Fine Line Joinery (Grass Valley, CA)
Category – Kitchen Face Frame Over $25K
Project Description – Most of the production for this project was pretty straight forward, using our standard processes. The most unusual part of the construction was the need for vacuum bagging to veneer and laminate many of the Walnut doors. These are mentioned in the next section and shown in the attached photos.
Of particular note among these, are the simulated walnut “grilles”at the tops of some of the doors. These “grilles“ were specified to consist of 1/8” fins, spaced 3/32” apart, the 3/32” space to be 3/16” deep. I managed to locate a Freud 3/32” square toothed rip blade, and used it with a pair blade stiffeners to ensure the smoothest cut possible. This turned out to give me a perfect finish cut. The next issue was to engineer the door to ensure that it would stay flat, after cutting a bunch of grooves on one side. My solution was to laminate 1/4”thick solid Walnut to the front side of a core panel (in some cases this was MDF, in others it was a hollow core assembly) and .040” veneer to the back. I then cut the 3/32” kerfs 3/16” deep, leaving a 1/16” thick veneer at the bottom of the kerfs. The design rationale was that the kerfed wood panel would be able to induce minimal stress to the sandwiched structure, and the panel assembly would be balanced with respect to veneer thicknesses and glue lines. Nearly 2 years in service, the panels are still flat.
Unusual Aspects – The architect for this project really likes to design built-in furniture, rather than simple cabinetry. Her projects are invariably face frame with flush inset doors. Stiles that extend to the floor like furniture legs are typical of her detailing. Less typical are the tapered legs/feet on these Walnut units, which add an extra degree of elegance.
The most unique part of this project, however, is the walnut doors. I think the photos explain better than I can in words.
The kitchen also features a custom built copper range hood. We fabricated a wood form for the hood, building exactly to the architects specs, minus 1/16” all around, to allow for the copper cladding.
Why I like the CMA – Being a member of recognized trade organizations lends an air of professionalism to my company. It lets potential customers know that I am a professional, take my business seriously and plan to be around for a while.
In particular, participating in the CMA forums has been quite helpful over my years of membership. In reality, I don’t get a chance to participate as much as I would like, but when I have, it has been great, whether to help solve some problem in the shop, or to discuss various business issues.