Kitchen cabinet challenge - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
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post #1 of 32 Old 01-07-2013, 09:46 PM Thread Starter
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Kitchen cabinet challenge

We had our kitchen remodeled and couple of years ago and are pleased with it except for one annoying thing. The under-cabinet lights are not hidden from view at all. There is no recess under the cabinets. The bottoms are flush with the lower edge of the face frames.

So, being a newbie woodworker I seek your guidance. How can I cut, stain, finish and attache about 1.5 - 2 inches of lower trim all around all cabinets in order to shield the lights from view?

The cabinets are maple. The underside where the trim would be attached is a laminate that feels like Formica.

Here are some pics.

Kitchen cabinet challenge-frontview.jpg

Kitchen cabinet challenge-backview.jpg

Kitchen cabinet challenge-endview.jpg

I think I can source and cut the right kind of wood. I might even whip out the router to put a decorative flare on it. (Or not.)

The things that concern me:
- How thick front-to-back should the trim be?
- How to attach the wood trim to the laminate? Gorilla glue? Screws? Something else?
- How to abut the trim pieces? Some will meet at 90 degrees. Some will meet at about 45 degrees.
- How to match the color? I've seen some YouTube vids and read up on this, but if you have your favorite link or method please share.
- How to match the finish. The factor finish is somewhere between low gloss and eggshell.

Thanks in advance.
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post #2 of 32 Old 01-07-2013, 10:06 PM
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Mark,
check out this link from Kraftmaid. It shows their light rail molding.
http://www.kraftmaid.com/products/de...ents/ilr_md06/

Mike Hawkins
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post #3 of 32 Old 01-07-2013, 10:13 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firehawkmph View Post
Mark,
check out this link from Kraftmaid. It shows their light rail molding.
http://www.kraftmaid.com/products/de...ents/ilr_md06/

Mike Hawkins
That's already a big help. You gave me the correct terminology - light rail molding. And there are "only" 48 KraftMaid retailers within 25 miles of my ZIP code.

I might enjoy making them, though. However, I'm sure my wife would just enjoy having them. In her lifetime.
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post #4 of 32 Old 01-07-2013, 10:16 PM
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you could do something like this

Kitchen cabinet challenge-light-valence.jpg

just screw it to the bottom of the cabinets

Bret
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post #5 of 32 Old 01-08-2013, 07:03 AM
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It looks like they put a laminate over the recessed bottoms of the cabinets so they would have a finished appearance from underneath. If you are not concerned with that and only with hiding the lights, you could take off the laminate and put in some slim puck lights which would be mostly hidden.
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post #6 of 32 Old 01-08-2013, 08:37 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by timmybgood View Post
It looks like they put a laminate over the recessed bottoms of the cabinets so they would have a finished appearance from underneath. If you are not concerned with that and only with hiding the lights, you could take off the laminate and put in some slim puck lights which would be mostly hidden.
Thanks good timmy, but there are no recessed bottoms. The laminate is on the bottom side of the lowest shelf. Learning that the terminology for my solution is "light rail molding" has been a great help. Searching the interwebs shows that there are off the shelf options, so to speak. So I think I will be buying or making light rail molding.
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post #7 of 32 Old 01-10-2013, 02:01 PM
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use a contrasting wood color would look nice as well.
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post #8 of 32 Old 01-10-2013, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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use a contrasting wood color would look nice as well.
Someone suggested black. Wife hates the idea. I need my wife, so black I out. Anyone have contrasting color ideas?
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post #9 of 32 Old 01-15-2013, 06:11 PM
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Bright kitchen. Maybe remove those under cabinet lights.
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post #10 of 32 Old 01-15-2013, 06:33 PM
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There are small can lights that finish flush with the underside of the cabinet. You need no railing if you don't want.





.
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post #11 of 32 Old 01-15-2013, 07:59 PM
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I have used the Kreg pocket hole jig for stuff like this in the past. I just got the Kreg Micro PHJ for some cabinets I'm building and it works really well. You would pre drill the pocket holes on the back of the finished trim (Obviously), then you would need to clamp the trim in place and screw it home. The screws for the micro are 3/4" so they won't poke through your new cabinets. No need for plugs, and you can always remove it. Face Frame biscuits and glue could work but thats more permanent.
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post #12 of 32 Old 01-23-2013, 11:22 AM
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Just my two cents but I would go to the manufacturer of the cabinet and purchase the light rail. I get the desire to build it yourself but even they will have difficulty matching that finish exactly. It varies from run to run. But they'll get the closest. And using a contrasting color would look silly. Only my opinion. But I would get the matching light rail, and attach it with pocket screws or recessed trim screws and move on to making something more fun.
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post #13 of 32 Old 01-24-2013, 09:08 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by LearnByDoing View Post
Just my two cents but I would go to the manufacturer of the cabinet and purchase the light rail. I get the desire to build it yourself but even they will have difficulty matching that finish exactly. It varies from run to run. But they'll get the closest. And using a contrasting color would look silly. Only my opinion. But I would get the matching light rail, and attach it with pocket screws or recessed trim screws and move on to making something more fun.
I completely agree with this approach. However, soon after the kitchen was finished I had another minor issue with the cabinets. Something to do with hardware or something. I don't exactly remember. I contacted the manufacturer and they said they don't deal directly with the public in a retail manner. They said their dealer in my area was.....my contractor. I cannot interface with the contractor because if I see him again I will have to kill him. I don't want to go into details other than to cite the famous quote, "Some folks just need killing."

I will try to investigate this route again. It has been a couple of years.
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post #14 of 32 Old 01-26-2013, 02:37 PM Thread Starter
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I dug up the paperwork. Blackstone Cabinetry of North Carolina made the cabinets. They are out of business. The interwebs indicate that they sold their manufacturing assets to RiverRun Cabinetry of Virginia, and the latter is using those assets to boost their commercial and hospitality (aka hotel) business.
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post #15 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 04:12 PM
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Well, that stinks. I guess the next think I would do is either mill something I like from the same type of wood or buy it from another cabinet shop unfinished. Then you could screw around trying to match the finish yourself, or take it and one of the doors to a furniture refinisher and see what they could do.
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post #16 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 08:51 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LearnByDoing
Well, that stinks. I guess the next think I would do is either mill something I like from the same type of wood or buy it from another cabinet shop unfinished. Then you could screw around trying to match the finish yourself, or take it and one of the doors to a furniture refinisher and see what they could do.
A furniture refinished? I didn't even know such beings existed! That's a great idea. Thanks.
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post #17 of 32 Old 01-28-2013, 09:08 PM
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This is probably obvious, but just in case.... the moulding will change the clearance between counter and cabinet, which may effect the way you use the space when coooking. An example.... at our place, we use the KitchenAide mixer all the time, and losing any height at the face of the cabinets via extra moulding would make it a lot less convenient.
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post #18 of 32 Old 02-04-2013, 11:21 PM
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can't you just get some filler strips either made about 1.5 inches long or how ever you feel it will take to get them hidden under there from the same manufacturer that made your cabinets OR maybe go as far as to paint the lights the color of the underside to slightly blend into the bottoms?
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post #19 of 32 Old 04-28-2013, 05:29 PM Thread Starter
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Steve, thanks. There is plenty of clearance.

Gone Wood'n, the manufacturer is out of business. But that would be a good idea.

I've been busy an am just getting back to this. Wife won't let me forget it.
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post #20 of 32 Old 05-02-2013, 09:54 AM
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Originally Posted by Lola Ranch View Post
you could do something like this

Attachment 58926

just screw it to the bottom of the cabinets

Bret
Exactly what I thought. I do this fairly often and with the cabinet style you have it would look good. Just make sure the screws aren't to long and put a little clear caulk on the edge for glue. The bottom deck is probably only 3/4 so there won't be much bite. Thats what the caulk is for.

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