Hi, I have been looking for a high quality cabinet door supplier for some time now with no luck. For my mud grade work I use Keystone, and I gave tried a few others but none of them meet my standards. I want a door that where the panel meets the stile, the profile doesn't have that unsightly undercut, and a good fit of the panel in the groove. I seems everything I find they have one of these problems. I use Freeborn cutters in my shop and would also like the supplier to have similar profiles as I would normally make any of the odd custom parts and would like to order the rest. Anyone have a good supplier that meets these criteria? Thanks in advance.
The tooling on the cutterhead exits the lumber at essentially 90º to the edge. Depending on species, grain characteristic and moisture content this exit cut is going to periodically manifest frayed edges.
The undercut part of the tooling is designed to clean this fray up.
I understand why they do it, it's because it's quicker and easier. It is not the hallmark of a high quality door though IMHO. I make doors all the time with out the undercut. Sometimes I run a stick twice to clean it up. I have found companies that don't have the under cut, but then the panel was sloppy in the groove.
One of the things I tell my customers is that they don't want to own a cabinet shop, they just want to rent one. Implicit in that is the fact that we have other customers and the systems we use need to work for a broader base of customer.
Some of this just reflects the demographics of the crew we can hire these days. It takes about ten years of woodworking before you can bring much worthwhile experience or reliable intuition to the table. The problem is that there are no candidates with ten years of experience. There may well be some people who started this career in the year 2006 but for five years these people were staying home watching Oprah.
To do what you are asking for the door shop needs someone like you, someone who is capable of reading the grain in a board and recognizing which side to orient up and which edge to orient in to the cutter. Someone with your experience wouldn't be willing to work for door making wages and the majority of door company customers wouldn't be willing to pay what they would need to for that level of experience.
You can't go to a McDonald's restaurant and ask for a Pastrami sandwich. It's not going to happen. They have a way better kitchen than your local deli but they would go broke selling $50 Pastrami sandwiches.
I recognize your problem. We build all of our own doors because we simply can't buy the quality we need. If I could pay through the nose and make it happen I would. There's no cooler employee than the UPS man.
I understand all that you have said cabmaker. I just wanted to know if such a company exsisted, and I thought this would be the best place to ask. I guess it might help that I am looking specifically for paint grade doors. The under cut and loose panel really show up painted white, and the time it takes to chalk the joint makes paying significantly more worth while. Thanks and hope someone has a source
Many thanks to all that posted, although I don't think a few didn't read what I was looking for. Not trying to go off on a tangent but Adam, yes I do GET work because I don't cut corners and have become the quality go to guy in my town. Sure 75% of my customers don't know the difference(there just buying a name or brand like BMW or Mercedes), but the 25% that do are what help build my brand and know quality and want something special. I have an non typical market of very high end summer cottage resorters in my town. They value a classic look. I would consider for lower end work the one piece HDF doors, but even then, they generally want the "cottage look" and want a true 5 piece door. I know my market, and what they want. Im not asking for a pastrami sandwich at McDonald's, I'm asking for a Cadillac in a high rent district. Sure these not as many, but there must be some out there, right?
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