Cabinets. A 2 year process

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Project by Bill7255 posted 08-09-2014 01:28 PM 2832 views 6 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

No it shouldn’t take 2 years to build cabinets. It was two years ago when I bought wood and decided I wanted to build cabinets for my new house. I have never done anything like this before. Rockler had cherry and African mahogany as their wood of the month on sale. I bought a 150bf of cherry and 300bf of mahogany. I decided to practice by refacing my existing home cabinets with the cherry for resale and to see if I could even do this. I bought a set of Woodline router bits at the WW show as I didn’t want to invest major $$ until I knew if I could do this. Woodline bits worked very well. I reused the same hardware and the change was impressive even to me. A lot of learning along the way. It was the first time I had ever used pocket hole, just the small jig. To make the new house cabinets I knew I had to invest in some new and upgrades to my tools. Back at the WW show I got sold on Somerfield’s cabinet making system. My wife wanted shaker style doors and I ended up spending about $600 on bits, Easy Bore jig, and supplies. I also bought a SuperMax 19-38 drum sander, a Incra LS 25 fence, upgraded my router table, and larger Kreg jig. I was hoping to use the Incra for the dovetail drawers, but large drawers are a challenge with the Incra and ended up buying a Leigh jig. I really didn’t need but I bought a Ceros sander and found a MinMax FS 35 14” jointer planer along the way. Also bought new saw blades.
The kitchen cabinets are mahogany with 3” rail and stiles and mahogany panels. Face frames are 1 1/2”. The boxes are 3/4” and I used pre finished ply where I could and mahogany ply when necessary. The lower cabinets are mostly drawers except for the corner cabinet which has the Rev-A-Shelf blind cabinet pull out and speciality mixer lift and cutting board cabinet. The island has bookshelves on each end and houses the dishwasher, sink, and trash compactor. The first coat of poly was gloss followed by satin. All hinges are Blum soft close and drawers are Blum undermount soft close. The laundry/pantry cabinets are maple. Initially I intended to stain these, but decided it was better to paint them. The large pantry cabinet is 6’ X 8’. This is a big cabinet with 4 pull outs in each side. All hinges are Blum and slides are KV.
So after two years it is finally over. My cost including all the tools/tooling and materials is less than $9,000. I think I ended up ok and have a lot of nice new tools left to use.

-- Bill R

17 comments so far

View shields71's profile


7 posts in 2367 days

#1 posted 08-09-2014 01:40 PM

thumbs up there Bill it looks pretty darn good from where i am sitting

View Strangar's profile


45 posts in 2538 days

#2 posted 08-09-2014 01:57 PM

Nice job

-- A man can never have enough tools. Now where did I put that hammer?

View ShaneA's profile


7085 posts in 3403 days

#3 posted 08-09-2014 02:04 PM

They both look great.

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3671 days

#4 posted 08-09-2014 02:34 PM

The cabinets are very nice. Congratulations.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Brad's profile


1146 posts in 3545 days

#5 posted 08-09-2014 02:48 PM

$9,000 isn’t bad at all for a beautiful result like that. Plus you learned a lot of new skills.

Though let’s face it. The true test of the final outcome is what your wife thinks of it ;)

-- "People's lives are their own rewards or punishments."

View Mark's profile


1046 posts in 2779 days

#6 posted 08-09-2014 03:30 PM

Very nice Bill. Love that kitchen. The lighting really accents the cabinetry. If ya don’t mind me asking. Why the gloss finish followed by satin? As opposed to just satin.

-- Mark

View Bill7255's profile


428 posts in 3089 days

#7 posted 08-09-2014 05:47 PM

I used the gloss to help bring out the grain. I wanted a satin finish, however putting two coats of satin would dull the wood.

The wife loves them. We purchased a higher quality cabinets for the bathroom vanities around $3,500 for both. You can tell mine are much better all the way around.

Of course I learned a lot and there were some redos, but in the end everything fit and best worked.

-- Bill R

View NormG's profile


6506 posts in 3809 days

#8 posted 08-10-2014 12:36 AM

You did one heck of a job on this kitchen cabinetry. I bet whomever purchased the other home is very lucky also. Sometimes it is not the costs so much, as the end result and what you learned along the way

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Manitario's profile


2816 posts in 3688 days

#9 posted 08-10-2014 02:23 AM

very nice looking cabinets! I can only begin to appreciate the amount of work that went into them!

-- Sometimes the creative process requires foul language. -- Charles Neil

View shopmania's profile


701 posts in 3987 days

#10 posted 08-10-2014 02:51 AM

Very nice! Did you stain the mahogany!! Beautiful rich color! Great job!

-- Tim, Myrtle Beach, [email protected] Just one more tool, that's all I need! :)

View Bill7255's profile


428 posts in 3089 days

#11 posted 08-10-2014 11:00 AM

I did stain the mahogany. I used a 50/50 mixture of ZAR brand dark mahogany and rosewood. IMOP the other house the change was dramatic to the kitchen with the cherry cabinets. I learned about a lot of things I had no idea before. The most challenging was the upper kitchen corner cabinet and the large pantry cabinet. Now in addition to the learning I have some nice new tools and can start cabinets for my workshop.

-- Bill R

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 4108 days

#12 posted 08-10-2014 03:12 PM

what a beautiful kitchen, the wood is very rich looking, and for sure makes the kitchen, although 9 grand sound a bit high, but im not up to date on what quality cabinets cost these days, but if i was going to do the job myself, i would hope it saved me a good amount….now you can look upon this with the knowledge that you did this…a very good feeling.

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View English's profile


688 posts in 2282 days

#13 posted 08-10-2014 03:37 PM

Great job!!

I built a kitchen out of hickory, I took 2 years also, there’s a lot of work in a complete kitchen full of modern cabinets and with other projects and life’s normal turmoil, it takes time.

So again, Great job, looks beautiful. Something you can be proud of each time you enter your kitchen. I know I am.

-- John, Suffolk Virgina

View TysonK's profile


154 posts in 2607 days

#14 posted 08-10-2014 07:10 PM

Remarkable work. Tucking this aside for some inspiration on the kitchen I hope to build someday. Looks fantastic.

-- -- Tyson

View Bill7255's profile


428 posts in 3089 days

#15 posted 08-11-2014 01:31 PM

Grizzman, I think you are a little outdated on custom cabinet prices. I didn’t price the kitchen cabinets, however I did get a price for the large 6’ X 8’ cabinet that ranged from $2400 to $4200. My brother and daughter both had new cabinets and islands and were over $12,000. With the laundry cabinets included my initial estimate was between $12,000 to $14,000. The $9,000 included a $1,000 in refacing my former home cabinets and all of the tooling for these cabinets. I think I came out ahead.
English, I know what you mean when someone comments on the cabinets and you can say I built them. I will bet yours are beautiful and the bathroom vanities I bought are hickory. Beautiful wood.
TysonK, I only had moderate skills before I started and learned by doing, so Yes you can do this.

-- Bill R

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