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Grr... Ferrari kitchen door hinge

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by TEG, Aug 26, 2007.

  1. TEG

    TEG TMC Moderator

    Aug 20, 2006
    #1 TEG, Aug 26, 2007
    Last edited: Aug 27, 2007
    So we did a kitchen remodel a couple years back.

    The Ikea high cabinets came with Ferrari brand lift hinges ("Klok flap joint") to hold the doors open.
    (Does anyone know if this is the same as the Ferrari car company? Ferrari America vs Ferrari North America. Wouldn't Ferrari car company have a trademark on their name?).


    I thought it was cool that they came with a little bit of Ferrari engineering, but I have become rather annoyed with those Ferrari abominations.

    I adjusted the tightness screw so that they would hold the doors open when we first installed them. Over time, the "hold" function got weaker such that I had to keep tightening the tension screw a little bit more each month to keep the doors from closing on their own. We rarely opened these cabinets, so it isn't from use, rather the mechanism just kept getting weaker and weaker even when sitting closed. At some point they were as tight as they could handle, and the screws started to strip the threads out of the brackets on all of them. There was no way to make them tight enough without stripping the bracket threads. One big problems is that the metal on the adjustment screw is much stronger than the metal on the bracket. (I think the screw is steel and the bracket is aluminum). They should have put in a steel nut rather than just tapping threads into the bracket. I don't know if Ikea is to blame for including hinges not meant to hold such heavy doors, or if Ferrari just didn't test these things well enough.

    I have since replaced the tension screw with a much longer, improvised, version and put a steel nut on the far end.

    I wish Ikea had just used the tried-and-true pneumatic pistons so I didn't have to spend time trying to fix a mistake.

    When the threads stripped on the tension adjust screw it pops out of the hinge and all sort of "pins" and spring guts come falling out. It is a bit of a job to get all the bits back together and retrofit a repair.

    Here is what the innards look like:

    I think someone was trying to be very clever when they designed that contraption, but apparently the "creative" engineering got more effort than the testing.

    This seems surprising given that Ferrari SPA makes a bunch of statements about quality control and is ISO 9001 certified.

    Years ago, it was more typical for companies to test products for many years before selling them, but these days time-to-market is so important that simulated wear is done instead.
    Sometimes many test cycles in a hurry don't tell the whole story of what happens over time. Some materials slowly disintegrate over time even if they aren't used.

    With many products, the weakest part, which can ruin a whole project, can end up being the $.50 hinge or $.20 washer. You hear tales of a small, inexpensive part being responsible for the crash of $million aircraft. It all comes down to doing enough testing to sort out every last bit.

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