the same drawers you mentioned in http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-how-to/number-of-dominos-for-deep-drawer/ , would be that you'd be tempted to load a 10" drawer past the 1/4" hardboard's capacity...

Offline BMH

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2014, 09:38 AM »
I have been using 1/4 tempered hardboard as flooring, it is what they use as flooring in many theaters and in many of drawers in my workshop. The problem is finding somebody who carries it just like high density fiber board to create a mft style table top.

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #11 on: July 16, 2014, 11:32 AM »
my only concern, assuming these are the same drawers you mentioned in http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-how-to/number-of-dominos-for-deep-drawer/ , would be that you'd be tempted to load a 10" drawer past the 1/4" hardboard's capacity...

Could do that. Also, I'm thinking that, since I made the drawer box from 18mm Baltic Birch, why would I go cheap on the bottoms? So, I will just wait till I get some place to buy some more 1/4" Baltic and use that. It's worked great on other workshop drawers I have made, so, in the end, why not stick with what has worked. I was never sorry I made the other drawers with 3/4 Baltic (although I did that because it was easier to joing with pocket holes than the thinner stuff). So, thanks for the advice and suggestions. As usual, no reason to cheapen something only to regret it later.
Randy

Offline wood pulp

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #12 on: July 16, 2014, 01:37 PM »
my only concern, assuming these are the same drawers you mentioned in http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-how-to/number-of-dominos-for-deep-drawer/ , would be that you'd be tempted to load a 10" drawer past the 1/4" hardboard's capacity...

Could do that. Also, I'm thinking that, since I made the drawer box from 18mm Baltic Birch, why would I go cheap on the bottoms? So, I will just wait till I get some place to buy some more 1/4" Baltic and use that. It's worked great on other workshop drawers I have made, so, in the end, why not stick with what has worked. I was never sorry I made the other drawers with 3/4 Baltic (although I did that because it was easier to joing with pocket holes than the thinner stuff). So, thanks for the advice and suggestions. As usual, no reason to cheapen something only to regret it later.

I don't know how close you are to the city but Wood World of Chicago is awesome.  Huge selection of wood and Festools!

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #13 on: July 16, 2014, 02:34 PM »
I'm actually closer to Madison, WI. Also there is a great WW store in Sycamore, IL which is also only an hour. Both have great selections of wood and various sizes of Baltic Birch. Sometimes their prices can be a little high but, I also have gotten good deals there. Anyway, I have sources plus some I've never even tried which are within an hour or so in southern Wisconsin. I live closer to Wisconsin than Chicago in Illinois. I was just trying to use up some stuff I had but I'm convinced I would be sorry and will just wait till I get up to Madison again to finish the drawers. I will be more satisfied doing it the way I think is best rather than the way I will save a little bit of money.
Randy

Offline roblg3

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #14 on: July 16, 2014, 05:28 PM »
+1   always go with your gut!
Rob Gardner
Operator
RL3 Enterprises

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2015, 02:41 AM »
I thought I'd bump this old thread as I picked up a half sheet of 1/2" Baltic birch for a couple of drawer sides.

I'll have plenty of material and I was thinking that I could save some dough and use the 1/2" Baltic birch also for the bottoms.

I realize it's overkill for the bottoms, but the alternative is to spend more money on 1/4" stock.

Is there any reason not to use my leftover 1/2" Baltic birch for drawer bottoms?
Aspiring DIY'er (hence the name "grasshopper" as I am looking to learn from all the masters on the FOG)- TS 55, OF 1400, MFT/3, VS600 Dovetail Jig, MFS700+ MFS2000 extension profiles, Kapex, Kapex UG set, T12 Li set(x2), CT22, Domino, Carvex, RO90, RO150, MFK700, CMS-VL, Qwas super pack & Cool Wife.

Offline Bill Chang

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2015, 02:53 AM »
I use 1/2" for most all of my drawer construction including bottoms.  Sometimes I use 3/4" for the box but all my bottoms are 1/2"

This way I only have to stock 2 thicknesses instead of 3  [cool]

Online Richard/RMW

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2015, 08:54 AM »
This may cause the true craftsmen to shudder, but for shop drawers I use 3/4" birch ply for both sides and bottoms, and pocket screws to hold them together. Reason being is I have a lot of machine tools and the contents of a 4" drawer can end up weighing 50-60#'s. The deeper drawers ~12" hold power tools, a small anvil, vises, arbor press, etc. & still no issues with weight.

I just flush the bottom with the lower edge of the sides and pocket screw into them. No need for dadoes, everything is a butt joint.

Assuming 24" cabinets you can get ~4 drawers worth of material from a sheet, so each one costs around $10-12. I guess it is a mite crude but they are bulletproof and fast to construct.

RMW   

As of 10/17 I am out of the Dog business and pursuing other distractions. Thanks for a fun ride!

Offline Grasshopper

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #18 on: January 14, 2015, 11:07 AM »
Awesome. Thanks for the replies.
Aspiring DIY'er (hence the name "grasshopper" as I am looking to learn from all the masters on the FOG)- TS 55, OF 1400, MFT/3, VS600 Dovetail Jig, MFS700+ MFS2000 extension profiles, Kapex, Kapex UG set, T12 Li set(x2), CT22, Domino, Carvex, RO90, RO150, MFK700, CMS-VL, Qwas super pack & Cool Wife.

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2015, 02:35 PM »
I don't disagree with the 3/4" for shop drawer sides, but why wouldn't Dominos work for the joints? I still think dadoing the bottoms in is the strongest. I've used 1/4" drawer bottoms dadoed in with success. I doubt it would hold 100 lbs which my slides are rated at but it does hold a lot of heavy tools and one drawer is 10" deep.

I made drawers with pocket hole joints on the sides but found that Dominos were almost as easy and the drawers were a bit squarer since there was no slippage when I assembled them like I sometimes get with pocket holes. Either way works though.
Randy

Offline Tinker

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #20 on: January 14, 2015, 02:56 PM »
This may cause the true craftsmen to shudder, but for shop drawers I use 3/4" birch ply for both sides and bottoms, and pocket screws to hold them together. Reason being is I have a lot of machine tools and the contents of a 4" drawer can end up weighing 50-60#'s. The deeper drawers ~12" hold power tools, a small anvil, vises, arbor press, etc. & still no issues with weight.

I just flush the bottom with the lower edge of the sides and pocket screw into them. No need for dadoes, everything is a butt joint.

Assuming 24" cabinets you can get ~4 drawers worth of material from a sheet, so each one costs around $10-12. I guess it is a mite crude but they are bulletproof and fast to construct.

RMW   

Since i don't consider myself a true craftsman (WW type that is), I like your idea.  I don't need to support as much weight in drawers as you, so maybe 1/2" AC ply wood work for me.  I have not tried pocket joinery with 1/2 to 1/2 yet, but have done some 1/2 to 3/4 joints. I am getting geared up to do a coulple of tool shelve/drawers as soon as i get thru my annual tax stuff (biz taxes and then a short breather before getting into the horror types of taxes.

Tinker
Wayne H. Tinker

Offline Scorpion

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #21 on: March 25, 2015, 06:57 PM »

my only concern, assuming these are the same drawers you mentioned in http://festoolownersgroup.com/festool-how-to/number-of-dominos-for-deep-drawer/ , would be that you'd be tempted to load a 10" drawer past the 1/4" hardboard's capacity...

It's easy to do and the primary reason I just went with 1/2-inch ply bottoms in all my drawers.  Add a pair of 100lb slides and you'll never need to worry about capacity

Offline JimD

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #22 on: May 19, 2015, 08:55 PM »
My shop drawers are even cruder.  Front, back and sides are 3/4 (really 18mm) BCX plywood.  Bottoms on all but the smallest are 7/16 waferboard.  Strong but cheap.  I cut a rabbet in the front and just overlay the sides and back.  Glue and brads hold it on.  I did splurge a little and bought some 1 1/2 wooden knobs off an ebay seller.  About $10 for 25.  I used 3/16 luan plywood for a few of the smallest drawers.  It's nicer and saves a bit of space.  (drawer boxes are pocket screwed together)

For nicer drawers (furniture, kitchen cabinets), I like to use 1/2 Baltic birch and dovetail all 4 joints.  Bottoms of smaller drawers for lighter stuff are 1/4 BB and big ones get 1/2 Baltic birch.  Both types of bottoms in dados.  I also built some of my shop drawers this way, when I had more time.

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #23 on: May 19, 2015, 09:38 PM »
Recently I made some more drawers for storage and used half blind dovetail joints just for the practice with my Incra table. However, I didn't really think this through completely. The dovetail joints turned out great, but I'm not quite sure what to do with the bottoms. I used pocket holes on the first set I made and dominos on the second set, both of which were no problem to cut a 1/4" dado along all 4 sides and it doesn't show. However, with the dovetails it would. I don't really care much about looks so I could do something simple since the dovetails were just for practice anyway. I've thought of a few options, but would like to hear what would be best, easiest, and not show any dadoes on the sides.
Randy

Offline fshanno

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #24 on: May 19, 2015, 10:19 PM »
Has anyone used 1/4" hardboard (Masonite?) for drawer bottoms. These drawers are for workshop benches, not quality furniture. It seemed like I could save a little money over using 1/4" Baltic Birch plywood.

You mean like this?

221327-0

I had it left over from another project so I used it.  The drawer you see is 24" wide. 
The one thing we learn from history is that we never learn from history.

Offline Claimdude

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #25 on: May 19, 2015, 10:21 PM »
My default drawer bottoms are 1/2" Birch from the big box store. Never have to worry about weight being a problem.

Jack

Offline Neal W

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #26 on: May 20, 2015, 07:59 AM »
I recently just used 1/4" underlayment (that is what the shelf tag at the box store said).  It has a pretty grain pattern on one side. 

I also used It for door panels for my garage cabinets.  Used it for the cabinet backs.  In expensive and seems relatively durable.
Turning perfectly good lumber into scrap and sawdust for more than 20 years!

Offline Billedis

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #27 on: May 20, 2015, 08:06 AM »
@grbmds I used stopped dados.  Takes a little work, but presents a finished look.  Bill

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #28 on: May 20, 2015, 08:07 AM »
@grbmds I used stopped dados.  Takes a little work, but presents a finished look.  Bill

Done with a router I assume?
Randy

Offline Billedis

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #29 on: May 20, 2015, 08:26 AM »
yes, I use a router, and then sometimes have to chisel the corners.  Bill

Offline #Tee

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #30 on: May 20, 2015, 08:58 AM »
8mm carbon fiber
When youre feeling depressed just treat yourself to a systainer even if its a mini systainer its ok.

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Festool USA does not pre-approve the contents of this website nor endorse the application or use of any Festool product in any way other than in the manner described in the Festool Instruction Manual. To reduce the risk of serious injury and/or damage to your Festool product, always read, understand and follow all warnings and instructions in your Festool product's Instruction Manual. Although Festool strives for accuracy in the website material, the website may contain inaccuracies. Festool makes no representations about the accuracy, reliability, completeness or timeliness of the material on this website or about the results to be obtained from using the website. Festool and its affiliates cannot be responsible for improper postings or your reliance on the website's material. Your use of any material contained on this website is entirely at your own risk. The content contained on this site is provided for informational purposes only and does not constitute professional advice.


Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #31 on: May 20, 2015, 10:35 AM »
8mm carbon fiber

What is carbon fiber?
Randy

Offline polarsea1

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #32 on: May 20, 2015, 03:46 PM »
8mm carbon fiber

What is carbon fiber?

It's made from recycled motorcycle fenders and bicycle forks. ;D

For smallish drawers I use 1/4" melamine coated mdf.

Offline JimD

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #33 on: May 25, 2015, 11:29 AM »
When using half blind dovetails I cut a 1/4 dado in all 4 sides, unless I rip the back down so the bottom is replaceable.  The dado goes into the last full pin in a side and the same recess on the front and back.  It doesn't show. 

Online tjbnwi

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #34 on: May 25, 2015, 11:30 AM »

Offline socaljohn

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #35 on: May 25, 2015, 04:15 PM »

Offline grbmds

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Re: Drawer Bottoms
« Reply #36 on: May 25, 2015, 07:27 PM »
When using half blind dovetails I cut a 1/4 dado in all 4 sides, unless I rip the back down so the bottom is replaceable.  The dado goes into the last full pin in a side and the same recess on the front and back.  It doesn't show.

Yeah, I figured that out when I finally got around to actually cutting the dado. You just have to make sure the doesn't go into the pin. I tried on a scrap piece first and found out that it doesn't show.
Randy