ance overlaps. They’re more friendly to farm, or apron sinks,
which are popular now. A lot of them overlap the face of the
cabinet, so having a face frame for the sink to butt against is
Whether renovation or new construction, it’s rare to find
a wall or ceiling that is perfectly square. Campbell says that’s
where face-frame cabinetry wins.
“It has more tolerance built into it, especially on 1/2”
overlay where door/drawer gaps aren’t as noticeable,” he said.
“That tolerance eliminates the need for fillers and gives more
flexibility in installation if the walls and ceiling aren’t square.
With face frame, you have the ability to scribe the outside
reveal to fit the wall or ceiling. With frameless, you may have
Other points in favor of face frame:
✚ They allow for gang-built cabinets, such as an 8-foot run
of cabinets with four or five cabinets built as one. That can
make installation faster with less prep work.
✚ With the frame’s sturdiness, there’s no need for additional installation hardware such as legs or suspension
system. Fewer pieces and steps saves installers time.
✚ No added fillers, light rails, or frieze mold as these are
built-in to the frame design.
✚ The joinery on the face frame has to be perfect because
that’s what you see but the joinery on the box is hidden by the
frame. More exacting production equipment is needed for
frameless since there’s nowhere to hide. Every joint has to be
✚ Decorative end panels can be integrated into the frame,
rather than as another add-on at installation.
What’s your take?
Of course, every shop and manufacturer is different, with
their own preferences. What’s your take? What style of construction do you use and why? We’d like to hear more. Send
email to firstname.lastname@example.org. ✚
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