Whenever you see a kitchen cabinet up the wall, you will be tempted to think that it has a back that has been used to attach it to the wall.
Well, that’s not the case; kitchen cabinets don’t have backs but rather a small strip that makes it possible to attach the cabinet to the wall.
The cabinets, therefore, use the kitchen wall as their back.
Types of Kitchen cabinets
Most kitchens will either have a framed or a frameless cabinet which are also the only two types available, no matter the design of the installation.
They are, therefore, set apart by the freedom of accessibility to the contents inside the cabinet and the general outlook.
The design of both the enclosed and frameless cabinets varies, as we have those that are free hanging and will thus be mounted on the wall.
You must have seen this type of cabinets in most homes because they are normally located either above the stoves or at the countertop, also known as the wall cabinets.
We then have the types of cabinets that are mounted on the floor and are meant to support the countertops that are also known as base cabinets.
Lastly, we have the tall free-standing cabinets that are at times attached to the wall also known as pantry cabinets.
Construction of the kitchen cabinets
Kitchen cabinets are usually heavily stashed with dinnerware, pans and cooking pots and have to endure constant opening and closing.
The above factor then puts to question the type of materials that are used in the construction of the kitchen cabinets and whether they are made sturdy enough for their intended purpose.
So what goes into the construction of the cabinet shelves?
Cabinet shelves are normally constructed using three types of materials, which are the MDF, Particleboard or plywood.
The above are then covered with laminate ply or wood veneer to achieve a smooth finish and accord it the necessary cosmetic look.
Another important factor about the cabinet shelves is the thickness of the shelves and how they have been reinforced, as we mentioned earlier cabinets hold a lot of utensils and cooking spices some of which are heavy.
So if your shelf is weak then you know that disaster is looming.
Therefore, to avoid a sagging shelf ensure that they are made of thick material and this especially goes for the wider cabinets.
The thickness of cabinet shelves varies with manufacturer, however, the standard thickness range are as follows 1/ 2”, 5/8”, 3/ 4”.
And to add to the sturdiness of the shelves, you could use the reinforcing rail, which is normally a strip of wood attached at the front edge of the shelf.
Cabinet doors, on the other hand, are made from MDF, plywood or particleboard, and just like the shelves, they are covered with wood veneer or thermofoil to give it a smooth finish and make it appealing.
When we move to the construction of the cabinet doors, we get two options, which are the slab and the framed type of doors.
Framed doors feature an outer frame, constructed around a panel in the center of the door, slab doors, on the other hand, are one-piece construction, however, at certain times several pieces are combined and joined with wood glue to form a solid slab.
Important to note is that if your slab door will be made from either MDF or plywood then you will need to cover it using laminate or wood veneer.
Lastly, we have the cabinet boxes that complete the anatomy of the kitchen cabinet, but remember some cabinets do have drawers, which should also be given careful consideration during construction to ensure durability and sturdiness.
The outside of the cabinet box normally features an MDF or Plywood material.
You might also have noticed some cabinets that have been made of stainless material, the latter are normally adopted in high-end professional kitchens, and the reason why they are loved is that they are durable and will not expand and contract like wood.
Constructing the kitchen cabinet
Of all the parts of the kitchen cabinet, the cabinet box turns out to be the trickiest to put together during construction, the reason being that it has to be constructed with reinforcement.
Most of them are, therefore, made using triangular braces that are inserted at the corner of the boxes.
The braces are normally made of plastic, plywood, solid wood or MDF.
There is also another type of reinforcing and this one uses the beam race, which will be attached from the front of the box to the back of the side panels or just on the back but from side to side.
The kitchen cabinets finish
Now that we understand the various parts that comprise our kitchen cabinets, it’s also best that we understand the importance of the right type of finish, which not only affects the cabinet’s cosmetic look but also helps in preserving the underlying wood used in its construction.
The kitchen is one place that produces a good amount of moisture bound to destroy your cabinets, the spices used in cooking and the cleaning detergents could also affect the cabinets if they are not protected.
There are therefore a number of treatments done to wood to preserve them thus enhance durability.
The first component is vanish, which is made from oil and resin, by using vanish on your kitchen cabinets, you are not only protecting it from being munched on by insects but they will also have a nice shiny appearance.
We then have paint, which is also the most common type of protection treatment done on wood, the advantage of adopting paint as your kitchen cabinet protective component is that you can use any color that will resonate with your overall house décor.
Stain is also a form of treatment on wood but one that normally changes the natural color of the underlying wood.
If you decide to go with this option, then you will also need to use a sealer to provide protection to the piece of wood.
Other common types of protection that you can use on your kitchen cabinet are Glaze or Lacquer.