Kitchen Cabinetry Part II: It’s All in the Foundation!
Chmura Custom Woodworks: Understanding Kitchen Cabinetry Part II
We’ve talked about the three classifications of kitchen cabinets: stock, semicustom, and custom. The three classifications of cabinets can also be easily carried over and apply to bathroom cabinets as well. But for now, let’s maintain our focus on kitchen cabinets. We will talk more about bathroom remodeling and bathroom cabinets later.
When it comes to purchasing kitchen cabinets, it pays to purchase cabinets that are well-built and constructed from quality materials and hardware.
In this post we will discuss the foundation of your kitchen and your kitchen cabinets, literally and figuratively, the kitchen cabinet box or base. This will be a relatively short post. However, we will go into greater detail in an upcoming video. In the upcoming video, Rick Chmura will explain and demonstrate the ins and outs of the kitchen cabinet base.
Then, we will add an additional post to fill in the gaps and talk more about the various levels of cabinet foundations (e.g., stock, semicustom, and custom) and the advantages or disadvantages of each. We will also discuss the various components and their differences…we hope you find it interesting.
From a construction point of view, manufactured kitchen cabinets are classified in one of two ways:
- Traditional Face Frame Cabinets
- Frameless Cabinets
Generally speaking, the traditional face frame cabinets have a fixed (i.e., rigid) framework generally constructed with ¾” solid wood that is secured to the front of a particleboard or plywood box.
Face frames produce square drawer and door openings, adding additional strength to the kitchen cabinet. Depending on the type of hardware used for hinges, either a portion of or the entire cabinet frame may be visible when the drawers and doors are installed.
In frameless kitchen cabinets, overlay drawer and door fronts will hide the cabinet box. These kitchen cabinet boxes are inexpensive and easy to clean. The frameless cabinets are often held together with glue and dowels and are covered with a layer of thin plastic laminate.
Most kitchen cabinets are made up of the following components:
- The Carcase, box or case includes the sides, back, and floor. Depending on the level (i.e., stock, semicustom, custom), the materials, thickness, and construction will vary. We will cover each of these in depth in upcoming blog posts.
- A Shelf (Shelves) may be fixed or adjustable (often with plastic pins or metal clips), again depending on the level of customization, and the shelf or shelves will run the full depth of the cabinet base.
- A Drawer (Drawers) will vary in construction from 3/8” fiberboard to 5/8” hardwood, the wood or fiberboard thickness varying with the level of customization. Drawer construction and drawer slides will also vary.
- The Door (Doors) is the visual focal point of the kitchen cabinet and will often reflect the overall quality of construction and the level of customization. The door may range from a wood-veneer panel with fixed hinges to a traditionally mortised and tenoned door frame hung with decorative butt hinges.
Once again, we will cover each of these components in greater depth.
Ultimately, there is a lot to consider when taking on a kitchen remodeling project. It is wise to do your research and to consult an authority. It is very important for you to find someone knowledgable in kitchen customization and remodeling, someone who knows custom kitchen cabinetry, an expert to help you if you are not a do-it-yourselfer…and sometimes even if you are.
Chmura Custom Woodworks has been helping Northern Ohio homeowners and businesses with their custom woodworking needs for more than a decade. Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions or if you would like a free, in-home consultation.
Additionally, if you would like to see us cover something here on our blog, please let us know. Or, if you like something you’ve read, please feel free to comment. We would love to hear from you!
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Rick and Bryan Chmura
Chmura Custom Woodworks
Serving Northeast Ohio for more than a decade!
PS, If you haven’t read the first post in this series yet, Custom Kitchen Remodeling: Understanding Kitchen Cabinetry Part I, simply click on the link and it will take you there. Thanks again for taking the time to visit and we hope you will stop back next week and check out the video on this topic.