Hardware Installation Jigs: Are They Worth It?

Some installers say a self-centering tape and combination square are quicker. January 25, 2013

I have always made on site jigs for installing knobs, handles and pulls for cabinets. I was thinking of purchasing a jig or two to help with the installation of all hardware items. I've found a few online but haven't fallen in love with one yet. I'm sure there are a few out there that I haven't seen and was wondering what you are using, if you are using a commercial jig.

Forum Responses
(Cabinet and Millwork Installation Forum)
From contributor M:
I like the Euro Handle It. It works great, not too expensive. McFeely's has it for about $45.00.

From contributor D:
A couple of combo squares and my tape and I can have a whole kitchen marked before you can set up or make a jig. The jigs would be okay, I guess, if everything was the same size and only one type of knob or pull was being used. But I do a lot of kitchens etc. where there are knobs and small pulls, medium pulls, large handles, etc. By the time you change your jig that many times, I can be done.

From contributor K:
I purchased one for drawer hardware from true 32.com, if memory serves me right. Brand was S&H or something like that. Price in the $300.00 range. If I had it to do again and it cost twice that price, I would buy it in a heartbeat and never look back. People say they can drill faster with a custom shop made jig... I can drill for drawer pulls for an entire kitchen, etc. in the time some people take a coke break. You'll never look back.

From contributor B:
There are some jigs out there that I have seen that seem pretty good. The one that contributor K is talking about seems to be top of the line as far as my research has gotten me. Yes, it is expensive, but so is one drawer or door screwed up and replaced. I've been looking at that one. There is a similar one that Woodworkers Supply sells and it's about $160.00. It seems a bit larger and I don't think it automatically centers up and down. It does from side to side, but I don't think up and down. I'm leaning toward the S&H.

From contributor F:
I wasted a lot of time on jigs. Now it's a self-centering tape and a straight edge.

From contributor R:
Bought the Woodworkers Warehouse one. Worked great on about 5 kitchens, then the plastic teeth broke on one of the side arms that centers the jig. I didn't realize this until having drilled a number of drawers and the GC comes by and says the holes are not centered! Bought the Euro jig, which is much less money and simple to use and does not seem prone to breaking, easy to set up and change. Threw away the WWH jig! The SH jig looks real nice, but I couldn't justify the cost unless I installed handles all day long. Not sure if you can offset the pull on a drawer, like placing on the upper rail instead of the middle panel, which some customers prefer. The Euro jig can.

From contributor B:
I'm with contributor D. Tape measure and a couple of combo squares is much faster for me than messing around with jigs ever was. Using a centerline tape measure speeds things up even more by helping find centers - without thinking. It's mostly thinking that slows me down on the job. I try not to do it too much!