Getting Square

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Forum topic by kkaiser posted 02-03-2012 05:30 AM 1005 views 0 times favorited 4 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View kkaiser's profile


15 posts in 2724 days

02-03-2012 05:30 AM

Hi All,

I have been attempting to building some cabinets for a small kitchen in a project I have going on.

I seem to get them about a 1/16 off, i cut the parts the same, route the dados all the same, and at same time, all the things i read should be done. I then built the cases, screewed in and checked things, (at least i thought i did) then the frames and took GREAT CARE to make them square, checked over and over, applied to case, and dam, off again, the doors are inset so the offness, is noticeable. usually 1-16 to almost an 1/8 mostly right in between. I cut the doors to square, that was easy.

i have tried cutting out 90 degree jigs to clamp, and read just about everything in can find. is there a secret to this??!!

very frustrating.

4 replies so far

View JAAune's profile


1846 posts in 2494 days

#1 posted 02-03-2012 05:36 AM

Screwing the cases to the wall will almost inevitably throw them out of square unless you use shims to keep the cases from being twisted against a crooked wall.

-- See my work at and

View cabmaker's profile


1740 posts in 2986 days

#2 posted 02-03-2012 05:37 AM

You may be getting your faceframes off somewhere. If not the faceframe, are you leaving the cab. backs (if applicable) off untill later or what ? 90 degree jigs will only tell you what is going on at the moment. Are you installing a top rail at the cabinet back ? You cannot assume that just because every cut you make is perfect that it will finish out perfect, however it does help. Do you know if its the casework shifting the faceframe or the faceframe shifting the cabinet ? Or could it be where you set the cabinet when your checking it for square. A lot of differant things going on there, but I know this, it can be corrected. JB

View kkaiser's profile


15 posts in 2724 days

#3 posted 02-03-2012 05:48 AM

thanks for the replies,

currently, they are free standing and have not been attached, The backs are a full panel of 3/8, with 3/4 on sides and bottom..

I will keep at it and see if i can figure it out,, lots of variables, but it can make you pull out hair,

View lewis62's profile


73 posts in 2816 days

#4 posted 02-03-2012 01:38 PM

A pic of what you are trying to fix would be easier to answer.
What are you trying to correct, door to faceframe, FF to cab, or carcass of cab .
Need better explanation.

I have never made any cab,perfectly square, but get close enough.
My framing square is off by 1/16 in 16 inches, just found out, it is in big round file and a new one took its place.
Some times its the tool not the worker, is your square true?
I had problems with doors not fitting openings with equal margins , started making doors 1/16 to 1/8 oversized for inset, then joint , saw cut , hand plane to fit .Now they all have equal margins.
If using table saw ,is blade as close to 90 as poss, is fence straight front to back, and square to blade, does it flex as you push stock through?My fence had belly in middle, never could cut parallel sides, added ply fence face shimed to be straight, now rip glue line straight.
Hope this a start to slove your problem.

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