Gazette Archive 7/27/03
A Book Review by John Lucas
Title: Building Frameless Kitchen
I have collected (and read) many books and videos on woodworking subjects over the last twenty years. Some have been great, and others less so. My philosophy has always been If there were just one idea I could use, the cost was justified.
Well, Danny Proulx's most recent book has given me about 30 or so ideas - fact is, I stopped counting. What I like most about this most recent publication are the "rules." I don't think Danny puts them forward as rules just things to consider, but I strongly suggest you make them your rules. They are procedures he has developed in his active cabinetmaking life. As exact procedures, he is making his cabinetmaking simpler and safer. My thought, is if I adopt one or more, it will help my cabinet making life.
For example, he drills his rows of shelf holes 37mm in and 67mm down. That is just one of the "rules" of the Euro or 32mm system, BUT, what it means to me is shelves that are level. I have to admit, in my past I have measured differently for different rows of holes. I made the error either because I was measuring from the wrong direction or some other feeble reason.
If you have done something like that, then you can appreciate how easy it is to make mistakes. Danny's approach setting specific procedures, is absolutely the best idea. Actually the best idea is that he has written everything down and is sharing it with us.
I can't help but really appreciate the care and detail of the illustrations. In the section on upper cabinets he has complete drawing and cut-list for making the basic cabinet using either 34 or 5/8" stock. I know that 5/8" is cheaper, but it is also less available, so I wanted to follow the instruction and drawing for using 34" while melamine particle core (PC) board. It was nice to have specifications for both thicknesses. You don't need to think anymore about it, take the materials list that is there and you can start your first cabinet.
In the past, I have tried every
conceivable joining of the back and sides. I have both butt jointed
the boards and rebated - trying to find what was best. Danny
takes a grand leap and proposes butt joints - period. With PC
board, that makes sense. Once you cut a rabbet, the strength
of this material is reduced greatly - not to mention much less
dust. The back sides showing is something of concern for end
cabinets only and is easy to deal with.
In his step by step, he very
clearly has a set of procedures that work. You start by cutting
the pieces to size. This is followed by applying edge banding
on front/visible edges. Then drill the system holes.then - etc.
In fact, that is exactly what
I am going to do. I can always use a new cabinet in the shop
and there is no better way for me to learn the specifics, per
Danny Proulx, than for me to go ahead and do it.
The books discusses many fasteners, hinges, edge treatments, etc. I will try to include many of these on the web pages. One picture is still worth a thousand words.
So, a special thanks to Danny Proulx for giving us this fine book. I expect to use it many times in the years to come - and my cabinetry should be the better for it. By the way, for those who might think that I am abandoning face frames - no way, nor is Danny. He includes a complete section on using these cabinets with face frames.
Editor's Note: You can find out more about Danny Proulx's books at his website.