As I did my kitchen counter tops, I purchased extra pieces of granite to make a sideboard. Now I’m shopping for the 2 base cabinets to make the sideboard.
Here’s what I need: 2 36″ wide base cabinets, Shaker style in a dark finish – Usually called Havana as it turns out. Each cabinet with drawer[s] above and two slide out shelves below behind double doors. This is a standard cabinet layout, and 36″ wide is a standard size.
I started at a local cabinet shop and after talking with them for almost an hour, I waited a week for a quote. $1800 for the 2 cabinets. Wow. Sticker shock! The cabinet boxes are made locally, and the drawer and door fronts are ordered from a cabinet factory in Oregon somewhere. That seems like a lot of money.
I checked two more places here in town that do not fabricate locally, but order. One place quoted $2100 and another quoted $1400. These seem high, so I decided to check online to see if I could get the cabinets cheaper online.
RTA vs Pre-Assembled
Turns out that RTA is a widely used term. Ready to Assemble. I’m sure you have heard of IKEA. Well all their furniture is RTA. I have some IKEA and I don’t like it. Particle Board boxes, funny fasteners that sometimes pull out of the wood. Lousy drawer slides and drawer boxes that pop apart if you load them up.
I have two IKEA cabinets in my office with computer cables etc. in them and I had to glue the drawer boxes together with construction adhesive so that the bottoms would not pop-out since they are made with flexible Masonite. I don’t want RTA cabinets for this project.
Kitchen Cabinet Kings
So let’s start looking online with Google for kitchen cabinets and this time, as we usually avoid, click on the results marked Ad.
In no particular order, let’s start with Kitchen Cabinet Kings. Click for a larger view on all these pictures.
This is as close as I can get to the color that I want. This looks black to me, but it will do for a comparison.
As you can see, these are plywood cabinets with soft close drawer slides. Let’s try to order them and see what we get:
Here’s a quote, as near as I can figure for one cabinet. Notice I had to order the pull-outs separate from the cabinet. So for two cabinets – in not the color I want and no provision for finished ends that I could find, the total including shipping is $2287. Over $400 in shipping seems very expensive. A non-starter. The expensive local option – from a cabinet designer in Probuild using Diamond cabinets – is less expensive than this.
Kitchen Resource Direct
Here are some cabinets from Kitchen Resource Direct by Deerfield. Look pretty good. Again there is a problem with the end panels since they don’t have an option to stain them. You have to purchase end skins and apply them.
One cabinet for $525. Let’s look at a complete quote.
$1400 approximately including shipping of about $200.
I might as well purchase locally. My conclusion is that there is no advantage in purchasing kitchen cabinets online. Unlike books and music, local brick and mortar stores are best when updating your kitchen.