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Old 10-16-2013, 09:50 PM   #1
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


I'm putting in a run of base cabinets that will eventually have a granite countertop on them.

I have been using a self leveling laser level to get them level.

Even with that, there is still a 1/16" gap at times between cabinets at different locations (say the front back or middle of the cabinet)

I assume 1/16" is an acceptable tolerance? the cabinets right now follow the laser line perfectly and split it down the middle so the back of the cabinet is illuminated and the front is also. So back to front seems fine.

I have also checked this with a 6" level and a 3" level at every location front to back, side to side and diagonal across multiple cabinets. They call come up "level" but this is when I will notice say one cabinet side is 1/16" lower then the next cabinet side right next to it. I assume the one cabinet touching is good enough and shims and silicone will fill the gap where there is one?

Am I over thinking this? this is my first cabinet install and I am trying to make it as good as possible.

The granite is the 3cm granite, with no plywood under it of course due to it's thickness

Thanks!

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Old 10-16-2013, 10:10 PM   #2
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


I've never found lasers accurate enough for finish work. The beams are just too thick. When I do finish layout I often scribe my layout lines with a drafting pencil or even a knife.
I assemble my cabinets by screwing the face frames together through the stlies and blocking between the rear of the carcasses to maintain square. Then the entire run of cabinets are installed as one and there is no variation in level from one to the next. It would be very difficult to maintain consistent accuracy any other way.

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Old 10-16-2013, 10:21 PM   #3
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


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Originally Posted by Davejss View Post
I've never found lasers accurate enough for finish work. The beams are just too thick. When I do finish layout I often scribe my layout lines with a drafting pencil or even a knife.
I assemble my cabinets by screwing the face frames together through the stlies and blocking between the rear of the carcasses to maintain square. Then the entire run of cabinets are installed as one and there is no variation in level from one to the next. It would be very difficult to maintain consistent accuracy any other way.
That's exactly how I assembled them... I first laid the run on their backs, screwed the stiles together under the hinge plates to hide the screws.. turned them upright straighten them out and measured front and backs so they where the same length (behind the face and at the back).. shimmed the gaps between the cabinets and screwed them together at the back top. but even when that we still have a 1/16" bow at some places in the middle. the backs and fronts are almost perfectly level. front to back is perfectly level, it's just when you get to a place like the center where it might bow down a little bit on one run or another almost like the ends aren't perfectly flat in the middles on a few of them.

Diagonally leveling back to front across a few cabinets you can see the dip in the middle in a couple but there is no gap front to back diagonally and it is dead center on the level bubble.
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Old 10-17-2013, 06:43 AM   #4
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


A 1/6" variance is going to happen---the boxes are never 100% perfect.

You are fine----I agree with Dave---an accurate level is the best tool for cabinet installation----If you buy a level--check it before you use it---some are flawed.
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Old 10-17-2013, 06:47 AM   #5
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


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A 1/6" variance is going to happen---the boxes are never 100% perfect.

You are fine----I agree with Dave---an accurate level is the best tool for cabinet installation----If you buy a level--check it before you use it---some are flawed.
yeah, my 8' aluminum level has a bow to it... didn't notice the bow until a year after I bought it... it's a 1/4" bow in the center, definitely annoying.. that's one reason I'm checking everything with a laser level and normal levels both..
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Old 10-17-2013, 06:55 AM   #6
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


I think you are going to be fine ---you are paying attention and that is more than some installers do-----proper shimming is important, you don't want the shims coming loose or have other sagging happen after the stone is installed.

Have you checked the sink drain height? That is often a problem ---under mount--deep--garbage disposer --old time standard height was 18" above the floor---

Now 15" is more like the right height.--you will feel bad if you have to chop up the inside of your new cabinet---
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:45 AM   #7
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


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Originally Posted by oh'mike View Post
I think you are going to be fine ---you are paying attention and that is more than some installers do-----proper shimming is important, you don't want the shims coming loose or have other sagging happen after the stone is installed.

Have you checked the sink drain height? That is often a problem ---under mount--deep--garbage disposer --old time standard height was 18" above the floor---

Now 15" is more like the right height.--you will feel bad if you have to chop up the inside of your new cabinet---
didn't even think of the drain height, because the plumber put in all new lines for this with the instructions it was for an under mount sink... going to have to look at that tonight.. thanks!

edit: I'm thinking off my head it's around 15" because it's not much higher then a wall outlet is in the room. going to have to double check that..
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Old 10-17-2013, 07:52 AM   #8
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


Good idea----we get threads about that problem once a week here----
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:50 AM   #9
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


just so I'm not going crazy trying to level this one cabinet... I have three corners that are level... one back corner that is 1/4" below level at top... that means they cut the frame wrong right?.... because how can you level a cube three spots and have one off..
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Old 10-18-2013, 07:59 AM   #10
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


Some times the boxes are wracked---low in a back corner is the best compromise---
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:08 AM   #11
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


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Some times the boxes are wracked---low in a back corner is the best compromise---
that's what I was thinking... kept leveling the thing thinking this isn't right this should be level spent about 30 minutes on a single cabinet had two runs done and leveled until I hit this single standalone cabinet
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:26 AM   #12
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


That happens--If you installed cabinets all the time,you would have recognized the problem a lot faster---This is where experience speeds up the work---
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Old 10-18-2013, 08:28 AM   #13
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


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That happens--If you installed cabinets all the time,you would have recognized the problem a lot faster---This is where experience speeds up the work---
yeah, this is my first time, and speed isn't an issue, I can take as long as I want It's nice to learn new stuff even if you mess up a bit in the process... have to start learning somewhere
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Old 10-18-2013, 09:28 PM   #14
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Base cabinet level tolerance?


Thanks for the tip about the drain height. The rough in coming out of the wall is 14.5" to center, so it looks like the plumber accounted for the height of the under mount sink

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