resizng custom cabinet


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Old 07-15-07, 08:49 PM
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resizng custom cabinet

Over my downdraft Jennair stove is a cabinet. I want to install an over-the-stove microwave, but I will not have adequate clearance (20" recommended). So I need to shorten that cabinet by 7".

The cabs are custom, with a joined face. I mean, the over-stove cab is joined to the ones to the left and right of the stove (not separate units that I could just unscrew and shift upward 7"). I can see in by looking inside those left and right cabs where the floor of the over-stove one is attached. It is nailed in place with 3 counter-sunk nails on each side. How do I get those guys out of there?!!

And then, how do I neatly cut the front face? A jigsaw is all I can think of...but I am not a carpenter. i know the front face is just decoration, and I can cover my cuts with some trim or wood putty later, once I move the floor of it up.

Or should I just expect to replace the floor and face of that cabibet, and remove it any old way I can?

Thanks for any suggestions...
Cynthia
 
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Old 07-16-07, 03:51 AM
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How old is the installation?? i haven't seen anyone nail cabinets together in a long time, they are usually screwed. Which would make it much easier to get the cabinet out for modification. Modifying the cabinet would porbably be the easy part, once you get it out. If the doors are anything but flat panels doors, they will be hard to modify.
 
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Old 07-16-07, 06:16 AM
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Resizing cabinet

If the bottom shelf of the center cabinet is nailed through the sides of the outer cabinets you don't remove the nails without destroying the ends. Instead use a thin nailset or pinpunch with a hammer to drive the nails through the end panels. It's probably 3/4" plywood, so that's how far you'll have to drive the nails. If the face frame on the front fits between the vertical stiles you may not have to remove it. It can possibly be moved up with the shelf. If the floor is dadoed into the ends (fitted into a groove) you may have to just cut it out and make a new floor to fit higher up. You may be able to get a clue about the construction by looking at the underside of the side cabinets at the corners. If the sides are 3/4" plywood but you're seeing 1/2" of plywood at the bottom, then the side is rabbeted 1/4" X 3/4" where the bottom is attached. If so, then the shelf higher up is probably dadoed in also. At the end it's called a rabbet (open sided groove). Anywhere else it's called a dadoe. At the least it's probably glued as wall as nailed so expect some difficulty getting it apart. Good luck.
 
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Old 07-16-07, 06:09 PM
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resizing cab: plan B?

Thank you for the ideas! I was so excited, we (husband and I) got right on the job. The first punch bent. The second one broke off completely when we tried to push the nails through from the end cabinets.

So now, how would you approach removing the floor of the over-stove cabinet? Perhaps I should just expect to replace the floor and face, and cut them out with a jigsaw? Is that an appropriate tool?

The cabs were built about 14 years ago. Much of the material is laminated particle board. The over-stove and end cabs share a wall. In other words, there is only one piece of wood between them. The cabs are not separate enclosed boxes that are joined together.

FYI, he is trying to talk me out of it. But I already bought the over-stove microwave unit and really want to do this. It just doesn't seem that complicated (is it?)....though every project has set-backs!!

Thanks for your help!

Cynthia
 
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Old 07-16-07, 07:07 PM
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resizing cabinet

If you're having so much trouble driving the nails through they may not be nails, but thin cabinet screws. Those are case hardened, so very tough. Your best bet may be to just cut the shelf out with a jig saw and replace it with new wood. If the facing piece is face nailed you could try driving those nails through, but it's probably glued, so it may splinter coming off. If so cut about 3" to 4" from both ends as far back as you can with the jig saw then finish the cuts with a hand saw. Get the center piece out then work on the ends. You will probably pull the nails or screws through, but it will only show from the inside once the micro is in place. Make a new shelf and fasten it with screws as before, only 7" higher. Then put a new facing on and stain and finish to match. You'll have to cut the doors shorter and relocate one hinge on each. That is if they're slab doors. If they're panel doors you'll probably have to get new ones made. Good luck
 
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Old 07-17-07, 05:03 AM
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doors

OK. Will try it later today. The doors are not slab; they are panel doors. But I thought I would try something unorthodox....just shift the doors up 7"....cut off the top 7" and finish with a decorative moulding and trim. We just glazed all the cabs (light beige undercoat with dark chocolate glaze) in this renovation process, and found that added decorative embellishments really enhance the look. If the different treatment looks cheesy, I can always have new doors made to match.

What do you think? It would be the one set of doors in the kitchen with this treatment. Though, we may do the same thing over the fridge. The fridge opening is rather small by today's standards, and we are limited in fridge options. So we may raise that a few inches too (depending how this goes).

thanks so much for the guidance!!
Cynthia
 
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Old 07-18-07, 05:31 AM
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It's done!

Thank you for your help!! The cabinet is now 7" shorter and my microwave is installed below it. Just some painting, glazing, and the door issue yet to tackle.

Thank you for being so helpful in sharing your wealth of expertise.

Cynthia
 
 

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