Earlier this week, you read about the new pantry door we put up in our kitchen. It was a world of problems, but one of the easiest parts of the project was one of the ones I thought would be the hardest, which is how to cut door hinge notches. The door didn’t have the hinge notches needed for the door hinge to fit flush with the outside of the door, so the door didn’t close properly. I had to cut out the door hinge notches myself, but it was super easy. Here’s how to cut door hinge notches.
First, attach the door hinges to the door in the appropriate places and then trace the outside of the hinge on the door. Then, remove the hinges.
Second, score the door within the traced area. You can do this a number of ways, but I chose to use an Xacto knife to score the traced edge of the hinge and then randomly within the trace. This will help make it easier for your chisel to work. You can also use your chisel to tap in straight notches within your traced area.
Next, use a chisel to… um, chisel out the wood in the hinge area. I used a 5/8 inch wide chisel because I knew it was a small area. Keep the chisel as flat and level with the door as possible to avoid digging too deep into the door and taking out too much wood. For the first few layers and the bigger areas within your hinge trace, use a hammer to tap the butt of the chisel to get it going. Continuously work and chisel out the area as best you can.
After you think you’re done, you probably aren’t. Grab the hinge itself and put it into your chiseled out area to test it. Likely, you will need to chisel out more around the curved edges like I did. Fine tune your chiseled area until the hinge lies flat and flush with the door in the area you traced out.
Do that for your next two hinge notches and then screw in the hinges. Now your door should be ready to hang.
If all that didn’t get you, here’s a little video to hopefully answer any last questions.
This was a super easy project and took me about 20 minutes to do all three hinge notches. This was the final step in our pantry door and the final step of our kitchen renovation. If you’re looking for how to cut door hinge notches, look no further because YOU CAN DO IT. It’s not hard and you’ll love your new door!