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Ultimate Guide to the Best Hinge Jig for Cabinet Doors

Buying the right hinge jig requires understanding how a concealed hinge is installed, controlling drill bit depth and hinge cup location. Did you know there are a variety of hinge jigs that range from stand alone jigs to complete sets you can use for shelfing, drilling cabinet knobs, installing drawers and more. In this article learn what types of hinge jigs are available and what the best hinge jig is for your projects.

First, I’ve made thousands of cabinet doors and drilled countless concealed hinge holes. And without a Kreg jig  know that attempting to drill a hole for a concealed (aka European or hidden) hinge is just not advisable.

In summary, when it comes to hinge jigs these things are important and part of this review:

  • Adjustable depth control of the drill bit with a stop collar
  • Using a high quality carbide 35mm bit
  • Adjustable distance control from the doors edge to the center of the hinge cup to allow for hinge clearance
  • Lastly, padded surfaces are required to avoid marring the doors
  1. BEST OVERALL: KREG HINGE BUNDLE
  2. JUST THE JIG: KREG KHI-HINGE
  3. ONE PIECE JIG + CLAMP: DDWT 35MM 

What is a cabinet hinge jig?

If you haven’t made cabinet doors with concealed hinges you might not know this jig exists.

However, concealed hinges require a jig to ensure three things happen:

  1. Precise depth: a hinge cup must be drilled deep enough the hinge is seated fully in the door. But, without going through the face of the door (a catastrophic event)
  2. Edge distance: the hinge cup must be placed an exact distance from the door edge for proper hinge operation
  3. Vertical distance: lastly, the hinge must be located at the right vertical location to clear cabinet frames and shelves.

And all of these tasks benefit greatly from a concealed hinge jig as it will put the hinge cup hole in EXACTLY the right location. 

Jig Manufacturers

In woodworking if you say “jig” then a blue brand named Kreg jumps to almost all woodworkers minds. So, of course, they offer a hinge jig.

But, who else makes them? Well, unfortunately for options the market drops off quickly to imported units. However for choice, that makes it pretty easy to stick with Kreg unless you’re really trying to save.

Alternatives to a cabinet door hinge jig

Drilling concealed hinge with a drill press

Since depth and placement are critical there is one alternative to a cabinet hinge jig: a drill press with proper setup and an edge guide.

To use a drill press for setting up and drilling concealed hinge cup holes you’ll need to follow the same steps as for a hinge jig:

  1. Locate your hinge location
  2. Use an edge guide to control distance of hinge cup from door edge
  3. And lastly use the drill press depth control to set the proper depth

In fact, for larger door runs, this setup can be easier than a jig. But, for smaller jobs, a jig is faster, portable and less bulky to store.

Best Cabinet Hinge Jigs

When choice isn’t an option and there’s a name brand that offers a solution you’ll find yourself quickly in tradeoffs on price vs. quality.

And, in my experience, quality wins. As does, with the Kreg systems, the option to just buy all of the jigs once and in a bundle. Which is why I recommend that first as you’re very likely going to be installing drawer slides and cabinet hardware.

1. Kreg Hinge Jig Bundle (Best overall)

Kreg Tool Company - Drawer Slide Jig with Cabinet...
1,178 Reviews
Kreg Tool Company – Drawer Slide Jig with Cabinet…
  • HARDWARE INSTALLATION KIT: Three easy-to-use Jigs plus two bonus Clamps in…
  • CONCEALED HINGE JIG: The Concealed Hinge Jig takes the guesswork out of…
  • CABINET HARDWARE JIG: The Kreg Cabinet Hardware Jig takes the guesswork out…
  • DRAWER SLIDE JIG: The Drawer Slide Jig takes the guesswork out of…

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 07:41 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

First, chances are good you’ll be drilling hinges, installing drawers and drilling cabinet knobs or handles. 

So why not invest in the best hinge jig from Kreg AND their class leading drawer slide jig and cabinet hardware jig?

Included in this value bundle are:

  • Cabinet door hinge jig
  • Drawer slide jig
  • Cabinet hardware jig
  • Two face clamps

Of course, as with any bundle, purchased individually these jigs are more expensive.  

Pros

Cons

2. Classic Kreg Hinge Jig

Kreg Tool Company KHI-HINGE Concealed Hinge Jig ,...
4,471 Reviews
Kreg Tool Company KHI-HINGE Concealed Hinge Jig ,…
  • Make cabinet door installation easy! Get drill press accuracy with any hand…
  • Accurate hinge positioning with built-in indexing tabs
  • Repeatable results with built-in measuring scales
  • Reliable drilling with bit guide and stop Collar

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 10:35 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

For advanced woodworkers the classic Kreg jig is all you will need as you probably own at least one of the other jigs. 

So, in this jig set you’ll find a jig with:

  • Adjustable indexing guides
  • Built-in measuring scales
  • And compatibility with any drill or standard forstner bit

The downside to this basic unit is you’ll only receive the jig. And, as you can guess, you’ll need a bit for drilling and a clamp to make sure the jig stays in place.

Pros

Cons

3. Budget Concealed Hinge Jig With Forstner Bit

BI-DTOOL 35mm Hinge Drilling Jig Hole Guide...
290 Reviews
BI-DTOOL 35mm Hinge Drilling Jig Hole Guide…
  • Our 35mm Jig is made of engineering plastic, This is a set of guide tool…
  • BI-DTOOL Hinge jig comes with adjustable dials design, limited to 3, 4, 5,…
  • The concealed hinge Jig is suitable for 35mm hinges and also available with…
  • The drill bit is razor sharp, easily drill the new holes with minimal…

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 12:26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

If you take a look this jig looks pretty much identical to Kreg. But, just in a dark yellow color vs. the Kreg blue. 

And, while it’s at a discount, it’s #3 on the list as Kreg just has an edge in brand and the option to bundle jigs.

Pros

Cons

4. Compact Concealed Hinge Jig with Bit

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 12:26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

As you can probably see, this jig cuts down the plastic by about 90% and has a no-frills approach to providing a simple yet adjustable hinge jig for your concealed cabinet doors. The biggest drawback? You’ll find the hinge screw holes might not fit your cabinet hinge of choice.

Pros

Cons

5. Hidden Hinge Template for Small Projects

Liberty AN0192C-G-Q1 35mm Hidden Hinge...
601 Reviews
Liberty AN0192C-G-Q1 35mm Hidden Hinge…
  • Made from durable plastic with molded measurement lines
  • Clear finish allows users to see through the template for enhanced…
  • Designed for concealed hinges with 35mm cup
  • Includes template and forstner drill bit

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 12:26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Not sure you’ll have another project and don’t want to shell out a lot of money for you project? As you can tell this jig is not as featured filled as the Kreg concealed hinge jig, but for marking hinge cup centers and hinge screw holes this jig will do the basics.

An alternative to this hidden hinge jig, however, could be careful measurement and a self-centering drill bit

Pros

Cons

How to Use a Hidden Hinge JIg

How to use a door hinge jig for concealed hinged

Mounting concealed hinges takes a little bit of planning as the hole you’ll drill is large and cannot be undone.

So, first things first, you’ll want to make sure your cabinets and doors are all ready to go. Then, following the manufacturers instructions, install your hinges using the jig in steps as follows:

  1. Always use a test scrap of wood the same thickness.
  2. Setup the test piece, and jig by making sure the jig is the proper distance from the edge.
  3. Then, drill two hinge holes the proper depth (go shallow, work your way to just the right depth).
  4. Switching to a different drill, use a self centering drill bit to drill the hinge bit holes.
  5. Lastly, install your test strip and make sure the hinges clear and everything things.

And only then, start doing doors one at a time and test as you go.

Tips to Using a Cabinet Hinge Jig

  • Always use a high quality carbon steel forstener bit for the smoothest cuts
  • Use a bit collar on the forstner bit and always start shallow
  • Never skip pilot holes in your hinges. A vix bit is a good tool to have.

Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best hinge jig?

For concealed doors the best jig will have three features. First, it will have adjustable indexing to set the hinge cup hole the proper distance. Second a guide will be used to hold a forstner bit vertical and provide a stop for the bit guide. Lastly, the jig will have holes to pre-drill the hinge screw holes.

What size forstner bit is used to drill concealed hinge holes?

A 35mm hinge hole is the standard size concealed hinge hole size.

Does a forstner drill bit a flat bottom hole?

Yes, forstner bits are unique in that they drill flat bottom holes.

Summary

Now that you’ve found the best cabinet hinge jig you’ll need to use one of the right soft close cabinet hinges with it for the best performing door. Be sure to check out our guide to the best soft close cabinet hinges.

Hinge Jigs on Amazon

Last update on 2021-12-05 at 06:33 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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