I'm planning on making my own kitchen cabinets and I need a few
pointers on hardware sources and cabinet drawer material.
I was recently moving a Kitchenmaid vanity and, frankly, I was
really impressed by their craftsmanship and the drawer hardware. (I
hate to say that) The drawer hardware was an under-the-drawer slide
(what I'm looking for) . In addition, the drawers were made of Baltic
Birch plywood (I think) (w/half-dovetail construction), but it looked
to be a better quality veneer on the plywood exterior than what I can
1. What are your recommendations for sources for under-the-drawer
2. Are there different grades of Baltic Birch or other alternatives
that I should look into? What is Kitchenmaid buying?
Thanks for your comments - all are appreciated
You will hate that you said it also, once you see/handle/experience custom
kitchen cabinets made by a craftsman, even one doing it for the first time
who is willing to put forth the effort ... there is no comparison.
Once you have been around a kitchen thusly made for 15 minutes, the next
time you walk through the BORG you will immediately recognize, at a
distance, what cheap stuff KitchenMaid really is, regardless of the looks
and price ... and it ain't that cheap.
As long as you are going to the trouble to invest time, energy and money in
your custom kitchen, consider long and hard about using real wood on your
drawers. Maple is not that expensive, and poplar makes a fine drawer
You will next be asking about a book. IME getting a few folks started in
that direction, there is no better start on the cabinet part than John
Paquays' little booklet at:
No color photos, no fluff ... just a basic, solid cabinet making methodology
to make both uppers and lowers that will give you a good departure point for
doing your own design as you gain experience on the first cabinet. If
nothing else, use it in conjunction with Jim Tolpin books, which are also
excellent and go into greater depth on issues like installation, etc.
Tell me about it. After the flooding from Kartina, the custom cabinet
maker that originally built my cabinets quoted 26 week delivery so we
were forced into the pre-built stuff (4-6 week delivery). The total
was $10K and they are real crap. The "plywood" is covered in paper
and only the fronts have a "finish" if that is what you call the spray
paint the put on them. When I protested to the company rep about the
roughness of the "finish" he launched into this diatribe about the
variations in wood being the beauty of it. WTF?
Then he proceeds to start dissin' the cabinet I built and hung on the
wall in the laundry room. At that point I told him to leave.
Never again. I'll take time off of work and build the suckers myself
in the future.
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