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post #1 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 12:14 AM Thread Starter
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Cabinet Refacing

I'm about to tackle some cabinet refacing and was wondering if there were any tips/tricks ya'll have to offer. I don't know what kind of specifics you might need, so if you ask I'll try to answer.
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post #2 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 04:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slatron25 View Post
I'm about to tackle some cabinet refacing and was wondering if there were any tips/tricks ya'll have to offer. I don't know what kind of specifics you might need, so if you ask I'll try to answer.

It might help with you giving complete details, like what kind of cabinets, are they wood, plywood, or Formica to start with. And, what you want to reface with. So, a better game would be for you to ask the questions, and we try to answer them.






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post #3 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 11:03 AM
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By refacing, do you mean applying a new substance over the existing? Or do you mean removing the existing faces and applying new ones?
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post #4 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 02:43 PM
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And are you refacing, refinishing, or a combination of both?

Refacing, to my understanding, is replacing the parts the user sees with new material, either formica, veneer, or whatnot. Refinishing involves removing the old finish, and applying a new one.

In my case, I am doing a combination. The face frames of my cabinets are white oak, and are getting stripped to bare wood, and re-stained with a couple of coats of satin poly. I am also building new doors, drawer fronts, false fronts, and adding slide out trays to the current lower drawers to keep LOML off the floor when trying to get to that stock pot in the back sort of thing...

This process is entirely different from say refinishing an existing cabinetry set, or refacing with veneers / etc... If my face frames were ply, I would be doing a full refacing, including face frames, to keep the possibility of blowing through the veneer out of the realm of possibility...

And of course, you could be refacing with formica or another sort of laminate...

So long winded story short, we need more details about what you have in mind...

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post #5 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 04:32 PM
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". I am also building new doors, drawer fronts, false fronts, and adding slide out trays to the current lower drawers to keep LOML off the floor when trying to get to that stock pot in the back sort of thing..."

What is this LOML that you are trying to keep off the floor?

G
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post #6 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 07:03 PM Thread Starter
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The face frames are solid wood but nothing special. This will be completely refaced (or faced for the first time) , new end panels, new doors and drawer fronts. We still haven't decided whether to go with wood veneers or some man-made material. I guess one question I would have is about trimming the edges, I'm guessing a router with a flush trim bit.
I'm working through the process in my mind right now, trying to avoid any oops situations in the middle of the process.

Also with the end panels, would you use a wood glue or contact cement?
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post #7 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 11:15 PM
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Originally Posted by slatron25 View Post
The face frames are solid wood but nothing special. This will be completely refaced (or faced for the first time) , new end panels, new doors and drawer fronts.
Um, you still haven't made it clear what you mean by the word 'refaced'. Replacing the face frames or covering them with something else? If you want to get any worthwhile help/suggestions, you have got to communicate clearly about what you are intending to do.
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post #8 of 14 Old 10-06-2008, 11:30 PM
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Actually, I thought he had. It sounded like covering up, not removing / installing new face frames...

And the idea with LOML staying off the floor, is the inevitable process, say when that one fancy pants roasting pan she just had to have is in the veeeeery back of the cabinet needs to come out for some reason. Inevitably I find her on the floor halfway in a cabinet... It's actually a cute sight...

Gee dear, that looks like a pain, How about I build something to make that easier for you?

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post #9 of 14 Old 10-07-2008, 05:17 PM Thread Starter
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Covering up would be correct.
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post #10 of 14 Old 10-07-2008, 11:11 PM
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I guess one question I would have is about trimming the edges, I'm guessing a router with a flush trim bit.

Also with the end panels, would you use a wood glue or contact cement?
Yes, you can use a router, as far as it will go. It won't get the last couple of inches next to a wall or ceiling or adjacent 90 degree cabinet. For that, my approach would be to cut the veneer or laminate no more than 1/8" wider than needed. That way, where your router does not reach, you can file it down.

As for the end panels, I'm assuming from what you've said that you are going to apply new end panels onto the existing ones? The last job in which I did that, I used 50 grit sandpaper and sanded the surface of the old end panel to rough it up a bit and to remove the flaking finish which was on it. Then I used panel adhesive, and some finish nails. I applied 1/4" ply to the ends, so screwing from the inside was not feasible. But if you're putting on 3/4" panels, you could go that route.

Wood glue probably wouldn't work well unless you went down to bare wood, because the way it works is to penetrate into the wood. Contact cement might work well enough, but I think you will still have to sand the old face to rough it up. Though I could be mistaken.
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post #11 of 14 Old 10-08-2008, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks mmwood_1, I was wondering how to get into those tight areas and hadn't thought about a file. I'd seen suggestions of using a knife and score it but that doesn't seem conducive to good workmanship.
My first plan of attack is to use a degreaser to clean everything, and then to lightly sand it all to rough it up for adhesion. The end panels will be veneer thickness so finish nailing from the outside will be my only choice.
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post #12 of 14 Old 10-08-2008, 10:06 AM
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Slatron,
Years ago I refaced my mother's cabinets with laminate (formica). First and last time. I don't enjoy working with laminates. Anyway, I bought at the time a Bosch trim router kit. It came with a small hand held router with three different bases. A small fixed base, an adjustable angle base, and an offset base. The offset base allowed you to route less than an inch away from an obstruction. I would definitely recommend taking a look at something like this. It would make the job go a lot easier. Also, a buddy of mine had his kitchen refaced a few years ago. His cabinets were in decent shape. The company refaced with real oak about 3/16" thick, new drawer fronts and new doors if I remember correctly. It came out real nice. Looked like a new kitchen. good luck,
Mike Hawkins
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post #13 of 14 Old 10-09-2008, 07:16 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Mike, I was thinking a trim router may be in my future.
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post #14 of 14 Old 10-20-2008, 10:44 AM
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The laminate (or trim) router is just about my favorite tool. Not only can it trim laminate but, with an 1/8 inch flute bit and clamped straight-edge, it's ideal for making factory cuts on laminate, paneling and plexi-glass. I also use this method for scoring hollow core doors before cutting.

As to contact cement, I've had excellent results with the non-flammable neoprene adhesives. They don't stink up the place and you don't have to worry about blowing up your house. Just make sure your surfaces are absolutely grease and dust free. Also adhesive backed veneers are available. These can be tricky to work with but can save a lot of time and mess.

Best of luck.
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