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What Is a Slab Cabinet? And Other Commercial Cabinet FAQs

Commercial cabinet options like the slab cabinet are popular, but many questions surround them and other types of commercial cabinets. The slab cabinet can work well in various settings — from multifamily builds to apartment complexes and assisted living facilities. 

In today’s blog, we’re answering some of the most popular questions about these cabinets. We hope this provides you with the information you’ve been looking for as you decide what type of cabinetry to install in your build! 

Keep reading to learn more! 

What Is A Slab Cabinet?

A slab cabinet is a flat panel door without design, engraving, or beveling. The term “slab” comes from the fact that it’s one piece, not multiple pieces that are assembled into one. It’s simple yet elegant, standing out from most other types of cabinets that usually have some ornamentation, like a raised panel or contoured design.

Slab cabinets differ from the traditional design, embedding themselves into modern kitchen designs. As mentioned, the slab cabinet is entirely flat, and its edges are 90-degree corners. It could be the perfect addition to the apartment complex you’re building! 

There are a few different types of slab cabinets: plywood, MDF, and particleboard. Let’s take a closer look at each kind of cabinet. 

What Is Class A, Furniture-Grade Plywood?

Class A, Furniture-grade plywood refers to the face layer of the plywood. It means that the face layer is made of high-quality hardwood placed over cheaper, softer wood, like pine. The edges of the cabinet have hardwood veneer tape covering them. 

Plywood slab cabinets make it easy to match the wood grains for a beautiful look. You can purchase your plywood one after another so the grains match up. It’s a simple, easy choice that’s perfect if you need to install lots of commercial cabinets. 

What Is MDF?

MDF stands for medium-density fiberboard. This type of particleboard is used for boards you plan to paint or as the core layer for a door with plastic laminate or Thermofoil. MDF particleboard is compatible with melamine.

Slab Cabinet Finishes

Whether you go with plywood, MDF, particleboard, or solid wood, you have several finishes: paint, lacquer, stain, wax, laminate, and veneer. Or, if you don’t want a finish, you could choose a “raw” look, meaning that the slab is installed without a finish. 

Let’s take a look at the available options for finishes!

What Is A Lacquer Finish?

Have you ever seen a slab cabinet with the most beautiful glossy finish? Chances are, you were looking at a lacquer finish. Its beauty makes it a popular choice, and it’s relatively easy and inexpensive to achieve for your build.

How easy? You can use MDF or Medex (the cousin to MDF) with a multi-layer lacquer finish and buff. Or, you can melt Thermofoil onto particleboard or plywood core. Finally, you can laminate it with matching edge banding glue if you have particleboard or plywood.

What Is A Laminate Finish?

A laminate finish, also known as Formica, is made of plastic and resin. It’s a durable choice with many options for colors and textures. Thin sheets of laminates are purchased and glued to the plywood or particle board to achieve this finish. 

If you go with a laminate finish, keep in mind that they’re very heavy and difficult to replace if they get damaged. Keeping the cabinets dry is also critical since moisture can damage the laminate. You’ll need to determine if the maintenance will be worth it for your tenants. 

For a super sleek, modern look, try pairing laminate-finished slab cabinets with wood, glass, or a unique backsplash. 

What Is A Solid Wood Finish?

A solid wood finish is an excellent option if you want a natural, woodsy look. However, it does take effort to put together — we recommend hiring a professional for the job. It involves selecting, milling, planning layout, grain matching, and tooling. 

The beauty of wood is how unique it is. You can pick slabs that look nearly identical, or you can go with slabs that have knots and different-sized growth rings for a vibe that really matches the woods. 

And to complete the look, you can finish the solid wood with a clear coat so it looks glossy. That’s right; you can put a finish on top of your finish. 

What Are the Pros and Cons of Slab Cabinets?

If you’re looking for a timeless look that doesn’t get outdated quickly, the slab cabinet might be the perfect choice for your build! Your tenants are less likely to get bored with their homes. 

Not only that, but slab cabinets have a clean look and stay clean easily. Wiping them down is super easy since there’s no ornamentation or design to worry about cleaning. This will make it easy to maintain those apartments for years to come.

On the other hand, slab doors are known to warp, making it essential to handle them carefully during construction. 

Aesthetic Aspects

Because of how simple slab cabinets are, you can use them for two different styles: sleek and modern or plain and utilitarian. Remember that slab doors offer a smooth, clean look with no design. 

If you’re on a tight budget but still want a slab cabinet look, use MDF particleboard with white thermofoil. It provides the same aesthetic without breaking the bank. But white isn’t your only color option; slab cabinets range from natural wood to red, purple, or black. 

Superior Commercial Solutions

Do you have more questions? Superior Commercial Solutions has the answers you’re looking for! You can contact us through our website or call us at 385.273.6670 to schedule an appointment. Whether you’re building a multifamily building, an apartment complex, or assisted living center, a slab cabinet might be perfect for you!

Let the experts bring their knowledge to the table — and your build. Superior Commercial Solutions comes with decades of experience and brings a team of professionals that will be with you from A to Z. Trust Superior Commercial Solutions with all your cabinetry needs!