Last weeks update just showed 45 cut pieces of melamine sitting on my work
bench. This week I started putting the cabinet boxes together.
Here is my version of box building 101 for those who might be interested,
All box parts are 5/8" melamine, the boxes will have full face frames and
the ends of all boxes will have panels applied. This allowed me to face
screw the carcass parts together in almost every case. There was only one
place I didn't face screw and I will show that later.
I cannot stand filled nail holes in face frames, plus nails just don't hold
too well in melamine. The first operation is to make pocket holes along the
outside front edge of the top, bottom and side panels in order to attach the
face frame later. This time I borrowed a benchtop Kreg Foreman pocket hole
machine from our demo inventory at work. If you don't happen to work at a
tool store, you use the $29 version to make the pocket holes for the face
frame like I did on my parents kitchen, it just takes longer.
There are no pocket holes in the bottoms of the uppers (does that make
sense?). The bottom edge of the face frames will be attached with biscuits
on the uppers.
Since I am working alone, I use a couple of home made right angle blocks and
a quick grip to hold one side of the cabinet up off the concrete workbench,
Now I use another of right angle block to hold the two parts together while
I mark a 5/16" line in from the edge of the sides,
The little Incra measuring/marking gauge shown in the photo has been one of
the best things I ever bought. At the time I though $30 was a lot for a
piece of plastic, but adjustable in 1/32" increments that hold, worth every
penny and used in almost every project I make.
Yawn, move the right angle block and screw the side to the top,
Ayup, you guessed it, move the RA blocks to hold the other side in place,
mark 5/16" in, drill with countersink and run in 1.75", #8 screws.
Better shot of the helpers,
Bored yet? Lay the back on, mark 5/16" in and screw the back on,
I had been using a Lee Valley tapered bit and four flute countersink, but I
found it clogged up. I switched to a Dimar (Canadian brand, similar to Amana
I think) two flute carbide countersink with tapered bit and it is light
Here is the one place where I did not face screw. Where the side of one
cabinet is exposed in the height transition to over the stove, I didn't want
to put a raised panel, I didn't think it would look right. The face frames,
doors/drawers and side panels are being painted white, so I don't think the
only plain melamine showing it will stand out (it is really a very small
area, 12"12" or so). The bottom two shelves of this cabinet are fixed with
two #10 biscuits each. Looks a lot more complicated that it is,
Notice the home made RA blocks once again.
In all the places where shelves were screwed in, I cut helper boards that I
clamped in place to ensure the same height from side to side and from
cabinet to cabinet,
With the above cabinet, the left side will have three drawers, that is why I
didn't worry about visible screws for the shelf on the right side.
I opted for fixed shelves. When I lived with my parents for 20 years in the
same house, my Mom never moved one of her adjustable shelves. And where I am
now, the shop foreman didn't even know our current kitchen had adjustable
shelves. So, I did the easy thing, I measured where our shelves are now in
the current yucky cabinets, and that is exactly where they will be in the
spankin new cabinets.
Here are the 7 boxes done (one without a back on it at this point),
Next, onto the face frames.
Thanks for looking,
Every Neighbourhood Has One, In Mine I'm Him.