Kitchen Cabinet Doors: How to buy online and get better quality

Many folks have told us about their search for kitchen cabinet doors at big-box and major hardware retail stores. They tell us about shopping but leaving very disappointed with the quality of the cabinet doors those retailers offer.

The fact is that major retailers can’t make the profit margins they require by offering a top-quality product, so they purchase lower quality (at a lower price) and advertise it in their stores.

The internet has made it possible to bypass the retail store and eliminate the retail store markup. By simply running a Google search for Cabinet Door Manufacturers, you can locate the actual company that makes the cabinet doors. Most times the manufacturers you locate are also the suppliers to the major retailers. The difference will be the quality; the retailers buy a thin, lower quality, lower priced door. You will not even see those low quality doors, Instead, you will be buying their top quality product; the same product they offer to professional cabinet makers and custom home builders.

One of the largest Custom Cabinet Door Manufacturers in the country, and the first door manufacturer to offer their products to home-owners from a website is CabinetDoors.Com.

 Cabinetdoors.com has been supplying kitchen cabinet doors to Custom Cabinet Makers, Custom Home Builders, and Furniture Manufacturers for over 35 years. And, for the past 20 years our cabinet doors have been available on our website.

Yes, we offer our products Factory-direct to home-owners and do-it-yourself re-modelers. You can order from a selection of hundreds of door styles in dozens of wood types, and in any custom sizes you need. The pricing is shown as you enter the sizes and even the Fedex shipping is shown before you enter your payment information. No hidden charges, manufacturing time is just 7-to-10 working days, quality is far superior to the doors carried by retailers, and your cabinet doors will be made in America with a solid guarantee backed by a solid American company.

Kitchen Cabinet Doors are made in Traditional Cope and Stick designs, Mitered designs, Glass Frames, Arched or Square, even Glass Frames with four or six lights.

Nobody makes a wider selection that Cabinetdoors.com and nobody beats our Better Business Bureau Rating of A+.

Browse our website and see the quality and lower prices for yourself. You will receive a higher quality product and save 30% to 50% off the Big-Box pricing.

Unfinished Cabinet Doors: How and Where to buy

The internet has made it possible to find sources for the do-it-yourself re-modeler to buy unfinished cabinet doors in any size, and do the finishing yourself.

 The majority of Cabinet Door Websites don’t actually make the doors they sell. They take your order and then buy your doors from an actual manufacturer. That middleman type of operation is being replaced by actual manufacturers offering their products factory-direct on the internet.

Because the Custom Cabinet Shops and Home Builders want to offer unlimited color options, they always do the final finishing themselves. So, unfinished doors are what the large manufacturers offer.

That gives the do-it-yourself remodeler an opportunity to save about 50% by finishing the cabinet doors himself.

Way back in the mid 1990’s Western Cabinet Doors, Inc launched the first website offering custom sized unfinished cabinet doors on the internet.

Western Cabinet Doors is a large manufacturer of Cabinet Doors, supplying hundreds of styles of doors to thousands of Home Builders, Custom Cabinet Shops, and Furniture Manufactures across the United States.

Today you can purchase their products on CabinetDoors.Com and choose from hundreds of door styles in dozens of wood types. You can browse all the cabinet door possibilities and price your new doors by entering your custom sizes and choosing your wood. Even the cost of Fedex shipping to your home is shown before you enter your credit card.

Compare the prices of other websites and the big-box stores to ours. Not only will you save 30% to 50% but you will get the same quality and guarantee we supply to luxury home builders across the country.

Our quality is superior, our product is made in the United States, and our production time is between 7-and-10 days.

Whether you want traditional cabinet doors, mitered doors, arched doors, or specialty doors, we make the largest selection in the industry and we have been supplying thousands of users for over 35 years.

Cabinetdoors.com is not just a website re-marketing cabinet doors, we are the manufacturer and we stand behind our product.

Cabinet Doors Online Factory Direct

Cabinet Doors Online: How and Where to buy

The internet has made it possible to find sources for the do-it-yourself re-modeler to buy custom sizes of cabinet doors.

The majority of Cabinet Door Websites don’t actually make the doors they sell, and because they need to make a profit, they price the doors on their website higher than you will pay if you can find the actual manufacturer.

Way back in the mid 1990’s Western Cabinet Doors, Inc launched the first website offering custom sized cabinet doors on the internet. Western Cabinet Doors is a large manufacturer of Cabinet Doors, supplying hundreds of styles of doors to thousands of Home Builders, Custom Cabinet Shops, and Furniture Manufactures across the United States.

Today you can purchase their products on CabinetDoors.Com and choose from hundreds of door styles in dozens of wood types. You cab browse all the cabinet door possibilities and price your new doors by entering your custom sizes and choosing your wood. Even the cost of Fedex shipping to your home is shown before you enter your credit card.

Compare the prices of other websites and the big-box stores to ours. Not only will you save 30% to 50% but you will get the same quality and guarantee we supply to luxury home builders across the country.

Our quality is superior, our product is made in the United States, and our production time is between 7-and-10 days.

Whether you want traditional cabinet doorsmitered doorsRaised Panel doors, or specialty doors, we make the largest selection in the industry and we have been supplying thousands of users for over 35 years.

Cabinetdoors.com
 is not just a website re-marketing cabinet doors, we are the manufacturer and we stand behind our product.

Tips on Staining Maple, Pine, Alder, and Cherry

Staining Maple, Pine, Alder, or Cherry… How to avoid Blotches.

Staining tight-grained woods like Hard Maple is a real problem for even experienced finishers.
For amateurs the problem gets even worse.
Understand that staining–without blotches–is difficult. Not impossible, just difficult.
Now, if you still want to get a darker finish on your Maple Cabinet Doors, here are some tips.
I strongly recommend against using any kind of wood stain on Maple, Alder, Pine, and Cherry unless you are familiar with various seal-coat techniques.

This post will refer to Maple but Alder, Pine, and Cherry all exhibit the same properties regarding stain.
While the grain may appear to be uniform, it will almost never be the case. With Maple, for instance, the new cabinet door will appear to your eyes to be perfect. It may have even color, perfect grain match, and exceptional sanding. These properties will produce a superior cabinet door when lacquered, but when stained this same door qualities will result in darker stain in the less dense areas and liter stain in the dense areas. And the darker the stain, the darker the blotches will be.
This is not the fault of the wood, it’s the NATURE of the wood. And having variations in density throughout the wood is the nature of Maple, Alder, Pine, and Cherry.

Many other woods, Oak and Poplar for example, are very uniform in density and, because they are uniform, take stain very evenly without blotching.

There are dozens of websites addressing the problem of blotchy stain on Maple as well as several Youtube Videos, and I’ve linked several of those sites below.

So how do you reduce the blotching from dark stains on Maple?
If you are going to use a wood stain you will need to pre-treat the wood with something to limit the penetration of the stain. The first step should be to sand the doors to a grit well beyond what the cabinet industry uses. Sand the frames and panels to 220 grit and the endgrain to 300+ grit. This will limit the stain penetration.
The doors will need to be treated with a sealer to limit stain penetration. Minwax Pre-Stain wood conditioner is one, another is dewaxed Zinsser Sanding Sealer cut 50% with Denatured Alcohol.
Also treat the endgrain with a cote of Gluesize made by mixing white or yellow glue with water at a rate of 10 parts water to one part glue. Allow the Gluesize to dry for several hours and sand with 400 grit paper. This will seal the endgrain which, being very open, will absorb stain at a higher rate and darken noticeably without treatment.

Staining Maple is more art that science and even experts struggle with obtaining an even finish.

The best solution for the do-it-yourself finisher is to avoid using stains on the problem woods and use a Wood Dye instead.

Because maple has such tight grain, pigment type stains don’t soak into the wood, except where there is a spot with more open grain. Try using dyes, such as TransTint or Transfast. There are other brands as well often marketed as aniline dyes. You should always make a habit of trying finishes on scrap left over from your project before tackling your project.
If you are planning on using a dark finish on your new Maple cabinet doors please request in the Additional Instructions box on our order page that you would like some scrap wood samples, and we will include samples in the wood you ordered for your stain experienced; free of charge.

Some links to useful sites for tips on staining problem woods are listed below.
http://www.finewoodworking.com/how-to/article/avoid-color-mistakes-and-learn-how-to-fix-a-blotchy-stain.aspx

Staining Maple Doors

Understanding and using Dyes

Coloring/Staining Blotchy Woods

If you have any questions about staining please email us at sales@cabinetdoors.com or call 800-342-1010 and we will be happy to help.

Another article we published is How to overcome staining problems on Hard Maple.

All Cabinet Doors made by CabinetDoors.com can be priced and ordered Online.

The Do’s and Dont’s of Staining Maple Cabinet Doors

The Do’s and Dont’s of Staining Maple Cabinet Doors will help you finish your cabinet order from The Door Stop.  We provide the high quality unfinished maple cabinet doors for your kitchens and bathrooms.  This post will help you choose your your stain, or your dye as the case will probably be.

Maple Stain vs. Maple Dye

Staining tight-grained woods like Hard Maple is a problem for finishers. For DIY homeowners the best advice is to avoid staining Maple, Birch, and Cherry.

Understand that staining–without blotches–is difficult. Not impossible, just difficult.

Now, if you still want to get a darker finish on your Maple Cabinet Doors, here are some tips.

  • Tip Number 1, Do not stain! If you want a darker finish on Maple, use a Dye.
  • Tip Number 2, Always start staining on the backs, so if you hate the stain experiment, you will not see it every day.

Additional Maple Staining Articles & Resources

Following are several web posts covering the Maple Staining Problem and just as many solutions, including some helpful Youtube Video links.

Here is a Link to Family Handyman article on staining maple…

Here are links to several good Youtube Videos…

Staining Maple Doors

Staining Maple Cabinet Door

Understanding and using Dyes

Understanding and Using Dyes

Coloring/Staining Blotchy Woods

Coloring Staining Blotchy Woods

Maple Cabinet Door Staining Problems & Solutions

When staining soft maple Kitchen doors and drawers from a millworks shop the painter applied a special walnut stain directly to the raw wood. The stain did not take well on wood milled with the grain, and on cross cuts the stain soaked into the wood giving a dark black color. How do we prevent the cross cut problem and promote a uniform acceptance of the stain.

This week the question comes from Robert. He writes:

When staining soft maple Kitchen doors and drawers from a millworks shop the painter applied a special walnut stain directly to the raw wood. The stain did not take well on wood milled with the grain, and on cross cuts the stain soaked into the wood giving a dark black color. How do we prevent the cross cut problem and promote a uniform acceptance of the stain.

And here was our reply:

Hey Robert. Uneven staining can be a real pain. There are a few things you can do to even things out in the future. First, you should sand the end-grain to one or two grits higher than the rest of the piece. So if the piece is sanded to 180, you should sand the endgrain to 220 or 320. The finer sanding will help prohibit stain absorption. Another technique is to apply a glue size to the endgrain. Make a 10:1 mixture of water and yellow or white glue. Brush this solution onto the endgrain and give it several hours to dry. Once dry, sand lightly and proceed with staining. The embedded glue will prevent excessive stain absorption. You can also use a light coat of shellac or any sealer to the same end. And remember to always test on scrap or inconspicuous areas to ensure you get the look you are after. Hope these ideas help.

If you use oil based stains, you cant beat MinWax Wood Conditioner on Maple. It totally eliminates the blotchyness and makes the color very even.

Maple Cabinet Door Staining Q&A

Here is an internet post about problems staining maple and 15 suggestions from readers…

“I really need some advice on staining maple. I just finished an entertainment center built out of maple and birch ply. I only discovered the difficulties of staining these woods after the fact. I want a dark color that wont appear black when I finish. Just a standard darker color like cherry or something similar.

Please help! thanks, Jonathan Dean”

15 replies so far

#1 posted 10-07-2010 04:03 AM

It almost sounds like you have discovered the difficulties be staining it already. I would practice with some stains on scrap pieces the check for the results you want. Also, you might want to consider giving it a coat of Zinsser sanding sealer and lightly sanding or steel wooling it before staining to help prevent blotchiness. But always practice first on scrap. You might want to try a couple of colors of gel stain to see if you like the way it applies. -SST

#2 posted 10-07-2010 04:15 AM

Maple is hard and dense, so the relatively large pigment particles can not penetrate the wood very well. They even highlight the sanding scratches.

Try some dyes instead, like TransTint, a concentrated dye that you mix with water.

#3 posted 10-07-2010 04:22 AM

Why would you use maple if you want a dark finished product? I dont understand. If you want figure, thats OK. But you will have to use a sealer if you want some sort of uniform finish on maple. Dye is a better bet, but only if you want pop.

#4 posted 10-07-2010 05:04 PM

Both your woods are notorious for blotching.

Minwax makes a product for this: Minwax Pre-Stain wood conditioner.

Application tool: cloth or brush

Dry time: 15 minutes

Stain Application: after 15 minutes, but no more than 2 hours

Cleanup: mineral spirits or paint thinner, following manufacturers safety instructions

Coverage: 125 sq. ft. per quart

Coats: normally 1, but additional coats may be applied on highly absorbent woods

Recommended uses: any soft or porous woods. Common examples include pine, fir and spruce or maple, alder and aspen (porous)

I have used it but not with astonishing success. It was an improvement over not using it.

#5 posted 10-07-2010 05:57 PM

I have had success using a dye as mentioned above and then put a spit coat of shellac over that, then when dry a light sanding with 0000 steel wool or a buffing pad (gray). Then apply a coat of Gel stain to get the color and tone you want. Hope this helps.

#6 posted 10-07-2010 06:41 PM

Two parts to this post.

First; Preventing this in the future.
The technique I use for getting dark stains in Maple is based on instructions graciously posted by M. Spagnuolo on his site (thewoodwhisperer.com) and the technicial musings at woodweb. It is not perfect, but It will get closer to a piano finish given time.

1. Moisten maple with damp cloth, you are only looking to raise the grain not force enough water in to warp the wood

2. Sand to 120, 180, 220, with preferred method, you are looking to prep an even and smooth surface, knocking down all the raised grain

3. Coat with dewaxed 1lb (Zinsser Sanding Sealer cut 50% with Denatured Alcohol) thinly

4. Mix Analine–TransTint dye with water, apply by rag with a light hand. You have some protection from oversaturation from the shellac sanding sealer, but even with dye you can cause slight blotching with maple/birch ply. You will not get the color you want in the first coat, for darker applications it is more like five to ten.

5. Once dry at the right hue you will want to apply a tinted dewaxed shellac (2lb) using a slightly more warm shade than used in the water based dye. Analine dyes are remarkably flat, the shellac overcoat is intended to warm the color. Again a light hand since the dyes will react with the alcohol, not enough force to move them around

6. Top coat with your preferred finish. Oil and Urethene will provide a very durable finish, poly will also work if you want a bulletproof finish.

Second, dealing with the situation of a blotchy entertainment center sitting in your shop

If you have time you can strip the surface using a dichloromethane based stain/varnish stripper. Please note, it is very caustic, will cause a first degree chemical burn if applied to skin. Wear gloves, wear goggles, work with plenty of fresh air. For the solid wood parts an alternative is to sand, but on ply parts you will have to be careful. Once you have removed the stain you can go ahead with a coloring/finishing routine

If you are out of time on the project then you will have to use a tinted shellac/glaze method that will obscure the grain. You are looking to create a smooth finish by applying full strength tinted shellac and glaze coat. Stick with dewaxed to avoid topcoat problems, and apply enough coats to hide the blotchiness.

Best of luck

#7 posted 10-07-2010 07:17 PM

Thank you everyone! Atomjack, I really did not plan on staining this piece dark to start with. I thought about some sort of clear coat but my wife changed her mind and thought it would better match our den with a darker color. The advice has been very helpful. I will try a few such as the dyes and gel stain with of course the prestain before going through with anything.

#8 posted 10-08-2010 12:50 AM

I use dye stains from Mohawk or Behlen or M L Campbell has stains that will wipe and or spray well. I have found these methods produce the best clarity with no blotching. No mixing or sealer coats before staining. Good for toning uneven color also.
The reason to choose maple and stain it dark is that it is a wood that is relatively cheap with nice tight grain features that can be made to look like a variety of woods.

#9 posted 10-08-2010 03:11 AM

The only thing I would add to the above is about the min-wax stain conditioner. I have had much better luck letting it dry overnight. Then wipe with a rag damp with mineral spirits. If an area soaks in/dries much more quickly than the surrounding area, coat that area again and repeat the overnight dry. The soak-in area is where you will have a darker blotch in your stain. When it is even, then lightly scuff sand before applying your stain. If the stain will not penetrate, use a higher grit sandpaper with a block and with the grain. The more porous wood should still stay sealed unless you over-sand.

The spirits wipe also will work with the Zinsser, (overnight dry not needed) altho I have not tried the cutting the 2# mix to 1#, which I will in the future. Thank you Nathan Allen for the tip.

#10 posted 10-08-2010 05:31 PM

Gofor, exactly, technically we should be using flakes, but having dewaxed #2 that can be cut to #1 and sit on the shelf about a year is too convienent.

And thank you for the tip on Minwax, I have avoided staining maple because I could never get the samples right even with conditioner, but mineral spirits should help identify those spots.

#11 posted 10-15-2010 09:03 PM

I am sure by now you have decided on a process, but I thought I would throw this out. I use Seal Coat cut 50/50 with alcohol as NathanAllen described. I, however, favor gel stains for these types of hard to stain woods especially if trying for a dark color. I have had really good success with them. The General Finish products seem to work the best for me but I have used other brands with good results too. Charles Neil also sells a water based product that does a great job as a seal coat. Using it or using the shellac method described above I have been able to get excellent looking results using pine and popular in addition to maple.

#12 posted 10-19-2010 02:44 AM

Ron thanks for the advice! Do you have a recommendation for which general finish gel stain to use. I was thinking the antique walnut but I want a dark color but not so dark it looks black! I want to see the grain patterns and bring out my work. Let me know if you have a suggestion. Thanks!

#13 posted 10-20-2010 03:26 AM

I did a recent project out of maple ply and had no problem with any blotching on the plywood (the solid hard maple is another story for a different time). I used minwax pre stain conditioner with minwax red mahogany oil based stain. It is my only project posted on here but you cant really see the plywood. All you can see is the solid drawer fronts and they turned out horribly blotchy but it was because of my own error. I had no blotching what so ever on the plywood using this method though and the grain pattern shows pretty well also.

#14 posted 10-20-2010 05:29 PM

For the table I think I used GF Candlelight but my wife wanted it still darker so I used another shellac wash coat followed with a final coat of GF Java which is really dark which is why I used the wash coat in between. The table is on my project page if you want to have a look.

#15 posted 10-20-2010 05:36 PM

Just my two cents. I vote for Zinsser over Minwax.

— http://www.peteroxley.com — http://north40studios.etsy.com —

 

A good article on how to Avoid Color Mistakes and Learn How to Fix a Blotchy Stain

To price and order Custom Cabinet Doors online from the webs leading manufacturer visit our website, CabinetDoors.Com.