Cabinetmaking involves more than simply designing,building, and repairing cabinets. It encompasses working with a variety of structures such as doors, windows and window frames, and all types of furniture. Cabinetmakers use many types of materials in this work, including veneer, fiberboard, particle board, hardboard, plywood, adhesives, abrasives, hardware and metal fastenings. They must follow blueprints and designer specifications exactly to construct and repair these wooden articles. Accuracy is imperative as they regularly need to fit small parts and sub-assemblies together, to precisely make and install cupboards and cases and to operate woodworking machines to cut and form parts. Today sophisticated equipment, basic woodworking machines, and portable power and hand tools are used to perform many of the job functions.
Cabinetmakers must have a broad knowledge of wood, its structures and properties, and an assortment of cabinetry hardware and materials. A worker with training and education could start in production and work their way up to a supervisory or management position in the wood industry, as the skills are transferable to a number of other professions.
You might enjoy a career in cabinetmaking if you like to build things and work with your hands. As a cabinetmaker, you should be physically fit and have strong math skills, manual dexterity and good hand-eye coordination. You must also be able to read, interpret and accurately follow blueprints, drawings and other design specifications. What's more, a cabinetmaker's artistic touch and creativity are often as important as their woodworking abilities in the development and design of new products. Good reading, writing and listening skills are essential, since instructions are often detailed and complex.
Cabinetmakers work in all areas of the wood industry. They can be self-employed or employed by furniture manufacturing and repair companies, construction firms or cabinetmaking contractors. Most of these companies dedicate a large portion of their business to the furniture and fixture industry, with a portion of this being renovation work. Although the jobsite changes from factories to custom shops, nearly all of the work is done indoors in large, well-lit and well-ventilated areas.
- Bench Carpenter
- Furniture Maker
- Woodworking Machine Operator