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Options for 2-door cabinet with no center stile

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Forum topic by BinghamtonEd posted 05-05-2015 03:54 PM 1697 views 0 times favorited 27 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


05-05-2015 03:54 PM

I’m working on designing the new cabinets for my kitchen. The existing ones are at the end of their life, literally peeling, broken slides, etc, and for the most part, I’m doing a one-to-one replacement. Also convinced the wife to let me buy an Earlex and a PC dovetail jig.

We do have a 27” wide cabinet, and I’ll be adding two new sections at 30” each, that I will be building. I would like to build these without a center stile, but with two doors. The cabinets will have face frame, probably 1.5”. My question is, what are my options for the space between the two doors on a single cabinet, with no stile? I know I could leave a gap (but I don’t want to), or I could attach a strip to one of the doors, and that door would have to be closed first (kind of annoying, but not as annoying as the center stile or the gap).

Are there any other solutions out there that I don’t know of? At this point, I think I would add the strip to one door, and probably put a thin strip of foam or something on the back, so it would not damage the other door if the one with the strip was not closed first.

I think the only cabinet that will have two doors with an actual center stile is the 36” wide sink base, for structural support.

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


27 replies so far

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

3930 posts in 1954 days


#1 posted 05-05-2015 04:00 PM

I went with the gap, much handier and if it’s the same width (1/16”) as the one at perimeter of the doors, it’s not distracting. You may have to bevel the edge of the doors where they meet so they clear when being opened/closed but I still like that better than an astragal (is that what it’s called?) or a stile. BTW, you can do that on the sink base as well, just make the front rail thicker (or double it up, on the inside). It’s really handy where you have to get in for plumbing stuff.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#2 posted 05-05-2015 04:08 PM

Thanks for the input, Fred. I should have mentioned that I am planning on 1/2” overlay doors, so there will be no gap on the perimeter of the doors.

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

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Fred Hargis

3930 posts in 1954 days


#3 posted 05-05-2015 07:27 PM

Oops, I can see why you don’t want the gap. That centerpiece (astragal?) may be your only option. My doors were inset. It’s still a good idea, those center stiles are a PITA.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, he was elected to congress.

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Woodmaster1

736 posts in 2048 days


#4 posted 05-05-2015 07:42 PM

I am in the process of making my cabinets with a center gap as tight possible. Aim using a half inch overlay and bevel edges. I will post pics when I get them done.

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waho6o9

7171 posts in 2038 days


#5 posted 05-05-2015 09:23 PM

Could your doors be inset inside of the face frame and use

European hinges?

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Bill White

4449 posts in 3421 days


#6 posted 05-05-2015 09:56 PM

Small center gap is very common, and is of no concern for most. I hate the center stile too.
Bill

-- bill@magraphics.us

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felkadelic

212 posts in 2001 days


#7 posted 05-05-2015 10:07 PM

I just checked the cabinet I have under my kitchen sink that’s setup like this (no center stile, overlay doors). There’s a small gap (maybe 3/32”) between the doors. I’ve never even thought about doing this another way, so obviously it doesn’t stand out as improper.

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hotbyte

841 posts in 2436 days


#8 posted 05-06-2015 12:52 AM

You could get fancy and replicate the mechanism on French door fridges where either door can be opened or closed first. No idea how to implement on a cabinet.

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Kelly

1110 posts in 2405 days


#9 posted 05-06-2015 01:24 AM

I’ve played with rare earth magnets a lot, including using them to make removable panels (e.g., wainscoting) to hide things. From that, I’ve wondered why I couldn’t use them to solve this problem.

It would be a simple task to flush mount three magnets in each door and the center strip (nine magnets total). If positioning blocks were installed at the top and bottom of the doors, where they meet, pulling on only one door would leave the strip tied to the other door, and it closed. That would, of course, apply to either door.

You would not want to use heavy pull magnets. On a wild guess, only a couple pounds each, at most.

The other option would be, as noted by hotbyte, to do it like they do the double door fridges of the last decade. Pulling one door forces a peg to follow a path, flipping the “center board” to flip ninety degrees so the door can open and close.

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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#10 posted 05-06-2015 12:38 PM

Woodmaster, definitely post pictures when you’re done, I’d like to see it.

I do not want to do inset doors. I could possibly redesign to cut the reveal around the doors/drawers down to 3/4” or so and minimize the size of the astragal I need to use is, so I don’t have such a large gap to fill.

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

View skipj's profile

skipj

88 posts in 1733 days


#11 posted 05-06-2015 01:57 PM

I do a lot of kitchens for my son in law,he is a contractor. If I would put a center stile in a sink
base he would shoot me and then grab a saw and cut it out.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#12 posted 05-06-2015 02:06 PM

Skip, how do you handle that gap when you have overlay doors with a reveal?

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

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skipj

88 posts in 1733 days


#13 posted 05-06-2015 02:16 PM

I use blum adjustable hinges and get the gap as close as I can. All my doors are overlay.

View Kelly's profile

Kelly

1110 posts in 2405 days


#14 posted 05-06-2015 04:03 PM

I installed a center style under my undermount sink, but used pocket screws, so it can be easily removed when the time to swap the sink arrives.


I do a lot of kitchens for my son in law,he is a contractor. If I would put a center stile in a sink
base he would shoot me and then grab a saw and cut it out.

- skipj


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BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1831 days


#15 posted 05-06-2015 04:34 PM

I think for the sink, I’m going to use an extra wide upper rail, doubled up, and attach a false drawer front. That should be sturdy enough. We keep cleaning supplies, sponges, etc down there, and we can never get to the stuff in the back, so I will probably put a full size (well, approx. 30” wide) pull-out in there with 100# full-extension slides.

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

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