1/2" plywood cabinet sides

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Forum topic by Wrkrbeee posted 05-22-2019 05:50 PM 441 views 0 times favorited 15 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3 posts in 25 days

05-22-2019 05:50 PM

Topic tags/keywords: cabinets plywood sides question

Hi everyone, seeking some advice here …. ordered kitchen cabs with 3/4” plywood sides, but received 1/2” plywood sides. Supplier is offering to ship 1/4” plywood sides that when attached to the 1/2” side will generate the the 3/4” side. Couple of issues that I see (and I’m sure there are many more that I do not see) are: 1) seems that 1/4” plywood is subject to warping, which complicates the install/attachment process; and 2) applying pressure to obtain a good bond between the 1/4” and 1/2” might be tricky … guess I could lay the 1/4” flat on the ground sit the cabinet (turned on its side) on the 1/4”, then place bricks, etc, on the interior cabinet sidewall … or use 1/2” countersunk screws at strategic locations (so as not to hit the holes for the shelf pins).

Anyone have any thoughts here?

Thank you!!!!

15 replies so far

View Steve's profile


1267 posts in 968 days

#1 posted 05-22-2019 06:19 PM

I’d have the same concerns you do and would probably push to have the supplier remake the cabinets. Unless you needed them installed right away, then I would ask for a heavy discount to fix their mistake.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5538 posts in 2879 days

#2 posted 05-22-2019 06:24 PM

I wouldn’t try to do that (add 1/4” to the sides). You deserve a do-over, or use them as-is.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View pottz's profile (online now)


5227 posts in 1370 days

#3 posted 05-22-2019 06:52 PM

id also say they need to replace those you shouldn’t have to do a fix because they screwed up.or as steve said a hefty discount would be in order.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

View jdmaher's profile


450 posts in 2965 days

#4 posted 05-22-2019 07:00 PM

If you have documentation that you ordered 3/4” plywood, demand a do-over or refund.

-- Jim Maher, Illinois

View AlaskaGuy's profile


5272 posts in 2695 days

#5 posted 05-22-2019 07:08 PM

Hold there damn feet to the fire. Last year my brother ordered cabinets and pay a lot of money for cabinets he specified all plywood. He ended up with cabinets with some plywood and some particle board in cabinet.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View kkaucher's profile


23 posts in 705 days

#6 posted 05-22-2019 07:17 PM

It’s all been said. Get what you paid for. Period. There’s no reason you should have to fix THEIR mistake with this order. Tell them they can either re-do your order, cancel and refund it, give you a hefty discount, or volunteer to be the recipients of a lot of splinters in their sitting parts.

No reason in the world why you should have to accept or repair their screw-up. Good luck!

-- A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working. ~Author unknown

View CWWoodworking's profile


478 posts in 564 days

#7 posted 05-22-2019 08:50 PM

What does it look like? Is is structurally sound?

If that all checks out good, I’d get as big of discount as possible. Nothing wrong with 1/2” if done properly.

I would not except a skin.

View WoodenDreams's profile


601 posts in 296 days

#8 posted 05-22-2019 09:17 PM

If your 1/2” panels look good to you, The mistake would look even better if you get a nice discount for your wallet. That’s a personal choice. If you heart is set for 3/4” then ask for a do over.

View Jared_S's profile


196 posts in 345 days

#9 posted 05-23-2019 02:11 AM

I prefer 1/2 sides, but if i paid for 3/4 id be getting 3/4.

1/4” skins are a insult.

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5538 posts in 2879 days

#10 posted 05-23-2019 10:30 AM

We pretty much all agreed you need a do over, but to your question: if you glue the skins to the existing 1/2” ply, the only bond will be between the very thin surface veneers which is likely to be a problem. However, if you insist on doing putting the 1/4” panels on, the trick with weights might work, but maybe consider contact cement. Think this through, the edges on the 1/2” are concealed (I would think) and your adding the 1/4”, so you’ll need to cover that edge as well. The whole process strikes me as a very bad idea; so much so I surprised your supplier suggested it.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View Wrkrbeee's profile


3 posts in 25 days

#11 posted 05-23-2019 12:25 PM

Thanks to everyone for their suggestions. IFFFF I were to make 1/4” additions to the existing 1/2”, why not keep it simple and use a material that I know will be nice and flat like MDF? Serves the same purpose of additional vertical support. Nevertheless, at this stage, I agree with several respondents who suggested trying to live with the 1/2” sides and extract some concession from the supplier. FWIW, I originally asked the current supplier to translate cab numbers from yet another supplierrs cab line. The 3/4” spec was not actually available with the new supplier, but this was never communicated to me. So, culpability on both the supplier and myself here. Guess I’m saying a do-over is not really practical,

I am grateful for everyone’s input. Thank you!

View JCamp's profile


981 posts in 936 days

#12 posted 05-23-2019 12:41 PM

Nothing really wrong with 1/2in as far as I’m considered but since u paid for 3/4 I’d either demand a hefty reduction in cost or send them back. I mean if you wanted to work on cabinets you could have just built your own

-- Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with all thy might

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

5538 posts in 2879 days

#13 posted 05-23-2019 01:39 PM

You only need the additional vertical support in the most extreme of circumstances. 1/2” is plenty strong for almost any normal cabinet use.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

View DS's profile


3163 posts in 2806 days

#14 posted 05-23-2019 04:38 PM

If you have face frame cabinets, the extra side panel thickness is really just dead weight. That doesn’t excuse them for not being clear about what you would be receiving.

If these are frameless cabinets, (Which I can’t imagine in 1/2”), then I wouldn’t even let them in the door. (There wouldn’t be enough lateral shear strength.)
But, for face frame cabinets, 1/2” boxes are pretty common. Some outfits are even using 3/8” panels (which is cutting it a bit thin for me – pun intended).

This seems to be a failure to align expectations, (a definitive sales function), regardless of who may be at fault.
If I were in your shoes I would negotiate with them until both parties are equally happy and/or unhappy.

Good luck to you.

-- "Hard work is not defined by the difficulty of the task as much as a person's desire to perform it.", DS251

View Wrkrbeee's profile


3 posts in 25 days

#15 posted 05-23-2019 05:00 PM

JCamp, Fred Hargis and DS,

Thank you for your input. I’m using your collective advice. Keeping the 1/2” cabs, but negotiating for an additional cabinet as a concession from the seller.

Thank you!!

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