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Homemade chests or cabinetry can be some of the most rewarding projects a woodworker can produce. But if your potential client is a youngun’ with fingers just begging to be smashed, you have to consider their safety when designing your project. For all those items out there with closing doors or lids,¬†Rockler has developed these stay-open hinges.

These torsion hinges are designed to be used with standard 3/4″ stock, making them ideal for many different cabinet, chest, or wardrobe designs. The greatest part is their operation – they open easily and stay open at whatever angle you leave them. This prevents unintended slamming or dropping of the lid when little fingers may be in the way.

Rockler machines these hinges from heavy-duty cast-zinc and they are available in 30, 40, and 60 inch-pound torsion ratings.

Lid Stay Torsion Hinges [Rockler]
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14 Responses to Lid Stay Torsion Hinges

  1. Jim German says:

    Kids have it so easy these days with their fancy hinges. I ahve fond memories of the lid on my toy box slamming onto my fingers many a time as I tried to retrieve the Lego’s stashed within.

  2. Wayne D. says:

    Hah hah!! I remember the EXACT same thing! My Dad took my old toy box he made for me when I was little and refinished it. It is now sitting in the bedroom storing quilts. NOW it has a soft close lid!

  3. kdp says:

    Simple – don’t make the lid hinged. Instead, make it oversized with a recessed bottom that fits squarely on top of the box.

  4. NickC says:

    They also make a dedicated Toy Box Lid Support for only $7.

  5. Zathrus says:


    Which just means the kid will take the top off and NEVER put it back on. It just becomes another piece of clutter at that point. May as well just forget the lid entirely.

  6. Electron says:

    “…just becomes another piece of clutter …”

    Spoken like someone with kids of his own, Zathrus. I had exactly the same thought.

  7. Matt says:

    @ NickC

    That fancy lid-stay-open-thingy looks like a good spot to cut a finger badly on a toy box, just my two cents though.

  8. Zathrus says:


    Uh, exactly how would you cut anything with that hinge?

    The hinges in this article are nifty, but they’re also vastly more expensive. Heck, they’re more expensive than either toy box we have (one Ikea; one deeply discounted from Zany Brainy when they were going out of business).

    The ones that NickC linked to have been pretty much the standard toybox design for a decade or so.

  9. Matt says:

    Looks kinda like that thing that teachers use to cut big pieces of paper, looks like it might jurt if your little fingers were touching it when the box closes…

  10. Matt says:


  11. eric says:

    I think matt meant the lid stay in another comment, not the hinge in the article

    NickC Says:
    June 25th, 2009 at 2:03 pm
    They also make a dedicated Toy Box Lid Support for only $7.

  12. kdp says:


    My thinking is that if the kid picks up his or her own toys, then they’d likely put the lid on. If they aren’t, then whomever is picking them up will put it on.

  13. Zathrus says:


    Yes, I know that’s what Matt was talking about. And if he thinks it would act in any way, shape, or form like a guillotine then he must have some really dull blades in his shop. Again, these things have been standard issue for at least a decade, if not more.


    You must not have kids…

  14. kdp says:

    I think you’re missing my point. I have an eleven month old who does not pick up his toys. His mom and I do. We would be the ones to pick up the lid as well.

    Now the assumption I’m making is that if (when) he’s mature enough to put his own toys away, he’ll be mature enough to put the lid on the box right after.

    I don’t see a scenario where he’s responsible enough to put the toys in the box, but not enough to put on the lid. A kid whose going to do one is likely to do the other.

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