Kitchen cabinet design question


I'm looking to build wall cabinets for a kitchen with an 8' ceiling that go (essentially) all the way to the ceiling (i.e. no soffit). At first glance, this would seem to dictate 42" cabinets. However, I'm wondering what those experienced do in this case. I'm planning to us a 2" face frame with a 1/2" overlay door. I'm also going to be putting up crown molding, and it seems that the 1.5" left on the top is going to be pretty tight for crown molding. I'm considering either of the following (or perhaps a combination). I'm thinking about using 3" stock for the top rails to provide a wider space to place the crown molding. I'm also considering leaving an inch of space between the cabinet and the ceiling to a) account for any variation out of level in the ceiling and b) provide additional space to fit in the crown molding. If I left additional space at the top, I would, of course, shorten the cabinet accordingly to leave the same amount of space between the countertop and the bottom of the wall cabinets. Which way would you go?
And since I have your attention, I know that stock kitchen cabinets are generally 12" deep. Do any of you bump that out an inch or two?
todd
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I would check to see how far out of level the ceiling is before getting to far into this. That may help you decide.
Probably be nice to have a slightly deeper cabinet. Though keep in mind that they kind of get in the way of the countertop work surface so don't make them too deep unless you also bump out the base cabinets.
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wrote:

You're on the right track. Stop the cabinets 1" short of the ceiling, then balance top rail width, crown width, and cabinet height to maintain the same 1-1/2" face frame reveal all around the door.

Lately I've been bumping by an inch. The additional space gained is much better for the larger bowls and dinner plates, and doesnt seem to hamper access to the counter top at all.
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"Todd Fatheree"wrote in message

molding.
Depending upon the molding, and you won't be able to use to tall a molding or you will throw your design with 42" cabinets out of balance, that's plenty of room .... more than you need in actual practice. Draw it out to scale, or mock a full size profile up, and see how it looks to you.

to
Not necessary, but suit yourself. The trend in the more expensive homes, most which have at least 10' ceilings, is a _tall_ look in kitchen uppers, and that will certainly add to that perception.

It is certainly recommended, due to any variation in ceiling height/level.

You should do that in any case ... industry standards in that particular dimension are there for a good reason and bucking them can make resale a problem.

Since you will not have room at the top to use exterior fasteners to fasten to the wall (fasteners at the top of kitchen cabinets are most important for strength over time, IME), you would do well to insure that you have good blocking in the walls, and solid tack strips built into the cabinet backs, so that you can get a good join to the wall.

Not really necessary, but suit yourself without deviating too far from standard practice as it can bite you in the butt in unforeseen circumstances when you do.
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Todd Fatheree wrote:

NP with the height, others have commented but keep in mind that only about the lower half will be totally "reachable" without a step ladder and plan your shelves accordingly. ____________

I haven't but can't hurt.
Personally, I (wife) only uses upper cabinets for little used stuff...dishes and the like are in lower cabinets fitted with pull out shelves.
-- dadiOH ____________________________
dadiOH's dandies v3.06... ...a help file of info about MP3s, recording from LP/cassette and tips & tricks on this and that. Get it at http://mysite.verizon.net/xico
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Before you start! Why are you doing this? To save money? make a point of your skill? or design a kitchen that fits?
Level the ceiling at all cost. It would be easier to level the area above the cabinets then dicking around with trim that may Never look right! Examine what cabinets will store what and build them for the family. I'm 6'2" and the wife is 5'6" realize the difference in reach having space out of is valueless. Unless you love hearing Honey can you get this! The focus besides storage area should also be the work area, bumping the cabinets out another inch or two may rob more valuable workspace. Why bump them out for 2 large plates and one bowl? I'd also avoid face framing and only consider that when re-modeling the cabinets.
The last thing I learned is to budget yourself first then re-evaluate your costs. I was going to bust my nut and build all new cabinets. I looked carefully at costs and time. When you sell the place in most all cases those beautiful cabinets will never really be appreciated again. I decided that it was best for me to buy Ikea Cabinets, and make the doors out of fine Maple. BUT! It also allowed me to save enough money (time is money too) to buy the Silestone Countertop I wanted! This also allowed me to focus more time, money and effort on the wet bar to show my skill.
...to do it again, I'd use 2 maybe 3 less cabinets on the wall and focus my storage area in another large pantry.

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Because I want to.

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There isn't a ceiling at the moment. This is for a new addition. I expect the ceiling to be pretty flat but there is no such thing as perfect. We've spent a fair amount of time discussing what cabinets will be used for what. One of the main reasons I'm using taller cabinets is that I hate soffits (almost as much as frameless cabinetry) and my wife hates the idea of dusting the top of a cabinet. Hence, they go all the way to the ceiling.

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I've already explained to my wife that after we do this addition, we're not going anywhere for a very long time.
todd
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I've almost finished but I'm doing Kitchen, Dining Room and right now the Living Room, Wet Bar and Hallway!
Been doing this since May and Hopefully finished by Thanksgiving.
No ceiling , that makes it east then just shim each beam to level. If you have a corner wall 90 degrees makes cabinet mounting easy. I have a modern style kitchen and went with frameless simply because of style using a lot of Aluminum and Glass doors for the show cabinets and Maple for the storage ones! The cabinets are 39" tall and I left 2.5 inches of space which I placed a 2" piece of Maple painted gloss black across the top, I left the .5 inch for back lights I have hidden.
Examine the French Cleaf for mounting. I did discover that dealing with 36", 30" and 24" cabinets. you'll miss some studs! That was one of the reasons I went with Ikea, I liked their mounting rails but I thought the cabinet backing board sucked so I simply ripped a 5/8ths faced maple ply for the back of the cabinets and just covered the bolt with a square of maple. The glass doors really show off the maple piece in the back and the white interior keeps things bright!
Also if you are doing them Stain or Paint? You really need a load of clamps and really have to watch square! You also may consider framing last!
Hey you can also cheat I found out later that there was a mill locally that will cut anything and everything to spec. I had them do some of the wainscoting... The price wasn't bad and it saved me about 2 days!
Well todd Good luck and have fun!

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