Is there anything good to say about 1950,60's flat plain birch cabinet doors?

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Old 05-17-19, 10:32 PM
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Is there anything good to say about 1950,60's flat plain birch cabinet doors?

I moved into a 1000sf small ranch about 4 years ago and don't have a ton of money, but decided to paint my old (ugly) birch plain jane (cheap) kitchen cabinets from maybe the 60s or 70s.

Maybe they're not so "cheap" though as they have lasted for 40 years and are very solid and maybe better in quality than todays mdf stuff? They're actually like a birch PLY and not solid though.

I know that today the rage is to have everything to keep up with your neighbours and shows on HGTV they all run out and have to update even a 90s or 2000's kitchen to all the latest stuff for about $30,000 (!!).

I kind of like my old plain jane 60s kitchen and even my old RETRO square formica sheet countertop with its white faux marble look and even matching backsplash!! Although I do plan on updating the counter and back splash.

So does anyone else have these plain type cabinets from the 50, 60s, or 70's and are happy with them?

Also, as I paint them from wood to SW Dover white (I think that's what it's called) I want to update the hardware.

Will a modern Brainerd type pull look funny on these plain type cabinets?

One of my doors is pretty big and I was going back between a glass knob, a nickel pull, etc and noticed that on a large door a larger handle may look better?
 
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Old 05-18-19, 03:32 AM
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Years ago a flat hollow core door was the norm. The cheaper ones were luan and the birch doors were an upgrade. You are right that they are better quality than the similar looking doors being manufactured today.

Probably the best way to determine if the new pulls will look right would be to buy one pull and set it in place so you can see how it looks to you. If the new pull has a smaller or different imprint on the door/drawer you'll need to pay special attention to the wood as often the old pull/handle will have left an imprint in the wood which needs to be either sanded down or filled to keep it from telegraphing thru the new paint.

The painted woodwork in my house is SWP's Dover white. I used their ProClassic waterborne on the trim.
 
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Old 05-18-19, 03:59 AM
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As long as you like it, who cares what others think?
 
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Old 05-30-19, 02:28 PM
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It's all about personal preference on how it looks...it's your house make it look the way you want! You can definitely paint these no problem. You will need to begin by taking them all off (it's much easier to paint them flat and prevents paint from running). Next you will need to clean them good with TSP or something similar. This is to help prepare them to allow for the paint to adhere and knock off those years of grime. Then you will need to lightly sand the doors with a low grit sandpaper. Again, this is to help the paint adhere. Before you paint you will want to use a nice primer, this will prevent the wood grain from popping through your paint. Finish off with a coat or two of some good paint. I would suggest a sheen no lower than satin so that it can easily be cleaned. Oil-base is the best thing you can use but many people can't even get it in their state, don't want to smell it, or see it as simply to expensive. Latex paint can be nearly as good if you get a quality paint.

As for your hardware I wouldn't suggest glass on my kitchen cabinets. I would personally be afraid of breaking a glass knob with all the hustle and bustle in a kitchen.
 
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Old 05-30-19, 03:55 PM
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I'm with Norm on this one; "As long as you like it, who cares what others think? ".

A bit off track, but I remember the first time I grew a beard, and my grandma saying something like "men should be clean shaven". I was a little surprised when my grandpa, clean shaven as long as I knew him, chuckled and said something like "ha, I remember when everyone said that and us young pups went ahead an grew them anyway". Well, that would have been somewhere in the early 1900's, and they've come and gone in vogue or whatever you call it more than a couple of times in my 60+ years. When I was younger, narrow ties were in, then they went real wide, now they're somewhere in between. Remember when you knew that you were in a really ritzy home because they had covered all of that "old fashion" hardwood flooring with shag carpet? And then when people started to realize how nice that buried hardwood was and started stripping, cleaning, and resealing it? In my opinion, red is the last color I would pick for kitchen walls, but I've been in a number of high end homes with them over the past number of years. Your cabinets, as Mark said, are good quality, and certainly better than what you'll buy for any reasonable price today. Go with what you want. Even if you were to decide to sell, your realtor will very possibly tell you otherwise, but don't change a thing. Your particular tastes are never going to be the same as the next persons' anyway, so enjoy it like you want as long as you want.
 
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Old 05-31-19, 02:37 AM
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you will need to clean them good with TSP or something similar. This is to help prepare them to allow for the paint to adhere and knock off those years of grime.
While TSP is a great detergent it's residue can cause adhesion issues. I only use it on exterior prep where it can be rinsed well.
 
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