Cabinet Manufacturing Methods
3 Methods of Cabinet Manufacturing
Kitchen cabinets are not one size fits all products. There are differences in the way cabinets are manufactured that impact cost, production time, the quality of your design, and the overall look of your kitchen.
To determine which cabinets at Consumers will align best with your goals, it is important to understand the three main manufacturing categories.
Keep in mind, no matter which category you choose, Consumers offers the best quality at the Guaranteed Lowest Price.
Furniture Custom Cabinets
Only the highest-quality lumber grades are used
Strict tolerances for color variation, mineral streaks, checks, and knots are closely adhered to at the factory. Manufacturers typically purchase wood from smaller lots, harvested from the same region and time of year for greater visual consistency.
No limitations on cabinet sizes and configurations
Cabinet widths, depths, and heights can be adjusted to the sixteenth of an inch! These size modifications can be used to maximize storage space and beautify your design.
A near-limitless selection of color and finish options
The same team of factory-trained artisans hand apply and hand wipe penetrating stains on each cabinet to showcase the beauty of the wood’s natural grains. The furniture staining process can be combined with specialty options, such as glazing, distressing, painting, rub-through, accenting, fly-specking, and brush stroke detailing. Finish samples are provided for your approval prior to manufacturing and colors can even be matched to any sample you provide.
Cabinets are assembled from doors and components that are cut and fabricated one kitchen at a time by a single team of dedicated craftsmen
The assembly process does not begin for a single cabinet until the manufacturer is in receipt of your approved final kitchen design. Since all cabinet components for the entire kitchen are built-to-order at the same time and place, the highest level of quality inspection is achieved at every step of the manufacturing process.
Furniture custom price and delivery expectations
For all of the above reasons, furniture custom cabinets take the longest to produce from the date the factory order is placed (typically 6-12 weeks). They are also generally the most labor intensive - and therefore expensive - to make. However, Consumers is the only distributor who offers a variety of promotions to make these cabinets available at a price point usually reserved for modular cabinets.
Modular cabinets are made on a medium-production basis
Hardwoods are typically ordered at different times of the year for building an inventory of cabinet doors and components. When compared to the wood grades used in furniture custom manufacturing, a higher allowance for color variation, mineral streaks, and slight imperfections should be expected.
Because doors and components are inventoried, modular cabinets are usually available in industry standard three-inch width increments only
A limited number of cabinet height and depth modifications may be available, but separate fillers will be required to fit cabinets to existing room conditions.
A large, fixed selection of colors are available, including some premium finish options, such as painting and glazing
Toner coats are used to compensate for any color variation in the wood before a penetrating stain is applied. Cabinet components are hand wiped by factory-trained workers to add character. Quality inspection takes place during hand wiping, and again during final assembly.
Cabinets are built on assembly lines, where doors, end panels, moldings, and accessories are pulled from inventory
Finished components are staged and labeled in different parts of the factory before arriving together at a dedicated production line where final assembly and packaging takes place. Continuous quality inspection on a per cabinet basis is not possible, but the entire kitchen is inspected by a line supervisor prior to shipping.
Modular price and delivery expectations
Modular cabinets can be shipped in as few as four weeks. They are generally less expensive than furniture custom cabinets, ranging from moderate to low in price.
Stock cabinets are produced for mass assembly
Hardwoods are ordered at different times of the year, from different regions, and even different countries to keep up with the demand for inventory. More tolerance for color variation, mineral streaks, and imperfections should be expected.
Cabinets are pre-manufactured in industry standard three-inch width increments and placed in inventory by style and color
Because they are not made-to-order, limited size modifications are available and separate fillers will be required to fit cabinets to existing room conditions. When compared to furniture custom and modular manufacturing, stock cabinets have a limited number of cabinet configurations available to meet basic design objectives.
With stock cabinet finishes, what you see is what you get
Each door design is only available in the finish shown. Toner coats, equalizers, and stains are sprayed on in advanced computerized production lines. Darker stains are commonly used on stock cabinets to compensate for color variation in the hardwood. Finish inspection takes place prior to packaging.
Cabinet doors and components are pre-made, mass produced, and usually imported from overseas
The components are mass assembled in domestic factories where they are pulled from inventory and put together on assembly lines. When a kitchen is ordered, the prefinished cabinets are quickly pulled from inventory and shipped by the truckload.
Stock price and delivery expectations
Bypassing the manufacturing process allows stock cabinets to be delivered in as few as two weeks. They are typically the least expensive cabinet option.