Make Your Own Snipe Hinges
Learn how to forge your own period-appropriate snipe hinges without any specialty tools
Cotter-pin or “snipe” hinges, common in Colonial furniture, are a simple way to attach the lids of boxes. They can be easily made from 1/8-in. steel rod available at any hardware store. In this short video, furniture maker Andrew Hunter uses a conventional propane torch to heat the rod before hammering the ends into flat points, and bending it around a length of 3/16-in. rod to form each of the two halves of this iconic hinge.
Attaching snipe hinges requires two angled holes to be drilled in both the lid as well as the rear wall of the box—or in this case—blanket chest. Then it’s simply a matter of bending the ends of each half and clinching them down into the wood.