BLUM CABINET HINGES
BLUM CONCEALED HINGES
Basically, there are two general types of Blum cabinet hinges, their Compact hinges and their Clip top hinges. The picture below right is of a Compact 39 hinge. It is more adjustable than the Compact 33 hinge and uses a cam, thus it has what they call 3 dimensional adjustment, where the Compact 33 hinge only has 2 dimensional adjustment. The benefit of 3 dimensional adjustment is that it allows for the tilt of the door to be adjusted. This means that you can adjust your door to lay against the cabinet at the top and bottom of the door, regardless of any slight bow, etc., of the door itself, and allows for a much nicer overall alignment.
Compact hinges are less expensive than the Clip top Blum cabinet hinges, and don't protrude into your cabinet as much as Clip top hinges do. This might make them work well for glass panel doors, etc., if you absolutely do not want to see a hinge.
Blum's literature indicates that Compact hinges are for frame cabinets. Well, yes, but we built frame cabinets almost exclusively, but prefered their Clip top hinges. They did protrude into the cabinet more, but are more diverse all the way around, so we used them rather than the Compact hinges most of the time, even for frame cabinets.
Blum's other hinge type, the Clip top hinge, is just that, it clips on and off your cabinets in a snap. This makes for easy installation and future cleaning. Blum's Clip top hinges have a 3 dimensional adjustment (cam depth adjustment, as described above for the Compact 39 hinge). They also come in a wide variety of opening angles, which means you can use them in several applications. For example, we never used piano hinges in our corner lazy susan areas, but utilized the 170 and Bi-fold Blum cabinet hinges to allow for lazy susan doors to close perfectly, and much better than piano hinges. The photo at right is an example of a Blum hinge, Blum's 120 degree concealed hinge. In this picture, the hinge has a silver cover over the adjustment screws, this is only for looks. You can also get black covers, even imprinted with your business name on them if you are building your own cabinets.
Blum's hinge systems use mounting plates that are installed on the frame or interior of the cabinet (they work for frame or frameless, i.e. European style, cabinetry). Once on the box, the mounting plates allow the hinge to be just clipped on. To take the Blum cabinet hinge off, a spring in the back of the hinge needs to be squeezed, so it's not something that children can just pull off. (However, a child can just put on (ha, ha) - the photo above is of our little guy "installing" a mounting plate to a face frame!)
VARIETY IS THE SPICE OF LIFE - AT LEAST FOR BLUM!
Depending on your application needs, blum cabinet hinges run from 94 degree mini-hinges, to 170 degree hinges, full overlay, partial overlay, inset, and even applications to mount these hinges into aluminum, glass, or thick doors. There are dozens of applications.
FOR THOSE OF YOU STARTING A CABINET MAKING BUSINESS
If you are going to make your own cabinets, you will need to research what type of Blum cabinet hinges to use and how to install them. Each type of Blum hinge or drawer system has it's own installation guide, and different hardware has different applications.
You can use a drill press to drill your doors for the hinge cups. We did that for the first kitchen or two we built. However, if you are going to use Blum functional hardware (Blum cabinet hinges and Blum drawers) in a full time business of any kind, you will want to invest in a Blum Mini-press, like the one pictured at right. The Blum Mini-press is a boring and insertion machine, and will literally save you hours of work.
They've come down a lot in price. Back in 1995 when we purchased our first Mini-press, they cost over $3,000. Now, you can buy one for $1,500 or so. Ask your distributor if they will let you use one on loan. If you purchase your Blum hardware exclusively from them, and do enough business, they will be more than happy to loan you one.
Blum hardware isn't sold directly to the public, but through distributors. You will have to contact a distributor near you to get an account, (check out Blum.com to locate distributors and for tons more of information) or purchase your hardware from an online source, then get all of the installation and mounting instructions from them.
You'll see and hear Blumotion used in describing how Blum hinges and drawers can close. Blumotion is an add-on to Blum hinges. Blum now has some Blumotion add-ons that you can attach directly on top of their Clip top hinges, like the photo at right. You can also attach Blumotion add-on's directly to your cabinet, like the next photo below.
Blumotion is basically a braking system that results in your doors (or drawers) closing smoothly and silently. If you try to "slam" the door shut, Blumotion will slow the door down, if you close it gently, it works too.
It really is a neat feature, and not a costly add-on. Often, for less than a dollar a door, you can include Blumotion in your hinge cost, and have really terrific closing, silent, protected (because of possible slamming, etc.) doors and drawers.
Blum has several drawer systems (Metabox, Tandem, Tandembox, etc.). For more information how their drawer systems work and how Blumotion works with their drawers, click here to go to our Blum Drawer Slide page.
AVENTOS LIFT SYSTEM
Blum has a wonderful (albeit spendy) system for wall cabinets that works great. It's their Aventos lift system. It utilizes their patented Blumotion system. The photo at right is of the lift system on a door. We used doors like this for appliance garage applications in our shop. Not everyone will like the look of upper doors looking more like drawer fronts, but it can look quite stylish in the right kitchen.
The Aventos system holds it's position. Where you raise it to is where it stays, you don't have to worry about it falling, etc. Which is quite nice when you are using cabinets - to not have to door fall on your head!!!
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For more information and related links check below.
And remember - HAVE A HAPPY KITCHEN!!!
OTHER RELATED LINKS:
WOW! We love Blum & you will too.
Blum Drawer Slides
The Best in the Business. 11 slides & accessories.
Hardware for Kitchen Cabients
It's what's on the inside that counts!
The Woodworkers Depot
Online Hardware Store and your place for Blum Cabinet Hinges. Great Prices, Great Products.