GLOSSARY KITCHEN CABINET TERMS

Base Cabinet The cabinet that sits on the floor. The Bottom Cabinets, these cabinets usually supports the countertops.
base cabinet
Cam Lock The key to a high quality RTA cabinet is how it is actually held together. For a high quality RTA cabinet, make sure that they use a cam lock assembly. What is a cam lock assembly, it is not only easier to put together, but it offers a stronger bond. Cam locks come in two versions: one is a hidden assembly that uses a combination of pegs and rotating locks, while the other one is an exposed cam lock which also uses rotating locks.
cam lock
Carcass The "box" or frame that make up the basic structure of a base, wall or tall cabinet. This is the structure of the cabinet before the draws, doors shelves are added.
Concealed Hinge A hinge that is not visible on the front of a cabinet door. Concealed hinges are attached to the inside surface of the door.
concealed_hinge
Custom Custom cabinets are cabinets made to a designer's or customer's specifications, with no limitations on sizing, materials and options. They are made to order. This is usually, more costly.
Dado A groove that is cut into a piece of material so that another piece may slide into it. The inside surface of cabinet drawers may be 'dadoed' with a groove to accept the drawer bottom panel which helps make for a stronger joint between the drawer side and bottom panels. a longer production time
dado
Dovetail A method of joining two pieces of wood that join each other, typically at right angles. The edge of each piece is cut with a number of V shaped notches that interlock with the adjoining piece forming a very strong joint. This is usually the best preferred method of construction for wooden drawers and pull outs. Dovetailed joints are the most durable
dovetail
Drawer Front The panel that is attached to the front of a drawer box. It is the visible front part of the drawer that the handle is attached to.
drawer_front
Engineered Wood A wood product that is manufactured to enhance the overall qualities of the wood material itself. Plywood and MDF are two examples of engineered wood products.
Engineered wood
Exposed Hinge A hinge type that is visible on the outside edge of the cabinet door when the door is closed.
Face Frame The wood frame that is attached to the front edges of the top, bottom and sides of the cabinet box. This frame helps provide rigidity to the box. Cabinet designs that incorporate this feature are called "framed" or "face frame" cabinets.
face frame
Finish The surface coating that is applied to a wood cabinet surface. The finish is typically made up of several layers of different materials such as a stain, sealer and clear coat. The finish is a key element in maintaining and protecting the beauty and durability of the wood surface.
Flakeboard Another word used to describe a form of particle board. You may also see the term "furniture board" used which means the same thing.
flakeboard
Framed A cabinet design that uses a 'face frame' which is typically a wood frame attached to the front edges of the cabinet box.
framed
Frameless A cabinet design that does not use a frame on the front outside edges of the cabinet box. The front of the cabinet box is formed by the edges of the top, bottom and side panels of the cabinet box. The cabinet door typically covers the edges when closed.The cabinet is strengthened by the back and sides in this construction.
frameless
Full Inset A cabinet design whereby the doors fit inside of the face frame when closed .
full-inset
Full Overlay A cabinet design whereby the cabinet door or drawer front covers all of the face frame so that only the cabinet door is seen with no part of the face frame visible.
full overlay
Furniture Board Furniture board is another term for particle board. The term was coined in reference to the particle board that's used in the furniture industry. This may sound like high quality but it’s not
Glaze A coating applied over the cabinet stain that enhances or changes the color of the base coat.
glaze
Laminate A composite material made up of paper and resin that has been fused together to form a relatively hard durable surfacing material. Vinyl laminate is used on cabinet surfaces and countertops by bonding the laminate to the substrate (many times referred to by its brand name Formica.)
laminate
Medium Density Fiberboard (MDF) A wood based product that's produced by the combination of very small wood fibers and a glue, resin or similar bonding agent. MDF can be more easily shaped than products like particle board due to the consistency of the material formed by the small fibers. MDF can be used for shelves, doors and other cabinet parts. MDF is denser then plywood and has a “green” eco friendly factor since its made of recycled wood product.
Melamine A plastic based, sheet material similar to a thin laminate that is applied to the exterior and or interior of cabinets. It’s similar to shelving paper. This is usually found on the exterior of less expensive cabinetry and can peel off easily.
Overlay Overlay refers to the amount of face frame that is covered by the cabinet door or drawer front.
Partial Overlay A cabinet design whereby the cabinet door or drawer front partially overlaps the face frame. When the drawers/doors are closed part of the face frame remains visible. (Also see "overlay").
Particle Board A wood product made up of very small wood pieces and fragments that are fused together with a glue or resin under mechanical pressure. Particle board sometime is used in cabinet construction. But beware particle board can expand like a sponge when exposed to water and sometimes humidity.
particle_board
Plywood A wood product made up of several layers or “Plies” of wood with the grain direction running at different angles with respect to each other. This orientation gives plywood greater strength and stability in comparison to solid wood and much more preferred in the quality of cabinet construction
plywood
Rail The horizontal pieces or members of a face frame or door frame (in contrast to a "stile" which is the vertical member of the frame).
RTA Kitchen Cabinets RTA stands for Ready To Assemble. That you find on this site, which feature a solid plywood cabinet box and solid wood face frames and doors. High quality RTA cabinet, make sure that they use a cam lock assembly. When compared to our cabinets, which feature a cam lock assembly, it is not only easier to put together, but it offers a stronger bond.
Stile The vertical pieces of a face frame or door
Stock Cabinets Cabinets that are manufactured in standard sizes.
Thermofoil A thin vinyl sheet that is formed over a wood or wood product substrate and bonded to the substrate.
Toe Kick The bottom piece of a base cabinet that is recessed from the front surface of the cabinet to allow room for a person's feet when standing in front of the cabinet. This can be matching the cabinet or even a decorative accent.
toe  kick
Varnish A typically clear paint like material applied as a coating to provide a protective finish. To the wood of a cabinet.
Veneer A thin layer of material (typical reference is to wood) that's applied and bonded to another material. Wood veneers are thin layers of real wood.
Wall Cabinet Cabinet boxes that are mounted to the wall.
wall cabinet

 

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