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Old 10-15-2008, 01:45 PM   #1
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'Blonde' to oak conversion???


I am looking at a HUGE (for me) house built in the 50's. It has built in cabinets everywhere and they ar ALL blonde finish . I hate blonde(wood only),,,blonde belongs on girls heads

Is there a way to replace the doors and drawer fronts(are there stores that JUST sell fronts??),,and HOW is the BEST way to transform the stiles etc???

I am guessing stripping and refinishing the whole fronts is way time consuming, and expensive,,,can you get a new natural looking modern finish doing THAT???

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Old 10-15-2008, 03:11 PM   #2
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'Blonde' to oak conversion???


I should have said blonde to "modern" conversion.

YES oak would be first choice,,, BUT any modern surface would be acceptable!!

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Old 10-15-2008, 03:15 PM   #3
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'Blonde' to oak conversion???


For a talented woodworker, this is an easy job.

You can get new doors and drawer fronts made to your specification and measurements, or you can make them yourself.

The faceframes are a little trickier. My suggestion would be to forget the idea of stripping them. You're better off re-facing them. The easiest way to do this is by applying 1/4" thick strips of oak (or another hardwood) cut to the withds and lengths of the existing faceframe pieces. You'd need a tablesaw and a brad nailer, as well as some wood glue.

If you have cabinet sides visible, 1/8" MDF core oak plywood is a great option. Do it before you install the faceframe pieces, that way you can cover the edge with a 1/8" wider faceframe.

I've done a number of cabinets this way, and it is reasonably quick and easy. These are pictures from my bathroom, which was done this way. You have to open them and look them over to determine they were re-faced with oak, and not completely new. I built the drawers and doors to replace the old ones.



If you don't have the tools to do what I described above, pressure sensitive adhesive (PSA) backed oak veneer can be used. It is basically a huge wooden bumper sticker. I think it looks cheesy, but all you have to have is a utility knife, tons of sharp blades, a straight edge, and a $15 edge trimmer. I actually used PSA veneer to skin the bathroom door, because I wanted oak in the bathroom and the hallway side gets paint. I wasn't about to paint a $200 oak door so I veneered a $30 hollow door for about $60 in PSA veneer. Looks awesome.

If you need more info, let me know!
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Old 10-15-2008, 03:17 PM   #4
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'Blonde' to oak conversion???


If you do either method...Do not use a tape measure. Lay your pieces against the old faceframe and use a knife (not a pencil) to mark the exact widths and lengths.

Using a tape measure creates too much margin for error.
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