Thursday, November 25, 2021

Building a Cabinet Door for our new Fridge Cabinet


I left the refrigerator project on hold when we left Mesa AZ because to finish it off I needed to find a cabinet door. I looked online and found that a narrow door in the same wood type as our rig, alder, was going to quite a challenge.


I did find a site which would build a cabinet nearly to my needs but it would have to be 1/2 wider than I desired. After remeasuring everything and taking into account that the door had to open to the right meaning the hinges had to be set in a particular spot to allow for the clearance of the door opening in toward another cabinet I figured I could make it work.


I kind of gave up on the project and thought I would reinvestigate it later. Well that day finally came because here at Far Horizons RV Resort I discovered the park has a wood shop. Since there were no fees associated with using it I decided that maybe I could build my own cabinet door.


Scouring You Tube videos trying to find a solution on how to build a cabinet door with minimal tools I finally came upon one that was perfect for what I needed. A You Tube video titled Build Shaker Cabinet Doors With Table Saw | New to Woodworking.


After watching the video a few times I knew this would work for our needs. And as luck would have it the local lumber center had alder wood and the same hinges we have in our RV. I bought a couple of pieces of 1x2’s and some hinges then I was off to the wood shop.


First I used a radial arm saw to cut the pieces to size for the cabinet door frame. Then I used a table saw to cut the groove on the edge of the frame pieces that I could later insert a 1/8’ piece of plywood that I had leftover from tearing out the old Norcold fridge.


Next was a tricky part to make the stub and groove tenon joints as can be seen in the above photo. These joints make the cabinet door stable and study to allow for the abuse of constant opening and closing that cabinets endure.The video showed me how to do this using only a table saw.


Measuring was critical and I lucked out as I was able to do so by only messing up one small piece. Once all the cuts were made I cut the 1/8” plywood cabinet face to fit inside the groves of the frame pieces. I dry fitted all the pieces together and once satisfied that all the pieces fit I glued it all together using wood frame clamps to hold it tight to dry overnight.


The next day I took off the clamps and gave all the pieces a light sanding including rounding the edges. Next I used a cherry stain I had previously purchased based upon Tiffin’s recommendation as one that would match our cabinetry the best.


Sharon and I couldn’t be more pleased at how the cabinet door turned out. After we installed the hinges and a door catch we now have a new storage area that looks as if it was always there and all built for less than $35.

NOTE: We are currently in Tucson AZ until December 1st…


  1. WOW! That looks great! Is there a wood shop in Tucson that allows you access to their power tools?

    1. Yes, one of the things I missed most was my wood shop tools.

  2. Nicely done! The cabinet looks like it's original to your rig and you'd certainly never find a custom built cabinet for that price.

  3. Looks great, nice job with matching everything.

  4. Great job! Dave built a similar one next to our "new" refrigerator a few years ago and it's been a very welcome additon to our motorhome life.

    1. Yes, the added storage has already been taken over.