I have started to rebuild my home office and due to a shortage of space have to have a 3-section desk. The first is fixed in place over the top of the void above the stairs with supporting cupboards underneath. The second piece (the one in question) will need to hinge upwards (too long to hinge downwards) to allow for an extending bed used occasionally. The third is not in question here as will be clip on so easily removed and light use.

My question is, how best to hinge this piece of desk. The desk is 25mm thick laminated MDF, the framework below is 18mm Laminated MDF. I obviously want the two pieces to sit close together, and thought about attaching a protruding 18mm piece of wood to the fixed desk and using full overlay cabinet hinges (6 of) that way the weight of the desk when closed would rest on the wood rather than the hinge, and it would only be opened about 6 times a year when people visit.

But if anyone has any better ideas...I would happily listen right now.

This might better describe my words

  • I think overlay hinges as @whatroughbeast suggested may be the best option here, see diagram. But this style of 'Euro' cabinet hinge may work just as well and there's no knuckle to hide.
    – Graphus
    Sep 21, 2016 at 7:16

3 Answers 3


I believe you have the right idea, and overlay hinges are the way to go. However, you would only need 2 or 3, rather than 6. The more hinges you add to a surface, especially if they are independent, the greater the chance that they will interfere with easy operation due to their rotation axes not being aligned.

However, why hinge at all? Support both ends, and add dowels and holes (1 per end) to keep the piece from shifting, and just lift it off and store it out the way when you want to use the bed.


If you want it to fold down, this is basically a drop-leaf table. If you want it to fold upward, it's more like a drop-down table Searching those terms should find some designs you could base yours on.


I would recommend using a Soss style hinge: example

This will be fully concealed, and will be strong enough to support the weight of the top all the way through the movement.

A Euro style hinge is not made to support the weight of a top in this orientation, and, at best, you would be looking for a blind corner Euro hinge to operate in this situation.

Any type of butt hinge will show through the top, if not protrude and create a catch for any objects that may slide over it.

Soss hinges also will create the thinnest reveal gap between the two tops, at 1/16".

They make these hinges for many different thicknesses as well.

I had to make a custom maple bartop for a restaurant, and they wanted the pass through to fold up, and we used this type of hinge.

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