Rebuilding a Broken Kitchen Drawer

My brother in law had a kitchen drawer fall apart on him after years of use. The drawer was built with mitered corners, which don’t make much sense in this application, because they’re essentially butt joints. As such, every time somebody pulls the drawer open, the entire force of the action is put on the glue that holds the side and front of the drawer together. Glue is strong stuff, but the drawer box was made out of particle board, which isn’t, and over time, the joints let go.

I tackled the repair by rebuilding the drawer box out of 1/2″ MDF, using drawer joints (yes those are a thing) in place of the mitered corners on the original drawer. Here’s an image that I blatantly stole from the internet that shows the type of joinery that I’m talking about:

As you can see, the two sides of the drawer hook together with a sort of mortise and tennon joint. The uppermost board in that image would be the front of the drawer that I made, while the lowermost board would be the side. Whenever somebody pulls the drawer open, the force of the action is distributed throughout the joint, and the wood that makes it up, instead of being focused entirely on a glued butt joint.

My brother in law was really happy with the way that the drawer turned out, and I got a chance to try out some new joinery that will definitely come in handy sometime down the road.

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