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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Long time since I have posted. Life has been hectic and wood working got put on the back burner. Recently I had someone contact me as they have had terrible luck with contractors in my area actually getting back to him let alone completing jobs. A friend of mine told him about me and at first I was hesitant to take on the job of building kitchen cabinets for him. He's not in a hurry and lives close by and it definitely helps he is a really nice down to earth guy so I decided what the heck and took the job as long as its within budget. I was upfront and told him I had never built them before but he didn't mind at all and honestly he would be happy with crappy cabinets but that's not what we're about on this site.

At this moment I am trying to figure out a layout for his kitchen. I already had to scrap several of his ideas because they were silly (not to mention probably not up to code)and wouldn't work anyways. We've agreed on the basics of the layout and right now I am figuring what size cabinets I need to make for the spaces allowed. The main things that slow me down aren't the major details, its the finer ones which I will touch base with as this thread progresses. At this moment I have a few questions below.

His stove is going to be between a cabinet (left side) and the wall (right side). Its a 29 7/8" wide stove. How much room of a gap is recommended? We agreed on 1/2 on each side as I am worried about his home being square. Its a very old house. Most of what I read says 30" only leaving 1/8 which doesn't give me any leeway. There is a back door where the door molding is flush with the rest of the wall but later if he decided to add one that stuck out might be an issue sliding the stove in and out but right now it wouldn't be.

On another portion of the kitchen, I have a Lazy Susan corner cabinet, then a dishwasher space, then about 16 inches left to work with. He wants a small cabinet built on the other side of the dishwasher. My question is since it will border a door way how much does a counter top over hand on the end of a cabinet that isn't next to a stove? Is it the standard 1 inch or flush? This will determine how wide a cabinet I build since there isn't a lot of room to work with.

To give you guys an idea of a total layout on the south wall if you were looking at the sink from right to left he will have a stove, a 24" cabinet with nothing but drawers, 48 inch kitchen sink cabinet, and then a 3 foot corner cabinet with a lazy susan. Continuing off that corner cabinet there will be the 24" space for a dish washer, than a cabinet to the left of it ranging from 12-16 inches wide then a doorway.

The only other base cabinets I will install are in the opposite corner from the lazy susan mentioned above. I have about 48 inches to work with on each side of the orner. His fridge is being sunk into the wall (to the right of the corner cabinet) where his old pantry was. I will be using probably maple 3/4 possibly oak plywood. Its pretty much the same price but the reviews for maple were much better than oak ply. If the budget allows I will make raised panel doors, though he seemed ecstatic if I just make shaker doors using plywood.

I will also be making upper cabinets that mirror the lower ones, minus the window above the sink and plus ones above the stove where he will be hanging a microwave.

His budget is around $4,000 for supplies and to pay me. Counter tops aren't included in that. So hopefully that is doable. I'm definitely going to need advice through out the project if the budget allows it so I would appreciate any and all help from you guys.
 

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I had a hard time figuring out the layout of the kitchen.
I have a few questions...

What type of material will be used for the cabinet boxes?
Will they be painted or stained/finished?
What type of construction do you plan to use?
What style for the doors/drawer fronts?
What kind of hardware for the drawers and doors?
Will the upper cabinets go to the ceiling or not?
Crown molding? UGH!!! :frown:

Hmmm...better check the local codes for the stove. Seems to me there is a minimum amount of counter space required so the cook can quickly sit a hot pot down, if you know what I mean. :grin:

I might be able to help with a basic drawing in Sketchup if you can give more details and dimensions of the layout.
 

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There are more reasons than just changing trim on the door to leave the counter top back away from the opening. I would recommend 2-3" at least. Have someone hold anything, even a broomstick flush with it and walk in and out a few times with them holding it there and you'll see what I mean. I generally go with about 1 to 1 1/4" of overhang on the ends but my absolute minimum is 3/4". If you have a situation where the bottom of the wall sticks out farther than up higher then your boxes will be flush at the floor level but have a gap at the top. In this case you may need to slide the counter top farther back to close that gap up so that you don't have problems supporting the splash board so this extra length has to be accounted for in the building (or ordering) of it.

a rough drawing of the layout would be helpful here. I'm nit sure if there are codes requiring counter top next to the stove or not but they are handy. Generally there is just enough room for the stove to slide into the opening. If you are worried about how square the wall are then stand a straight strip of ply against the wall and hold a level against it and see if the top or bottom are leaning. Holding the strip vertical measure from the shortest point to the stove and build to that. Remember that you should be adding a splash board at the back of the counter top and they are meant to hide problems like that, as long as they aren't too severe, and your silicone caulking will hide the minor imperfections on top of that (waves in the wall, also providing they aren't too severe).

If you are using plywood that's okay if you paint them so that the plies don't show. Otherwise you need to band them and if you plan on profiling them after then that means using solid wood strips. That's not a lot of money to do that but it is time consuming.

There is one cardinal rule in building counter tops. Do Not try to wrap the laminate around a corner. I can guarantee you that it will crack in time if you do. I don't think I've ever seen a case where it didn't.

As I said, we really need a fair sketch to be sure of what we are suggesting.
 

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Some reading material for ya...

Hopefully, you will get some inspiration or ideas you can use.

Maragrets kitchen remodel. UGH, it was ugly from start to finish.
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/115506-kitchen-remodel-quote-request-2.html

Blake and JoAnne's kitchen remodel
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/73545-blake-joannes-kitchen-remodel.html

Trudi and Archie's Rental Duplex
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/103106-trudi-archies-rental-duplex.html

Trudi and Archie's Rent House
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/47036-trudi-archies-kitchen-cabinets.html

Our breakfast room buffett
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/44161-custom-buffet.html

Our Kitchen Remodel
http://www.routerforums.com/show-n-tell/47429-our-kitchen-remodel.html
 

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On another portion of the kitchen, I have a Lazy Susan corner cabinet, then a dishwasher space, then about 16 inches left to work with. He wants a small cabinet built on the other side of the dishwasher. My question is since it will border a door way how much does a counter top over hang on the end of a cabinet that isn't next to a stove? Is it the standard 1 inch or flush? This will determine how wide a cabinet I build since there isn't a lot of room to work with.
I built my cabinet so it would end 2 inches from the walk-thru. The counter top guys let the top overhang about 1 1/2 inches. It has a bull nose style edge treatment. No problem walking past it into the kitchen.

And I managed to squeeze in a utensil drawer adjacent to the dishwasher. The cabinet is 14 inches wide. Just barely wide enough to build drawers so the utensil drawer could be utilized. Just a thought.
 

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what is total LF of cabinets.. upper and lower..
how many corners..
what is going on the wall at the stove..
whose buying the hardware and glides..
what type of glides...
what type of finish...
who is doing the finishing..

go to a restore, get cabinets and reface them...
 
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I had a hard time figuring out the layout of the kitchen.
I have a few questions...

What type of material will be used for the cabinet boxes? 3/4 Maple Plywood for carcass and solid maple for faces
Will they be painted or stained/finished? Nothing finalized yet, but I believe stained.
What type of construction do you plan to use? Pocket Holes
What style for the doors/drawer fronts? Depends on the budget, ideally raised panel, but shaker syle if need be.
What kind of hardware for the drawers and doors? Still in the works depends on budget, probably basic door slides, the only thing the person wants are self closing hinges.
Will the upper cabinets go to the ceiling or not? The home owner wants them to go to the ceiling.
Crown molding? UGH!!! :frown: I am not doing the entire kitchen or else I'd be doing it differently. I am actually attaching the cabinets to pre-existing boxes that come down maybe 10 inches from the ceiling. So no crown molding.

Hmmm...better check the local codes for the stove. Seems to me there is a minimum amount of counter space required so the cook can quickly sit a hot pot down, if you know what I mean. :grin: There will be 24 inches of counter top between the sink and the stove so plenty of room there.

I might be able to help with a basic drawing in Sketchup if you can give more details and dimensions of the layout.
I answered most of everything above which should be bolded. As far as lay out I think I pretty much have a decent layout for the base cabinets. I could post up a really rough sketch later so you can get an idea of the lay out. I really have very little room to do much with. At the moment I am still trying to get a good idea on the price. Like I mentioned he only has $4000 to work with which includes paying me.

There are more reasons than just changing trim on the door to leave the counter top back away from the opening. I would recommend 2-3" at least. Have someone hold anything, even a broomstick flush with it and walk in and out a few times with them holding it there and you'll see what I mean. I generally go with about 1 to 1 1/4" of overhang on the ends but my absolute minimum is 3/4". If you have a situation where the bottom of the wall sticks out farther than up higher then your boxes will be flush at the floor level but have a gap at the top. In this case you may need to slide the counter top farther back to close that gap up so that you don't have problems supporting the splash board so this extra length has to be accounted for in the building (or ordering) of it.

a rough drawing of the layout would be helpful here. I'm nit sure if there are codes requiring counter top next to the stove or not but they are handy. Generally there is just enough room for the stove to slide into the opening. If you are worried about how square the wall are then stand a straight strip of ply against the wall and hold a level against it and see if the top or bottom are leaning. Holding the strip vertical measure from the shortest point to the stove and build to that. Remember that you should be adding a splash board at the back of the counter top and they are meant to hide problems like that, as long as they aren't too severe, and your silicone caulking will hide the minor imperfections on top of that (waves in the wall, also providing they aren't too severe).

If you are using plywood that's okay if you paint them so that the plies don't show. Otherwise you need to band them and if you plan on profiling them after then that means using solid wood strips. That's not a lot of money to do that but it is time consuming.

There is one cardinal rule in building counter tops. Do Not try to wrap the laminate around a corner. I can guarantee you that it will crack in time if you do. I don't think I've ever seen a case where it didn't.

As I said, we really need a fair sketch to be sure of what we are suggesting.
I will work on the sketch. I have a few already but they are a mess with tons of measurements on them. I'm by no means an artist. I was hoping to grab some graph paper later today so I could get a better more presentable diagram. As far as counter tops at this point in time its not my responsibility, I am sure they will want me to help but they were taking care of that last time I talked to them. As far as the countertop next to stove. There will counters on the left side of the stove just not the right. To be honest I am not even certain their kitchen could be made to have counters on both sides without moving the sink which just wouldn't work. The space I am working with is rectangular. 139 inches, by maybe 129 inches working around 3 door ways and a fridge that will be built into an old pantry.

I have been watching video after video the past few days of how to make them. It seems pretty straight forward and simple, it all depends on how fancy I want to get. I essentially have free reign on how I want to make them as long as it works within the budget. Though I do like some of those images for myself. I do still need to build my own kitchen. Probably not a popular choice but I am going with a butcher block counter for mine.


what is total LF of cabinets.. upper and lower..
how many corners..
what is going on the wall at the stove..
whose buying the hardware and glides..
what type of glides...
what type of finish...
who is doing the finishing..

go to a restore, get cabinets and reface them...
Its just a rough number but 24 feet base and 25.25 for uppers. Two lower and two upper corners. One upper and one lower with lazy susan. I am responsible for buying all the hardware and lumber minus counter tops. I know I am getting self closing hinges as they requested it. I haven't gotten that far on the glides aspect of the build. They mentioned staining but exact details were not given just yet. Already mentioned it. Getting used cabinets is not what they want, nor are store bought ones. Not sure why, its not my money its just what they want.

...and I modeled my cabinets and workflow after Kris Reynolds.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F3uOkMK4UqM&t=24s
I'll check it out tonight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
One question before I forget. A couple videos mentioned building my face frame 1/4 wider than the carcass on each side, meaning two cabinets butted together would have a 1/2 gap in between. Is this normal? I am guessing this is incase something isn't squared up perfectly to make them easier to install? Here is a really quick sketch I just did. I know its terrible.

On the top right are two door ways sharing one corner. The north most door way is where you enter the kitchen, immediately to the right is where the fridge will be sunk into the wall where the pantry currently is. On the south wall above where it says 36 is where the kitchen window is. On the left side of the sketch is where a door way is going to a back porch. There is approx. 40 inches from door frame to the wall where the stove will go. The numbers are the size of the base cabinets.

The reason the 36 inch on the south wall is where it is, is because I have to center the sink below the window. They already bought the sink, and the smallest cabinet that can be used is a 36 inch.
 

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One question before I forget. A couple videos mentioned building my face frame 1/4 wider than the carcass on each side, meaning two cabinets butted together would have a 1/2 gap in between. Is this normal? I am guessing this is incase something isn't squared up perfectly to make them easier to install?

Yes. Take a minute and go to the big box store and check out the particle board cabinets. Saying that, I build my face frames first. That way I know I can lay them out and they will fit. Then I build the boxes a little smaller. Pocket screws for the frames and to attach the frames to the boxes if they won't be seen. On a couple, I put a 1/4 inch piece of cabinet grade Birch on the side that is seen to cover the pocket holes. Used construction adhesive. :grin:

Here is a really quick sketch I just did. I know its terrible.
Always better than nothing.
Thanks for the details.
 

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Its just a rough number but 24 feet base and 25.25 for uppers. Two lower and two upper corners..
Getting used cabinets is not what they want, nor are store bought ones. Not sure why, its not my money its just what they want.
4,000 won't even begin to cover...
use a big box design program...
get prices w/ and w/o installation...
you'll see...
I said used carcases...
they can't have what they want for 4K from the store..
they want a lot for a little...
 

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And the Sink/Stove side.

Hope this helps you think about what all will be entailed such as...

Drawers or doors. Drawers cost more. A simple mid shelf vs two-three-four drawers. And hardware for them also!

Maple is costly around these parts if that is what you will be using for the face frames.
Maple plywood is fairly expensive also...$50 plus at our local big box stores. Cabinet grade from local lumber yard is more expensive. I used pre-finished Birch for our cabinet carcases. No finishing on the inside required.

So basically, each cabinet would be 34 1/2 inches tall with a toe kick built in. However, if the house is old with an unlevel floor, then it might be better to build ladder frames, install and level, then build the cabinets 31 inches tall so they will sit on top. Regardless, keep the height less than 32 inches so the plywood can be cut and not have a lot of waste. At 34 1/2 inches, other parts can be cut from the off cuts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
4,000 won't even begin to cover...
use a big box design program...
get prices w/ and w/o installation...
you'll see...
I said used carcases...
they can't have what they want for 4K from the store..
they want a lot for a little...
I personally believe there is enough budget for me to buy the supplies and still get paid a decent amount. We shall see.

And the Sink/Stove side.

Hope this helps you think about what all will be entailed such as...

Drawers or doors. Drawers cost more. A simple mid shelf vs two-three-four drawers. And hardware for them also!

Maple is costly around these parts if that is what you will be using for the face frames.
Maple plywood is fairly expensive also...$50 plus at our local big box stores. Cabinet grade from local lumber yard is more expensive. I used pre-finished Birch for our cabinet carcases. No finishing on the inside required.

So basically, each cabinet would be 34 1/2 inches tall with a toe kick built in. However, if the house is old with an unlevel floor, then it might be better to build ladder frames, install and level, then build the cabinets 31 inches tall so they will sit on top. Regardless, keep the height less than 32 inches so the plywood can be cut and not have a lot of waste. At 34 1/2 inches, other parts can be cut from the off cuts.
Thanks a lot for the digital mock up. Its pretty much exactly what it will be minus the cabinet between the sink and stove are going to be 3 drawers. Much better than my quick sketch. I did price Maple and you are right its around $50 a sheet, however if needed I can get 20% off all my purchases at lowes. I did look at Birch but decided on Maple if its doable. The dimensions I am choosing are 22 1/4 by 34 1/2. Though that might change depending on his floor. I also plan to install 1/4 backing to the cabinets. It is if his walls are at 90 degrees or not.
 

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The main issue I see with your sketch is the corners. Corners are always a bit of a problem. With square corners you'll need a hinged door that folds at the corner and one as wide as the sketch shows will be impractical. Some incorporate a lazy susan in them but this drives up cost and usually means you are only storing small items on the lazy susan. The other normal is shelves used to store things like mixers and crock pots where you have to dig out what you want. The cavities are deep and wide but the openings are usually small. That means the boxes on either side will be wider than you show.

I can't get down on my hands and knees anymore to search for things on the back of a lower shelf and my wife is getting close to the same so the last cupboards I built for us has slide out shelves and I would never build anything else now. Basically they are shallow boxes but it would drive up the price noticeably to do that but you get a lot of value for that money. I could post pictures of them tomorrow if you would like to see.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The main issue I see with your sketch is the corners. Corners are always a bit of a problem. With square corners you'll need a hinged door that folds at the corner and one as wide as the sketch shows will be impractical. Some incorporate a lazy susan in them but this drives up cost and usually means you are only storing small items on the lazy susan. The other normal is shelves used to store things like mixers and crock pots where you have to dig out what you want. The cavities are deep and wide but the openings are usually small. That means the boxes on either side will be wider than you show.

I can't get down on my hands and knees anymore to search for things on the back of a lower shelf and my wife is getting close to the same so the last cupboards I built for us has slide out shelves and I would never build anything else now. Basically they are shallow boxes but it would drive up the price noticeably to do that but you get a lot of value for that money. I could post pictures of them tomorrow if you would like to see.
You are misreading the sketch. The 36" measurement is the amount of space it takes up on the wall not the door. The cabinet face would take up around 18 inches. The person wants the corner cabinets. And requested one lazy susan lower and one upper.

Does anyone happen to have a list or a site I can go to that has cut lists for all different sizes of cabinets so I can figure out a cut list for each quickly and get a rough estimate of price?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
One thing I have noticed is it seems pretty common now for people to use a ladder as the toe kick and just put square cabinet boxes on top of it after leveling it off. Would this be the way to go, or should I just build your standard cabinets with toe kicks built into them and use the old shim method? IF I have a separate toe kick ladder I would be worried about what my ends look like. If I use cabinets with the toe kick built into them I would be worried about a gap from wall or floor being out of square on ends but I would guess I could hide it with some trim/quarter round or something?
 

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One thing I have noticed is it seems pretty common now for people to use a ladder as the toe kick and just put square cabinet boxes on top of it after leveling it off. Would this be the way to go, or should I just build your standard cabinets with toe kicks built into them and use the old shim method? IF I have a separate toe kick ladder I would be worried about what my ends look like. If I use cabinets with the toe kick built into them I would be worried about a gap from wall or floor being out of square on ends but I would guess I could hide it with some trim/quarter round or something?
Whats a ladder? I hate separate toes on cabinets. Harder to install...One piece easy install...You are correct with trimming the gap with shoe at the bottom...
 

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The last kitchen we remodeled was in a house built on blocks in the 1950's. Nothing level or plumb. I decided early on to use the ladder frame for the toe kick. There was 3/4 inch difference in level from one side of the kitchen to the other. Everything had to be level because the granite top would be on three sides (U shaped kitchen).

It was much easier to install and level the frame vs installing the cabinets one at a time and leveling them. Since the floor was wooden, I screwed brackets to the frame sides and the floor. That made for a sturdy platform for the cabinets to sit on.
 

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