Thousands of kitchen cabinets are produced by manufacturers each year. They are made from a number of different materials, with engineered wood (such as particleboard and MDF), laminate and solid wood being the most popular. Read on to learn more about how this type of item is made.
Shaping and sanding
There are numerous steps involved in the creation of even the simplest and most basic of kitchen cabinets. The first step in the production process is usually the cutting of the raw material (i.e. the wood) into the desired shape. In large-scale manufacturing facilities, this process is usually done by 'feeding' the wood into a computerised cutting machine. The exact width, length, depth and height of the cabinet's dimensions are programmed into this machine.
Following this step, the shaped wood will be sanded down to smooth out its surface so that it is ready to be varnished or painted. This is sometimes done manually, using handheld sanders; however, in larger facilities, this step is also carried out by an automatic wide-belt sanding machine.
Painting, lacquering or varnishing
Paint, lacquer or varnish will then be applied to the newly-sanded cabinet components. This serves a number of purposes; it enhances the aesthetic appeal of the finished product and acts as a barrier, which protects the underlying wood from damage caused by impact or exposure to moisture.
The application of these substances may be carried out using large, automatic spraying machines, or it might be done by hand, by an employee. The painted, varnished or lacquered components are then usually passed through a drying chamber.
Metal component fabrication
The metal parts of a cabinet (that is, its hinges and brackets) are often made using CNC metal folding machinery. The dimensions of the metal components are typed into a computer. This numerical data serves as the 'instruction manual' for the machine, which it then used to fold the metal sheets into the appropriate shapes.
The assembly of kitchen cabinets is done manually in many manufacturing facilities. If traditional joinery techniques (such as rabbets and dados, for example) have been used, the pieces of the cabinets will fit together, much like pieces of a puzzle. However, some manufacturers (particularly those that produce cheaper cabinets) prefer not to use these techniques and will instead fuse cabinet components together using glue, staples, dowels, screws and nails. This usually makes for a less sturdy, but more affordable product.
Hello, my name is Freddie. While I do not actually work in the processing or manufacturing sector, I do have a lot of knowledge about it. I gained this knowledge during one long summer when I helped my cousin who owns a processing and manufacturing facility located in Sydney, Australia. On my first day, I really didn't have a clue what he produced or how the facility worked. However, as the weeks passed and I got to know everyone in the different departments, my understanding grew. I decided to start this blog so I could share my knowledge with others.