This is a major problem in many homes, when untreated plywood  cabinets attract termites.
The original cabinets in this kitchen were made of  ‘particle boards’. These materials were commonly  used to make cabinets for new homes  in the 60’s and 70’s,  The price of particle boards are relatively “inexpensive” and are used by  many cabinet manufactures,  The downside of using particle boards is, that it will eventually  swell up when exposed to moisture and water.

This renovation called for replacing all the moisture – damaged bottoms and sides of the cabinets and birch plywood panels were used. Unfortunately,  untreated birch plywood  attract termites,  All the cabinets in this kitchen were damaged by termites.  But, fortunately,  the solid wood  frames that  supported the sink and granite counter tops were termite free.


The second renovation job was a challenge, because  the sink and granite counter tops could not be removed and remained in place.  Following the  initial renovation,  the home owner decided to install granite counter tops with full wall back splashes.  The granites  were  permanently  glued to the original laminated counter tops and to the t&g walls underneath the wall cabinets.  Gluing of the granite pieces,  prevented their removal to allow for a normal and easier installation of the new cabinets.


The personal challenge that I  had in planning for the renovation of this kitchen,  was to design and build 6 cabinet units with termite treated  3/4″ white melamine cab-liners,  that will fit under the granite counter tops.  The  cabinet to occupy the space under the sink, with all the plumbing remaining in place, was designed and built with a feature that is uncommon in most kitchens.

36″ custom built kitchen sink cabinet



The preparation for the installation of 3 cabinet units was much more involved and detailed, because  the  two counter tops were not at the same level.  Building and Installing 6 drawers and a ‘lazy susan’ unit was another challenging task that ended well.  Not bad, yeah?


Hanging wall cabinets in the kitchen of a home with  single wall construction is a serious undertaking  because the cabinets have to be  secured to the wall with screws.  The length of these screws is very critical, because you don’t want them poking through to the other side.
Take a moment and calculate the total thickness of the cabinet’s side and back that will be against the wall.  The kitchen wall is (3/4″) thick.  Cabinets are built with (3/4″) thick  by 3″ and 1-1/2″ rails respectfully, between the cabinet sides at the top and bottom  rear  of the cabinets.  The back is enclosed with a (1/4″) plywood  panel .  This all adds up to (1-3/4″)    1-5/8″ wood screws are used.  A minimum of (3) screws each for the top and the bottom,   One important fact to note is that,  we have earthquakes!


Finally, my kitchen renovation project is completed, although minor ‘touch ups’ like replacing  ceiling/wall  moldings  need to be done.

Dismantling the wall pantry first was in order, to be followed by removing the cabinet over the refrigerator.  Next was to place the new base cabinets into  position and preparing the electrical wiring for the ac outlet that was built into the backsplash of the new counter for the base cabinets.  The wall cabinets over the base cabinets were next.  The base and wall cabinets have pull-out trays, that will provide better storage features than the original pantry for the ease of accessing  the contents.

The frig cabinet was installed a couple weeks after.  Installation was a bit challenging, when securing it to the wall, ceiling and adjacent cabinet.  This cabinet held two pull out trays. All trays are on full pull-out 22″ Accuride Slides.




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