Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 15 of 16

Thread: Separate cabinet base

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    72

    Separate cabinet base

    Beginner woodworker here, when I initially posted my plans for cabinets that I'm building to surround my washer and dryer a number of you suggested I build a separate base for the lower cabinets as it would be far easier to level on my likely very uneven floor. I want to heed that advice and build the separate base but am not finding much information on how I should actually construct the base. I was thinking some 2x4s in a ladder type arrangement but I don't know if that is best. Is there reference material that I can look at for construction? These cabinets are fairly large and heavy so I want to make sure I construct this properly.

    Also, once I construct the base, am I leveling it with shims like I would with the cabinets against the wall, or is there a better way to level it? Thanks so much in advance on this. You all have been instrumental on me inching forward with this project.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Waterford, PA
    Posts
    482
    When I make bases, I usually construct them out of 3/4" plywood scraps, in a ladder configuration. I sometimes make the rungs tee shaped to allow more space for to seperate cabinets to rest on the same rung. I make the height about 1" shorter than my desired base height and then make L-shaped legs. Once I have the base shimmed to the desired height, I screw the legs on the inside of the base and to the floor. Hope this makes sense.

  3. #3
    I recently built a separate base for a base cabinet I'm putting in my great room that will be a little over 7 feet long. I used 2x4s and put base molding on the outside to match the base in this room. I had to cut the base down since it is taller than the 2x4s. My floor is so uneven I had to scribe the 2x4s to the floor, I had a dip of about 1/2 inch about in the middle. After I scribed them, I glued and screwed the 2x4s together with cross pieces where the verticals will be in the cabinet.

    2x4s are overkill, 3/4 plywood would have been fine but the wider pieces will make it easier to hit them to screw the cabinet down. They are also not very expensive.

    In my shop, which is a garage with a concrete floor, I used PT 2x4s. I need to build more in my car garage and will do the same thing.

  4. #4
    Probably I used 3/4" birch plywood because 2x4's have a nasty tendency to be warped and twisted. On a basement floor I might nail nylon furniture glides every couple feet so moisture cannot wick up from the concrete floor into the plywood base. The front can be painted black, or black laminate glued on.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    Posts
    53,298
    I also generally use plywood for this task, but 3/4" solid stock is also perfectly acceptable.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Los Angeles, California
    Posts
    275
    I constructed the ladder base entirely out of 3/4 cabinet grade plywood. It is 3" less in depth than your actual cabinet base box. The center portions of the ladder base are slightly cut out, I guess I would call them scalloped, which will make it easier to shim when leveling, because often the hump is in the middle of the board. I cover the ladder base with a thin skin of plywood, say, 1/2" or even 1/4" to make it easier to attach the cabinet box, like Jim suggested. I'll grab some pictures to demonstrate what I am talking about. Gregory Paolina has a great book called "Building Kitchen Cabinets Made Simple" which is about $20, which would be a good purchase for you.





    Cabinet Ladder Base01.jpgCabinet Ladder Base02.jpgCabinet Ladder Base03.jpg
    Regards,

    Tom

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Becker View Post
    I also generally use plywood for this task, but 3/4" solid stock is also perfectly acceptable.
    3/4" ply seems to be the consensus and I have a bit left over from the project so I'll go that route.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Dwight View Post
    I recently built a separate base for a base cabinet I'm putting in my great room that will be a little over 7 feet long. I used 2x4s and put base molding on the outside to match the base in this room. I had to cut the base down since it is taller than the 2x4s. My floor is so uneven I had to scribe the 2x4s to the floor, I had a dip of about 1/2 inch about in the middle. After I scribed them, I glued and screwed the 2x4s together with cross pieces where the verticals will be in the cabinet.

    2x4s are overkill, 3/4 plywood would have been fine but the wider pieces will make it easier to hit them to screw the cabinet down. They are also not very expensive.

    In my shop, which is a garage with a concrete floor, I used PT 2x4s. I need to build more in my car garage and will do the same thing.
    Thank you, this is great feedback and I'm going the 3/4" ply route.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas McCurnin View Post
    I constructed the ladder base entirely out of 3/4 cabinet grade plywood. It is 3" less in depth than your actual cabinet base box. The center portions of the ladder base are slightly cut out, I guess I would call them scalloped, which will make it easier to shim when leveling, because often the hump is in the middle of the board. I cover the ladder base with a thin skin of plywood, say, 1/2" or even 1/4" to make it easier to attach the cabinet box, like Jim suggested. I'll grab some pictures to demonstrate what I am talking about. Gregory Paolina has a great book called "Building Kitchen Cabinets Made Simple" which is about $20, which would be a good purchase for you.





    Cabinet Ladder Base01.jpgCabinet Ladder Base02.jpgCabinet Ladder Base03.jpg
    Thank you, these images are perfect and help me conceptualize exactly how the base should look.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    1,297
    You're putting your W and D up on a base?? Why? And how's that going to work out when you have to pull one out to fix it? How about cleaning up a spill?

    My suggestion is to build whatever you want to above them.

    If you want to hide it (and contain some noise) give it sides and doors (those are going to get in the way but if they are necessary...)

  11. #11
    I make cabinet sub-bases out of spruce 2x material that I joint and plane perfectly straight, because it's cheap, easy to assemble and gives a nice, big target for screws. Assemble it with construction screws (or drywall screws, back in the day), shim as needed. and screw into the subfloor. ...Also, as someone who lives in an old house with very out-of-level floors, I agree with your plan to put the washer and dryer on a level platform, even if the adjustable feet might have enough travel to level the appliances. Front load washers will walk all over the place during the spin cycle on uneven floors, leading to the premature demise of my first one, and me building a nice level platform for its successor.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    May 2020
    Location
    Redwood City, CA
    Posts
    72
    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bender View Post
    You're putting your W and D up on a base?? Why? And how's that going to work out when you have to pull one out to fix it? How about cleaning up a spill?

    My suggestion is to build whatever you want to above them.

    If you want to hide it (and contain some noise) give it sides and doors (those are going to get in the way but if they are necessary...)
    The washer and dryer sit on the floor in a pan, the cabinets are going above and around them though on a very uneven floor. I left a bit of room on the sides of the washer & dryer to allow me to wiggle it out. I'm trying to workout base construction for the lower cabinets since the area is an uneven mess.

  13. #13
    Garbriel,

    Take a look at levelling feet. They really are a snap and avoid the hassle of levelling/anchoring a base.

    These are the ones I use.

    I prefer the ones you can adjust from inside the cabinet.

    You have to get the clips separately to attach the toekick.

  14. #14
    I true up 2x4 on the table saw and make a ladder frame. For uneven floors, I use shim material (the wedges for setting windows and doors) to level the base. I cover the show side with 1/4 plywood, either veneer plywood in the same species as the cabinet or paintable birch ply painted black. I apply shoe molding at the base. It is flexible enough to follow the floor so I don’t have to scribe.

    On a basement concrete floor, you might want to use treated wood for the base or at least put down a plastic sheet as a vapor barrier under the frame.

    TW

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Toronto Ontario
    Posts
    10,049
    The suggestion to use cabinet levelling feet is a good one.

    On concrete floors I use Propel nuts in 3/8-UNC thread and then use 3/8-UNC cap screws as feet.............Rod.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •