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Thread: Proportions and Kitchen cabinets

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Lakewood, Ohio. Western burb of Cleveland.
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    Question Proportions and Kitchen cabinets

    Hello all.

    I need help with a few design problems or questions on a couple things I can't decide on.

    I am currently building kitchen cabinets. The overall design I guess you'd call Shaker style. They will have face frames with inset doors and drawers. I shouldn't say I'm 'building' them as I haven't really started other than planing down all my rough sawn Cherry.

    My first question deals with proportions. I can not decide what width stiles and rails to use on the face frames. In addition, I can't decide on widths for the door stiles and rails. What's your opinion???

    Secondly, one of the boxes will be a pantry. It'll be about 21" wide and about 86" high. It'll have pull out shelves for storage. On this box, I can't decide how many doors it should have and thier sizes. Any thoughts???

    I guess my questions are all proportion related. Isn't there some kind of rule or formula to use?

    Thank you!
    Joe

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Broken Arrow(Tulsa), OK
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    812

    Cabinet design

    Joe,

    I tend to use 2" rails and stiles on cabinets and cabinet doors with the exception being on lower cabinets where the top will overhang. In this case, the top rail must be wider to accomodate the overhang.

    I would suggest that you get some cardboard, tape, staples, etc. and do a mockup. Once you think you've got it where you want it, build a door out of cheaper material for the final test. Remember that any edge treatments or raised panels can change the appearance and perceived proportions.

    As for rules, the only one I am aware of is the Golden Mean which is for rectangles. If my memory is working it is something like 1:1.6.

    Good luck,
    Bob

  3. #3
    Ruby in NC Guest

    Smile Just my 2-cents...

    Others, more experienced than myself will be able to answer your sizing questions better than I can. However, I'd like to offer an opinion on the pantry door.

    Because it is narrow, I'd but in two doors, one over the other. With that height, it may be difficult to keep 1 top-to-bottom door from warping, unless you build it like a torsion box.

    As to side-by-side doors, please take it from a pantry user I wouldn't want to have to open two doors when dealing with large objects. (Pressure Canner for example.) With one door over the other, this wouldn't (shouldn't) be a problem.

    Again, just my 2-cents. Hope it helps, a bit.

    Regards,
    Ruby

  4. #4
    Joe says:

    My first question deals with proportions. I can not decide what width stiles and rails to use on the face frames. In addition, I can't decide on widths for the door stiles and rails. What's your opinion???


    Peruse a cabinet-making book written by Danny Proulx or Jim Tolpin.

    There are "industry standards" that work very well.

    As far as your pantry goes, you should break the cabinet up into two sections and have four doors. Say, two lowers approx. 5' tall, and two uppers approx. 2' tall.

    Sixty inch doors are about as tall as I like to go; the taller they are, the more tendency to warp over time.

    HTH,

    Phil Hudak

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Coatesville, PA
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    Joe I'm no expert on this but . . .

    I definately think 2 doors on the pantry - top & bottom. It will look nice, be more stable & functional.

    I think Bob's dimensions sound good. Why don't you go to one of the box stores & look around their cabinet display area for ideas. You can even take some measurements. A cabinet store would be even better - but probably less receptive to nosing around just for ideas to build yourself

    Also most of the big cabinet manufacturers, like Merrillat (?), have nice catalogs that are geared for the trades - Some of these even have detailed drawing with dimensions. You could check those out. I also really like the idea of doing cheap mock ups whenever you're doing a big / expensive project.

    Hope this helps
    God Bless America!

    Tom Sweeney BP

  6. #6
    I will take a picture of the ones I built and give you the dimmensions tonight. but if you make the Stiles 2" when you but two cabinets togeather make those stiles 1.5" (so when butted together they are 3" which is close to the 2" where they are by them selves)

  7. #7
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    Lakewood, Ohio. Western burb of Cleveland.
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    Thanks Dave. I would be interested in seeing the pics.


    Joe

  8. #8

    Talking

    Joe, on your pantry, make a fixed shelf somewhere in the middle of the box, then use two sets of double doors. One set on top, one set on bottom.
    On your cabinets stiles, it just depends on what you need to make everything look even. I use anywhere from 1 1/2" to 3" stiles.
    On the door rail and stiles, I like to stay with 2 1/2" widths. This allows the panel to be somewhat smaller, less tendancy to warp, especially before the door is assembled. Arched doors get a top rail width of 4 3/16". Steve

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lakewood, Ohio. Western burb of Cleveland.
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    Thanks.

    Thanks for the replies and advice everybody.

    Joe

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Tidewater, VA
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    Let us know how it comes out

    Joe -

    Keep us up to date. I am about to embark on this endeavor. You are about two stages ahead of me in the planning.

    Thanks,
    Ted

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Lakewood, Ohio. Western burb of Cleveland.
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    47
    Sure, I'll keep you up to date. But the way my schedule is, I wont be 2 steps ahead of you very long. I haven't done anything for almost two weeks now. Uhg.

    Well... I did have to buy some more clamps, and a Kreg jig, and some Freud bits, and.... that's working on the project isn't it?

    Oohh. Just thought of some much needed project related tools, oops supplies I must have for this project.

    Thanks.
    Joe

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
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    Tidewater, VA
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    Tool Justification

    Joe -

    Anything for tool justification.

    Sent you a private message with the button at the bottom of your post

    Ted

  13. #13
    i try to work with other things going on in the kitchen. these all use 2" for the doors and the frames are 2" as well. notice the oven cabinet and pantry have the same size doors on the top half. normally in the shop the pantry doors are 56 on full inset. these cabinets are 96" tall....jack
    Attached Images Attached Images

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Coatesville, PA
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    Thumbs up Jack, I hope you don't mind

    but your cabinets were so nice I thought I'd repost them in a smaller size so it was easier to get the full picture, without scrolling.

    Great job!
    Attached Images Attached Images
    God Bless America!

    Tom Sweeney BP

  15. #15
    dont mind at all. trying the "ulead" software fer the first time. still trying to get the hang of it...thx....jack

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