How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors

Written by michael straessle
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How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors
Flat Panel "Shaker" Kitchen Cabinet Door (Michael Straessle)

Cabinet doors are the focal point of kitchen cabinets and can complement or take away from the overall aesthetics of the kitchen. More and more homeowners are using cabinets with overlay doors because of their picture-frame look. Whether they're raised panel, glass panel or shaker doors, the frame look causes the cabinets to look more architecturally sound. The door you're going to make here is for a regular 30-inch-by-27-inch kitchen wall cabinet. Remember to make the doors one inch larger in both width and height of the door opening.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • Table saw
  • Two pieces of 1-inch-by-6-inch-by-30-inch lumber
  • Electric mitre saw
  • One piece of 24-inch-by-30-inch-by-¼-inch plywood
  • Wood glue
  • Two 36-inch bar clamps

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Set the fence of the table saw at two inches. Rip two pieces from each of the 1-by-6-by-30-inch lumber.

  2. 2

    Set the fence of the table saw at 3/16 inch. Lower the blade to a half-inch. Cut a groove in the long edges of the four pieces. Then, turn them around to cut a groove on the same edge from the other side of the lumber. This will result in a groove that is 3/8-inch-by-1/2-inch.

    How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors
  3. 3

    Measure from the end of two of the 30-inch pieces and make a mark at 20 inches. Cut these with the electric mitre saw. These are the rails (horizontal pieces) of the shaker door frame. Set the fence of the table saw at ½-inch over the blade. Set the height of the blade to 3/16 inches. Cut the 20-inch pieces across the grain on both sides and both ends.

    How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors
  4. 4

    Set the fence of the table saw at 3/16-inch over the blade. Raise the blade up to ½ inch. Stand the 20-inch pieces on their ends and cut both sides on both ends of each piece. This will result in a "tongue" to slip inside the groove in the 30-inch pieces.

    How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors
  5. 5

    Set the fence of the table saw at 24½ inches. Cut the ¼-inch plywood to this measurement. Next, set the fence of the table saw at 21 inches and rip the 24½-inch piece to this width. Fit the frame and ¼-inch panel to be certain they fit. Make any adjustments needed.

    How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors
  6. 6

    Apply glue to one of the tongues on the rails and insert them into one of the ends. Next, slip the shaker panel into the grooves, then apply glue to the exposed tongues and install the remaining end piece. Clamp the doorframe together with the bar clamps across the rails.

    How to Make Kitchen Cabinet Shaker Doors

Tips and warnings

  • Clean up excess glue immediately with a damp cloth.
  • Sand the doorframe pieces and the shaker panel before assembly to reduce labour when prepping the door for a finish.
  • Fill joints with wood putty if needed after the glue dries.
  • Do not leave power tools unattended in the presence of children.
  • Do not raise the blade of the table saw any higher than needed to make the cut.
  • Do not stain or paint the shaker doors without proper ventilation.

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