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How to measure for dovetail drawers

how to measure drawersProbox offers bespoke dovetail drawers to suit your project. Before you order them you need to measure up your unit and work out what size you need.

Many of our customers ring us up with a list of measurements or order online, but if you are new to dovetail drawers it’s important to make sure you have the right measurements when you place your order. Customers are welcome to ring us and discuss your project if you have any questions at all.

The details we need when you place your order;

  • Drawer width or internal carcass width
  • Drawer height and depth
  • The timber required
  • Runner type and length ( see our range of runners)

Any special features like handle cut outs, shaped sides, unlacquered, traditional dovetails

Tips for measuring up your drawers

  • Work out if your is drawer in-frame or lay on
  • Allow space for your runners

Follow this Probox pdf that shows instructions with diagrams for measuring up your drawers

Click here to order online


Dovetail Drawers VS Standard

dovetail drawers vs standard

What is a dovetail drawer? 

Dovetail drawers are typically solid wood drawers with a dovetail joint on each corner.

What are the advantages of a dovetail drawer?

Customers that are building bespoke kitchens or furniture often opt for dovetail drawers, this is for many reasons, here are a few;

  • A dovetail joint is very strong and will outperform most other joint options, including dowel joints or a biscuit joint. 
  • A dovetail joint in a drawer for many years has been known as a sign of a high level of craftsmanship and it has become a specified requirement for many kitchen manufactures when they build a bespoke kitchen. 
  • The dovetail drawers at Probox are made from select solid timber and they are built to last, the build quality is designed to match that of a high end bespoke kitchen or furniture piece. 

What is a dovetail joint? 

A dovetail joint is a joint that holds together the sides of the drawer. It has interlocking tails on one side and pins on the other. When they are fitted together and hot glued they create a high tensile strength, this means the joint is very hard to pull apart. 

Standard drawers 

Standard drawers are often cheaper to make, but the build quality is not as good. Drawers with dowel joints are often used for flat pack furniture or bedroom furniture. Drawers with dowel joints haven’t the same strength and durability as drawers with dovetail joints and do not demonstrate the same craftsmanship or possess the same quality. 


New Product: Classic Swift Oak Cutlery Insert

Classic Swift Oak Cutlery Insert UK

Our customers find the Classic Swift dovetail drawer range to be very convenient when they require standard sized, quality oak drawers delivered from stock. We have now further developed this service to also offer a Classic Swift cutlery insert.

The Classic Swift cutlery insert is made from solid oak timber and is available to work with lay-on or in-frame drawers.

Probox stocks a solid oak cutlery insert that suits lay-on drawers is 621(w) x 412(d) x 60(h) and a solid oak cutlery insert that suits in-frame drawers is 585(w) x 412(d) x 60(h).

Daniel Wells, Sales Director at Probox, commented “These versatile inserts allow you to adapt the insert by cutting it to shorten it to fit the drawer perfectly, or removing the horns on one or both ends”.

The Classic Swift cutlery insert is now being added to Classic Swift dovetail drawer orders by kitchen designers that are working on fast turnaround projects or designers that are happy to work with set sizes so that they can enjoy a cost saving and a quicker turnaround. 

As per the picture, the Classic Swift cutlery insert has three vertical cutlery areas and one horizontal utensil area. 

The Classic Swift cutlery insert is available to buy online or you can call 01280 825776 to speak to our sales team.  Orders have a 1-2 day turnaround time. 

We also offer a bespoke made solid timber cutlery tray in a range of finishes, for more information click here 


Probox cater for a range of kitchen styles with dovetail drawers in a selection of materials

kitchen Dovetail Drawer

Probox create the range drawers in a wide range of materials, including oak, walnut, beech, maple and birch ply.

All dovetail drawer options (except birch ply) are made using A grade select solid/ hardwood timber.  Hardwood offers a pristine finish and due its nature is very durable and resistant to wear and tear.

Solid oak is the most popular timber choice, partly because many kitchens are made using oak and also because oak offers a neutral tone that’s often used with painted panels, high gloss kitchen styles cabinets in UK or other timbers.

Solid walnut is the most premium solid timber option and offers a dramatic dark tone, this can be used to create contrast in a kitchen design. This luxurious timber choice has been traditionally associated with chateaus libraries or high end wine cellars and by choosing walnut customers can incorporate this sophistication into the center of their home.

For a paler scheme beech or maple are other alternatives to oak. Beech is strong and durable with a close straight grain, polishes well and offers a small cost saving on oak.

Maple is more durable than oak and is one of the hardest woods suitable for kitchens, standing up to dings and dents, maple is priced slightly higher than oak.

All the Probox solid wood options offer a premium, durable and long lasting result, the choice of timber can be down to customer preference, colour matching, creating contrast or budget.

Birch ply is an economy alternative and is often used in very modern kitchens and also for bedroom or office furniture, this BB grade wood offers a 25% saving on solid oak.  Birch ply is constructed using solid birch veneers, with a quality birch face on either side and offers an extremely stable and solid material.

As well as bespoke made drawers Probox also offers ‘Classic Swift’ a range of solid oak drawers in a range of sizes, these drawers are hand crafted with dovetail joints are stored ready for dispatch. Classic Swift offers a cost and time saving for those that need dovetail drawers that match the sizes within the range drawers (details on Probox website). Another drawer solution at Probox is ‘Eko’ in oak finish, these are drawer kits are made from of quality oak finish wood with dowel joints. Each pack comes with all the components needed to make the range drawers, including screws and assembly instructions.


Product Focus: Bespoke Walnut Dovetail Drawers

 Bespoke Walnut Dovetail Drawers

Walnut is an increasingly popular, luxurious timber choice for kitchen designers. This deep and dark wood species has been traditionally associated with chateaus libraries or high end wine cellars. By choosing walnut drawers customers can incorporate this sophistication into the centre of their home.

Walnut is very long-standing and this hardwood species is a great choice for surviving the everyday life of a kitchen. Probox use A grade solid timber to make walnut dovetail drawers.

Walnut is sometimes used throughout a kitchen design or coupled with fresh white cabinets, bringing a craft, traditional element to an otherwise minimal kitchen. Walnut also twins with silver, bronze or painted designs, as well as many other options.

Walnut dovetail drawers are made bespoke, with options such as notched to accept runners, shaped sides, stepped into edges, handle cut out front.  These options also apply to oak, beech, maple and birch ply bespoke dovetail drawers.

FSC Walnut Dovetail Drawers

Probox also offer runners, with a wide selection to choose from including brands such as Grass and Blum.

Some walnut kitchen designers specify FSC walnut dovetail drawers and we can provide this, as Probox is FSC certified.


Probox expands dovetail drawer branding and personalisation service with laser engraving

Solid Timber Drawer Boxes Online Uk

Probox is the UK’s leading supplier of solid timber drawer boxes and has been a trusted partner of the kitchen and furniture industry for over 15 years. Probox has expanded its CNC router cutting service to now also include laser etching and offer laser engraving service in UK.

The new laser machine applies precision etching, this is often used to apply branding to dovetail drawers, by marking the side of select drawers with the kitchen or furniture manufacturer’s logo.

To have a logo laser engraved the customer just needs to supply their logo, as a pdf or jpeg along with their dovetail drawer order, they should also specify the size of the logo needed and give an indication of logo positioning on the drawer box. As part of the order process a pdf proof is supplied for customer approval.

Daniel Wells, Director at Probox, commented “Laser engraving is a popular engraving style for branding and personalising solid wood kitchen drawers. We are confident this new engraving machine investment will benefit our customers, enabling them to enhance their drawer boxes with high quality, precision engraving”.

The laser engraving bed is 1200 x 900 mm, which is more than large enough to cater for the branding, personalisation and labelling of dovetail drawers and kitchen accessories.  The existing CNC router cutter is 2440 x 1220mm, with an overflow CNC router machine that’s 600 x 1200mm.

Daniel added “By laser engraving the sides of dovetail drawers, kitchen manufactures can discreetly communicate that the kitchen was hand crafted by their particular company and brand the kitchen as a high quality bespoke design made by craftsmen and add to the perceived value of the kitchen.”

The laser and the router CNC machines can also cut shapes and the engraving is 3 axis.

Daniel added “We expect to run lots of kitchen and furniture manufacture logos on the new wood laser engraver as this has been the most popular request on our CNC engraving router, but we are also  open to any design ideas with cutting or engraving to enhance a joinery project”


Rowood handmade kitchens and joinery partner with Probox for dovetail drawers

Kitchen Bespoke Dovetail Drawers Online

Rowood Ltd is one of Oxfordshire’s premier specialist carpentry companies, based in Brize Norton, Rowood completes a wide range of carpentry projects, including kitchens & joinery, bespoke furniture, wooden windows and doors and etc.

Rowood has over 25 years’ experience and has built up a high profile client portfolio across Oxfordshire and the Cotswolds based on the excellence of their joinery. Rowood works with private individuals, companies with property portfolios, country estates and receives joinery commissions from house builders and developers.

Rowood use Probox to create their bespoke dovetail drawers, to be used in kitchen and furniture units.  Nick Roland, Director at Rowood Ltd commented “Probox produce very high quality solid timber dovetail drawers in the bespoke sizes we specify, this allows us to release internal resource to complete other joinery work and deliver projects in a timely manner”.

Nick added “We won’t compromise on quality and that’s why we would only use Probox as a bespoke joinery partner. I know we are not alone, as many other cabinet makers partner with Probox for dovetail drawers, with fantastic results”.

Rowood create bespoke kitchens oxfordshire, often in high end Cotswold stone or unique properties. When they draw up the project, if they use Probox drawers, they send a bespoke brief over and the drawers arrive at the workshop around 10 days later, ready for installation together with drawer runners.

Daniel Wells, Director at Probox commented “Probox work with many cabinet makers and bespoke kitchen producers, our specialist equipment, over 15 years’ experience and tradesman craftsmanship combine to make us the leading UK supplier of solid timber dovetail drawers”.

Probox offer bespoke dovetail drawers in a range of solid timbers, including oak, walnut, maple beech and birch ply. Probox also supply standard sized oak dovetail drawers that can be ordered from stock.


10 reasons why Probox dovetail drawers are such high quality

Wooden Dovetail Drawers Online Uk#1 When a customer orders Probox dovetail drawers online or places an order over the phone each drawer project is drawn up and quoted by an experienced team member, this ensures that the drawers always match the customer’s requirements.

#2 Quality draws start with the timber selection process and Probox only uses A grade solid wood timber. Before the manufacturing process starts the timber is sorted and any wood that doesn’t appear to meet our high standard we discard.

#3 Probox is FSC certified and sources FSC grade timber for all customers that require this specification.  The FSC logo is an assurance that the timber comes from a FSC certified forest and meets FSC standards.

#4 Probox only use single staves on drawers up to 150mm high, beyond that they are matched with quality in mind.

#5 Dovetail joints are precision cut using CNC controlled machinery, providing variable pitch dovetails, allowing for total freedom for the drawer heights. Probox can produce precision ‘traditional’ dovetails with pins wider than the sockets, this makes the dovetail joints more hand crafted in appearance.

#6 All Probox dovetail drawers are hand finished and quality checked buy a dedicated team.

#7 The drawers are hand sprayed with a 10% lacquer for lasting durability. Alternative lacquers are available and some customers ask for the drawers to be produced without lacquer so they can apply their own finish.

#8 A selection of drawer runners are available to buy on the Probox website and have been hand selected for their brand quality, with innovative options such as soft close and press to open.

#9 Probox offers an engraving service. Kitchen and furniture manufacturers often use this to apply their logo onto the sides of the drawers as a mark of the quality of their craftsmanship.

#10 All drawers are carefully individually packed before despatch, this ensures that no damage occurs on route to the customer.

Call 01280 825776 or click here to buy online


Premium kitchen manufacturers partner with Probox for quality dovetail drawers

 Kitchen Solid Timber Drawer Boxes Online UK

Probox is the UK’s leading supplier of solid timber drawer boxes and a trusted partner of the kitchen  manufacturers UK and furniture industry for over 15 years. Probox use only the highest quality hardwood to make dovetail drawers, guaranteeing single staves on drawers up to 150mm high and offer walnut, oak, ash, beech and maple. Probox uses A grade solid timber, each piece of timber is individually selected with quality in mind.

Probox also offers Birch Ply, this is BB grade and presents a 25% saving compared to solid oak, birch ply is often used for bedroom furniture drawers and for projects where budget won’t allow for solid wood drawers.

Specialist equipment and tradesmen craftsmanship are combined during the manufacturing process to achieve the precision and attention to detail required to produce Probox drawers.

The front, back and sides of the drawers are made from solid timber, the veneered bases are grooved into all four sides for maximum strength. The boxes can be pre-drilled and notched to accept runners.

Dovetail joints are precision cut using CNC controlled machinery, providing variable pitch dovetails, allowing for total freedom for the drawer heights. Probox can produce precision ‘traditional’ dovetails with pins wider than the sockets, this makes the dovetail joints more hand crafted in appearance.

Probox also has an engraving service, many kitchen furniture and manufacturers UK apply branding to the sides of their drawers with a company logo. Personalisation is also popular, for example applying children’s names to furniture or labelling kitchen drawers online I.e cutlery, or utensils.

All boxes are sprayed with a high quality lacquer for long lasting durability and carefully packed before delivery.

For those that need off the shelf high quality dovetail drawers in standard sizes, Probox has Classic Swift, solid oak dovetail drawers manufacturers can be ordered online or over the phone and are dispatched within 2-3 days.

Talk to Probox today about your drawer box and kitchen kitchen manufacturers uk accessory requirements.

Call our experienced customer service advisors about your next project on T: 01280 825776  [email protected]


Interview with Ella from Probox : Find out the answers to typical questions from buyers

Ella from sales team at Probox team

Ella from sales team at Probox team has answered common questions from customers ordering dovetail drawers. If you have any other questions feel free to call

01280825776 or email [email protected] 

Q1# When I call Probox, what info do I need to know so I can get my job quoted up?

To get a basic quote we need the width, depth and height of the box(s) needed and the material you want them in. If you can also let us know if you require notching and drilling to suit your runners and any other details you may be after, for example a handle cut-out in the front or engraving on the boxes.

Q2# How long does it take to get a quote?

Generally we get our free, no obligation quotes back to you in the same day, but if you require a quote urgently please contact a member of our team who will be happy to speed up the process.

Q3# Can I buy runners with my drawers?

We can supply runners with our drawer boxes and you can also buy the runners by themselves!  We can supply Blum, Grass and Hettich runners ( available to buy online)

Q4# What is your turn around time?

Our lead time is 10 working days for our standard materials (birch plywood, beech, oak, ash, maple, walnut), if you require drawer boxes in a different material then we will advise the lead time on the quote.

Q5# Can I have drawers that are made from FSC certified timber?

We can offer FSC certified timber, please specify when you send through your enquiry.

Q6# What other items do you make at Probox?

We can also make cutlery tray inserts, spice racks, handled trays and solid Oak drawer fronts.

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