Kitchen Cabinet Reno
Comments 5

Kitchen Cabinet Reno, Part 5

One of the reasons I put off this project for so long is that this is more than a woodworking project where I am replacing the kitchen cabinet doors and drawers. I have already talked about the demolition undertaken along the top of the sink wall cabinets. There has been partial removal of popcorn ceiling. And now, as I work to complete the same set of upper cabinets, I need to replace a light fixture.

I consider electrical work as a doable task, at least for basic replacing fixtures, etc. I once needed to add some circuit breakers to my electrical panel and I decided that was a chore for someone else. Some electrical work I’ll attempt while others frankly intimidate me.

The old light fixture being over the sink was a single row, 24″ florescent light. It was just the fixture and the florescent bulb with no cover to make it look nice. Depending on your location in the kitchen, it was out of view, blocked by a piece of wood with a decorative cut out which served as a valence of sorts. See below…

This is the official “before” photo. Note the light over the sink.

My wife does not like me to show photos like this because the kitchen isn’t neat and orderly. But I took this photo as I was moving things on the counter to get started on demolition.

The location of this light made it very difficult to work on. I had to contort my body into odd positions just to reach the light (the sink being below it made this a tough job). I eventually replaced the fixture with a new LED light (similar to this one) which has a sleek cover and is much nicer to look at.

New light in place, new profile of the wooden piece which hides it and I have primer added to the cabinet doors.
A close up of the new sink light valence. Old profile above and new below.

The Stove Wall Uppers

My plan has always been to build out the new space for the upper cabinets, add the doors and apply a primer coat of paint to them. Then, move to the next set of cabinets. We plan to have our house painted and I want the painter to actually put the finish coat of paint on the completed kitchen cabinets. So, mounted primed doors is what I consider a finished cabinet. I still need to add crown molding which I’ll make and add later.

Stove upper cabinets during demolition – top plywood panel removed.
This is a good comparison of the old door design (left) and the new design.
Demolition complete including removal of popcorn texture on the ceiling.
New face frame and some new doors in place.
The stove upper cabinets mostly complete. We will replace the stove hood, new counter tops and back splash also.

Door Construction

The construction process for the doors is the same as shown in this post. I did do something different to help speed up my work flow. I bought a trim router. This makes three routers I currently operate. The reason for the purchase is I now have a dedicated router (my plunge router) to cut the panel grooves, a router in my router table which is dedicated to cutting the bead material and now a trim router which I’m using to cut the cove on the outside edge of each door. This means I don’t have to change bit set-ups in each router and allows for a better, production style process for the doors.

My new trim router and a close-up of the cove it cuts.

I chose this Ryobi trim router mainly because I have adopted other Ryobi battery powered products and I can use the same battery on this router. The router has worked fine, but using it deserves a lot of respect. I consider it to be a more dangerous tool than say my plunge router.

So, making some good progress on this massive project.


  1. Stan Powell says

    Jeff, how do you think the painted cabinets will hold up over the long run as opposed to a clear finish. I ask because I need to redo my kitchen cabinets and figuring out which way I want to go. Nice job on yours.

    • Hi Stan, these cabinets currently have an oil based paint on them and overall, the paint has performed very well which is impressive since kitchen cabinets need regular cleaning. I am frequently surprised at how much stuff gets spilled on these cabinets especially around the trash bin door. I have cleaned coffee which got splashed on them, ketchup, all kinds of stuff.

      For my renovation I am planning on using a satin latex paint which has been recommended to me by my local Benjamin Moore paint dealer. So that is all I can tell you. Painted cabinets are trendy right now and this renovation is in advance of us selling our house.

  2. Needs something over the range hood in the same format as the rest, with the same hoopty do as the other two valances.

    Just say saying.

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