Remodeling cabinets by refinishing.

We looked at remodeling cabinets, there are many ideas for kitchen cabinets, but after checking the costs for replacement doors and realizing that we had quality oak doors we decided on painting kitchen cabinets or refinishing them. This turned out to be a great diy kitchen project.

Our custom kitchen cabinets

I removed 4 cabinet doors at a time and replaced them with temporary doors as we have cats that love to explore and crawl into open spaces. I sanded the door panels down using a random orbit sander and 120 grit sand paper. You need to be careful with sanding as the veneer on these doors is very thin and you can sand down to the base board very quickly.

I did this on one of the remodeling cabinets door, so I pulled the door frame apart turned the panel front to back and stapled the frame back together again. I bought some small rubber stops from a hardware store that are designed to be placed in the groves between the frame and the panels to keep the panels from rattling.

I then sanded the frames down with a contour sander and 120 grit sand paper. The frames usually have a design routed out on their face and edges. You need to get all the old varnish sanded and scraped off to bare wood.

If you scrape the groves off use a utility knife with a fresh blade and carefully scrape the groves. Always scrape away from yourself or your other hand. Safety practices are very important to follow all the time.

Our custom kitchen cabinets

After you get all the doors sanded down to bare wood, it is time to stain the remodeling cabinets wood to a warm color. We chose a Cherry Blossom oil based wood stain. This color has a warm bright glow that compliments the Brazilian Cherry flooring.

The directions for staining recommends that you stain the wood all over and let it dry for 10 to 15 minutes depending on how dark you want the stain, then wipe it off with a dry cloth. Let the stain dry for 5 hours or so, sand it down with a very fine steel wool, 400 grit or higher to a smooth finish and reapply the stain for a deeper looking finish. Again wipe off the excess stain after 10 to 15 minutes and let it dry overnight.

Now it is time to varnish with a good polyurethane finish. Again sand the wood down with a very fine steel wool pad or cloth to a smooth surface and apply a thin coat of varnish over the entire surface of the door. I used a 3 inch wide brush that had split ends on the bristles, this let me put down a thin smooth coating of varnish. I did both sides of the door so I would let one side dry for 12 hours or longer, turn it over and varnish the other side.

The recommendations on the polyurethane pail said to let the varnish dry for 48 hours before applying a second coat. Again sand the varnish down with a very fine steel wool pad or cloth to a smooth surface before applying the second coat. Let them dry for 48 hours and sand down again with the very fine steel wool pad before installing the doors back on the cabinets. You need to sand, stain and varnish the frames of the cabinet doors the same as the doors so that all wood looks new. I put new hinges on the doors and my wife found some very pretty crystal door knobs at a refinishing store. So i installed them on the doors.

I repeated this process on all the doors starting with the largest and going to the smallest. That way I could just cut the temporary doors smaller each time to fit the next opening.

I refinished all the cabinet drawers and put the new crystal knobs on them as well. The remodeling cabinets look lovely and compliment the floor.

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Kitchen Cabinet Renovation Not rated yet
We decided to take down our cabinets, remove the false panel above them and put them back up at the ceiling edge. This may be too high for most people …

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