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Old 06-22-2009, 10:47 AM   #1
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


My house has fairly plain, flat panel doors that are oak and all the boxes are oak. They are sort of a medium oak color. I just had new counters installed a few months ago, and they look great, but now make the cabinets look bad.

There is a little box rot down beside the fridge where I'm guessing the previous owner had a water problem at some point.

I want to redo them. I like modern and contemporary but my house doesn't warrant going too modern.

I was initially looking at trying to make them darker with stain. My friend was helping me who used to own a cabinet shop, and finally said we just can't go that dark with these materials. I did NOT want to buy doors.

Now, I am thinking of buying new doors since I found a guy who my dad just used and did a great job on his doors at a good price.

However, I don't want oak. By doing new doors and all, I'd like to go lighter on the cabinets, and even hidden hinges if possible.

I was looking into veneering all the boxes and staining them to go with new doors in a rich caramel looking color. I like the wood with not much grain btw.

However, this door maker says using this adhesive veneer would be terrible as it starts peeling in a couple years.

Does nayone have a suggestion for what I can do short of buying new cabinets? That is simply not int he budget, and plus, new counters are already installed on them.

I have 23 doors, and 5 drawers, and based on my estimating based on my dads pricing, he will probably do these for around a grand. I would hope to not spend more than 300 or so more to redo the boxes somehow.

Ideas??

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Old 06-22-2009, 02:06 PM   #2
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


I agree, veneering will likely end up being more problems than it is worth. How about painting them? Color options are endless and you can then make the doors out of MDF, which is cheaper than wood.

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Old 06-22-2009, 02:43 PM   #3
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


Thanks for the reply. I guess I havn't thought about the MDF, because, yes its cheaper, but its a less quality door. Right? I guess i likened that to, if I sold my house, advertising "laminate countertops". Which, would be a negative, instead of a positive.

Instead, I put in LG Himac solid surface and they look great!

As far as doors, I think the guy my dad found will make nice doors at a good price. Other estimates for his job were 2100 and higher. This guy was 1600.

My main concern is the boxes. If I can't veneer em, and they are oak, and a medium color, I can only stain them darker. But, they will still be oak with a lot of grain. If I'm gonna pay to have doors made, I didn't want oak. I love this rich caramel color wood I've seen which is very smooth (almost no grain), but my boxes would need to be similar.

That was when I found the veneer, which seemed like a great idea, but now this guy says it'll peel. So, I'm back to square one.

What if instead of the peel and stick veneer, I use something that has to be glued, or nailed? Any ideas?
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Old 06-22-2009, 03:10 PM   #4
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


I guess also to more directly respond to your suggestion, when you say paint them, I mainly picture white cabinets, or in outdated stuff, I see different color cabinets.

I've never seen any painted that I thought looked good. I love the cherry wood, and other non grainy wood, and the rich caramel looking wood with a shiny finish, and that's what I'd like to achieve without replacing my cabinets. That is just nowhere in the budget to do.
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Old 06-22-2009, 08:34 PM   #5
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


Anyone else possibly have any thoughts on this matter?
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Old 06-23-2009, 09:33 AM   #6
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


I don't understand about ,"this adhesive veneer" statement. There are a number of ways to attach veneer to a cabinet. I've used iron on veneer over the years and never had an issue. I've also used contact cement to attach veneer. You don't mention what type of cabinets you have, but many face framed cabinets have the face frame stick out from the cabinet side. In that case you can use a thin ply to attach to the cabinet side and just veneer the face frame.
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Old 06-23-2009, 03:09 PM   #7
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


Ron, I didn't mention all these things, because I didn't know about all those things. I will reply again in 5 or 10 minutes and try to clarify as I greatly appreciate all suggestions and comments.
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:06 PM   #8
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


Ron, sorry. That 10 minutes took an hour and a half by the time the phone stopped ringing.

I looked into veneering a while back when I first discovered it a few months ago. I believe there is the peel ands tick type, and then you can just buy thin sheets and cut and glue, or nail them as you please.

I think the sheets are cheaper, because when you buy the peel ands tick type, with the precut stiles and everything, its more expensive, so I'm really fine with just thin sheets, UNLESS the other is way better.

My cabinets are fairly plain, medium oak cabinets that were installed in this house in 1991. It is a Mungo home which is a builder down here, known for fairly decent quality, but mainly mass quantity building. They do whole neighborhoods. This is about a 1500 sqft vinyl home on a slab.

I'm pretty sure these cabinets were the marginal quality type, bought, stuck together, and hung up.

The doors have the middle flat (not raised panel), and the edge of the doors around the frame are chamfered off a little.

I think the boxes are "face frame". The front of the boxes seem to be real wood, and the front face sticks ot beyond the end just a 1/4" or less. The end of the boxes, (at the fridge) and by the door to the kitchen, look like a piece of laminated particle board.

I'll try to attach a pic or two.

I had new LG counters installed in late Nov, so removing the cabinets at this point is not an option (and well outside the budget).

My dad just had new doors made for his 1984 Birch cabinets and the guy did nice work. We slightly darkened his light boxes with a Polyshades stain and then hung the new doors and they look amazing.

My dad spoke with the the guy who made the doors and just said, that I (his son) was thinking of having doors made and veneering his boxes.
Apparently, the guy's response was, "oh no, who wants to do that? That will be the worst thing he's ever done."

That's what I know. At that point, I started to try and do more research on this, and am not finding such bad info.

The guy went on to say, that after a couple years, the veneer will start peeling and curling at the edges and be a mess.

I have no particular veneer in mind, so I'm open for suggestions.

Does this help?
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Old 06-23-2009, 05:35 PM   #9
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


I'm attaching two pics. The first was from when I first moved into the house.

The second was after painting, new appliances, and new countertops, sink and faucet.

Please ignore the mess, as I was in the middle of testing stain samples and had a messd rug out.

Also, I like the contemporary look, and I love that rich "caramel" colored wood I've seen around recently. It looks soo delicious! lol

I even thought, if I'm going to the trouble of refacing, and getting doors and drawer fronts made, that I might convert two cabinet doors into two deep drawers instead (probably the two doors on the right of the stove as their is no Stile between those doors.

Based on dads cabinet door job, I'm estimating I'd be about 1000 dollars for 23 doors and 5 drawers. (Slightly different if I add drawers and subtract doors).

I was hoping I could do the veneering and staining for under 300. Am I way off base?

New hardware will run me a couple hundred, but that's already in my budget for now as I took all those white rose flower handles off as you can see below.

Thanks for any ideas.
Attached Thumbnails
Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??-img_1468.jpg   Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??-img_1761.jpg  

Last edited by Rhizzlebop; 06-23-2009 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:31 AM   #10
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


haha, is it that bad that noone will even comment now? jk
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Old 06-24-2009, 06:23 PM   #11
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


A lot more than just solid colors can be done with paint. You might to find someone in your area that specializes in faux finishes. Here's the website for a buddy of mine in Nashville that does that sort of thing.

http://www.keelingstudio.com/
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Old 06-24-2009, 08:56 PM   #12
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


No Rhiz: If I were a betting person most likely your cabinets are vinyl over particleboard boxes and doors solid wood. They look alot like Merrilatt. IF you r going to try and apply that peel and stick get a very very good degreaser and really clean them first.
Just remember this simle rule:
You can have cheap or good. You can pick one
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Old 06-24-2009, 09:34 PM   #13
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


If it helps any, when the countertops were off, I could see the stiles from the top and they are not particleboard.
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Old 06-24-2009, 11:25 PM   #14
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


the faceframe IE stiles,rails and doors are normally real wood, it is the boxes that are really suspect.
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Old 06-25-2009, 08:00 AM   #15
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Looking to redo plain oak cabinets from 1991. Help??


Ah, I see what you're saying. I can agree with that. I'd say that's about right.

I know the ends, like beside the fridge, and as you walk into the kitchen, those ends are laminated partical board.

I figured I'd have to put a whole sheet of veneer over that as well.

So, with that said, any suggestions?

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