Getting Value from a Vintage Hinge-Boring Machine

The purchaser of an outmoded MeplaMat 3000 boring machine gets advice on how to use it in modern work. September 25, 2014

Question (WOODWEB Member) :
I just bought at auction a MEPLA MAT 3000. It does not have a manual and I cannot figure out how to use it. Does anyone have one of these or something similar and could copy and send me the instructions, or point me to a place on the internet I can find Mepla company?

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From Contributor C:
As I recall, Mepla shared the same hinge boring pattern as Hettich. I did use Mepla hinges until their merger with Alfit.

From Contributor D:
The Mepla-mat 3000 was a great machine back in the day (1980ís). The calibrated fence system is very unique. It allows you to automatically center the door under the boring head. Some find this useful when setting up doors that are non-handed (neither left nor right). The machine however only bores the old Mepla hole pattern of 48mm x 9mm. This hole pattern will be of no use for any hinge brand available today. Most are now in the 45mm x 9.5mm pattern. You can, of course use the machine to bore the 35mm hinge cup hole only and then fasten the hinges with wood screws. The fence settings and the depth setting makes it a fancy, very accurate drill press for hinges but it will have no value as an insertion machine. I have seen one cabinet shop remove the calibrated fence from the Mepla machine and re-assemble it on a Salice machine. This worked great for them; they ended up with a very nice fence and could bore/insert hinges too.

From Contributor D:
I stand corrected. It was the Meplamat 4000 that featured the calibrated fence. The Meplamat 3000 has the standard fixed fence. The same situation remains with the old Mepla boring pattern.

From Contributor B:
I still use an old Meplamat 750. Grass hinge with insertion dowels still work and the hinge you snap the wings shut with little stub metal pins. Iím not sure if the boring pattern is the same as the 3000?

From contributor H:
What do you need to know about the machine? The machine has a lot of other uses besides hinges. I'd get a Blum machine for hinges and use this one for everything else. I have seven hinge machines and only one gets used for hinges.