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Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Kitchen Cabinet Modification

In a previous post, I described how to install a floor heat mat. Lucky was kind enough to give me a paw (I mean “hand”). Kiley showed absolutely no interest in helping me.

Lucky held the mat down while I marked the floor heat wire. Thank you, Lucky.

Kiley preferred to keep warm in front of the wood stove.
I have been busy modifying a cooktop cabinet to accommodate an IH cooktop. The cabinet that comes with the cooktop is made of particle board. It looks nice on the outside, but... It’s common for Japanese household appliance companies (Panasonic, Toto, Rinnai, etc.) to use particle board and laminate instead of wood. Many of the modern Japanese homes are supplied with cabinets made of these materials. 

IH cooktop
The counter required several vent holes to be cut out and routed to match the thickness of the cooktop. I'm using 28 mm plywood for the counter. The cabinet is made of solid wood. I'll give the bottom of the counter a coat of mildew resistant paint before installation.

This is the cabinet that came with the IH cooktop. There are no supports to keep the cabinet from twisting and cracking. I'll keep the soft close sliders, but the rest of the carcass will be tossed out. 

I prefer to use wood. Why? Take a look at this picture. The particle board is poorly made and flimsy. When I pulled on one of the cabinet drawers, the drawer pulled out of the slider because the particle board flexed! It’s hard to believe that these particle board cabinets are in some of the most expensive homes in Japan.     George

The gaps in the particle board make this cabinet very weak and susceptible to moisture damage. 

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