Kitchens..... Schreiber and Homebase....

Hi All,
The next big project is to replace our kitchen.
I'm doing the floor tiling, the wall tiling, electrics, and plumbing myself.
We have been to Homebase and looked at Shreiber Kitchens
We were given two quotes, supply only as I can get my own kitchen fitter and a supply and fit quote using homebase supplied permanent/contractors.
Digging around the net it appears that Schreiber and Homebase have an exclusivity agreement... i.e. Shreiber supply only to Homebase and only Homebase sell Shreiber kitchens along with hygena etc.
Now we have never used homebase before for a big project, and we have never had a Shreiber kitchen before.
So we have several questions:
What are Homebase like with kitchen projects? What are Shreiber like with kitchen products? Whats the standard of workmanship like, i.e are they exact, pay attention to detail or do they do it as quick as possible and dissappear if we go for supply & fit? Will there be buck passing between fitter and Homebase/Shreiber if we have supply only? Whats aftercare like from Homebase? Whats aftercare like from Shreiber? ARe Homebase or Shreiber potential future victims of liquidation/administration given teh current recession? (we plan to use a credit card anyway for extra protection)
We've already found that we can source appliances cheaper ourselves than getting them from Homebase, saving £1200.
Homebase quoted £15 quid each for the door handles, we have found the same ones elsewhere for less than £2 each!
In addition, Homebase supply laminate worktops only up to 3m long, we need a 4.2m long one if we wish to avoid joints, so we were quoted for Maia worktops (the seams can be fused apparently), it appears to be like corian sheet on a chipboard former rather than solid corian. This was almost £2k. Searching on the net indicates that we can get worktops up to something line 4.8m long! (we were trying to avoid worktop joints/seams)
We've been told its 4 weeks for delivery after placing & paying for order. That troubles me a bit as if somethings missing or we need an extra panel etc, we could have to wait a further four weeks for snagging works to be sorted out.....
We had been to Been & Queued (atrocious product knowledge and poor customer service), been to Howdens (the units were of questionable build and looked cheap & nasty)
We have not tried Wickes yet.
I have fitted kitchens before, I've been pleased with Sheraton, but unfortunately the local Independent kitchen retailer has stopped doing kitchens and only focusses on bathrooms now.
We are going to another independent to get a quote for Sheraton.
Incidentally, Homebase are doing a 60% off all kitchen materials provided we pay a deposit of £250 by 8.00pm Tuesday 7th January. Apparently they can adjust the final order should we make changes, and will hold the offer open on the final supply or supply and fit quotes. (there is no discount on labour though on the supply & fit)
I look forward to hearing from those of you who have direct & recent experience of Homebase and Shreiber.....
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On Sun, 05 Jan 2014 22:55:04 +0000 Stephen wrote :

When I did my last UK kitchen, the tops came from Stantons, Byfleet http://www.stantonsuk.co.uk/ . The choice of colours was amazing and they did all sorts of special finishing, not just standard mason mitres and BB ends. Also worth noting that they did 650mm deep tops which give a bit more space for appliances under. No doubt there are similar firms everywhere if you know where to look.
--
Tony Bryer, Greentram: 'Software to build on',
Melbourne, Australia www.greentram.com
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I'm struggling to work out how the depth of worktop can have any effect on the space for appliances underneath
Surely that's dependent upon the height of the pillars that you stand it on?
tim
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On 06/01/2014 22:10, tim...... wrote:

Could you be thinking of thickness rather than depth? Your description would be spot on for vertical thickness. But 650mm seems rather more likely to be back-to-front depth.
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Rod

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On Mon, 6 Jan 2014 23:10:30 +0100 Tim...... wrote :

Depth as in front to back, width if you prefer. 600mm can make it hard to get a w/m to go back flush depending on the plumbing and machine.
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Tony Bryer, Greentram: 'Software to build on',
Melbourne, Australia www.greentram.com
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On 06/01/2014 22:45, Tony Bryer wrote:

Don't most people fitting put the back of the cabinet flush against the wall?
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Yes. Make sure there are no obstructions behind a machine location. Put things like the socket and waste trap in the next cupboard.
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Andrew Gabriel
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On Tue, 07 Jan 2014 10:48:32 +0000 Gb wrote :

Yes. Spacing them out is more work but does make accommodating services (especially waste pipes) a lot easier.
--
Tony Bryer, Greentram: 'Software to build on',
Melbourne, Australia www.greentram.com
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On 07/01/2014 20:34, Tony Bryer wrote:

What sort of brackets do you use to fix them?
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On Tue, 07 Jan 2014 21:45:51 +0000 Gb wrote :

When I've done this, I've put a 100mm corner brace horizontally, fixed to the cabinet side at the top and the wall as a temporary fix. Once the worktop goes in and is fixed to the wall and cabinet nothing can move.
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Tony Bryer, Greentram: 'Software to build on',
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I've used IKEA twice and been entirely happy; not liked a friend's Howdens and doubt B&Q for this kind of thing. Schreiber is not a real company - it comes and goes - like Grundig and Bush.
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+1 although I was surprised more recently how much it's gone up.

It belonged to GEC, when I worked there 30 years ago. I remember our local management getting a right bollocking for ordering the office furniture from somewhere else. GEC ceased to exist some ~10 years ago, and I suspect the Schreiber name was sold off well before that.
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On 06/01/2014 12:01, Andrew Gabriel wrote:

+1 on quality and finish. Price a couple of years ago was okay. I'd get worktops and plinths elsewhere.
I've had three from Magnet recently, and they were very good. Not sure about price, though.

+1. Horrid finish. (Apologies to all who have them, and no doubt disagree.)
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(about Howden's)

We got some Howdens a couple of years ago for the Utility room. Finish seems OK to us, did you have some specific issues? As things stand, I'd expect to look at going back to them (at least as one contender) for when we rip out the m**ble tops.
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On 07/01/2014 11:05, Tim Streater wrote:

I hated the foil-wrapped doors. The Ikea doors are *vastly* nicer, with a real wood veneer. They've lasted well, too.
I may only have been looking at the cheaper end of the Howdens range, but I was also looking at the cheap end of the Ikea range.
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Eh? Foil-wrapped? What are you on about? We got stuff from this range:
<http://www.howdens.com/kitchen-collection/kitchen-families/tewkesbury/t ewkesbury-oak/>
The units that were in the utility room when we moved in were somebody's horrible laminated white doors with the aluminium strip at the bottom to open the door with.
More modern shit that gave no clue as to which end the door opened at, and which cut your fingers in the process. They are now used for storage in the shed.
We used these door knobs, which don't cut your fingers and which you can get hold of:
<http://www.howdens.com/kitchen-collection/kitchen-handles/knob-handles/ classic-pewter-effect-knob/>
And it looks quite nice, too. As we use the utility room for a variety of purposes we have come to know what works and what doesn't.
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Tim

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On 07/01/2014 11:43, Tim Streater wrote:

The doors in a comparable price range to Ikea were foil wrapped.

That looks expensive, but I might be pleasantly surprised. I did say "I may only have been looking at the cheaper end of the Howdens range, but I was also looking at the cheap end of the Ikea range."
There's no point comparing deluxe and budget ranges. The sort of thing I bought at Ikea was this: http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/S69852498/#/S79852501
That's a 60cm base unit for £47. How much is the equivalent in Howden's Tewkesbury? And what can you get at Howden for the same sort of money? I'd be interested to know, as Ikea are a pain to shop at. (Sorry to ask this, but I can't find the Howden price list online.)

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The Tewkesbury is all solid oak front. Your IKEA unit is £63 if you want solid oak. A similar (in dimensions) Tewkesbury unit would have cost us £67 in 2011.

They do have a price list, but normally not available to the public, AFAICT. You're supposed to work through your installer, they don't sell direct to the public (well perhaps they might at 4 x the price). But we went in there and asked for one.
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On 07/01/2014 15:24, Tim Streater wrote:

Well, I'd certainly pay 10% extra not to have to deal with Ikea! :)
I suspect that at the bottom end Ikea are difficult to beat.

My builder was dead keen on Howden, mainly because they would give him a big box of screws if I purchased the units from them. He was happy to pass on the price discount, but not the screws.
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Actually I lied a bit - I forgot that there's VAT to add to the Howden's prices.

I still have and use the double bed I got from IKEA up the road from Geneva in 1980. And it's been to California & back, too.
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