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I'm brand new to woodworking but have started to build cabinets/closet in a knee-wall. It's almost 24' long and so far I have 2 questions I can't find the answer to:

1. Should I make a pre-assembled face frame or treat the front of it like trim, and nail each piece to the wall as I go? If face frame is the best way to go - should I use pocket hole screws? dowels? biscuits?

2. Since it is as long as 24' (feet) how should I join the bottom and top piece of the face frame / trim? The floor is VERY uneven! (over 2 inch dips) so I'll have to scribe that piece. Do I assemble a 24' board before I start scribing or can I piece it together afterwards? And what type of joint would be the easiest to accomplish for someone with very limited skills...?

Thanks for any help!!
 

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I think I'd start with a 4" wide board for the bottom rail. A 24' one may be hard to come by, though. Lets assume you use 3 ea. 8' pieces.
Lay them out on the floor as they will be when assembled. Do the scribe and cut/sand.

Take the pieces and assemble the entire face frame with pocket screws.

If it were me, I would just make 3 separate 8' long face frames with pocket screws, scribing the bottoms as above. Then screw them together at their butting stiles.
 

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make a ladder base scribed to the floor then just make all of your faceframed cabinets nice and square just set em on the pre attached base,screw em down done
 

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I did the same thing in an upstairs bedroom in a 90 year old cape that my ex wound up with which also had floors like the ocean.

What I did was remove the plaster and build the drawer boxes so they extended into the room about 4 inches more than the wall. Then I used a furniture base - ran the stiles to the floor in 4 places - and recessed a toe kick so that the bottom rail line ran straight. The toe kick was stained the same color as the floor, the cabinet was white.

I pocket screwed the face frame together. I also ran trim around the perimeter of the built-in.

Cheers,
Jim
 

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Discussion Starter #6
here's a picture

Thanks for your guys' replies. Here is a picture of it. (Couldn't fit it all though) The cabinets/boxes are made of 1/2" MDF.

So I should definitely pre-assemble some sort of face frame rather than nail the moulding/trim up one piece at a time?

Thanks!

-silver
 

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Thanks for your guys' replies. Here is a picture of it. (Couldn't fit it all though) The cabinets/boxes are made of 1/2" MDF.

So I should definitely pre-assemble some sort of face frame rather than nail the moulding/trim up one piece at a time?

Thanks!

-silver

It looks like you've already installed all the boxes. At this point, one of the choices (and maybe the easiest) would be to use a hand block sander (sandpaper wrapped around a block of wood) and flatten the joining cabinet ends and leading edges all around. Then contact cement the pieces to the front edges.

If you have flat edges to start with, solvent based contact cement will hold very well. Start at one end and just put them on like an ongoing puzzle.

If you prefer to use yellow glue, you can drive into the front edges 4d finish nails (keep them straight), and snip off the length on a sharp angle to protrude about 1/4". Then, apply a thin layer of glue and use a block and hammer and tap the FF pieces onto the front edges.

Or, if you're painting, just nail them on to the front edges, and seat the head with a nail set, and fill and sand. You could do this with a finished wood (natural or stained) FF and use a matched fill. I would not use pocket screws or biscuits. If you need to tie the rails to the edges of the stiles, drill a small pilot hole on an angle from either the top or bottom or both of the rail into the stile, to drive in a finish nail. Seat the head with a nail set.

Making individual FF's or large sections of FF would also work, but would be more labor intensive. If you choose to go that way, HERE is a thread that might be helpful.






 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you!!

Thanks a lot guys for all your help!!

I think I've decided to attempt cabinetman's method of nailing up one piece at a time since I'll be painting it all anyway. So I'll start with scribing the baseboards and get those level on top, cut all the stiles to length (some will probably have to be ripped as well) and do the top horizontal piece last.... Hopefully I'll get the seams somewhat flush...

Thank you!!
 

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Looks like you have your answer already, but be sure to use plenty of glue. assemble similar to Stile and rail, and you may want to pocket screw the stiles to the rails to keep everything looking good for years to come.
 
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