Author Topic: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm  (Read 2105 times)

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Offline Michael Kellough

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IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« on: July 14, 2019, 09:49 PM »
This applies to SEKTION kitchen cabinets only. The PAX cabinets still conform to the 32mm system.

Haven’t bought any IKEA cabinets in decades. Wanted to add some storage to my utility room quickly and needed an in-between size. The IKEA ready-to-assemble stuff is easy to cut down, cheap, and packaged in clean neat bundles so I bought some nominal 24” deep base cabinets to get the 20” that would fit.

Get out the holey rail and LR32 kit to restore the columns of cut off shelf pin holes and discover the mismatch. I guess when IKEA Americanized their cabinets for the the US market (how about you Canada?) they adjusted the hole pattern too. Now the pitch is 1-1/4” instead of 32mm. A difference of a fat 1/4mm but it adds up fast.

I’ll only use a few shelves so I’ll just add holes where needed.
« Last Edit: July 15, 2019, 09:30 PM by Michael Kellough »

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Offline Rollin22Petes

  • Posts: 196
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2019, 10:05 PM »
That's really strange as far as I know all line boring, and cnc machines are set up for 32mm worldwide. Not to mention pretty much all hardware is set for 32mm system. I have a large cnc and I can place at holes 1.25'' but I have to bore them individually instead of 10 at once since the machine is built for 32mm.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2019, 10:07 PM »
Which IKEA cabinets?

I have measured their stuff a ton and their kitchen system is very much still metric.  Just the width changes to some of the North American widths.  They really couldn't change it if the even wanted to since they don't make the hardware that goes with it.  When they went to the new kitchen system a few years ago they shifted the placement of the 32mm hole spacing from the previous system, but still very much metric design.  Actually the whole system got a bit more metric, they made it even more the same as the Global system, less alterations than the previous one. Unless you get a part that is directly driven by the width changes to the Base 3" setup, it's the same part as other countries get.

Now some of the other systems like PAX might get weird.  I have never understood why IKEA doesn't use the same stuff for everything.  I don't know if they have any US only offerings, but even then I can't imagine they would go 1 1/4, who uses such a spacing?

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 4217
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #3 on: July 15, 2019, 01:54 PM »
“...can't imagine they would go 1 1/4”

Just divide 30” (base cabinet side) by 24 increments and you get 1.25”.

Also bought a 40” wall cabinet which has 32 increments and should also have a 1.25” hole pitch but it’s a little off and then there is an adjustment in the middle of the pattern removing about a mm between a pair of holes. No idea why that happened whether done by CNC or line boring machine.

I wondered if the whole thing was cut via CNC but looking at the larger holes, (8mm and 15mm) the bottoms of the holes show evidence of full diameter boring bits.

Manufacturing data printed on the back edge of parts says IKEA SEKTION, Made in USA, June 11, 2019 (I simplified and shortened for clarity).
« Last Edit: July 15, 2019, 03:25 PM by Michael Kellough »

Offline usernumber1

  • Posts: 52
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #4 on: July 15, 2019, 02:55 PM »
canada pax from few years ago - 32mm

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #5 on: July 15, 2019, 09:03 PM »
I wonder if this is a mess up and IKEA is going to end up with a recall.  This is going to completely trash their drawer systems.  I don't think this is intentional, I wonder if something at the plant got messed up and they didn't catch it.

I would try to reach out to IKEA as even a heads up for them. I know this is almost impossible as IKEA has no forward facing office for people to contact.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 4217
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2019, 09:28 PM »
This 1.25” hole pitch is probably limited to kitchen cabinets designed for the US market.

I’m not real familiar with the IKEA product/brand range so I don’t know if SEKTION is limited to kitchen cabinets or if it is available elsewhere.

The PAX range of cabinets aren’t required to meet specific height targets (no kitchen cabinets) so there’s no need to change the hole pitch from the usual 32mm.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2019, 10:56 PM »
Sektion is the North American name for the same kitchen system they use in Europe.  They just change widths, to be the 3" increments instead of being based around the European 600mm width baseline.  I have measured the Sektion many times, it's very much 32mm, and so is the blum hardware it runs.  They can't just do a running change on this as it would break the whole system, and all the parts.  Most the metric aspect of it people would never notice without actively thinking to look for it or putting a metric tape on it.

It's been out for 5 years and part of the whole concept is you can swap stuff around later, buy different parts and the like. Huge selling point. If they did a running change like that the internet would blow up and 3rd parties like Semi-Handmade would go nuts.

It looks much more like something has messed up at the factory and some bad parts are being made.  Go back to ikea with metric tape and measure the stuff in store, maybe take your photo with you to show them something is not right.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #8 on: July 16, 2019, 09:57 AM »
Amazingly topical news I see this morning.

https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/16/business/ikea-us-factory-closing/index.html

IKEA is closing the plant that currently makes the cabinets for Sektion in the North America.  If the place is now making wonked parts, this is probably a good time for this.

I get why they had it, just the sheer shipping cost of moving the big stuff (panels) around the world and with the kitchens being their big seller, it makes sense to have.  But looks like the math got to where it wasn't working.  I wonder if long term IKEA will decided to stop adjusting the widths and just sell the Global version direct and start selling 600mm wide appliances here, I wish they had done that from the start as a way to push a phase out of North American only sized appliances so we could have global options.

Offline Michael Kellough

  • Posts: 4217
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #9 on: July 16, 2019, 11:09 AM »
I was glad to see IKEA bring (to Elizabeth NJ some thirty years ago) European design (especially bathroom cabinets) but that style increasingly (sometimes lurchingly) is becoming Americanized and thus less appealing.

Can’t deny the exceptional value though.

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2019, 09:18 PM »
I agree that bringing frameless cabinets to the forefront in this country was big.  I think they have hurt things at time by bringing some really off looking and cheesy door options, which then get people thinking that is what frameless looks like... so that hurts progress.  It probably also helps some traditional cabinet makers as it makes what they make more special and different from the frameless stuff.

Like I mentioned above, it gets frustrating when you see the appliances and such you can get elsewhere in the world, where they largely standardize on widths, which makes kitchen layout work so much better,  no 24" washer, 30" oven, 33" fridge, 36" cooktop non-sense.  They had the opportunity to bring built in fridges to the US.  Just imagine them bringing a ~1200 USD built in fridge to the market when right now the cheapest options are 5-6000 USD.  I think they could have changed the landscape there a lot of they had pushed it instead of caving to the North American norms.  At the same time it is a frustration they skipped common US sizes for things do to their door commonality plan, so no 6", 9",  27", 33" , 39" cabinets, which for a lot of kitchens is a killer. In the end I gave up one trying to get their parts to work and decided to just make all the cabinets for my house.

That said, it's not like IKEA is ditching the kitchens (that would be insane), and maybe with production shifting back closer to the mothership, maybe they will re-think a bit and suddenly they will start marketing some built in 24" appliances for the kitchens. Be just like dishwashers, we get global 600mm dishwashers, because manufactures just re-label them 24", but they don't do other things.  I can see a lot of US households liking the idea of having multiple combo washer/dryers in their house verses 1 big washer and 1 big dryer.  I know a lot of folks would like to see nice, yet small fridges return, you can't even buy a single door 36" fridge anymore unless you pay for a 5-6K high end fridge, 33" fridges are getting rare.

Offline rmhinden

  • Posts: 202
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #11 on: September 18, 2019, 04:58 PM »
We just purchased an IKEA book case (BILLY for $59).   I just measured the shelf spacing, it is 32mm vertically, and 37mm insert from the front edge.  Appears to use the 32mm system.

Bob

Offline xedos

  • Posts: 60
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #12 on: September 18, 2019, 07:56 PM »
Having some experience in this arena I can offer this:

The vertical spacing in a row of continuous 5mm holes doesn't really affect the installation of a euro drawer runner.  As long as both rows are spaced apart in a multiple of 32 the drawers don't care what height they are installed at.   What does happen is the drawer front height / position / and spacing will no long be able to be easily calculated using the drawer manuf.'s included measurements.  In this instance BLUM.  Those are based on a 32mm vertical spacing.

If however, you are designing a cabinet program from the ground up and only offer 3-4 different drawer height configurations; the calculations can be quickly done and programed into your machinery.  It's a one time deal.   A 32mm multiple just happens to be the most efficient use of space with Euro hardware.

On the appliance front - most U.S. consumers balk when told they will have "less space" in their metric sized appliance.  I hear pitches all the time telling customers that our 24" oven,dishwasher, or sink is BIGGER than the Euro 60cm version.  I cannot recall there ever being a 36" wide "affordable" non built -in all refrigerator on the market.   There have been, and remain, a few at 32-34" wide.  Some are counter depth too.   The overwhelming majority of Ikea kitchens just don't have room for 60+ inches of refrigeration in them.  So , they have no real incentive to push this. 

Offline Bob D.

  • Posts: 1291
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #13 on: September 19, 2019, 06:43 AM »
"They had the opportunity to bring built in fridges to the US.  Just imagine them bringing a ~1200 USD built in fridge to the market when right now the cheapest options are 5-6000 USD.  I think they could have changed the landscape there a lot of they had pushed it instead of caving to the North American norms"

I wonder if this has a lot to do with our (US) way of living and being more mobile. Many families move every few years. They may perceive an expense like a built-in fridge as lost money when they sell. Or that they can't easily take with them what the appliance they like. Not everyone but many people take their fridge, washer, and dryer with them when they move. A stove which is a stand alone appliance doesn't seem to garner the same affection though. A built-in oven and/or cooktop are fixed and stay with the house. Maybe that's not the case elsewhere, I don't know how often people move in other parts of the world.
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It's a table saw, do you know where your fingers are?

Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #14 on: September 20, 2019, 12:09 AM »
"They had the opportunity to bring built in fridges to the US.  Just imagine them bringing a ~1200 USD built in fridge to the market when right now the cheapest options are 5-6000 USD.  I think they could have changed the landscape there a lot of they had pushed it instead of caving to the North American norms"

I wonder if this has a lot to do with our (US) way of living and being more mobile. Many families move every few years. They may perceive an expense like a built-in fridge as lost money when they sell. Or that they can't easily take with them what the appliance they like. Not everyone but many people take their fridge, washer, and dryer with them when they move. A stove which is a stand alone appliance doesn't seem to garner the same affection though. A built-in oven and/or cooktop are fixed and stay with the house. Maybe that's not the case elsewhere, I don't know how often people move in other parts of the world.

I think it is correct that US folks move around far more than people in most countries.  This is an issue in getting people to build better homes and things related to them. People don't want to put money into something they figure they will just move from in a few years. Look how many people have no interest in solar panels, they see it takes 5 years to pay back the cost and they balk at the idea.  Or roofs, a metal roof will last forever but cost more than a fiberglass shingles that will last 15 years, so they stick with the fiberglass shingles cause they figure they won't be around.

People taking appliances with them is a complete mixed bag. I don't think there is a real pattern too it. I think it's more of if they move to a new places that doesn't have something their current one does they take it with them, or maybe they just bought something nice they take it, verses using it as an excuse to upgrade.  Of course appliance size variation makes this even more complex.

I'm sure Europe is varied. I believe in some countries it is or was normal for rental properties to be setup where folks completely take the kitchen with them and put their kitchen back together in the next place. I'm curious how real that is or if it's more of a specialized case at best.

Offline xedos

  • Posts: 60
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2019, 08:52 AM »
I've never seen any calculations that show a 5 year payback on solar panels. Most are in the 25 year range.  But I agree that people don't want at to spend if they aren't going to be around to use something. 

As homes move up the price scale , taking appliances with you when you move becomes non existent.  Additionally, if the appliance is "built in " or attached to the house , it must stay under most rules. 

My experience in Europe is the same.  No one in my orbit ever took appliances or a kitchen with them.  Although I know it happens,  because I've seen a place or two that were empty.  It's also correct that EU members just don't move as often as Americans do, so the sample size is much smaller.

My view is that Americans just have a different view on investment.  We'd rather have a shiny new , or the latest greatest widget; and a lot of them rather than fewer higher quality ones.  Europeans take a longer term view and are willing to invest in better materials.   This seems to be the case with hard and soft goods, food, cars, homes and even tools.

This is after all a Festool forum  - a Euro brand. We're used to spending more for a better product and service (hopefully) when other cheaper shinier newer tools exist from other makers that do the same things.   Most Americans would rather have the $40 black &decker than the $400 Festool.  It just a different mentality. 

Offline Gregor

  • Posts: 1333
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #16 on: September 23, 2019, 06:41 AM »
I think it is correct that US folks move around far more than people in most countries.  This is an issue in getting people to build better homes and things related to them. People don't want to put money into something they figure they will just move from in a few years. Look how many people have no interest in solar panels, they see it takes 5 years to pay back the cost and they balk at the idea.  Or roofs, a metal roof will last forever but cost more than a fiberglass shingles that will last 15 years, so they stick with the fiberglass shingles cause they figure they won't be around.
Unless the average lifetime of the buildings is way too low in general it should make sense for a property owner to go for the persistant option, from it increasing the retail value (as the next owner won't need to fix it again for a foreseeable future).

Offline xedos

  • Posts: 60
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #17 on: September 23, 2019, 12:48 PM »
I think it is correct that US folks move around far more than people in most countries.  This is an issue in getting people to build better homes and things related to them. People don't want to put money into something they figure they will just move from in a few years. Look how many people have no interest in solar panels, they see it takes 5 years to pay back the cost and they balk at the idea.  Or roofs, a metal roof will last forever but cost more than a fiberglass shingles that will last 15 years, so they stick with the fiberglass shingles cause they figure they won't be around.
Unless the average lifetime of the buildings is way too low in general it should make sense for a property owner to go for the persistant option, from it increasing the retail value (as the next owner won't need to fix it again for a foreseeable future).

That seems reasonable but the situation is far more complex than that.  Without a lengthy discussion it boils down to money today.  Most will agree a tile roof will last 2-5x longer than an ashphalt shingle. The cost at install is 5-10x more.  And that money is due today. It takes a loooong time to recover the xtra spend.

Most people will recognize the maintence benefit when purchasing , but are not willing to cough up the 5-10x needed to pay for the original job. Coupled with the frequent moving trend, there's no way for the original purchaser to recoup on their choice to buy the better product. 

Short of it is , there just isn't a return on the investment in better quality products in the USA.


Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 582
Re: IKEA US shelf pin hole pattern is ALMOST 32mm
« Reply #18 on: September 23, 2019, 11:19 PM »
I think it is correct that US folks move around far more than people in most countries.  This is an issue in getting people to build better homes and things related to them. People don't want to put money into something they figure they will just move from in a few years. Look how many people have no interest in solar panels, they see it takes 5 years to pay back the cost and they balk at the idea.  Or roofs, a metal roof will last forever but cost more than a fiberglass shingles that will last 15 years, so they stick with the fiberglass shingles cause they figure they won't be around.
Unless the average lifetime of the buildings is way too low in general it should make sense for a property owner to go for the persistant option, from it increasing the retail value (as the next owner won't need to fix it again for a foreseeable future).

So on average houses are sold in this country every 7 years.  Thus as mentioned, we move around a lot.  This ties into a lot of other issues faced by the US, but that's a whole bigger tangent.

The next issue is houses in the US just simply are not of a good construction, code only plans for a service life of 80 years. And they expect people will heavily renovate it at least once.  The structures are built to be safe, and handle things like earthquakes. But they aren't designed for indefinite life.  If someone is building their home for them, and wants a well built house they certainly can get it, but that's a small bunch of people.  Most is big developments that are built with as cheap as possible.  I don't know if there is the term "builder grade" in Europe, but here its not just a term but a listing on lots of stuff.  It's understood that when you buy a house in development here, you expect to have to replace the roof, windows, doors in a few years, gut the kitchen, and the bathrooms as everything is basically disposable.  What would be considered a pretty normal house in most of Europe would be extreme in the US.  It's a sad state, but it's what it is. 

stats

Note the ~2400 sq ft on new construction, and remember that generally won't include basement, which could add another 1000 sq ft. Looking around it looks like new houses in Germany are around 1200sq ft.  Which is 1950's US.

Big houses with lots of bathrooms means they cheap out along the way.  Not to say all old houses were built well.

This also extends to systems.  People here just tend to accept things like tanked water heaters and replacing them every 10 years, so make sure they are dirt cheap. Same for a furnace, keep them cheap since they replace them a lot.  I have a tankless (from Germany), and people act like it can't work.  It cost a little bit more than a tanked water here, yet takes no space and just works flawlessly.  Then you get to solar panels.  Along the way people got convinced the place they go has to be the roof, but our roofs only last ~20 years, so to put panels there means issues each time you have to replace the roof.  This has helped standing seam metal grow, but it's till very expensive here mainly due to the lack of companies doing it, and skills.  The other part is since we design around fiberglass shingles, architects general make complex roofs that are easy with shingles (even if leak prone), but very hard to do with metal. Lots of valleys and ridges instead of simple wedge or even single slope.  If you design with metal or tile in mind, the cost difference isn't so bad (can even be cheaper). But for existing houses metal roofs can cost 3-4X the price which at that point it doesn't make sense.

The real shame is a lot of timber frame, stone, full masonry houses from pre-1900 in this country will out live most stuff built the last 100 years here.   Apparently about 9% of new construction here is manufactured (advanced "trailer"), in rural areas the percentage is something like 80%.  They are very cheap, but also in the end disposable construction. 

If you stay put, build for what you need, and build/buy when still fairly young. A solid quality house with made with good stuff is fine, but it just doesn't happen. If you spend the money on a solid structure, and systems in the house, when you find yourself having to move in a few years for your job, you will just loose money on the house as people don't pay for what they can't see, nor do appraisers factor in quality.