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Question about Wall Cabinet Runs - Screw Together Before/After Mounting to Wall

Question about Wall Cabinet Runs - Screw Together Before/After Mounting to Wall

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Old 09-13-19, 11:17 AM
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Question about Wall Cabinet Runs - Screw Together Before/After Mounting to Wall

I am getting ready to install new wall cabinets in my kitchen. I've done a lot of reading and watched various YouTube videos. I've noticed that some installers create cabinet runs before mounting to the wall and others mount them to the wall first. Is one method better than the other? Which would be preferable? What kind of screws would you recommend for joining the runs? I appreciate any insight!
 
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Old 09-13-19, 11:42 AM
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It's all about flush and levelness.

I have never pre assembled cabinets together then installed to the wall, primarily they would get heavy and awkward to move.

Typ they are laid out and installed one by one shimming as you progress.

They typ come with mounting screws but they are similar to drywall but with large flat heads!
 
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Old 09-13-19, 03:10 PM
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It depends how many you can lift at a time. If I'm hanging wall cabinets first, typically I'll make a pair of stands out of 2x4s- they kind of look like a hangman pole from the side. You can pretty easily put 2 or 3 cabinets on them, then just shim them up to your line.

But if the base cabinets are first, I will just make a couple short boxes to set on top of the base cabinets... since they are already level. Then I stick shims in, set the upper on top, shim it up to the line, and install it. (You have to use shims that you can pull out to give yourself space to pull the box out).

When screwing face frames together, you usually want to use a pair of pony or bessey cabinet face clamps, to align the faces (all doors are off) then I predrill holes and use 2" GRK finish screws. Usually 3 screws will do it on a 30" cabinet. You can often hide 2 of them behind the hinges, with one in the middle. Or a 4th one inside the top drawer on base cabinets.

But as Marq mentioned, most guys will typically work left to right... mount one to the wall, get it level, screw the left side top and bottom, leaving the screws slightly loose and the right side of the cabinet free. Then put up the next cabinet, screw the face frames together first, then screw it to the wall loosely, leaving the right side free. Then repeat. This allows you to shim behind the cabinets as needed so that you get them in a straight line, even if the wall is crooked. (Identifying any humps on the wall along your level reference line is usually a good idea so that you know which cabinet will be tight to the wall, and which might need to be shimmed out.)

I usually work alone, so all my advice is kind of geared around that.

Cabinet screws are not what you use to screw face frames together... that's what you use to screw the cabinets to the wall.
 
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Old 09-14-19, 07:38 AM
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Marq1 and XSleeper, thank you so much for your advice. One question:

I predrill holes and use 2" GRK finish screws. Usually 3 screws will do it on a 30" cabinet. You can often hide 2 of them behind the hinges, with one in the middle. Or a 4th one inside the top drawer on base cabinets.
I bought 2.5" GRK Finish Screws. Should I return these for 2"? Should I use a countersink bit? I'm glad to read that you also use these. I saw them yesterday, and at first, I was afraid that the head was to small to use for this purpose.
 
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Old 09-14-19, 07:45 AM
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Well, I can't see your cabinets, and don't know how wide your face frames are. If they are exactly 1 1/2", your 2.5's will be fine. (I assume your cabinets HAVE face frames and that these are not euro cabinets?)

No, you don't need a countersinker for finish screws. Just the right size drill bit for the pilot hole. I don't like to use 2.5s because that's pretty close to coming out the other side, and I only drill a 2" deep pilot hole.

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Old 09-14-19, 07:46 AM
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XSleeper, thank you! Your advice has been very helpful.
 
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