Author Topic: Support for European Base Cabinets  (Read 2672 times)

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Offline Cincinnati

  • Posts: 53
Support for European Base Cabinets
« on: July 10, 2018, 10:23 PM »
I am considering building frameless cabinets as part of our kitchen remodel.  I’m looking at adjustable legs with clip-on toe kicks for the base units.  All the legs I have seen screw onto the bottom of the cabinets.  This means that the joint connecting the bottom to the sides must transmit all the forces to the legs.  I want to be certain these won’t collapse. Countertops can weigh up to about 20 lbs/sq ft.  But I have seen two adult contractors stand on a countertop to work on a light fixture on the ceiling. This added about 450-500 pounds to be supported by the 2-Cabinet island.

How much weight should base cabinets be designed to support?
« Last Edit: July 10, 2018, 10:29 PM by Cincinnati »

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Offline DeformedTree

  • Posts: 833
Re: Support for European Base Cabinets
« Reply #1 on: July 10, 2018, 11:54 PM »
If the standard legs you see were not up to the job, they wouldn't be on the market very long. The common threaded plastic ones are going to hold a lot of weight, it's all compression.  400lbs each

Step on a Lego brick, it wins, plastic in compression isn't going to give up.

I think a fair number of legs have tabs or are intended to catch a bit under the side panel. The load is going down on 2 side, plus possibly the back.  The sides are clamp loaded by the hardware to the side, so you get the side panel holding to the base, plus the shear ability of the min of 4 fasteners. Additionally you tend to have multiple cabinets together, so the load is getting spread around to multiple cabinets.  Fully assembled the side panel joint has to slip, shear off 4 to 6 fasteners, shear 4-6 dowels (or dominos), shear off fasteners to adjoining cabinets, possibly fail fasteners to a wall behind.   It's going to be very hard to get all that to fail.  If it was an issue in the past 70 odd years of frameless cabinets folks would have changed the design.  Also just think of all the IKEA kitchens assembled every weekend by people who have no idea what they are doing and having granite installed on it.

Or think of uppers, filled with plates and glasses, all hanging off a wall on 2 screws/bolts with some form of load transfer to the side panels and then from there all the shelves transferring the weight into the sides.

Your thinking about it a lot more than most folks, but probably over thinking it.

I'd focus more on getting the top of all the cabinets perfectly true, no highs and lows, so the countertop weight gets spread perfectly on everything, no pressure points from a rouge bump or fastener that will cause the counter to break.

Offline Cincinnati

  • Posts: 53
Re: Support for European Base Cabinets
« Reply #2 on: July 11, 2018, 12:34 AM »
Thank you.  I was not questioning the leg capability, but the structural integrity of the bottom to side panel construction. I could not find that information you shared about a tab extending to the side panel.  The pictures I’ve seen of cabinets with feet looked like the legs were far too offset to be under the side panel edge. I thought the kickplate clips would require a fully clear area below the cabinet. But it makes sense that the support is transmitted directly to the side panels from the feet via an offset mounting plate.

Do you have an adjustable leg you recommend?
« Last Edit: July 11, 2018, 12:38 AM by Cincinnati »

Offline JBag09

  • Posts: 228
Re: Support for European Base Cabinets
« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2018, 06:33 PM »
  I know these legs work. Former FOG’r Erock used these for his Mom’s kitchen he built a few years back. I know from speaking with him the design changed since then a little bit they are still made just as strong. I know he said she has granite countertops.

  He is also using these for the current kitchen he’s working on now. These seem to have what your looking for anyway. Give them a look.

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Offline jobsworth

  • Posts: 6214
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Re: Support for European Base Cabinets
« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2018, 09:26 PM »
they'll work just fine. If you have any doubts then use a shop made base out of 3/4 ply