Kitchen Cabinet Retrofit

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Project by AandCstyle posted 01-09-2019 02:34 PM 1728 views 3 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch

These 2 cabinets had the typical bottom shelf and a half shelf above that. That arrangement is inconvenient, especially when trying to retrieve heavy items from the back of the bottom shelf.

These new shelves are full extension trays and will be much more user friendly. One fits a 27” wide cabinet and the other is 33”. I glued the plywood into grooves in the sides and reinforced the butt joints with dominoes as you can see. I was not concerned about that because the dominoes will be invisible 99.99% of the time and I don’t think they look bad. The finish is 3 coats of Arm-R-Seal.

We gave up the flexibility of the adjustable shelf and a bit of space along the sides and under the lower tray, but gained in convenience and storage space.

Thanks for looking.

-- Art

20 comments so far

View pottz's profile (online now)


14898 posts in 1997 days

#1 posted 01-09-2019 02:45 PM

great idea art the biggest problem with shelves is stuff gets lost at the back and never seen again.when i built my kitchen i used only drawers in the lower cabinets.if needed though there are ways to makes sliders adjustable but once a shelf is positioned do we ever move em again?nice work.

-- working with my hands is a joy,it gives me a sense of fulfillment,somthing so many seek and so few find.-SAM MALOOF.

View CampD's profile


1818 posts in 4498 days

#2 posted 01-09-2019 02:59 PM

Nice job Art, a great fix to the most underused and “twilight zone” of Kitchen Cabinets.

-- Doug...

View Sylvain's profile


1210 posts in 3512 days

#3 posted 01-09-2019 03:03 PM

In 20 years we never changed the shelf height.
2 weeks ago, my wife has catch a lumbago while putting back a pan in the cabinet.
I am just considering making the same retrofit.

-- Sylvain, Brussels, Belgium, Europe - The more I learn, the more there is to learn

View Mark's profile


1066 posts in 2987 days

#4 posted 01-09-2019 03:37 PM

Well done Art. Nicely done. I did that to an 18”x56” pantry we have. Sure makes a big difference.

-- Mark

View Jerry's profile


3488 posts in 2660 days

#5 posted 01-09-2019 04:07 PM

At least yours slide past the door edges with no problem. I was not smart enough to allow for that.

-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be.

View oldrivers's profile


2469 posts in 2579 days

#6 posted 01-09-2019 04:10 PM

Splendid job!Definitely a big upgrade, looks Great, well done.

-- Soli Deo gloria!

View EarlS's profile


4312 posts in 3360 days

#7 posted 01-09-2019 04:18 PM

I will keep your project in mind when we start figuring out cabinets for the kitchen in the new house.

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View Luddite's profile


244 posts in 2250 days

#8 posted 01-09-2019 08:47 PM

Great stuff Art. We did this to our under the counter cabinets years ago but not as nice as yours. I like the dominoe effect as well. This is the sort of project that will make your friends and neighbors jealous.

-- T Loftus -- Just on the edge of common sense

View AandCstyle's profile


3294 posts in 3269 days

#9 posted 01-09-2019 09:42 PM

Thanks for all the compliments.

Earl, either full drawers or these slide out trays are vastly superior to what we had according to SWMBO.

Terry, I will not show these to any friends or neighbors unless they are woodworkers. Making the trays is fine, but I wouldn’t want to crawl into anymore cabinets.

-- Art

View Alongiron's profile


654 posts in 3705 days

#10 posted 01-09-2019 09:54 PM

Looks like you will be filling your drawers now! lol Great retro fit and I am sure TLOYL is very happy.
I have been busy in the shop making some things but my Father in Law has been ill and has limited my time since he has moved into the guest room here at the house. I need to post a few things so everyone does not think I died or something!
Take care my friend and good work as always!

-- Measure twice and cut once.....sneak up on it! Steve Lien

View AM420's profile


323 posts in 1396 days

#11 posted 01-09-2019 10:30 PM

Nice work! I’ve been eager to do this also, but my cabinet doors have huge hindges that stick pretty far out. I’d have to make the drawer much narrower to clear them, at least for the bottom one. Still, may be worth it go be able to use the space more effectively.

View doubleDD's profile


10159 posts in 3055 days

#12 posted 01-10-2019 03:45 PM

This is a great idea. When we ordered new cabinets they screwed up and didn’t add the sliding shelves to the pantry cabinet. After two years my wife said we need them so I did the same thing. The best thing we could of done.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

View Sylvain's profile


1210 posts in 3512 days

#13 posted 01-10-2019 03:49 PM

Jerry, AM420
Blum makes hinges which brings the door completely out of the way:
Look for “wide angle applications”

You can get them by IKEA
look for “UTRUSTA 153°”

It is cheaper in US than in Belgium.

-- Sylvain, Brussels, Belgium, Europe - The more I learn, the more there is to learn

View Grumpy's profile


26811 posts in 4863 days

#14 posted 01-12-2019 03:28 AM

Art , nice job and congratulations on your ‘Daily Top 3’ award.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View AandCstyle's profile


3294 posts in 3269 days

#15 posted 01-12-2019 12:15 PM

Again, my thanks to everyone.

Grumpy, regarding the DT3, there must have only been 3 projects posted. :)

-- Art

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