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Building Kitchen Cabinets (Taunton's Build Like a Pro) Paperback – April 1, 2003

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Building Kitchen Cabinets (Taunton's Build Like a Pro) + How To Make Kitchen Cabinets (Best of American Woodworker): Build, Upgrade, and Install Your Own with the Experts at American Woodworker + Building Kitchen Cabinets Made Simple: A Book and Companion Step-by-Step Video DVD
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Product Details

  • Series: Taunton's Build Like a Pro
  • Paperback: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Taunton Press (April 1, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1561584703
  • ISBN-13: 978-1561584703
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 9.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Udo Schmidt apprenticed with a master cabinetmaker in Germany before moving to the United States over 20 years ago. Today he combines Old World craftmanship with time-saving tools and techniques. He lives and works in North Carolina.

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Customer Reviews

An easy read, with lots of illustrative photographs in color.
Bob Feeser
This book is a great resource, and I recommend it for anyone wanting to build cabinets that already has some basic woodworking skills.
I highly recommend this book for anyone considering building kitchen cabinets.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

241 of 245 people found the following review helpful By Bob Feeser TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 10, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I like this book. Lots of pictures, insider tips, and a no nonsense approach to cabinet building. The author gives it to you straight. He uses pocket hole joinery in abundance. Why? Because it takes less time, joins strong, and is reversible if you want to correct something. He doesn't go for a lot of complex joinery that is very time consuming, and not what the customer cares about.
Myself I want to also build some heirloom quality cabinets. You know dovetails in every drawer corner. Inside panel solid wood overlays. Dadoes throughout, with hand rubbed finishes. You know the works. This is not about that. If you want to get practical and build fabulous looking hand made cabinets for a living, or for yourself, and not spend a month or a year doing it, this is the book for you. Instead of using plastic laminated interior panels, with fake wood, like the home centers sell you, you can use cabinet grade veneer plywood instead. This book will show you how.
Robert Yoder gives you the insider tips, on what it takes to make professional cabinets, and not waste time on non-essentials. For example, one of many that are in the book, he says that you have the option, of once gluing up your raised face panel, you can insert two finish nails in the back of the panel, at the joint of the rails and stiles, and free your clamps up for another panel. No having to have a wall full of clamps that way. See what I mean about practical. He also uses the pocket hole joinery to join his face frame panels, with the pocket holes in the back of the panel. Way quicker than mortise and tenon joinery, and actually less difficult to get a perfect fit.
I think every cabinetmaker has to have at his disposal, procedures that will enable him to make a fine set of cabinets that fit into any practical budget.
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97 of 97 people found the following review helpful By Frank Shic on July 5, 2006
Format: Paperback
I did a lot of research prior to building my own kitchen cabinets earlier this year and this book was what inspired me the most as Udo's Schmidt's cabinets are simply BEAUTIFUL encompassing many custom details like: mitered corner returns, beaded inset face frames, raised panel doors/drawer fronts, dovetailed drawers and arched mullion glass upper cabinet doors.

He basically sold me on the KREG pocket hole jig as he explains quite thoroughly the ease by which you can use it to not only screw together the face frames, but also to screw the face frame on to the cabinet carcase and also to screw together drawer boxes. Schmidt also covers how to use biscuit joinery to help with aligning the bottom edge of your face frame to the bottom of the cabinet so that you don't have an annoying ledge scraping your arm when cleaning or getting objects out of the cabinet. His coverage of making the mullions for arched upper cabinet doors is worth the price of the book alone! I would caution against using the same router bit that you used for the stiles as the diameter is a little too wide except for an absurdly wide mullion - use a standard cove bit instead. He also covers how to build dovetail drawers (come on, you know you want them...) with the katie jig although you can do the same with the STOTS dovetail template master for much less money.

This book will NOT give you exact dimensions on all of the cabinets that you will have to build for your kitchen. Very few cabinetry books do this with the exception of Danny Proulx's excellent book. The formula for calculating the raised panel door rail is incorrect but very EASILY recognizable by anyone with any basic algebra skills (rail width=total door width-(2 x stile width)+(2 x rail tongue - usually 3/8 so a total of 3/4)).
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131 of 136 people found the following review helpful By Al Smith on August 10, 2003
Format: Paperback
This is a good book for someone with good basic woodworking skills who wants to do a kitchen cabinet addition or modification but needs some help with design concepts unique to kitchen cabinetry. Unfortunately, you cannot rely upon all the formulas given in the book. Here are some examples:
On pages 60 & 61 the formulas to determine rail length and panel height for raised panel doors are both incorrect due to a simple error showing a subtraction operation instead of an addition.
Now that I've discovered these errors I've got a much lower level of confidence in other formulas used to determine part sizes--especially for those parts that I'd rather not cut too short!
The publisher's website doesn't have a forum for discussion or posting of comments/errors. I could not locate the author's Email address or website.
All-in-all this is a good book for illustrating concepts and describing shortcuts. The user needs to do their own thinking about the accuracy of any forumulas given in the book before making those final cuts.
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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By D. Omer on January 15, 2005
Format: Paperback
I just recently completed making our kitchen cabinets by using this book as my guide throughout the entire process. This was the largest woodworking project by far that I have attempted and it turned out very well. Mr. Schmidt's construction techniques, particularly on the base cabinets, are simple and straight forward but result in a very strong well built cabinet. Probably the most helpful section to me was on building corner cabinets for a lazy susan. This would have been very difficult if it wasn't for the step by step directions the author provided. It turned what would have been nearly impossible into mildly challenging. There are the dimensional errors that other reviewers mentioned that really unnecessarily complicate the planning and building, but I found these to be more of a nuisance through the whole process than something that kept me from building quality cabinetry.

The book also has very good instruction on special cabinets (microwave, pantry, refrigerator etc..) different techniques for building drawers, building end panels, choosing and installing hardware among others. I looked at a couple other cabinet making books, purchased one other besides this one (Building Traditional Kitchen Cabinets), and after reading reading both I felt that this book really described the nuts and bolts of cabinet making better for me. I think this book along with careful planning turned a large potentially complicated project into a large manageable project.
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