warp free cabinet doors? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
 
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post #1 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 09:06 AM Thread Starter
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warp free cabinet doors?

Hi Folks, New here and looking forward to giving and taking good advice.
I'm a self employed general carpenter turning my hand to a lot of different projects. Jack of all trades, Master of none kind of thing. I do a fair amount of interior work, kitchens, cabinets etc but not enough to be really good at it.
so.......As part of an ongoing kitchen project, customer requires a pantry split into a broom cupboard. Long and tall. 80'' x 36''. Cope and stick poplar
with bead board panels. It's inset double doors btw
I'm waking up at 4am in the morning watching the doors warp. It's just to tall to be stable.
Solution I have come up with is to bond 1/2'' birch or maple ply to the back and finish the edges with poplar trim flush with the cope and stick. There will be the glue line but it's a painted finish so will be hidden.
Does anyone have a better way to stabilize these doors?
Thank you in advance.
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post #2 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 09:43 AM
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Are the doors 80 x 36 or is that the opening size? On doors that tall I usually use 1/2" panels and make sure I'm using quarter sawn material for the stiles. Since it is being painted MDF would be awesome for the panels since it is so stable. Also, you might want to add a center rail if you haven't already. But, it sounds like you've already built the doors and I'm not sure if you want to remake them.
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post #3 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 09:45 AM
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Oh, and soft maple would be a better choice for wood. Paints easier and is more stable.
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post #4 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 09:49 AM
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We have an introduction section where you can say a few words about yourself. If you fill out your profile in your "User Control Panel", you can list any hobbies, experience or other facts. You can also list your general geographical location which would be a help in answering some questions. In doing that your location will show under your username when you post.

It's a mother nature thing. There are no absolutes...at least that I have found. I start with KD lumber. I try to select pieces suitable for straightness, grain, color, to cut the rails and stiles. If at all possible I cut all the stiles in sequence, and likewise for the rails.

Proper handling, and how the lumber is handled from the start and continued acclimation is important. How the parts are stacked and set aside if necessary. I try to keep an eye out for inordinate reactions. Proper machining, well mated joints and clamping pressures help minimize the problems. The parts are all finished the same and at the same time. It's not much, but there you have it. Oh, forgot to say that prayer might help.










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post #5 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 10:36 AM
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MDF is a good choice if you paint both sides. I've done a door almost that size with a poplar block rabbeted and glued on one edge for hinge strength. It remained very stable.
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post #6 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 11:12 AM
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I think you biggest problem is with the poplar. I quit using poplar because it was prone to warp. I think if you would use soft maple you would have better luck.
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post #7 of 17 Old 04-16-2014, 02:19 PM Thread Starter
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Wow. Quick replies. Thanks

The doors are not built yet, still in the thinking stage.
RO is 80" x 36" with double doors going in there.
To match the rest of the cabinetry I'm going to put a rail in 50"/30" ish. which should add some stability.
I take your point about poplar, nice finish but it's not the first time I've had warpage. I'll go buy some maple.
I have some 1/2' MDF lying around and take your point that it will be more stable. That's the plan then Maple cope and stick with bead board panel backed by 1/2' MDF.
I have had the stock stickered in the house for a few weeks plus it's a summer cottage that won't see any heat in the winter just the Maine coast humidity in the summer.
Welcome the advice, thank you.
Best get back to it.
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post #8 of 17 Old 04-17-2014, 12:16 AM
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A couple of things. First, for rails and stiles I always begin with 15/16" stock and flatten one face on the jointer. Then I plane them to thickness, trying to take about the same amount off of both faces. More often than not, I will end up with flat, straight rails and stiles. If I detect any slight warpage, I try to put the crowns to the outside face of the doors. On the center stiles, use the 2 stiles that are closest to each other in the amount of curvature. If the crown is outward, the doors can close against the face frame at top and bottom and if you're using Euro hinges, you can usually get them pretty even.

As it's been said, vertical grain is best and most stable, but you won't get that with poplar. Here in the PNW, I can use alder. Soft maple is probably a good choice in your area, as has been recommended. But I have certainly used poplar for paint grade projects in the past and will again, no doubt. It's just those tall doors....
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post #9 of 17 Old 04-27-2014, 12:48 AM
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? about popular

Also new to this forum, and after reading some of the posts, I'm suprised to read that soft maple is much less prone to warping than popular. I know popular is alot softer than the maple, but is this why it is more prone to warping? So some of the projects I have have planned to do in popular because of its ability to hold paint very well, maybe I should consider soft maple. I do live in area of the country that is humid in the summer and dry in the winter, so there are wide temp. swings. Anybody have any thoughts.
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post #10 of 17 Old 04-27-2014, 01:27 AM
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Poplar isn't much softer than soft maple...anything you can do with poplar is probably better done with soft maple.

The tools don't make the craftsman....
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post #11 of 17 Old 04-27-2014, 09:19 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks folks. As an update, I found some 6% dry poplar from my local lumber specialist and milled that up. I would have gone with soft maple but they didn't have any in stock.
More to the point, I managed to persuade the customer that inset doors in those dimensions were too risky.
Now I'm going for full overlap doors with 2" face frame, bead board panels and backing the entire door(s) with MDF with a narrow poplar trim to protect the edge.

























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post #12 of 17 Old 04-27-2014, 09:25 AM
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You might consider frameless construction with overlay doors.





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post #13 of 17 Old 04-28-2014, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romany
Thanks folks. As an update, I found some 6% dry poplar from my local lumber specialist and milled that up. I would have gone with soft maple but they didn't have any in stock. More to the point, I managed to persuade the customer that inset doors in those dimensions were too risky. Now I'm going for full overlap doors with 2" face frame, bead board panels and backing the entire door(s) with MDF with a narrow poplar trim to protect the edge. '
The most overlay you can get with a cup hinge is 1 9/16". So, I'd recommend using 1 1/2" facers or like Cabinetman mentioned going with frameless construction if you are trying to achieve a full overlay.
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post #14 of 17 Old 04-29-2014, 01:53 PM Thread Starter
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Aah...I see my keyboard works without a brain to guide it. What I meant to write was.....it's the overlay doors that have the 2" rail and stiles containing the bead board panel. The frame farme is indeed 1 1/2" but is actually flush with the 3/4" insides, scribable on the outside. So lots of room to play with although my client has hinges in mind which may not be European. ....Drat ..more persuasive conversations.
Thanks
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post #15 of 17 Old 04-29-2014, 02:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romany View Post
The frame farme is indeed 1 1/2" but is actually flush with the 3/4" insides, scribable on the outside.
I don't have a visual with this description. How about a drawing.





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post #16 of 17 Old 04-29-2014, 03:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romany View Post
The doors are not built yet, still in the thinking stage.
RO is 80" x 36" with double doors going in there.
To match the rest of the cabinetry I'm going to put a rail in 50"/30" ish. which should add some stability.
I take your point about poplar, nice finish but it's not the first time I've had warpage. I'll go buy some maple.
I have some 1/2' MDF lying around and take your point that it will be more stable. That's the plan then Maple cope and stick with bead board panel backed by 1/2' MDF.
I have had the stock stickered in the house for a few weeks plus it's a summer cottage that won't see any heat in the winter just the Maine coast humidity in the summer.
Welcome the advice, thank you.
Best get back to it.
hold on a minute there speedy.

You making cabinet doors or thicker doors. 1/4" bead board over 1/2" MDF leaves no room for that being a flat panel in a standard cabinet door. A thicker door will also reduce the warp factor provided you take care picking and handling the wood through the process.

Hinge type and placement will be important also heavier door. The normal cabinet hinges may not work with the thicker door. Just trying to help you think of everything before you start.
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post #17 of 17 Old 04-29-2014, 10:22 PM Thread Starter
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picture worth a thousand words?

On the smaller cabinet , the face frame flush with the inside but overlaps the side panel
The actual beast of a broom/pantry has just the exposed ply edge finished with 1 1/4" on the shelves and 1 1/2" on the verticals enough to again cover the side panel which will hadly ever be seen since it's sqeezed in next to an existing built in unit.
The initial, now defunct, plan was to apply another 'face frame' to inset the double doors into .
If I ever get off the computer and go back to work, I plan on doing a full overlay doors.
To hopefully arrest any movement, they will be the same 3/4" stile and rail 1/4" bead board but adding another 1/2" mdf over the entire back with a poplar bead edge flush with the existing stiles and rails.
I realize there must be many better ways to deal with this but this is what I've come up with to stabilize these floppy doors.
I haven't started on the doors yet so still time to suggest a better way.
Thanks for your interest
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