Amish cabinets

6/25/14 @ 10:00 AM
ORIGINAL POST
gr8hunter
gr8hunter
USER since 1/1/08
They are starting to break ground on our house this week and we are in the process of picking out kitchen cabinets. I was blown away with how much cheap particle board cabinets cost!!! A co-worker of mine said he knew a guy that had his cabinets made by the Amish for half the price and excellent quality. Anyone ever done this or no someone who has??
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Displaying 1 to 8 of 8 Posts
7/2/14 @ 9:08 PM
FishFinder87
FishFinder87
USER since 2/8/11
The problem is that with the growing popularity of Amish furniture and construction, more than just Amish furniture makers and constriction crews are now making furniture and doing construction. There still are some Amish crews and furniture makers out there that do top notch, awesome work... but now you also have teenagers and less skilled workers offering "amish" products that do not have the quality you are expecting. So will just echo what has already been said: Research, check out their work, find someone who has used them before, etc.. There are some great "american made" companies out there and there are also some awful "american made" companies as well... Amish companies are no different in this regard anymore.

Edited on 7/2/14 9:08 PM
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7/2/14 @ 8:19 PM
Perchhound
Perchhound
USER since 12/5/07
My brother priced around and he did go with Amish. He went there to see them made. Excellent quality and the price was great. Every thing custom made to fit the space. Wish I had them in my house. Lives outside Mt Horeb. Don't buy just because it says Amish made. Many fakes out there. If you want I'm sure he has the contact info and I can get it for you.

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7/2/14 @ 7:31 PM
Church
Church
USER since 11/30/05
I used to build in southern WI. The last home I built, in 2008, the homeowners turned me onto an Amish cabinet maker and it ended up that he built the cabinets for the house. I can say that the cabinets were an excellent value. The workmanship was very good. Not great, but very good. For the price the homeowners paid, they did get excellent value. The cabinets were just big heavy boxes, they were made of 3/4 plywood all around and decorative end panels were included as a standard feature. Because of the limitations that the Amish lifestyle requires, their construction methods are substantially differnt than standard methods employed by non-Amish. This particular shop used power tools but everything was air powered, which is fine. But the joinery, expecially for the drawers, was quite simple. While the drawer boxes were solid 1" x stock, they were just square cut and screwed together as opposed to being dovetailed joints. This is an example of an accomodation that had to be accepted because of the source of the cabinets.

I'll echo the thoughts of a couple of the earlier posters; there seems to be a misconception with regard to craftsmanship. Just because something is made by the Amish doesn't mean the craftsmanship is exceptional or even average for that matter. While the cabinets were what I would describe as an excellent value, the workmanship that was evidenced in the installation of the cabinets was below average. I remember the crown moulding that was installed on an armoir in the master bedroom. The crown had mill marks on the first (4") of the crown, which is common. Most finish carpenters simply cut this end of the millwork off so they have a clean, square cut to start with. In addition to not cutting off the first (4") with the mill marks, they didn't square the end and then cut the piece 1/8" short. I'd also previously worked with a crew of Amish carpenters. They were contracted to install some decorative beams in the house I was working on. They were all kids, just teenagers. And once again, the workmanship was just average at best. These are the observations of a master level finish carpenter that has been honing his skills for more than (20) years.

Edited on 7/2/14 7:32 PM
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6/25/14 @ 12:49 PM
river_chaser
river_chaser
USER since 10/3/12
I agree with others........shop around. there are lots of cabinet makers who do excellent work and use top material. Ive gone to places that showcase Amish furniture and I cant say there is anything special about it. The name "Amish" is becoming more and more commercialized and relies more on past reputation rather than actual product quality.

Originally the Amish were reputed to use traditional building techniques common to the early American Puritans and Shakers. This is no longer the norm.

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6/25/14 @ 10:44 AM
brews4995
brews4995
USER since 4/2/10
Be very wary of Amish craftsmanship. If the price seems to good to be true, it probably is. They don't always use the top grade material everyone thinks. Lots of pine gets used. I think the quality of their work was very good years ago when they started moving to this area and they did very limited work. Now with more of them around and the mass producing of products from them, quality takes a backseat to quantity.

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6/25/14 @ 10:18 AM
dsinwi
dsinwi
USER since 1/24/02
I've seen a number of peices of furniture done by the Amish. I have helped pickup a few also and been to an Amish wood shop. I have no experience with kitchen cabient made by an actual Amish craftsman. I share your thoughts on partical board. The Amish can and will use partical board also. Check into it and get a quote for exactly what you want.

Congrats on the new home btw.

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