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Jeremy Hillary Boob, PhD 03-08-2009 07:36 PM

pocket hole joinery for cabinet doors?
I'm building face frame kitchen cabinets following the approach in Udo Schmidt's book, Building Kitchen Cabinets. He relies a lot on pocket hole joinery, and so that's what I've used to assemble the face frames and attach them to the cabinets (not to mention all of the pocket holes holding the cabinet boxes together...). However, he does not suggest using pocket holes to build cabinet doors.

I've decided to go with Shaker style doors (flat panels), and I was wondering if it would be too weird to use pocket holes to build the doors. The pocket holes worked well on the face frames, which are a lot like the "frames" I'll need for each of the doors. I realize that the pocket holes would be visible when the doors are open, but supposing that I can handle that issue, is there any reason not use this approach? The doors will be relatively lightweight, and I can add a vertical support down the middle, if necessary for rigidity. I especially like the fact that the doors would not be glued together, since that makes it easy to correct for small errors (on the face frames, this saved my a lot of pain and suffering).

Any opinions on this idea would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

sausagefingers 03-08-2009 08:33 PM

Other than seeing them, like you said, I don't think it would hurt anything. It could possibly interfere with hinges depending on what kind you use and where you put them.

Termite 03-08-2009 09:13 PM

Pocket holes work fine for cabinet doors. They're not as "high end" as mortise and tenon or cope and stick joinery, but they're plenty strong. Kreg does make fillers for the holes that you tap in using the back of their rocket jig. Use wood glue for them. You'll need a block plane to make them flush, because they'll stand about 3/32" proud of the face of the wood after installation.

They won't interfere with your hinges unless you really put your hinges in strange locations.

Bob Mariani 03-08-2009 09:29 PM


They won't interfere with your hinges unless you really put your hinges in strange locations.
And yet I can see this happening.

Buy the doors. Why would there be small errors on the frames? This should never be.

Ron6519 03-09-2009 05:26 PM

I always use wood glue with pocket screws. Face frames are held together with both of these materials, not just pocket screws. Then the face frames are glued and mechanically fastened to the carcasses.
Personally, making kitchen doors with pocket screws is inappropriate. More suited to shop cabinets.

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