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Discussion Starter #1
Hello and thanks for all advice in advance and sorry for the long post.

I am in the process of remodeling my mother's kitchen. Can't afford to buy all new cabinets so I thought I would make them. Needing a little help where to start.

I gutted the room. I just don't know where to start with my build.
Mom is staying with my brother till I get this done so I've got time to build not in a rush.

Should I try and build all the base cabinets in place or build in sections. The base cabinet will need to cover 3 walls. when I minus appliances at the end I left with the following space.

west wall 80.5"
north wall 131" with window(84.25" wide) 27.5" inches from west wall
east wall 47"
nothing can go on the south wall

wall cabinets will go on the west and east walls

I was thinking about building then in place. Making a frame out of 2x4s then covering with plywood cutting out doors and draws.

Just need some advice.

thanks

Kilgore
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply.

From the video and your pics I have a good plan of attack of where to start.

I'll take some pics of the project and post. If it turn out half as nice as yours I'll post. If not it will be an empty promise.

Thanks again.

Kilgore
 

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Here's a tip that may help.

Many of the drawing programs may not present the actual details as they occur. I have a method I use for laying out that may help. I take all my wall measurements and details like plumbing, electrical outlets, windows, door casings, appliances, etc. Then I cut out a mock countertop from anything, like 1/4" plywood, or, if it's to be a laminated top, the actual 3/4" plywood that will be the countertops. I cut them out to fit the overall layout as per the wall measurements. Where there's a break in countertops like for a slide in stove, I'll cut a filler top for the spacing. Brown paper could be used in place of a panel. But I find maneuvering the paper layout and fitting cabinets to it pretty much destroys it.

Then I lay out the tops and draw right on the tops the base cabinets as they go. I also draw right on the tops the upper cabinets, as they go. Doing this accomplishes several things. When I say draw, it's not just the outside lines for the carcasses, but the actual thickness of the carcass walls. That way, the planning for the joinery and figuring the finished ends can be done. If dadoes and rabbets or whatever joinery methods are being used, it will give the exact size of all the parts.


This method will also solve all clearance and fitting situations. If the countertop pieces are cut exactly to the needed wall dimensions, and everything above and below it is drawn to fit, they most likely will fit. Any filler pieces can be easily figured out.


With this done, you have the whole kitchen laid out, and all the sizes of all the pieces needed can be transcribed to lists for figuring materials, cut lists, and possibly an order for a sequence of assembly. For shops with limited space, once the boxes go together, space becomes a premium.


With everything detailed, an accurate materials list, cut list, and layout sketch can be made. All the parts can be numbered or lettered and transferred to the list, and that way, you'll know what is cut what isn't, and in the end if anything is missing. Parts marked that way won't get used for anything other than what they are intended. I like to make several copies of all the wall elevation drawings. They don't even have to be to scale. Right on one set titled "cabinets" will be all the numbers or letters for the boxes, another set titled "doors and drawer fronts" will have door and drawer front numbers or letters, and likewise for shelves. The drawers are also marked. With these drawings, at any time during the project, I know what part is what, and where it goes. These drawings help in making the cut list, and as parts are cut, they just get marked and checked off.


Once all the boxes are assembled, they should fit right on the countertop drawing. If elevation drawings are made, all the marked parts, such as door and drawer front numbers or letters will match the actual parts.


For layouts other than kitchens, that don't utilize a countertop per se, a mock panel to represent the overall depth and width can be used, and then in plan (view), the drawing can be done. For working out elevation details, they can be drawn out full size on brown paper.


Those drawings, and lists with all the parts will tell you what and where everything goes even before you turn on the saw.


As a side note, I don't build cabinets in place unless there is no other way. If they are to be face framed, I make the cabinets first, and then the face frames. I don't use pocket screws, but rather conventional joinery for sheet goods.






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Here's a tip that may help.

Many of the drawing programs may not present the actual details as they occur. I have a method I use for laying out that may help. I take all my wall measurements and details like plumbing, electrical outlets, windows, door casings, appliances, etc. Then I cut out a mock countertop from anything, like 1/4" plywood, or, if it's to be a laminated top, the actual 3/4" plywood that will be the countertops. I cut them out to fit the overall layout as per the wall measurements. Where there's a break in countertops like for a slide in stove, I'll cut a filler top for the spacing. Brown paper could be used in place of a panel. But I find maneuvering the paper layout and fitting cabinets to it pretty much destroys it.

Then I lay out the tops and draw right on the tops the base cabinets as they go. I also draw right on the tops the upper cabinets, as they go. Doing this accomplishes several things. When I say draw, it's not just the outside lines for the carcasses, but the actual thickness of the carcass walls. That way, the planning for the joinery and figuring the finished ends can be done. If dadoes and rabbets or whatever joinery methods are being used, it will give the exact size of all the parts.


This method will also solve all clearance and fitting situations. If the countertop pieces are cut exactly to the needed wall dimensions, and everything above and below it is drawn to fit, they most likely will fit. Any filler pieces can be easily figured out.


With this done, you have the whole kitchen laid out, and all the sizes of all the pieces needed can be transcribed to lists for figuring materials, cut lists, and possibly an order for a sequence of assembly. For shops with limited space, once the boxes go together, space becomes a premium.


With everything detailed, an accurate materials list, cut list, and layout sketch can be made. All the parts can be numbered or lettered and transferred to the list, and that way, you'll know what is cut what isn't, and in the end if anything is missing. Parts marked that way won't get used for anything other than what they are intended. I like to make several copies of all the wall elevation drawings. They don't even have to be to scale. Right on one set titled "cabinets" will be all the numbers or letters for the boxes, another set titled "doors and drawer fronts" will have door and drawer front numbers or letters, and likewise for shelves. The drawers are also marked. With these drawings, at any time during the project, I know what part is what, and where it goes. These drawings help in making the cut list, and as parts are cut, they just get marked and checked off.


Once all the boxes are assembled, they should fit right on the countertop drawing. If elevation drawings are made, all the marked parts, such as door and drawer front numbers or letters will match the actual parts.


For layouts other than kitchens, that don't utilize a countertop per se, a mock panel to represent the overall depth and width can be used, and then in plan (view), the drawing can be done. For working out elevation details, they can be drawn out full size on brown paper.


Those drawings, and lists with all the parts will tell you what and where everything goes even before you turn on the saw.


As a side note, I don't build cabinets in place unless there is no other way. If they are to be face framed, I make the cabinets first, and then the face frames. I don't use pocket screws, but rather conventional joinery for sheet goods.






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Excellent write up.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Laminate Countertops

Well I have most of the wall and base cabinets done. Just need to add the doors on the wall and shelves drawers on the base.

Needing a little help with the "U" shaped countertops. This is what I have done so far.

I bought three 5/8 pieces of particle board. I placed a 4 1/2" strip of particleboard to be used as the backsplash along the back of the base cabinets. Then sanded the particle board I'm using as the substrate to follow the contour of the back splash. Then allowed a 1" overhang of the substrate over the face frame. Done the same thing with the 2nd sheet of particle board with an added following of the contour where the 2nd sheet meets the 1st sheet. And that is where I stopped nothing is attached at this moment. I still have one full sheet of particle board left to use as build-up strips.

The seam where the 2 pieces of substrate meet is not as nice as I would like so this is what I plan on doing. Please let me know what you guys think.

I plan on laying the substrate on sawhorses (or ground) and drawing them together as close as I can. Then take my circle saw and sawing right down the seam. that should give me an seam that should allow both to pieces to match up nicely and only take 1/16 of the width (1/32 each piece of substrate) of the entire substrate. Then of course to build up the countertop I will glue and brad nail 5" or so strips to the underside of the substrate and where the seam is use a 10" or so strip so the left and right side can share the 10" strip.

I have contact cement to glue the laminate down with. I will glue the laminate to the front edges, then the main substrate, then the back splash, then attach the back splash to the substrate.

I also thought about trimming the some of the 1" overhang off the front of the substrate. Then attaching a 1x2 to the front of the substrate. Sanding it smooth to the top and bottom of the substrate. Gluing the laminate to the top and stain and poly the wood. I don't have a router to add any kind of contour to the edge so will just have to leave it at that.

My brother wants to glue laminate to backsplash. glue and brad nail back splash to substrate. Add the buildup to bottom of substrate. attach everything to base cabinet. then glue laminate to substrate so the seam of the laminate is on the opposite side of the "U" to the seam of the particle board. I told him not to smoke crack and then try to help me :)

Any thought or tips?

Kilgore
 

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Discussion Starter #9
yea, will take bout 2 hrs. going up mom's now. that is where the work is being done. Need to get some anyway for braggin' on the during and after.:)

Kilgore
 

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"Mom is staying with my brother till I get this done so I've got time to build not in a rush."

Does your brother agree with this comment?

George
 

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Discussion Starter #11
As far as Mom staying with my brother. Brother doesn't mind at all. Brother is a single parent taking care of 5 year old. Can use the help.

Well got some pics hope they get posted

Pic 01
Left side of the "U". Fridge goes on the end of the cabinet. base and wall cabinets are straight in line with each other.

2014-03-24 18.11.47.jpg

Pic 02 Center of the "U". Center of zink will be in center of window. Seam is to the left.

2014-03-24 18.10.57.jpg

Pic 03 Right side of "U". Right of the corner will be a pull out garbage can. Stove will go to the right. There is 31" between the end of the cabinet and door trim. Stove is 30" wide. May have to cutout bottom of cabinet for electric connection for stove if there is not enough room under back of stove for it.

2014-03-24 18.12.11.jpg

Pic 04 Close-up of the seam.

2014-03-24 18.12.31.jpg

Pic 05 showing the difference in the front and back of the seam. Just slid the left side down. You'll see. The back splash seen in this are 2 different pieces as well.

2014-03-24 18.14.55.jpg

Please keep in mind this is the FIRST time I have ever attempted anything like this. The house was built in 1930's or 1940's. Is an old box house. Was added on to 3-5 times over the years. From looking up in the ceiling. This was a porch at one time I think. I ripped up all the old floor because of rot and replaced. Ripped out all old drywall because of mold and rot and replace. replaced 90% of electric wires. Added insulation in outside walls and ceiling. Well it's supper time. Be back in a little while.

Kilgore
 

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Did you build it in place?

It's easier to laminate the top off the cabinet. It should be done without the backsplash in place. Cutting the sinkhole in place is more difficult being in place, and the splash in place. I would remove the splash and do it separately.

I prefer not to use particle board or MDF around a sink or dishwasher, which includes the backsplash.





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Discussion Starter #13
I can take the tops outside. The back splash are just temp screwed to the wall to hold them in place.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
If you look at Pic 02 you can see that there are only 2 sheets of particle bard making the countertop with the seam being on the left. I can remove both and take outside to apply laminate. Used particle board because www.what ever I first read.com said to use. That was before I joined here.

Kilgore
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Alright, I now know I should have used plywood for the countertop. Live and learn.

I now know that I should take countertops outside and apply laminate to the countertop.

Question is should I put countertop seam as close together as possible and saw a new seam to get a tighter fit. This is how it looks now.

2014-03-24 18.12.47.jpg

Kilgore
 

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Alright, I now know I should have used plywood for the countertop. Live and learn.

I now know that I should take countertops outside and apply laminate to the countertop.

Question is should I put countertop seam as close together as possible and saw a new seam to get a tighter fit. This is how it looks now.

View attachment 91684

Kilgore
Here's what I would do. If you can have a helper handy when you are done laminating to help carry and place the top, that would be great. If not, you could do this in place if necessary.

First, I would glue and install to the underside of the front and back edge ¾" plywood, 2½" wide to get a front edge buildup, and space up the back edge. This is also used to screw down the top from the underside when ready to install. Hold the back edge in abut ½", in case you have to scribe it to the wall. If you have held the back support ½" in, put a small section of ¾" plywood at the very end, so when you laminate the edge it will be solid all the way to the wall. If you don't there will be a notch in the laminate.

Install the underside buildup piece right across your seam in the substrate. Cut a scab board out of ¾ " plywood to cover the PB seam from the underside for about 6" in both directions. Glue and screw it on both sides. Make sure your screws are the correct length.

I would then laminate the front edges first, and sand off flat to the top. When laminating the top, I would run the seam from the left 90° corner on a 45° into the back corner. Joint both mating edges with a straightedge, and check for a fit. An alternative to straight edging the mating edges would be to cut a miter on both sheets about ½" long. Clamp the sheets about ⅜" apart, mark across both sheets some alignment marks with a pencil. Run a trim router bit on a straightedge between both sheets at once. When done, backfile them to dress them clean.

Apply a solvent base contact cement to both the PB and the laminate. When the glue has flashed dry for about 20 minutes, check both surfaces for any debris, and check the mating edges of the miter for glue globs. Those edges should be clean. You could back file those edges so the top surface will touch without a problem.

Lay on the PB some ½" dowels about 10" apart to keep the mica from touching the PB. That will allow you to get some overhang all the way around, and align the pieces for the seam. Have a line drawn on the PB for the seam. Lay the edge of the 45° on the line, and slowly and lightly start taking out the dowels. When you are ready to put down the left piece, lay a ¼" dowel parallel to the seam line about 10"-12" away, and touch the edge to the seam. Then pull out the dowels slowly leaving the ¼" one. That will leave a hump type bubble when you slide it out, which you will gently start pushing down forcing the edges to become tight. If you haven't pressed the entire sheet down, you can get some movement from it. If it's too tight, it should be lax enough to move back to flatten out.

Once the top has been laid down, use a "J" roller, or the edge of a block of wood and press down hard from the centerline out to get all the air out. Then use a handheld router with a flush trim bit with a bearing to rout off the overhang. Use a mill file to dress the mating edge, filing only on the down stroke. And, there you have it.

NOTE: Laminate used for countertops would be best if you use 1/16" laminate. Laminate for doors, and cabinet faces is 1/32". They are in many cases available in the same color and texture. Sizes for 1/16" can go up to 5'x12'.

You can apply the contact cement with a brush, or a 9" short nap paint roller (adhesive type roller cover). Work in a well ventilated area.






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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks for the advice CabinetMan.

Will let you know how it turns out. May not be right away cause I think I pulled stomach muscle moving that PB by myself. Will have to rest a bit and do something else to let belly heal a little before tackling the top. As well as letting it warm up a little. Contact cement said both surfaces must be 65ish and will have to apply it outside to have ventilation and room to move.

Would be a good time to work on the doors I guess.

Kilgore
 
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