Gilreath Custom Cabinetry LLC
Cabinet Construction & Finish
The way we construct our cabinets is something we pride ourselves on. All of our cabinetry and moldings are made and milled from scratch in our shop. All joints are secured using wooden biscuits and glue or screws and glue. The majority of cabinet companies use hot glue, staples and plastic parts for securing the cabinet face, sides and back. We utilize 3/4" hardwood laminated plywood for all cabinet decks, plain sides and shelves instead of low-quality 1/2" composite plywood (particle board). This provides you with added strength and stability. The face of the cabinet is constructed using 3/4" or 1" hardwood. The species of wood used in that application is dependant on style and finish. For paneled ends, we build a framed panel and attach 1/2" ply to it. This ensures the interior of the cabinet matches and adds stability. The horizontal rails of the face and top of the cabinet back are reinforced with 3/4" hardwood. This provides stability for the face and a strong fastening point on the back. All in all, our cabinets are little wooden tanks. Look for our video coming soon that shows how superior our build is to the industry standard box cabinet.
A- Panel End Frame- Constructed of soft white maple for painted finishes or any other species for a stained finish. The panels are built similar to standard door construction using the cope and stick method, which utilizes a tenon in a slot to increase stability at the glue joint. The frame
profile typically matches the door style. If no panel end is applied, a piece of 3/4" plywood is used instead.
B- Flat or Raised Panel- For painted finishes, an MDF panel is used so there is no panel movement. This eliminates the possibility of a finish gap between the panel and frame due to natural movement with a solid wood panel. Solid wood panels are used with stained finishes. Reference the Door and Drawer front options page to see the panel style options available.
C- 1/2" Plywood- This plywood is attached to the panel end primarily to create a finished inside surface. This keeps the inside of the cabinet uniform while adding strength to the cabinet structure.
D- Bracing & Nailer- The strong yellow items in the detail are made from poplar. These 3/4" x 1-1/2" pieces are used to support the horizontal rails of the cabinet face. They also provide a sturdy nailer for securing the cabinet to the wall. All bracing and nailers are secured with screws.
E- 1/4" Cabinet Back- This piece of plywood matches the inside of the cabinet. Cabinets that are painted inside will have an MDF back applied to provide a smooth finish. This piece helps to keep the cabinet square.
F- Cabinet Deck- This piece of 3/4" plywood provides a sturdy bottom for the cabinet. The deck is set into a 3/8" deep dado slot on each cabinet side and secured with nails and screws.
G- Face Frame- The face frame of the cabinet is made from 3/4" or 1" thick hardwood depending on your personal preferences. All joints are glued and screwed together. 3/4" material is the industry standard and is perfectly suitable for any general cabinet face. 1" material adds a little more strength and stability but isn't really necessary. The face frame can also be made with a beaded inside edge profile for inset doors or painted/finished openings.
H- Radius Corner- This is generally a company standard. We apply a radius corner to all exposed ends to provide a seamless furniture look and feel. This is especially nice on base cabinet ends eliminating sharp corners that can easily chip or catch a little one's head.
I- Furniture Base- We use 3/4" wood stock milled with a traditional profile to accent any base cabinet or vanity. The profile can be changed to suit your design or style needs. Once the cabinet is installed a small piece of matching shoe molding is applied to cover any gaps along the floor edge.
J- Scalloped Baseboard- This is an accent generally applied to working areas. These areas would typically be around a sink, wall oven, stand-alone cooktop, vanity and possibly others. This piece typically allows toes to slip under. This keeps you from constantly kicking the cabinet. There is a recessed toe kick behind the scalloped base to keep things from rolling under the cabinet.
K- Face & Case Joint- When assembling the cabinet all decks are held flush to the opening. The face and case are joined together using glue and wooden biscuits. This makes for a really strong joint.
L- Drawer slide packing- This piece of poplar is generally attached to openings that require a drawer or special amenity. The purpose is to provide a strong attachment point for the drawer slide instead of using ugly mounting brackets.
Our finish process is slightly involved. We use a catalyzed varnish, similar to car finish, that provides a smooth and durable surface. Painted cabinets can have up to five coats of finish applied. Two base or primer coats that seal in the wood grain and spot filling. One coat of color locks in the primer and two coats of clear protect the painted surface. The clear coat is available in multiple sheens just like house paint. Stained or natural finishes get a sealer coat and two coats of clear or amber finish depending on the tone desired. The clear coats for stained or natural finish are available with the same sheens as painted. We can match any paint or stain color desired through our finish supplier.