Anatomy of Our Cabinets

Anatomy of Our Cabinets

What's the definition of a great cabinet? Quality materials, hardware and construction techniques. Better cabinets last longer and perform better. At American Woodmark, we believe a great cabinet gives your home fantastic style and function - with furniture - quality construction that will stand up to the test of everyday living and last for years. And we stand behind every cabinet with a Warranty.

Evaluate these 5 elements when purchasing cabinetry: Box Construction, Drawers, Doors, Hardware and Finish.

  Cabinet Box:

  Standard or All - Plywood Option  

All cabinet front face frames are made from ¾” X 1-5/8” solid hardwood. Kiln-dried to prevent warping. Face frame joints are pressure fitted, glued, double doweled and stapled. Standard Construction features ½” thick cabinet side panels made of engineered wood with our rigorous multi-step TuffTech® UV-cured finish. All-Plywood Construction features ½” thick cabinet side panels made of furniture grade plywood with our exclusive BeautyGuard® finish on all exteriors.

Pressure fitted:  Two components are joined together and pressure is applied to insure a tight fit.  By applying pressure during glue set up time it insures superior adhesion. 

Glued: Various types of glues are used to bond components together including various wood glues and hot melts.  Proper gluing can yield a stronger joint than wood itself.

Double doweled: A mechanical joining method in woodworking where a solid cylindrical rod is used to hold two pieces of wood together.  Adhesive is used to hold the dowel and the two components together.  Sometimes stapling or pin nails are used to further reinforce this during glue set - up connection.

Stapled: A type of fastener commonly used in woodworking and furniture making.  Various types of staples and pins are used in the manufacture of cabinetry.  They help join and hold components together.


  Dovetail Construction Standard

Dovetail construction is stronger and longer-lasting. All-wood premium hardwood drawers with dovetail construction are standard at American Woodmark.

  • Solid hardwood construction
  • Dovetail joined on front, sides and back
  • Plywood bottom panel-captured sides, front and back

Our drawers give you full access ... all the way to the back. Even long utensils are easy to put away.


 Traditional Craftsmanship

Cabinet doors are constructed of a solid wood frame with a center insert panel. They come in a variety of decorative designs to satisfy the budget and taste of any customer and are made of solid wood or wood veneer. Solid doors will show the natural beauty and characteristics of the wood while veneer doors have a more uniform appearance with less variation.

Types of doors include:

Full Overlay- Sized to cover nearly all of the cabinet face frame, so the surface is simplified. These doors require knobs and/or pulls.

Partial Overlay- Sometimes known as traditional overlay. Sized so you see about an inch of the cabinet face frame resulting in greater visual depth.

Solid Wood- Door frames and panels made entirely of solid hardwood.

Veneer- Doors in which the door frame is solid hardwood but the center panel is made of a plywood or other stable core material covered with a hardwood veneer. Because natural wood expands and contracts, the stability of veneer on plywood helps provide integrity to thinner panels.

Raised Center Panel- Panel is raised to create visual interest and design depth.  Panel can be made of solid wood or veneer.

Flat Center Panel- Panel is a flat surface to create contrast with the door frame.  Panel can be made of solid wood or veneer.

Thermo Foil- Extremely durable and easy to clean. The Thermo Foil finish is produced when a PVC molded plastic is bonded to a pre-machined core material using heat and pressure. The core of a Thermo Foil door is medium density fiberboard.


 Full Access and CushionClose®

Exclusive Full Access Glide System
Our self-closing drawers glide back into place effortlessly and quietly.

  • Steel ball bearings for top performance and long life
  • Self - cleaning track with dozens of chrome-hardened steel balls handles heavy loads
  • Unique four-sided design evenly balances pressure and weight

CushionClose® For Drawers And Doors
Upgrade to whisper - quiet performance with CushionClose®. Only at American Woodmark - this automatic closing system uses air damper technology to reduce slamming and noise.


 Standard and Premium Options

All American Woodmark doors and face frames are finished with our Beauty Guard® Finishing System - a sophisticated and environmentally responsible coating that offers durability, ease of cleaning and water resistance. This rigorous, multi - step process includes sanding, brushing, cleaning, stain application, computerized oven drying and a catalyzed topcoat to protect and beautify your cabinets for years to come.

We also apply our TuffTech® Finishing System to returns, shelves and floors of all cabinets. This multi - step process begins with three sanding operations, followed by a top and bottom brush cleaning to provide a smooth surface for material adhesion. Next, an ultraviolet (UV) filler is cured using light ovens to seal the board completely. Once again the board is sanded, a waterborne adhesion material is applied and dried to provide an interlocking bond with the water - based paints. Several coats of paint are applied, dried, and then covered with a UV topcoat. This topcoat is made of acrylic and urethane and acts as a sealant to protect the paint.

Our KCMA certification means that our cabinet finishes can withstand high humidity, hot and cold temperatures, and exposure to water, detergent, vinegar, juice and other kitchen and bath substances.

Hand-Applied Glazes
American Woodmark offers a wide range of painted and glazed finishes to bring a deeper richness and luxury to your cabinets. Our glazing options settle into recesses, corners and grooves to create a dramatic contrast between the glazed and unglazed surfaces.  Our finishing process marries technology and old world craftsmanship. We hand rub every finish - the same way it's been done for centuries.

View our Cabinet Specification Guides