Find the ideal file cabinet?
November 19, 2005 3:15 PM   Subscribe

Help me find a good filing cabinet?

My criteria for the perfect filing cabinet:
(1) Good quality - it won't fall apart like my current cabinet did.
(2) Doesn't require hanging file folders - has an adjustable backstop so I can just use manila folders.
(3) Not hideously ugly - neither made of metal with ugly enamel finish, nor covered with too much decorative crap.

My attempts to find one at regular stores and via google searches have totally failed.
posted by betterton to Shopping (9 answers total)
It sounds to me like you need to visit an antique store or a used furniture dealer. Where I live (Portland, OR), there are a couple of seedy looking places that call themselves Desks, Inc. and similar things. They sell old office furniture. It's generally in good shape and rather inexpensive. Antique stores would also have what you're after, but you'd probably pay a premium because you're ostensibly buying a collectible. (I have a love/hate relationship with antique stores.)
posted by jdroth at 4:00 PM on November 19, 2005

Might be really pricey, but places like Room & Board might have some nicer filing cabinet-y things (at least nicer than, say, Target or Staples...which seem to focus on the beige metal cabinet design)
posted by tpl1212 at 4:39 PM on November 19, 2005

Levenger has nice filing cabinets, but I don't remember if they meet your requirement #2.
posted by jamesonandwater at 4:54 PM on November 19, 2005

Try, with the caveat that if you want a piece that has to get shipped you could get hammered on delivery charges.

If you're in SW CT, I've had good luck at Stamford Housewrecking, though the last time I was there was ten years ago.
posted by Opposite George at 5:20 PM on November 19, 2005

I was looking for the exact same thing (starting GTD?), and I found an old 4-drawer wooden hanging file cabinet on craigslist and loaded it with manilla folders and used some small cardboard boxes to prop up the folders. There's probably some better way to do it, but it's been working pretty well and it looks very good in my room, particularly for $20.
posted by anonymoose at 6:12 PM on November 19, 2005

I'm in the same boat. I'm just waiting for the right deal to come my way. I'm starting GTD as well. Good luck!
posted by Ekim Neems at 7:01 PM on November 19, 2005

If you can find a modern cabinet that meets your needs except it's butt ugly it would be a fairly simple task to clad it with wood.
posted by Mitheral at 6:40 AM on November 20, 2005

jdroth's got a good idea ... don't forget thrift stores like goodwill, either ... that's where i've gotten most of my filing cabinets
posted by pyramid termite at 1:16 PM on November 20, 2005

If you're looking for an industrial-strength filing cabinet, you'll be hard pressed to find one at Staples or Office Max. Look for office supply companies that sell commercial-grade products. You might want to start by looking at Hon.

Of course, heavy-duty filing cabinets are pricey, and I wasn't willing to pay several hundred dollars for one. If you live near a university, chances are the school holds regular surplus sales. I found a fire-proof beast in great condition for less than $50 at the local campus surplus sale.
posted by lewistate at 2:09 PM on November 20, 2005

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