21 February 2016

Repair of DTC cabinet hinge #4C6A

This post is for the 0.0004% of the world's population who have a broken DTC cabinet hinge model #4C6A.

I could not find a replacement for the base plate (the part that attaches to the wood of the cabinet.) A tiny crossbar had broken off the base plate and it would no longer attach to the hinge that is mounted on the cabinet door. (An undamaged base plate and hinge are a single unit. The bar just came off after very light use.

These companies offer to help find something similar if you want to go that route:

They may or may not have good alternatives for you. However, if you want to try to repair the hinge, I found this was an easy procedure:

  1. Find a piece of scrap lumber and place it on your wife's polished heirloom dining room table. Use this as a working surface. If you can't find any scrap lumber, just use the table.

  2. Assemble the damaged mounting plate as best you can so that it fits back together in the correct position in the hinge.

  3. If necessary, brace the assembled piece of clamp it with a C-clamp or vice grips. (I didn't have to do more than just hold the assembled part against the wood with a finger.)

  4. Fill the hole with rosen-based solder using your soldering iron as illustrated in this photo:

  5. Let the hinge cool. The parts are now firmly joined.

  6. Drill two small holes from the side with the solder using a 1/16" drill bit. You will have to go through two pieces of metal. (Avoid drilling through to the dining room table. Mistakes will happen, of course, but life is never free of risk.)

  7. Turn the hinge over and screw two 4x3/8" sheet metal screws into the hinge so that they protrude as shown in the above picture. You've now got a sturdy hinge to reuse that is unlikely to be as fragile as the original. Better than new.
Here's a view from the top showing the screws already installed.

OK. Minor stuff but it's fun to be able to remedy problems without having to rely on Big Pharm Big Oil Big Government the giant outlet store for products manufactured in China that used to be manufactured in the U.S.

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