Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Clarifications on measuring for side mounted drawer guides

Q. I’ve read your primer on measuring for drawers but needed to double check something. The “face frame” on my cabinets overhangs to the inside on the sides, which I think is fairly standard. I assume in this case I need to add furing strips on the inside walls where the drawer guides go and measure the drawer and the guides from this point? Also, I know the guides are ½, but how much clearance is needed to each side of the drawer as it comes out to clear this face frame? In your primer it looks more like a frameless design or such.

A. It sounds like you have a very standard face frame construction cabinet. Typically you will attach the drawer guide to the inside edge of face frame at the front of the cabinet. As far as the back is concerned, you have two options. First, you can add the strips tot eh inside of the cabinet case in order to flush out the case with the face frame which will allow you to simply screw the guide on to the strips. This may be a bit more time consuming that the second option. Second, you can order the rear mounting brackets that will allow the back of the guide to secure to the back of the cabinet. I like this option because you now have some adjustment for any unforeseen issues that may crop up.

I am not quite sure what you mean by the clearance of the box to the face frame. You will want to attach the guide to the inside edge of the 3/4" thick face frame. This means that if your face frame opening is say 10" wide, then you drawer box will need to be exactly 9" wide. As far as the depth if concerned, if you have a 24" deep cabinet (overall depth from the very back of the cabinet to the front of the face frame) then you will most likely want to order a 22" deep drawer box.

I hope this answered your questions. Please let me know if you need any clarification.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Applying veneer to existing cabinet face frames?

Q: We are in the process of refacing our kitchen cabinets (all new doors/drawers/hardware). The site has answered most of our questions and given us all the pricing, but because our existing frames are painted plywood, we wanted to know if it's still possible to use your veneer products or are we stuck with the painted look and should order paint grade doors/drawers.

A. You can use a veneer to reface the existing face frames. In my experience this can be a messy process that is very time consuming. I do not want to make you think it is impossible, but most people tend to simply repaint the doors, or order new doors, and repaint the entire kitchen in order to achieve the updated kitchen look. Painted kitchens are very popular at the moment.

Chad Barker

Monday, August 23, 2010

Measuring drawer boxes from the cabinet opening

Measuring for new drawer boxes.

Example cabinet opening of:
10" wide, 6" tall, and 24" deep.

Using drawer box standards from

1. WIDTH OF THE DRAWER BOX. The width of the drawer box depends on two different factors. First, is the opening of the cabinet. Second, is the type of drawer guide to be used. For this tutorial we will be assuming that a side mounted KV soft closing drawer slide will be used for the drawer guide. The KV drawer guide is available for purchase on Let's take an opening width of 10" wide by 6" in height. With this opening you will need to subtract a certain amount for the thickness of the drawer guide on the left and right side of the drawer box. Our KV side mounted slide is exactly 1/2" thick. Therefore we will take the opening of 10" and subtract 1/2" from the left side of the drawer box and 1/2" from the right side of the drawer box. This gets us a finished width of 9" (calculated by 10" - 1/2" on left - 1/2" on right= 9"). Now we have our drawer box width that needs to be ordered at 9" wide.

2. HEIGHT OF DRAWER BOX. To calculate the height of the drawer box you should take the actual height of the opening and subtract a certain amount to allow for a bit of clearance both above and below the drawer box. I personally like to subtract about 3/8" to 1/2" from the opening height to get the drawer box height. For this example let's say that the opening height is exactly 6" tall. We will take this opening height and subtract 3/8" to get 5 5/8" usable drawer box height. Since Barker Door has set heights of 3.75", 5 1/2", and so on, we will need to select the closest box height that is just under the 5 5/8" usable height area. This drawer box height would be 5 1/2". Now we have our drawer box height set at 5 1/2".

3. DEPTH OF DRAWER BOX. The depth of the drawer box is calculated by looking at the depth of the opening. Let's say that the depth of the opening is 24" deep from the front of the face frame to the back of the cabinet. In this example you will need at least 1" of clearance behind the drawer box to allow enough room for adjustment. Take 24" and subtract 1" for extra clearance and we get 23". Now find the deepest drawer guide you can fit into this 23" deep opening. In this example a 22" KV slide will work just fine. Due to the fact that you are using a 22" slide in a 23" usable depth opening, you will need to order a 22" deep drawer box. Always order the same depth drawer box and the depth of the drawer guide. For example if you order a 16" deep drawer guide, make sure you order a 16" deep drawer box. This will eliminate any confusion and ensure a working drawer box and guide combination. Rear mounting brackets can be used in most applications by attaching the bracket to the inside back of the cabinet.

Finished drawer box
Width= 9"
Height= 5 1/2"
Depth= 22"

Drawer Boxes are available in many wood types as seen below:

Written by:

Chad Barker

Measuring cabinet doors from the face frame opening

How to measure cabinet doors from the cabinet opening.

Measuring cabinet doors from the cabinet opening brings about a few obvious scenarios. One, you have either lost or the existing doors have been removed and are no longer available. Two, you are tired of the existing cabinet doors and wish to apply new doors to your existing cabinet boxes. And three, most likely you are changing or updating the hinge type to something other than the existing hinge used on the old cabinet doors.

There are many different hinges that can apply a cabinet door to a cabinet box. For this example we will assume an industry standard hinge, like the blum clip top. This is a great hinge that works very well in a lot of different applications. It also has a huge amount of adjustment so your doors don't have to be perfect. We will assume an industry standard goal a 1/2" overlay.

The door "overlay", is how far the actual door overlaps the face frame of the cabinet. Typically most cabinets (even cabinets built with exposed hinges) will stay true to the ½” overlay standard. If this is true, you should make sure to measure an opening, and therefore the cabinet door, by the following rules:

Lets say your opening is 10” wide and 20” tall. If I wanted to put 1 door on this opening I would take 10” and add 1/2” to the left and 1/2” to the right. This gets me an 11” wide cabinet door width. You would do the same with the height as well. Take the 20” height and add 1/2” to the bottom, and 1/2” to the top. This gets us a 21” tall cabinet door. Thus, you will need to order a door with a width of 11” wide by 21” tall for this single opening.

If you have an opening with a pair of doors to be installed, it is actually very easy to calculate. Say you have an opening of 20” wide by 30” tall. To calculate the width of each door you would take 20” and divide by 2 (two doors). This gets us 10”. Then simply add 1/2” to the width to account for the overlay of the cabinet door which gets us 10 1/2”. The width of each cabinet door you need to order will be 10 1/2” wide. The height of the cabinet door is calculated the same as it would be on a single door opening. Take the opening height of 30” and simply add 1/2" to the top and another 1/2” to the bottom to get 31” for the cabinet door height. To clarify, for this opening, you will need to order 2 doors at 10 1/2” wide by 31” tall.

Keep in mind that the Blum concealed hinges are very adjustable. You have about a ¼” adjustment in all ways. This means that you can adjust the doors up, down, left, right, in, and out.

Written by,
Chad Barker