Was this work done correctly? - Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
Was this work done correctly?

I recently paid approx. $10kish to complete reface every cabinet in my house along with solid maple doors. The work was done recently and I'm not 100% satisfied with the results. I wanted to get some expert opinions on if the work was done correctly. The maple doors are great, they seem to be constructed/finished relaly well and I have no problems with them. The problem i have is the face veneers that are on the face and sides of the cabinets are the problems. The refinishers used a really thick maple veneer, I believe thin pieces of hardwood sandwiching an MDF core. Here are some pictures of the work.









As you can see the strips don't really line up with the sides of the cabinets. Also on the edges, they weren't cut to join to a point they were just put on and painted to match, although the paint isn't a perfect match. When you open the cabinets, you can see the what he veneer is made of which looks odd. Some of the joints filled with putty are already cracking.

Was this work done correctly, and if not, what should I say to the company?
eightythree is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 05:04 PM
Sawdust Creator
 
ryan50hrl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 8,047
View ryan50hrl's Photo Album My Photos
I would not be happy with the work, did they give you a written explanation of the work prior to starting?

The tools don't make the craftsman....
ryan50hrl is offline  
post #3 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by ryan50hrl View Post
I would not be happy with the work, did they give you a written explanation of the work prior to starting?
I had a salesperson come out and show me the samples etc. and write the contract. The actual construction methods weren't really discussed. Previously they were finished in paper-thin maple veneers with glue backing, which had begun to peel off, which is why I did the work. The new veneers are about .25 inches thick and I thought would be better then the paper-thin ones.

Isn't the goal of veneering to give the cabinets the appearance the appearance they are made of solid wood? That's what I was assuming would happen but they way they cut and joined the pieces break that illusion.
eightythree is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #4 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 07:10 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 26,059
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
That is some of the worst work I've ever seen. I realize prices vary around the country but I probably could have done that job for half of that. I would have also refaced the cabinets with veneer instead of plywood and not the peal and press stuff either.
Steve Neul is offline  
post #5 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 07:15 PM
Sawdust Creator
 
ryan50hrl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 8,047
View ryan50hrl's Photo Album My Photos
I wouldn't have paid anyone to do that work, I agree it's terrible. No chance they left you a sample or that you took pictures of the sample they presented??

The tools don't make the craftsman....
ryan50hrl is offline  
post #6 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 07:52 PM
Village Idiot
 
epicfail48's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2014
Location: Springfield MO
Posts: 4,941
View epicfail48's Photo Album My Photos
The crack in the 4th picture would be enough to tick me off. Figure if cracks are already showing, you're boned further down the line

I need cheaper hobby
etsy.com/shop/projectepicfail
epicfail48 is offline  
post #7 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 07:56 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: SE Michigan
Posts: 1,733
View bauerbach's Photo Album My Photos
Im gonna say that looks like 1/4" plywood rather than an MDF core... More than 1 way to skin a cat, this is 1 of them I suppose. with the exception of the 1 broken gap, the rest of the work actually looks very clean to me and you say the doors are done well.

But it doesnt meet your expectations, still not sure what you can really do... ask for your money back? Ideally you would have stopped the work early in the job, or seen some detailed photos of other jobs so you knew this would be the result. Could be in for a fight, especially if youve already paid.
bauerbach is offline  
post #8 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 07:59 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 26,059
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by epicfail48 View Post
The crack in the 4th picture would be enough to tick me off. Figure if cracks are already showing, you're boned further down the line
You would think for that price they could have left eightythree a jar of soft putty.
Steve Neul is offline  
post #9 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 08:08 PM
Sawdust Creator
 
ryan50hrl's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 8,047
View ryan50hrl's Photo Album My Photos
For that price they could have left some new cabinets.

The tools don't make the craftsman....
ryan50hrl is offline  
post #10 of 40 Old 01-09-2015, 10:34 PM
Senior Member
 
OnealWoodworking's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 1,128
View OnealWoodworking's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by eightythree View Post
I recently paid approx. $10kish to complete reface every cabinet in my house along with solid maple doors. The work was done recently and I'm not 100% satisfied with the results. I wanted to get some expert opinions on if the work was done correctly. The maple doors are great, they seem to be constructed/finished relaly well and I have no problems with them. ?
Hard to tell how much work they did for the money with that description. Could be a 'few' cabinets and doors or could be a LOT of them...

Have you even talked to them yet about your concerns?
OnealWoodworking is offline  
post #11 of 40 Old 01-10-2015, 05:19 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by bauerbach View Post
Im gonna say that looks like 1/4" plywood rather than an MDF core... More than 1 way to skin a cat, this is 1 of them I suppose. with the exception of the 1 broken gap, the rest of the work actually looks very clean to me and you say the doors are done well.

But it doesnt meet your expectations, still not sure what you can really do... ask for your money back? Ideally you would have stopped the work early in the job, or seen some detailed photos of other jobs so you knew this would be the result. Could be in for a fight, especially if youve already paid.
Well the cabinet sides look good as well as the doors, I don't know why they cut the joints where they did. They basically seemed to take widths of the plywood at random and glued them on and routed out the excess. If they went that route, why not just put a huge piece up and route it out so it's seamless? Or at least cut the wides so they match the side widths.

I don't know anything about cabinetry so I'm making guesses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve Neul View Post
You would think for that price they could have left eightythree a jar of soft putty.
They actually left me a small ball of the stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OnealWoodworking View Post
Hard to tell how much work they did for the money with that description. Could be a 'few' cabinets and doors or could be a LOT of them...

Have you even talked to them yet about your concerns?
I'm having the owner come out next week to look at the work and address my concerns, I came here first to find out what quality of work I received and to know what questions to ask.
eightythree is offline  
post #12 of 40 Old 01-10-2015, 05:21 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
2 questions, can you join 1/4 inch plywood at a 45 degree angle (think miter joint it's called)? Also could they have just used the thin veneers on the front faces to or is that not a common practice.
eightythree is offline  
post #13 of 40 Old 01-10-2015, 06:36 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 26,059
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by eightythree View Post
2 questions, can you join 1/4 inch plywood at a 45 degree angle (think miter joint it's called)? Also could they have just used the thin veneers on the front faces to or is that not a common practice.
Yes you can miter 1/4" plywood to where the face is seamless to the sides. Had they used veneer it wouldn't have been necessary. It can still be done. The strip of plywood making the outer stile and the side can be removed and done in this manor.

The majority of what I see in the pictures could be touched up by a qualified finisher. There is some veneers that need a toner and I saw at least one nail hole that needs some color.

They probably didn't accumulate the plywood to the environment in the house before using it to cover the faceframes. Then after they got done the wood shrank and caused much of the gaps in the joints. If I was touching it up I would put tape on each side of the joint and fill it with wood putty. Then sand it off and finish it.
Steve Neul is offline  
post #14 of 40 Old 01-11-2015, 12:23 AM
Senior Member
 
Al_Amantea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 146
View Al_Amantea's Photo Album My Photos
The work looks fairly average. I personally would not have the 1/4" plywood on the cabinet faces due to thickness issues and hiding the edge seams that you have now. I would have used a solid glue on veneer, then used a veneer trim saw or laminate router to trim the edges. The first reason for their choice may simply be that the job was spec'd that way due to the salesman's job write up. This may have been a result of your request for the thicker material and your thoughts that this was better than veneer. In most cases, your assumption would be correct, but here is why it was not:
While 1/4" plywood does have more structural strength than veneer, when refacing cabinets, it simply is not needed if the cabinet is already structurally sound and stable. It causes more problems than it has potential to solve, first and foremost is hiding the plywood edges. Most plywood, when cut, will chip out on the edge if a dull blade is used, or if the cut is forced, or if the blade is skewed while cutting. This is almost impossible to hide after it occurs without recutting. The face of the plywood is actually just a veneer anyway, and can be extremely thin. This can cause issues with sanding after a cut, or before finishing, as the veneer is very easy to sand through, exposing the core of the plywood.
There are many ways to hide the plywood edge, ranging from adding a solid wood edge banding, to reverse cutting the edge and glueing it back on, to using a veneer tape to hide the edge.
The cracking you are seeing in the joint is most probably due to the installers being rushed to finish and not allowing the putty to dry completely, then refiling the joint a second time prior to sanding. All putty will shrink as it dries, and this should be accounted for during installation.
The doors were probably ordered for the size openings, and simply installed on site, hence the quality of their build and the difference between the refaced bodies and the doors/drawer fronts. They may have been custom made by the company, but most likely in a shop environment and not done on site. Also, they are likely solid maple on the stiles and rails, with a maple veneered panel made of particle board if they were ordered. Not an issue, and can actually be extremely stable with humidity swings and temp changes due to the particle board.
I do agree with Mr. Neul about them not allowing the panels to acclimate to the environment, but this normally isn't an issue with plywood. This only occurs with solid wood veneers, especially if the plywood was stored indoors or stocked in a climate controlled environment.
You asked about using a miter joint, and yes, this can be done, but is not a normal practice due to the fragility of a miter joint and its difficulty of cutting properly on site. In a shop environment, this can be controlled easier, but is still a pain. In addition, it can and does change the look of the cabinet face, and will expose the grain differently at each joint and make them more noticeable.
I would have a discussion with the owner, and let him know about your issues. I personally wouldn't be happy with the quality of the installation. If you feel that you can live with it, ask for a monetary compensation and leave it at that.
If not, ask that the installers return and make it right. While you may not be able to see it when the doors are closed, remind the owner than every time you open a door or a drawer, you will be reminded of the poor quality of their installation for many years to come, and will forever be unhappy with your home because of their work.

As far as their proceedure to repair it, if it were me, i would pull the doors and drawers, leave the cabinet ends, but pull the plywood off the face. I would then come in with a solid maple veneer at least 1/16th thick (preferably 3/32), paper backed, and glue that to the face frames using a contact adhesive. Following that, using a laminate trimmer, i would trim the veneer to the face frames with a flush trim bit, using a veneer saw where the router won't fit. Finish sand, tone and finish to match.

But your mileage may vary...
Al Amantea
Amantea Fine Woodworks

Last edited by Al_Amantea; 01-11-2015 at 12:29 AM.
Al_Amantea is offline  
post #15 of 40 Old 01-11-2015, 08:47 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2014
Location: East Anglia
Posts: 182
View fareastern's Photo Album My Photos
Looks like the aftermath of a communication problem;the customer got what they thought he wanted and not what he expected.The face "veneer" is a lot thicker and more costly than normal decorative veneer and has moved because of its thickness.

Good luck with negotiating a solution.
fareastern is offline  
post #16 of 40 Old 01-11-2015, 09:13 AM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 26,059
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by fareastern View Post
Looks like the aftermath of a communication problem;the customer got what they thought he wanted and not what he expected.The face "veneer" is a lot thicker and more costly than normal decorative veneer and has moved because of its thickness.

Good luck with negotiating a solution.
It's more than that. The contractor just didn't know how to reface cabinets. There is no reputable contractor that is going to reface cabinets with 1/4" plywood just because you can see the core veneers on the edges around the door openings and the exposed ends. They could have done it better by mitering the corners at the exposed ends but that still leaves the door openings. Covering the existing cabinets with veneer is the only way to do the job correctly. What is going to be hard at this point is getting them to fix the cabinets right which would be pretty much to start over. I think at best they might get them out there to touch up what they did. These kind of contractors are what makes life hard for reputable contractors. You can't really advertise your work, you have to get work from word of mouth from other customers you have done work for.
Steve Neul is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Steve Neul For This Useful Post:
Tennessee Tim (01-12-2015)
post #17 of 40 Old 01-11-2015, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
Wow @ Al Amantea - Amazingly educating reply if you were in California you would have my business immediately. Thank you.

Now gentleman there is a silver lining to this. I have not paid the remaining $2.5kish that remains on the contract due to them still manufacturing 2 doors that were mis-measured. So I have a bit of leverage.

If I understand all the great info you guys are giving I should ask for them to pull the faces off and redo them with paper backed veneer. Am I correct or do I need to ask for more?

This material :



Was what was on the cabinets prior and as you can see was coming off in giant sheets, which is why I did the refacing. Is this paper backed veneer. If so, how do you prevent it from peeling again?

Last edited by eightythree; 01-11-2015 at 04:42 PM.
eightythree is offline  
post #18 of 40 Old 01-11-2015, 05:16 PM
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Posts: 26,059
View Steve Neul's Photo Album My Photos
The veneer you had on your cabinets is not the paper back veneer however not having a paper back wasn't the reason it is coming off. The edging on that shelf was applied with hot melt glue. Some shelf edging comes with the hot melt glue already on it and you heat it on with a hot iron. If someone doesn't heat it enough or heats it too much and doesn't put pressure on the veneer tape it doesn't make a good bond and will peal off. A factory making these type cabinets will have a machine that dispenses hot melt glue on the edge of the wood just prior to applying the veneer tape. These machines normally use a better glue and it does a better job. Still they may have had something wrong with the glue spreader and it didn't make a good bond.

If the cabinets are smooth and it good condition a paper back veneer would cover it fine. Normally when I reface cabinets the cabinets have a lot of damage on them and is in terrible condition. For that reason I usually use a phenolic veneer. It basically is formica with real wood veneer on it. The benefit is if there is a dent or some defect in the cabinet you don't see, it won't show through the veneer. A paper back veneer will follow any dip in the wood.
Steve Neul is offline  
post #19 of 40 Old 01-12-2015, 06:22 AM
Senior Member
 
Al_Amantea's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2014
Posts: 146
View Al_Amantea's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by eightythree View Post
Wow @ Al Amantea - Amazingly educating reply if you were in California you would have my business immediately. Thank you.

Now gentleman there is a silver lining to this. I have not paid the remaining $2.5kish that remains on the contract due to them still manufacturing 2 doors that were mis-measured. So I have a bit of leverage.

If I understand all the great info you guys are giving I should ask for them to pull the faces off and redo them with paper backed veneer. Am I correct or do I need to ask for more?

This material :



Was what was on the cabinets prior and as you can see was coming off in giant sheets, which is why I did the refacing. Is this paper backed veneer. If so, how do you prevent it from peeling again?
Thank you for the kind words. I am in Baton Rouge, LA. Sorry.

The veneer that you peeling off on the shelf is an edge banding just like Steve said. He is also correct in that if it was applied in a shop, it most likely was done with an edge banding machine. Sometimes you can use a household iron on a cotton or linen setting to reactivate the adhesive and reattach the edging.
There is nothing wrong with using an edge banding, and the hot melt glue used on the banding is not the same as you would use in a household hot melt glue gun but is very similar.

Since you have not paid the final installment, you have quite a bit of leverage. Most times, that final payment is where the company has its profits, as well as job incidentals. Dont underestimate the power of that.
As an owner, I would want to know how and why the problems occured. I am sure he probably has no idea what happened, and would want to know who made the mistake of spec'ing out 1/4" plywood for a facing. Even if this was a request by the client, a proper and conscientious salesman would have guided the client to the proper end result. After all, they are supposed to be the expert.
If one of my salesmen was responsible for this, i would want to know. Sometimes an over eagerness to sell the job can lead to irresponsible actions, or it could just be inexperience on his part. Either way, this issue needs to be addressed with the salesman.
On the other side of the coin, unlikely due to your apparent inexperience in this matter, if you were absolutely insistant on using plywood for the facing, and not searching for guidance from the salesman, it should have been listed as a client request in the job quote.
If this was the case, you may not have a possible resolution except to graciously accept a serving of humble pie, and try to work an acceptable price to redo the facing properly. I dont believe this was the case, but it is a possibility.
Any owner who cares about his reputation will try to resolve the issue to the satisfaction of both parties, but it may require a little give and take on both sides.

Respectfully,
Al
Al_Amantea is offline  
The Following User Says Thank You to Al_Amantea For This Useful Post:
123pugsy (01-12-2015)
post #20 of 40 Old 01-12-2015, 11:07 AM Thread Starter
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2015
Posts: 11
View eightythree's Photo Album My Photos
Quote:
Originally Posted by Al_Amantea View Post
Thank you for the kind words. I am in Baton Rouge, LA. Sorry.

The veneer that you peeling off on the shelf is an edge banding just like Steve said. He is also correct in that if it was applied in a shop, it most likely was done with an edge banding machine. Sometimes you can use a household iron on a cotton or linen setting to reactivate the adhesive and reattach the edging.
There is nothing wrong with using an edge banding, and the hot melt glue used on the banding is not the same as you would use in a household hot melt glue gun but is very similar.

Since you have not paid the final installment, you have quite a bit of leverage. Most times, that final payment is where the company has its profits, as well as job incidentals. Dont underestimate the power of that.
As an owner, I would want to know how and why the problems occured. I am sure he probably has no idea what happened, and would want to know who made the mistake of spec'ing out 1/4" plywood for a facing. Even if this was a request by the client, a proper and conscientious salesman would have guided the client to the proper end result. After all, they are supposed to be the expert.
If one of my salesmen was responsible for this, i would want to know. Sometimes an over eagerness to sell the job can lead to irresponsible actions, or it could just be inexperience on his part. Either way, this issue needs to be addressed with the salesman.
On the other side of the coin, unlikely due to your apparent inexperience in this matter, if you were absolutely insistant on using plywood for the facing, and not searching for guidance from the salesman, it should have been listed as a client request in the job quote.
If this was the case, you may not have a possible resolution except to graciously accept a serving of humble pie, and try to work an acceptable price to redo the facing properly. I dont believe this was the case, but it is a possibility.
Any owner who cares about his reputation will try to resolve the issue to the satisfaction of both parties, but it may require a little give and take on both sides.

Respectfully,
Al
As a matter of fact Al, the ONLY option that was show to me was the 1/4 plywood :



They specifically said they dont like to use other veneers as they didn't hold up as well as the ply.
eightythree is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the Woodworking Talk - Woodworkers Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Deck addition, how correctly brace free-standing deck? BulletHead Project Showcase 27 09-06-2014 12:45 PM
how to cut multiple wide "boards" correctly? yarg28 General Woodworking Discussion 18 01-14-2014 08:32 AM
Did I setup dados correctly? deadherring General Woodworking Discussion 7 04-29-2012 06:53 PM
Am i reading this correctly? htank General Woodworking Discussion 21 07-18-2011 11:10 PM
Anti-Slip Tip for work sliding on your work surface. Bearcreek Tips, Tricks, & Homemade Jigs 3 08-19-2009 08:08 PM

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome