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1/4" flat pannel for doors?

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Forum topic by BrianA posted 08-21-2014 05:58 PM 1003 views 0 times favorited 10 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BrianA

71 posts in 2492 days


08-21-2014 05:58 PM

Making kitchen cabinets and was wondering if I was taking a risk by making the flat panel in the doors 1/4”

I am ripping down the cherry hoping to get 3/8 thickness before surfacing. Gluing up the panels. I am thinking of making the panels as close to 3/8 as I can .

My main question is the reason flat panel is usually raised panel turned to the inside (3/4”) because of warpage etc for such a thin panel?.

The largest panel will be 12” X 42 as the rails and styles will be 4.5” wide.

Is it stupid to make the panel 1/4”

Brian


10 replies so far

View firefighterontheside's profile

firefighterontheside

13466 posts in 1319 days


#1 posted 08-22-2014 02:39 AM

Are you planing cherry down to 1/4 to use a s a panel? I would either track down cherry plywood or just make a rabbet on the inside so you can use a thicker panel, but have the same look on the outside. Are you resawing to get more out of your cherry? If so I think it would be fine.

-- Bill M. "People change, walnut doesn't" by Gene.

View Vincent Nocito's profile

Vincent Nocito

485 posts in 2827 days


#2 posted 08-22-2014 03:50 AM

I would go with at least 3/8”. If you rails and stiles are 3/4”, you can easily go to 1/2” and rabbet the back. I like to leave a shadow line on the inside and use either space balls or a few 5/8” pin nails to keep the panel centered.

View DylanC's profile

DylanC

196 posts in 2137 days


#3 posted 08-22-2014 04:00 AM

I lived in an apartment once that had thin (maybe 1/4”, probably thinner) oak plywood for the panels in the cabinet doors. Obviously they looked very plain, but the sound of them was the worst part. When the doors would shut, the panel would make an almost drum-like sound. It made the cabinets look and sound cheap.

-- Dylan C ...Seems like all ever I make is sawdust...

View mudflap4869's profile

mudflap4869

1155 posts in 922 days


#4 posted 08-22-2014 06:18 AM

Considering the rapid changes of temp an moisture in a kitchen I would be concerned about the thinner panel expanding and contracting which leads to splitting along the grain. I have repaired and replaced many door panels which have failed because they were too thin.

-- Still trying to master kindling making

View Bmezz's profile

Bmezz

34 posts in 846 days


#5 posted 08-22-2014 10:53 AM

Take it from a guy with 35 years in the kitchen business. Solid 1/4 or 3/8 panels is just asking for trouble. Veneered ply or even MDF is a much better choice. Solid panels will be moving with the seasons and if trapped will split. If not trapped they will rattle.

-- Member Valley Woodturners Ottawa

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1832 days


#6 posted 08-22-2014 12:46 PM

I would second the plywood idea. Easier to work with, you don’t have to glue/plane anything up, and you can glue the whole panel in place, which will help make for a stronger door. I would go for 1/2”.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View BrianA's profile

BrianA

71 posts in 2492 days


#7 posted 08-22-2014 01:52 PM

Thanks.

I took a trip to HD and it appears all of the raised panel cabinets on display had 1/2” thick panels. So if I can get them close to 1/2” I assume that they should be OK.
I can make them any thickness I choose, but it would be nice to be able to make 2 panels out of each board. Hate to plane away so much wood to get it down to 1/2”. Have a stack of 1” cherry I am working with. I made a full 3/4” panel and that seemed too thick and heavy.

My wife said the 1/4” panel sounded too thin.

I know 3/8 is not 1/2” but is is closer to1/2 than 1/4 ;-)

Brian

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1832 days


#8 posted 08-22-2014 02:24 PM

Brian, are you using full tenons for the door frames, or stub tenons? If stub tenons, the plywood allows a much greater glue surface around the door. If you’re planing 1” to 1/2”, you’re throwing away 50% of your cherry. If you have the capability to resaw, you could resaw the 1” into 1/2” and at 1/4” pieces after resawing and planing, and save the 1/4” for something else.

Also, just for the sake of numbers, assume a 4×8 sheet of 1/2” quality cherry plywood runs you $96 (easy math). HD is not going to carry the plywood you want, go to a hardwood dealer. That works out to $3 per square foot. It would take you more than 32 board feet planed down to 1/2” to get that same quantity. I say more than, because you’ll have more waste in width and length making those panels than you would just cutting them out of plywood.

These are just my opinions, so they’re just that, opinions. But, if I were doing simple flat panels, I’d rather buy a sheet of nice cherry plywood and just cut all of my panels from that, get a stronger door, not worry about movement, and move on to the next phase, as opposed to spending far more time and money to make my own panels.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

View Nubsnstubs's profile

Nubsnstubs

826 posts in 1193 days


#9 posted 08-22-2014 02:53 PM

1/4” plywood inserted into properly prepared stiles and rails with space balls will remove that drum roll sound you’ve heard from other doors. Any 1/4 -1/2” flat panel should be veneer with a stable core rather than solid lumber. It’s less labor intensive, and has a better success rate than solid.
If you aren’t going to raise or detail your panels, there is no reason to use solid lumber for inserts on doors… ....Jerry (in Tucson)

-- Jerry (in Tucson)

View BrianA's profile

BrianA

71 posts in 2492 days


#10 posted 08-22-2014 03:30 PM

If you aren’t going to raise or detail your panels, there is no reason to use solid lumber for inserts on doors…

Except I already have enough cherry to make the panels, Was going to make them raised panel but turn the raised side to the inside.

I think I will resaw them as wide as possible and go with 3/8-1/2” panels?

Brian

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