Clippings by Labradane

 Sort by: Last Updated Post Date Post Title Forum Name 

bathroom tile FAQ's

posted by: bill_vincent on 07.01.2008 at 09:31 pm in Bathrooms Forum

This is going to take me a while, so I'll post as many as I can each night until it gets done. To start, here's the first set of questions and answers:

Okay, here we go. These questions come from the thread on the discussions side where I solicited questions from everyone for this thread. These are in the order they were asked:

Q) What are the different types of tiles you can use in a bathroom and what are the advantages/disadvantages of each?

A) There are several types of tile available. They fall into two general groups: ceramic and natural stone. I'll take these one at a time:

Ceramic tile-- For purposes of this discussion, there's glazed conventional, unglazed porcelain, and glazed porcelain. All three are good tiles for bathroom use, but the porcelain is a better choice only because of its density and lack of water absorbsion, which makes upkeep and cleaning easier. Also, with reference to steam showers, you DO NOT want to use natural stone, being that the steam would tend to permeate into the stone even more readily than liquid water, and could end up giving you algae problems, as well as mold and mildew problems, unless you don't mind being tied down to your bathroom.

Natural Stone-- There are several types of stone that are used in bathrooms. It doesn't necessarily mean that they're all GOOD IDEAS for bathrooms, expecially the softer (and more absorbant) stones, such as slate or limestone. Now, I know I'm going to get a world of flack about this from epople who have bathrooms finished in these materials. I know they CAN be used.... so long as you're aware of the extra upkeep involved. But if you're someone who doesn't like to keep after things, you may want to pick an easier material to maintain. Generally speaking, the softer the stone, the more the upkeep. Limestone being the softer of the stones, and that would include travertine, next would be many slates (although some would actually be harder than even most marbles, such as brazilian and british slates), then marbles, with quartzite and granite rounding off the list as the harder and more dense stones that you could use.

Q) What should I be sure to look for when choosing tile for a bathroom?

A) Short answer-- something that you like! The bathroom is the one place that just about anything the showroom has can be used. The only limitations are basically the upkeep you want to put in, and slip resistance on the floors of your bathroom and shower. Now, although ceramic tile is basically maintenence free, you don't want to use something with a texture to it that will catch all kinds of junk in the shower, making it more difficult to keep clean. At the same time, you don't want to use a polished stone or bright glazed ceramic tile for the shower floor, either. These both CAN be used, but again, it comes down to upkeep for textured wall tile, and doing something to rectify the slippery floor.

Q) Where should I use tile and where not?

A) Tile can be used on every single surface in the bathroom, if that's what you like. This is all a matter of taste... for the most part. About the only place where there's a requirement is any place there's a showerhead involved. If tile is to be used either in a shower or a tub/ shower combo, The tile MUST go up to a minimum of 72" off the floor. Past that, it's up to the disgression of the owner.

Q) What size tile and what layout patterns to use in various areas?

A) Again, this is a subjective question that can really only be answered by the owner. The ONLY place where there's a recommendation for mechaincal reasons is on a shower floor. TCNA recommends that mothing bigger than 6" be used on shower floors due to the cone shape of the floor's pitch. In addition, most installers will request no bigger than 4", and prefer a 2x2 tile to work with on the shower floor. This is also advantageous to the homeowner who'll be showering in there, because the added grout joints will add more traction to the floor.

Now, I've heard many times that you shouldn't use large format tiles in a small area like a powder room floor, and if you have a wide open bathroom, you don't want to use real small tiles. My response to both is the same-- HORSEHOCKEY. I've done bathrooms both ways-- 24x24 diagonal in a 3' wide powder room, and 1" hex ceramic mosaics in an open 100 sq. ft. bathroom floor. The rule of thumb is if you like it, it's right!

Q) How do I find/choose someone to install the tile?

A) Many people will tell you to get names from the showroom you get your tile from. This is no good, unless the showroom is willing to take responsibility for the installer by either having them on payrool, or as a subcontract. Then they have something to lose if they give you a bad installer. Many people will also tell you to get references and to actually check them out. This ALSO doesn't work. I've been in this work for just under 30 years now, and I've yet to find a single installer who ever gave the name of someone they had a problem with. They say even a blind squirrel will find a nut once in a while. The same can be said for "fly-by-nights" and good work.

So if you can't trust recommendations, and checking references is a lost cause, what do you do? REVERSE THE PROCESS!! Instead of finding an installer and getting references, get references, and thru them, find your installer!! No matter where you live, if you drive around, you'll find constructions sites and developements. Stop and ask who the GC uses. Get a name and phone number. Sooner or later, after asking around enough, you're going to find that the same names will begin to show up time and time again. THESE are the guys you want to use. But don't expect a bargain price, and be prepared to wait, because these guys will be in high demand, even in the worst of times, and they may demand a bit higher price, but they'll be worth every penny, if for no other reason, just because of the peace of mind they'll give you in knowing you're getting a good quality installation. Ask anyone who's gone through this experience, good or bad-- that alone is worth its weight in gold.

Q) What are the proper underlayments for tile?

A) There are several, and I'll take them one at a time:

CBU (cementitious Backer Units)-- This is the term that generally covers all cement boards (such as Wonderboard or Durock) or cement fiber boards (such as Hardibacker). This is the most common used tile underlayment. Generally speaking, it comes in two thicknesses-- 1/2" and 1/4"-- and each has its use. !/2" must be used for wall installations, due to the fact that the 1/4" is way too flimsy with nothing to back it up, and would flex too much to last. Besides, the 1/2" CBU will usually match up nicely to most sheetrocks. The 1/4" is used for floor installations, unless the added height of the 1/2" is needed to match up to other floorings. Being that neither has very much structural strength, so long as the subfloor is 3/4" or more, the 1/4" CBU is all that's needed. Keep in mind that even though it's basically fiberglass reinforced concrete, the only thing it adds to the floor is a stable bonding surface, so the 1/4" will do just fine. One place where alot of contractors will try and shortcut is by using greenboard instead of CBU for shower walls. This is expressly forbidden in the IRC (International Residential Code) by the following code:

IRC Greenboard Code:
The 2006 International Residential Code (IRC) states in
Section R702.4.2 that "Cement, fiber-cement or glass mat
gypsum backers in compliance with ASTM C1288, C1325
or C1178 and installed in accordance with manufacturers�
recommendations shall be used as backers for wall tile in
tub and shower areas and wall panels in shower areas."

The 2006 IRC also states in Section R702.3.8.1 that
"Water-resistant gypsum backing board [Greenboard] shall
not be used where there will be direct exposure to water."

Membranes-- There are several around that work well over many different surfaces. Most of them are what's called "Crack Isolation Membranes". Just about every manufacturer has one, from trowel ons or roll ons, such as Hydroment's Ultraset or Laticrete's 9235 or Hydroban, to sheet membranes such as Noble's CIS membrane. All will give the tile a little more protection against movement than just going over CBU. However, there's another class of membranes called "uncoupling membranes" of which the most popular by far is Schluter's Ditra, that are made from bonding two layers together, usually a fabric fleece backing and a plastic sheeting with dovetailed waffling to "lock" the thinset in place ( as opposed to accepting a thinset BOND). These membranes will, as their name implies, uncouple their two layers in case of movement, to save the floor, and for thinset floors, it's the most protection you can give your tile floor.

Plywood-- This is one where I get the most flack. I'm one of a dying breed that still believes in tiling directly over plywood. However, I can very well understand the reluctance of the industry to embrace this installation method, even though the TCNA DOES approve of its use for interior installations (Those with a handbook can check Method F-149). The reason I say that is it's a very "tempermental installation method. You need to be very familiar with what you're doing, or you risk failure. There are even many pros I wouldn't trust to tile using this method. Everything you do is important, from the species of plywood used, to the direction the grain is laid with relation to the joists, to how it's gapped, and a host of other specs, as well-- many of which won't be found in the handbook, and if you miss just one of them, you're flirtin with disaster. All in all, when people ask me about it, I tell them that with the membranes available, there's no need to go directly over plywood. There are other methods that will give you just as long lasting a floor, and aren't NEARLY as sensitive.

Mudset-- This is the oldest, and still, after THOUSANDS of years of use, the strongest installation method available. In a mudset installation, a minimum of 1 1/4" of mortar called "drypack" (mixed to the consistancy of damp sand) is either bonded to a concrete slab, or laid down over tarpaper or 6 mil poly with wire reinforcement, packed, and then screaded off to flat level (or pitched) subfloor. This is what most people see when tiling a shower pan. Initially, the mud will be a somewhat soft subfloor. But over time, if mixed properly, it'll be stronger than concrete.

Q) What are the proper tile setting compounds?

A) This is one where I could write a book. It all depends on what kind fo tile you're installing, and what the underlayment is that you're going over. I'll give a generalized list:

Polymer/ latex modified thinset: For all intents and purposes, this is the "cure-all". For almost any installation the modified thinset, which is basically portland cement, silica sand, and chemical polymers added for strength, will work. There are some that are specialized, such as the lightweight non-sag thinsets (such as Laticrete's 255 or Mapei's Ultralite), or the high latex content thinsets (like Latictrete's 254 Platinum or Hydroment's Reflex), but with the exception of going over some membranes, there's a modified thinset for every installation.

Unmodified thinset: This is the same as above, but with no polymers added. It's usually used in conjunction with a liquid latex additive, but will also be used mixed with water for going over some membranes. It's also used as a bedding for all CBU's.

Medium Bed Mortars-- This is a relatively new class of setting mortars, used mainly for large format tiles, where the normal notched trowels just don't put down enough material, and with thinset, it would be too much, causing too much shrinkage as it dries, causing voids under, and poor bond to, the tile, but at the same time, there's not enoough room for a mudset installation. This mortar is usually used with either a 1/2x1/2" or 1/2x3/4" notched trowel.

Mastics and Premixed Thinsets: THESE HAVE VERY LIMITED USES!! Let me say that again-- THESE HAVE VERY LIMITED USES!! They work well for vertical installations, where the tile used is 8x8 or less, and it's not a wet area. ALL THREE of those conditions must be met!! I know just about every pail of type 1 mastic says it can be used in showers except for the floor. DON'T BELIEVE IT!! Also, both mastic and premixed thinset (which is just mastic with a fine sand mixed in to give it bulk) claim they can be used for floor installations. Unfortunately, for the amount of material needed under virtually all floor tiles to bond to the subfloor, neither of these will fully harden. I had a personal experience where I helped a sister in law across country, telling her husband exactly how to do his main floor, what to use, and how to use it. Unfortunately, he went to the big box store to get his tile and materials, and they talked him into using premixed thinset. I didn't hear about it until SIX MONTHS LATER when his tile and grout joints started showing cracks all over the floor. When he called me I asked him what he used for thinset, and sure enough, this is when he told me. I told him to pull one of the tiles, and SIX MONTHS LATER, IT WAS STILL SOFT!!! DOn't let them talk you into it!! Use the proper thinset, and don't try and shortcut your installation. You're spending alot of money for it to be "just practice"!!

Q) How do you deal with different thicknesses of tile?

A) Whatever it takes. I've used membranes, built up the amount of thinset being used, I've even doubled up tiles when it worked out that way. Whatever it takes to get the two tiles to be flush toeach other.

Q) What are the typical tools required to lay tile?

A) Generally speaking, this is a list for just about all installations. Some may require specialized tools, but this would be for all:

Proper sized notched trowel
measuring tape
chalk line
margin trowel
nippers
high amp low speed drill and mixing paddle (best would be 6 amp or better and less than 400 rpm)
several buckets
score and snap cutter for straight ceramic cuts
4 1/2" grinder with a continuous rim dry diamond blade for ceramic, anything other than straight cuts
wet saw (can be used for ALL cuts, ceramic or stone)
grout float
hydra grout sponges (2-- once for grouting, one for cleaning)
24" and 48" levels (for vertical work)
heavy duty extension cords
KINEE PADS!! :-)
screwgun or nailgun (where CBU will be used)

Q) What about tile spacing and tpes of grout?

A) According to Dave Gobis from the Ceramic Tile Education Foundation in Pendleton, South Carolina, there will finally be a new standard for ceramic tile next year. The tolerances are shrinking. There will also be a standard for rectified tile. Along with that, there will be a revision to the installation standards that will specifically recommend a grout joint no less than 3 times the variation of the tile. For rectified tile the minimum grout joint width will be .075 or just over a 1/16".

As for grout, there's only one thing that determines whether you use sanded or unsanded grout, and that's the size of the grout joint. Anything less than 1/8" you use unsanded grout. 1/8" or larger, you need to use sanded grout. The reason is that the main ingredient in grout is porland cement, which tends to shrink as it dries. In joints 1/8" or larger, the grout will shrink way too much and end up cracking ans shrinking into the joint. The sand give the grout bulk, and the sanded grout won't shrink nearly as much and therefore, can be used in the larger joints.

NOTES:

<none>
clipped on: 05.24.2014 at 06:17 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2014 at 06:17 pm

Small things that get forgotten

posted by: Laura12 on 04.11.2012 at 06:01 pm in Building a Home Forum

I keep hearing that most people find that there are small things that they didn't think about until after they finished construction that they wish they would have added into their build, and I was curious if all of you would like to help me to compile a list for all of us to consider during planning!

So far I have
- Plugs in kitchen pantry for charging, or for items that may end up living there
- Full size broom cupboard in pantry or laundry room to hide all the cleaning items away from sight.
- Solar tubes in areas that don't get natural sunlight
- Prewire security system
- Run wire and prepare roof for future solar
- Central Vac with vac pans

Any others to add?

NOTES:

Check out whole thread.
clipped on: 05.24.2014 at 06:16 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2014 at 06:17 pm

LED recessed cans guide for kitchen ...

posted by: davidtay on 01.30.2012 at 01:27 am in Lighting Forum

A collection of tips/ answers
Since kitchens have higher lighting requirements, I like to use 35 lumen per sq ft as a rule to compute the number of lights. If there are additional sources of light that will be used, the output (lumens not watts) from those sources can be deducted from the total.

Placement/ layout
1. Cans should be > 24 to 30 inches from the wall (on center). Most countertop spaces have upper cabinets (typically ~ 12" deep) + crown molding. The edge of the can may be spaced ~ 12" away from the edge of the crown molding (if present or cabinet if there is no crown molding) making the average distance between 26 to 30 inches.

2. Assuming the need for a fairly uniformly lit space @ 35 lumens per sq ft, the cans may have to be spaced closer together - between 3 - 4 ft apart (if all general lighting is provided by recessed lights). A fairly regular pattern is preferable to a random layout.

3. The actual layout of cans will be impacted by the location of ceiling joists, HVAC ducting, electrical wiring, plumbing, ceiling height, fire suppression sprinklers and other obstructions above the ceiling.

Dimming
The Cree LR6 series lamps do not dim as well as the later models (CR6, ...). ELV dimmers probably work better with LR6 than incandescent dimmers since the total load of the lights may not meet the minimum load requirement for the incandescent dimmer.

Dimmers such as the Lutron Diva CL dimmers work well. The max output is 95%.

Some Choices (in order of preference) and notes
Cree CR6 or ECO-575 (Home Depot branded CR6)
ECO4-575 (Home Depot branded Cree CR4 4" recessed light)
The above are only available in 2700k light color.

Cree LR6 series - including the LE6.

The Cree CR6 and LR6 lamps will not fit into 5" housings.

The standard LR6 behaves more like a surface mount than a recessed light as the LED emitters are close to the surface and the recess is shallow. Some may not like the amount of light spillage (standard LR6).

There is a higher output version of the LR6 that has a much deeper recess.

To prevent the Cree lamps from falling out, the 3 prongs have to be fully extended and a slight clockwise twist made when push installing. The slight clockwise twist will ensure that the prongs are fully extended.

The Cree lamps are currently the best available today (2012).

Sylvania RT-6, RT-4. The lights could be easier to install than Cree lamps as they utilize the torsion spring mechanism. However, the lights do not look as pleasant as the Cree lamps.

The Cree and Sylvania lamps do outperform 26W CFLs (and incandescents) in a standard recessed can in terms of light spread and output as the standard bulb in a can solution traps a significant amount of light. The Cree and Sylvania recessed lamp solutions referenced above have all the LED elements facing outwards so that the effective light output is higher.

The CRI (Color Rendition Index) of Cree and Sylvania recessed lamps > 80.

There is no warm up time required for Cree recessed lamps, unlike CFL light bulbs.

Most recessed lighting is used with flat ceilings. Sloped ceilings would require special solutions such as the LE6 or some other form of lighting (i.e. -non recessed lighting).

Some common objections to recessed can lights stem from
1. looks and performance of traditional can lights (standard bulb in a can)
2. swiss cheese effect from too many holes.

NOTES:

<none>
clipped on: 05.24.2014 at 06:16 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2014 at 06:16 pm

RE: What was your best bathroom remodeling decision? (Follow-Up #4)

posted by: warsher on 02.19.2007 at 11:04 am in Bathrooms Forum

First mistake "do'nt gut it". Gut it and second, use a vapor barrier under the cement board, do'nt use greenboard. The rusted nails will tell you where the vapor barrier and cement board prefer to go, I would just put the vapor lock everywhere, use half inch boards. You can use 6 mil plastic or roofing felt as barrier under boards, stapled. I like roofing, a little better insulation sound/thermal.
Cement board is a sponge, if that bothers you do what I did, use a cement board sealer around the shower/pullman area Depot has it. I used epoxy that I get cheap, 80 dollars for 1.5 gallon. That stops moisture before the board and not after.
Next stop tub. Cast iron equals quiet and thermal insulation it memorizes heat, (not drumlike with no echoes) Kohler Villager is cheapest; I say mistake. It is 14 inches tall so beware of a too little tub. I got the Toto 1525 at Express Pipe here in southern cal, 554 dollars. the tub iron is twice as thick as Kohlers I saw also, the glaze is smoother. 2 people can install it (the ground is the third person, roll the tub in end over end or just shuffle it in) 381 pounds but not heavy as you think.
Vanity, ebay has good glass/metal ones, will not absorb odors, lifetime product, under 500 with all hardware, faucets.
The toilet must do one thing foremost, flush. try the Toto Drake and if not the Ultramax will give you much more room. Express pipe or Homeclick. There are some horrible toilets out their beware, get a commercial one, Toto G max for instance.
Porcelain is king on tile, Ceramic is ok, check the grade (1-5) Marble is ok for a bathroom floor awesome visually. I would use 1/8 grout line porcelain on shower with sanded grout. Unsanded might shrink. Keep sponge dry, use caulk in tile corners, do not use premix wet mastic under tile, use powdered thinset with latex additive.
You might want to leave in the cieling when you gut.
You might want to get some kilz and paint the studs around the shower area if moisture problems were evident.

NOTES:

Check out whole thread. Lots of good advice.
clipped on: 05.24.2014 at 06:16 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2014 at 06:16 pm

How To Buy a Faucet

posted by: francesca_sf on 04.20.2010 at 04:05 pm in Kitchens Forum

I�ve lurked and I�ve learned a lot from GardenWeb. So, as a way to give-back, here�s a summary of what I�ve learned about How To Buy a Faucet, adding my own experience and my own personal point of view. Now I am no expert, so please feel free to add your research sources and methods about finding faucets.

1. Identify the Best Brands
Identiify the best brands from reliable sources who have broad experience with many brands and information on the construction of the faucets which is not obvious from just looking at them. http://starcraftcustombuilders.com/sources.faucets2.htm

Based on their 15 years of experience, and the experiences of other trusted building professionals, StarCraft Builders, the source of this article, has rated 30 faucet companies. My own experience of getting out and "feeling the merchandise" confirms the lower rated faucets feel lighter, cheaper, not as smooth-operating as the better-rated brands. There are plenty of popular brands they didn�t mention such as Elements of Design, Herbeau, Kindred, Kraus, Newport Brass, Rohl, Waterstone and Whitehaus.

Rated 7 -9 out of 10
Chicago, Dornbracht, Graff, Jado, KWC, LaCava, MSG Progetti, Porcher, San-Ei

Rated 6-8 out of 10
Blanco, Grohe, Mico, Phylrich, THG

Rate 5 to 7 or 8 out of 10
Brizo, Ginger, Hamat, Hansgrohe, Mico, Storm, Symmons

Rated 4 to 7 out of 10
American Standard, Danze, Eljer, Elkay, Kohler, Price-Pfister

Rated 3 to 6 or 7 out of 10
Delta, Moen, Peerless

Other caveats from the article:
1. "For the money, a basic American faucet may be one of the best consumer values around. Designed to last a lifetime, all but the cheapest will and if they don�t the manufacturer will at least replace defective parts. Washerless valves have virtually banished leaks.
2. "When you pay more than mid-price ($100-300), you are generally buying the high styling or custom hand casting and finishing (Strom, Chicago, MGS Progetti)."
3. Read the whole article here: http://starcraftcustombuilders.com/sources.faucets.htm

2. Identify the Functions YOU Require
Figure out what functions the faucet will be required to perform in additon to the usual cleaning dished and washing veggies. DH and I needed to fill pots, fill tall vases, and reach every corner of the sink to clean it. We preferred a pull-out or pull-down dual spray with a minimum 12" reach. This eliminated a lot of 8" reach faucets and all faucets with a side spray or no spray attachment. And, I needed to be able to reach the handle easily.

3. Identify Limitations in Your Set Up
Determine height restrictions for the faucet, whether it must be ADA compliant, how many holes you want to drill, etc.

4. Identify Style Preference
If your kitchen is traditional, transitional or modern; Bauhaus, country French, southwestern or anything else, you can find a faucet that suits that style. Select a shape (gooseneck, square, etc), a height (8" up to 36"), and a finish (chrome, brushed stainless, bronze, copper, etc). We identified 3 shapes in one finish and came up with 30 alternatives from 5 manufacturers. How to trim the list?

5. Double Check the Tech Spec�s
We trimmed the list by requiring the hole be the standard 1 3/8" with a flow of 2.2 gallons per minute (GPM).

6. Determine Price Range
Then, we finally determined our price range. For fairly similar looking faucets that met all the spec�s, we were in the $259 to $719 range, with one renegade point at $1200. Was it worth $500 or $1000 to get a handle at a 30 degree angle rather than a 90 degree angle?

7. Locate the Model
After whittling the list down to 5 faucets, we found some great bargains from both local retailers and highly-rated online sources of new faucets with warranties.

8. Weigh the Criteria
In the end, it came down to the balance between which faucet felt great in our hands, moved smoothly, and looked very sleek.

NOTES:

<none>
clipped on: 05.24.2014 at 06:11 pm    last updated on: 05.24.2014 at 06:12 pm

RE: Everything I Wanted to Know About Drawers... (Follow-Up #5)

posted by: angela12345 on 02.02.2013 at 02:03 pm in Kitchens Forum

I have posted this other places before, but I am going to try to consolidate it *all* in one place.

My kitchen cabinets from UltraCraft are semi-custom. LOVE them. They are Frameless cabinets that allow size modifications in 1/16" increments to height, width, and depth (or all 3) at no additional cost. So, go ahead and make your uppers 13" or 14" deep for those extra large mixing/salad bowls and charger plates, and maximize your storage space for example storing glasses 4 deep instead of 3 deep and storing cereal bowls 2 deep instead of only 1. Have deeper base cabinets. Make your toekick slightly shorter so you have an extra inch or two for more drawers height. Cut down on the fillers you need by making your cabinets the exact width you need them, instead of being forced to choose from 3" increments. I like that all my uppers are flat across the bottom (no frame/dividers between cabinets), so I could install one long plugmold and one long under cabinet light, then hide it all with lightrail at the front. Also, standard is Blum full extension soft close drawer glides, soft close doors, no charge for finished sides (like end of cabinet run), all dovetail drawers with fully captured bottoms, and bunches of other stuff is standard. 100 year warranty.
http://www.ultracraft.com/ Yep, I LOVE them !!!

Cabinet Decisions - I emailed this part to a friend recently, so am copying here ...
1. One of the first things to decide is what cabinet door overlay you want. Inset doors or overlay doors ? Inset doors sit inside of the cabinet box frame rather than attached to the front of the cabinet box. Overlay is further broken down into traditional overlay, partial / modified overlay, and full overlay and determines how much of the cabinet box/frame behind the door you want to show (traditional overlay shows the most of the cabinet box & frame, full overlay shows the least). The hinges can be exposed or concealed for all overlay styles except full overlay which only allows for concealed hinges. The overlay you choose will automatically knock out some cabinet options and cabinet mfgs who may not make that type of cabinet. (My cabinets are full overlay)
See ... http://www.hansoncustombuilders.com/questions3.html
And ...http://www.kraftmaid.com/learn/choose-right-cabinetry/door-overlays/

2. Then you want to decide on the cabinet boxes ... framed or frameless ? Some mfgs only make one or the other, but not both, so this will knock out other mfgs. Framed cabinets have a frame on the face of the cabinet box that the doors attach to and allows for inset doors as well as all 3 overlay styles (traditional, partial, and full overlay). On frameless, the doors attach directly to the cabinet box sides instead of a face frame. Frameless are typically full overlay, but inset is also possible. I think a small partial overlay is possible on frameless if you are using semi-custom or custom cabinets - you would order slightly smaller doors so a little of the cabinet box would show. Traditional overlay is not possible on frameless because the cabinet box sides are not wide enough to show the traditional 1"-2" of the face frame. (My cabinets are frameless)
See ... http://www.cabinets.com/FORM/THE BOX - construction.asp

The disadvantage of framed is you give up useable space in drawers/pullouts and ease of access on cabinets with doors. This is because the drawer or pullout has to clear the face frame that goes around the opening, so they are narrower from side to side and also shallower from top to bottom. In a small kitchen, the extra useable space from frameless could make a big difference. Estimates say frameless gives 10-15% more space, so 100 inches of framed would be 110 inches in frameless. To me, an extra 10 inches of drawer space is huge, especially when you don't have much to begin with !! Frameless cabinets with doors also offer easier access - there is no face frame creating a 1-2" obstruction on the left, right, and top inside the cabinet doors, also there is typically no center stile between double doors in frameless.

For full overlay doors, there is very little difference in the looks of framed vs frameless. From an exterior appearance standpoint, these cabinets will basically look alike. Because the doors are full overlay, you don't see much or any of the frame and would have to open the door or drawer to see if the cabinet was framed or frameless. For inset doors, the framed cabinets would have a wider frame around the door than the frameless cabinet would.

In the below two pics, the cabinet on the left is framed, and the one on the right is frameless. Looking only at the size of the opening, see how the drawer for frameless is wider from left to right and also has more open space from top to bottom. The useable drawer space is a couple inches more in each direction in the frameless. If they both had the same size full overlay exterior drawer face on them, they would look alike from the exterior. You would not be able to see the useable interior space until you opened the drawer.

As catbuilder said, the space for inset would be the same, depending on which you use. In other words, it doesn't matter if the framed cabinet on the left had overlay or inset, the actual drawer space would be the same no matter what door style was used on this cabinet. And, if the frameless on the right had overlay or inset, the actual drawer space would be the same for that cabinet. If they both had inset doors, you can see that the framed cabinets would have a much wider "frame" around the door and drawer openings.

3. The third thing to consider is the cosmetics ... the door style you like, the drawer style (slab/flat/plain drawer front or drawer front that matches your door style), as well as wood species (cherry, oak, maple, etc), and stain or paint colors, glazing, distressing, finish/sheen, etc. (My cabinets are slab drawer, raised panel door, cherry with a chestnut stain, no additional finishes or glazes)
This website shows just a few of the different door styles available ... http://www.cabinets.com/FORM/THE DOOR - style.asp

4. The fourth thing to consider is stock cabinets vs semi-custom vs custom cabinet mfgs. Stock cabinets are available in 3" width increments (cabinets have to be width of 12", 15", 18", etc), filler strips fill in gaps between cabinets and wall or appliances, you have to choose from the heights and depths they offer, and there are very few options available, which can be pretty pricey to add on. Semi-custom cabinets vary by manufacturer in what customizations and options they offer, but they offer many more options than stock and allow sizing modifications. With custom cabinets, there should be no limitations including drawings for non-standard items, custom molding profiles, door styles, alternate wood species, custom stains & finishes, construction, accessories and options. (My cabinets are semi-custom)

5. Finally, you want to consider the cabinet construction. Not that this is the least important ! It is one of the most important things. Pretty much all the other stuff is just the "pretty" stuff, LOL. This has to do with how well the cabinets are made - are the drawers stapled, dowelled, glued, dovetail ? What materials are the cabinets made of ? etc, etc.

Drawer depths
My bases are 24" deep bases and are all 20" useable interior from front to back. I'm pretty sure I could have (and definitely should have!) requested the drawers be an extra 1-2 inches deep to fill up the inside of the cabinet. I *think* the full extension glides would not have pulled out that extra inch or so, but I could have lived with that !! I was already used to my drawers not pulling out for the back 4 inches anyway with the cabinets I already had. I could have fit my 8qt stock pots 2 deep front to back in the drawer instead of having to offset them slightly in the drawer if I had even an extra 1/2".

Some people choose to have their base cabinets deeper (i.e. 27-30" deep instead of 24" deep standard) from front to back for a number of different reasons, for example to make the front of the cabinet even with the front of the refrigerator so the standard fridge looks like a built in/counter depth. Or they may want a larger countertop work surface. This can be accomplished by using deeper base cabinets or by using standard 24" deep bases and installing them a couple inches out from the wall then covering the full space with the countertop material. If you want to do this and order deeper bases, be sure to specify the drawers are deeper from front to back as well ! Some mfgs will still only install the standard depth drawer even though the cabinet box is larger.
(in pics below, my two standard $500 ea fridges look counter depth by recessing the wall behind the fridges only)

Drawer Heights
You can get a number of different drawer combinations ... for example two drawer could be 6-24 or 15-15, three drawer could be 6-12-12 or 6-9-15, four drawer could be 6-6-6-12 or 6-6-9-9, five drawer could be 6-6-6-6-6. These are just examples of size combinations ! I have even seen linens in 8 shallow pullouts behind doors in one base cabinet.

The height of my drawer fronts do not line up all the way around the 4 sides of my kitchen, but do line up when you are looking at any one section at a time. I have 2 stacks together that are 6-12-12 separated by a stove. On the opposite corner of the kitchen are 2 stacks that are 6-6-9-9. What helps is that my stacks are caddy-cornered across the kitchen with appliances and base cabinets with doors separating them ... it would be very hard to look in any direction where you could see the "mis-matches" at one time. Some people have drawer stacks right next to each other where the drawer heights do not 'line up' and others have all the drawer bases in their entire kitchen with the exact same horizontal lines all the way around.

My one advice ... find out the interior useable height of your drawers ahead of time. My Ultracraft cabinets are frameless so have more than framed would. They have undermount glides. On the 6-12-12 stacks, the useable interior drawer height is 4, 10.5, 9.5 (top to bottom on stack). Where this becomes an issue ... I wanted to store all of my pans, pots, etc vertical on their edges in the drawers so they wouldn't have to be stacked. The middle 10.5" drawers are tall enough for all of the casserole/baking dishes and pie tins, the roasting pan, and almost all of the pans, pots, and lids to stand on edge (the 9.5" drawers are not tall enough for a couple of those items to stand on edge). Both height drawers are definitely tall enough for all of the big pots (even the 8qt stockpot) that I own, except for the huge "canning" pot which is on the top shelf of one of my 15" deep uppers.

Obviously, neither drawer is tall enough for my 12" pans/skillets to stand on edge (arrggh!). I have really been struggling with how to store these. Right now I have them flat in the bottom of the 9.5" height bottom drawer. Big waste of real estate !! I wish I had a shallower drawer I could put the big skillets in, like 6-6-6-12 so the frying pans were flat in drawers 2 & 3 and the pots were in the bottom drawer. Or even better(?!) if I had made my drawer heights 6-9-15 that would have given me 4, 7.5, 12.5 useable. My tallest 8qt pots are 7" tall, so all of them could have gone in the middle drawer and everything on edge could have gone in the bottom drawer (including the 12" skillets!). Google for images of drawers with pans on edge.

On the other side of the kitchen with the 6-6-9-9 stacks, the useable interior drawer height is 4, 4.75, 6.75, 7 (top to bottom). I use the top 6" drawers all around the kitchen for silverware, spatulas and all the other kitchen gadgets, in-drawer knife block, foil wax paper cling wrap and plastic baggies, potholders, dish towels, etc. All of those things fit with no problem in these drawers including the ladle and the box grater. The 3rd drawer holds all of the tupperware and is the perfect height for this - 6 would have been too shallow and 12 would have been too deep. The bottom drawer is where we currently keep the paper and plastic grocery bags until we carry them for recycling.

(note: the interior drawer heights listed above vary slightly for the bottom two 12" drawers, the top two 6" drawers, and for the bottom two 9" drawers because of an interior cross support and space to clear the granite without scraping at the top. Jakuvall addresses this below "Note that some brands use intermediate stretchers in frameless which take up 3/4" vertical clearance. If they do I always spec them to be removed.")

ALSO: the drawer face to interior useable space ratio will be DIFFERENT depending on if your drawer face is inset, partial overlay, or full overlay, and depending on if you have undermount glides or sidemount glides as catbuilder says above. For example on my 6-6-9-9 four drawer stack ... 1.5" counter + 6 + 6 + 9 + 9 + 4.5" toekick = 36" finished height. My useable heights are 4, 4.75, 6.75, 7 = 22.5" total useable height. I lose 1.25-2.25" useable height for each drawer.
Compare to quiltgirl above inset drawers ... 1.5" counter + 5.5 + 5.5 + 6.25 + 6.25 + 4.5 toekick (assumed) = 29.5". Are her cabinets shorter than mine ? No ! Add in between each of her drawers approx 1.25" face frame. She has undermount glides as well so her useable heights are 4, 4, 4.75, 4.75 = 17.5" total useable height. She only loses 1.5" useable height for each drawer face showing so it sounds like she is losing less, but she is also losing useable height in the face frame between each drawer which is why her total useable space is less.
This is FINE !! Nothing at all against her cabinets. They will be beautiful. Inset is a gorgeous look. And she knew she was going to lose space with the inset when she chose them, but chose to do it because inset is the look she loves.

Drawer widths
The maximum cabinet width my manufacturer will do for drawer bases is 36" wide. I have 4 drawer bases at 21", 32", 17", and 36" wide. The interior useable width of these drawer bases are 18, 29, 14, 33 wide, so 3" less than the exterior width in each.

 photo 4-5-11-kitchen.jpg
Going around my kitchen ... first I have a 6" wide pullout broom closet. Next are two 30" wide fridge/top freezers. There are full depth cabinets above the fridges with an adjustable shelf. Then a 24" full height cabinet with pantry space at the top, MW, a single oven, and 6" high drawer under oven (4.5" useable height).

The 21" 3 drawer 6-12-12 is to the left of my stove. Top drawer holds knife block, sharpener, scissors, trivets, potholders. 2nd drawer holds baking dishes on their edge. Bottom drawer is basically empty - it has one 8qt stockpot. If my drawer heights had been 6-9-15 instead (did I say grrrr?), I would have used the middle drawer as a bread drawer and stored the bakeware on edge in the bottom drawer.

Next is the stove (Whirlpool GGE388LXS Electric Range w/Dbl ovens).
This stove is now available with an induction top which is what I would have gotten if it had been available at the time WGI925C0BS http://www.whirlpool.com/kitchen-1/cooking-2/ranges-3/-[WGI925C0BS]-1021750/WGI925C0BS/

The 32" 3 drawer 6-12-12 is to the right of the stove. Top drawer holds spatulas, spoons, ladles, wood spoons, basting brushes, meat thermometer, etc - things that are used at the stove. 2nd drawer holds frying pans, the smaller pots (1qt 2qt 3qt), and lids all on their edges. Bottom drawer holds 8qt pots. Also, the 12" skillets with lids, splatter screens, and griddle are all stacked in one stack flat in bottom of drawer, Grrrrrrr. If they were in the drawer with the other frying pans instead of taking up real estate here, that lone 8qt pot in my other cabinet would have been here with the other pots.

Turn the corner and next is the first dishwasher and then a 36" sink base with Ticor S405D sink (70/30 double bowl). LOVE !!! <3
Turn the corner and next is a 36" wide all door base cabinet (no upper drawer) with full depth adjustable shelves. I use this base cabinet for all my small appliances - blender, beaters, toaster, George Foreman, elec can opener, etc. Next to this base cabinet is the second dishwasher, followed by an 18" prep sink base with a Ticor S815 14x15x8 sink, and an empty space for an ice maker which is where the trash can currently resides.

The 17" 4 drawer stack 6-6-9-9 sits between the trash area/future ice maker and the peninsula and is on the opposite corner of the kitchen from the other drawer bases. The top drawer holds foil, wax paper, cling wrap, plastic baggies, chip clips, and restaurant menus. The 2nd drawer is our "junk" drawer and has some of everything including screwdrivers, clothespins, matches, flashlights, sewing kit, lint brush, etc. The 3rd drawer holds medicine, bandaids, alcohol, peroxide, as well as dish towels and plastic utensils from takeout restaurants in a tub. The bottom drawer is for "tupperware without partners" - bowls and lids with no matches (haha!).

The 36" 4 drawer stack 6-6-9-9 forms the peninsula. The top drawer holds all eating utensils (silverware and kid utensils), serving utensils, chopsticks, handheld can opener, wine opener in a strategically easy-to-access location : ), etc. The 2nd drawer holds all the other kitchen gadgets that aren't to the left and right of the stove like shrimp deveiners, graters, whisks, rolling pin, pizza rolling cutter-thingy, mashers, salad tongs, etc, etc. The 3rd drawer holds tupperware with their matching lids. The bottom drawer holds paper and plastic grocery bags until we carry them for recycling.

I don't like lazy susans or corner cabinets, so in the blind corner is a 26" all door base cabinet that opens out the backside to where the barstools sit.

Upper Cabinets
I will come back and fill this in later

Handles
We went with the same size handle for all of our drawers and also only one handle in the center for all of the drawers, no matter what the width of the drawer. They are 4" wide. We maybe would have used different widths, but the ones we liked in the finish we wanted did not come in a bunch of widths. The cabinet guy said they would look fine and they do. We have slab drawer fronts and the pulls are centered top to bottom and side to side on each drawer. We used round knobs on all doors.

Drawer Organizers
We ordered the drawer divider channels from Lee Valley so we could completely customize the interior of our drawers. They often have free shipping on orders over $40.
www.leevalley.com/us/hardware/page.aspx?p=40168
Google for images - lots of gardenweb members have used these.
http://www.google.com/search?q=lee+valley+dividers+site:gardenweb.com&tbm=isch
Take inventory of the things you will be storing in the drawers & doors. Measure it all and plan ahead where things will go. From the FAQs that Buehl put together ... http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/kitchbath/msg010523449014.html
Excellent information on organizing !!

These are not my cabinets ... examples of pans stored vertically ...

This is my kitchen ...
 photo 4-5-11-kitchen.jpg
A note on our kitchen ... this home is a vacation rental oceanfront beach house with 8 bedrooms, 6 baths, that sleeps 26 (send me a private message through My Page above if you are interested in renting or would like a link to see more info & pictures of the home). Hence the 2 fridges, 3 ovens, 2 dishwashers. We had a large portion of our family here at Thanksgiving (32 people) and had like 7 or 8 women working to prepare the feast all at one time. Thank you Gardenweb for helping design a kitchen that WORKS !!!

edited: mostly to decrease monster picture sizes thanks to GW changing their website coding, also clarified my wording on a couple things

This post was edited by angela12345 on Wed, Feb 26, 14 at 18:52

NOTES:

Kitchen drawers
clipped on: 03.30.2014 at 08:35 pm    last updated on: 03.30.2014 at 08:36 pm

Anyone ever regret choosing white cabinets?

posted by: leennp on 12.12.2013 at 05:14 pm in Kitchens Forum

Hello all, still struggling with some big major decisions, I think I am aware of the basic pros and cons of white/off white cabinets versus stained cabinets, but just wondering if anyone had decided to put in a white kitchen and regretted it ? Every picture I see on Houzz of a white kitchen i think how light, bright and open they look and how much I love that look. But those are all newly installed or remodeled kitchens and most fairly high end. I need a working kitchen. You never see pictures of the lived in for 5 years white kitchens. That is my only hesitancy. Has nothing to do with trendiness of white kitchens and maybe down the road white will not be in fashion and affect resale. Only the looking around 5 years from now and thinking wow, this did not hold up to well. Thanks.

NOTES:

Note maintenance issues with white cabinets. They require lots of cleaning and touch up paint every few years.
clipped on: 03.30.2014 at 08:14 pm    last updated on: 03.30.2014 at 08:15 pm

Kitchen Ideas Checklist - What can you add?

posted by: BelfastBound on 12.10.2013 at 04:53 pm in Kitchens Forum

I was just taken to the woodshed by my GC for "wearing down" the KD and Window salesperson with questions and changes. I blame GW because here I learned creative and useful ideas that both these "subs" failed to provide. Also I do not have an unlimited budget and I need to know the price of an option so I can make trade-offs. I told him if they had given me these options up front, not every little thing would have to be a "change". The subs are p**sd because they may price out glaze on cabinets or type of window and I have to say, thanks, I can't afford it and they feel why did they bother to price it.

I thought a list of ideas and things to consider might be helpful for those just starting to plan a new kitchen, a rubric of sorts, to discuss with your KD or DS. I am still in the planning phase so the list here is likely lacking. Thanks for your contribution.

Cabinets - Frameless, inset, beaded inset, overlay, partial overlay, construction (wood type, dovetailed), paint or stain and or glaze,

Upper Cabinets - Flush to ceiling or molding, above cabinet lights, lights in cabinet, below cabinet lights, light rail to hide the under cab lights, lights at top, lights at side, glass fronts, glass shelves, height above counter, depth of cabinet to fit your plates, hinges.

Lower Cabinets - Toe kick drawer, Height, drawer or door, proud to other cabinets, pull out options like Rev-a-Shelf

Cabinet Drawers - Glides: under or on the side, Amount of weight glides need to hold, soft close and/or full extension

Panel for dishwasher

Open shelving

Where will your paper towel holder be?

Pullout shelves for spices, pots, under the sink

What will be used for hand soap, dish soap, SOS etc

Where will wet dish towels go, dishes that will air dry?

Options for handling a blind corner

Options for above the fridge

Hiding or placement of outlets in cabinets/island/drawer

Computer/phone charging station

Where will cookbooks live
.....

What am I missing? Thx again.

NOTES:

Random kitchen ideas
clipped on: 03.30.2014 at 07:22 pm    last updated on: 03.30.2014 at 07:22 pm