Steel Thickness Chart
Thickness
Measurement
Thickness
In Inches
Metal Weight
Lbs/Sq Foot
Use
18 gauge
0.0478
2.00
Commercial / Residential
1.2 mm
0.0472
1.97
Commercial / Residential
1.0 mm SABER CABINETS   
0.0394
1.65
Commercial / Residential
20 gauge  
0.0359
1.50
Commercial / Residential
0.8 mm
0.0315
1.32
Residential
22 gauge
0.0299
1.25
Residential
24 gauge
0.0239
1.00
Light Duty Residential   AVOID
0.6 mm
0.0236
0.98
Light Duty Residential   AVOID
STEEL THICKNESS is the main factor in determining cabinet strength.  Higher-end, Heavy Duty cabinet lines
use thicker gauge steel, lower-end cabinet lines use thinner gauge steel (Note - the higher the gauge
number, the thinner the steel).  Bracing and double wall panels can substantially increase the strength of the
cabinet giving a 20 gauge cabinet more structural strength than an 18 gauge cabinet.   However, once you
drop into the thinner gauges of steel (22 and higher), bracing cannot overcome the inherent flex of thinner
steel panels.  

Steel content accounts for the largest expense in the construction of a metal cabinet.  Manufacturers of high
quality cabinets will always provide metal thickness information in the product description or on the
specification page.  
Manufacturers and vendors who do not provide metal thickness information are most
likely selling a thin wall, light-duty cabinet
.
CHOOSE A CABINET SYSTEM THAT CAN BE WALL MOUNTED

Garage cabinets should typically be mounted 4"-6" above the floor.  Whenever possible, always WALL MOUNT garage cabinets.   After installing hundreds
of cabinets and systems, we prefer wall mounting for the following reasons:

  • Cabinets have a more professional, finished look and eliminates leveling problems caused by sloping floor.
  • Elevated wall mounted cabinets eliminate a nesting area for rodents and insects.
  • Space underneath cabinets can be used to store long items such as lumber, irrigation PVC, etc.
  • Easier to retrieve items that roll underneath the cabinets.
  • Easier to clean underneath the cabinets - there are no legs to accumulate dirt, debris, and cobwebs.
  • Lower unit cost - no legs required

Cabinets on adjustable legs may be required when the mounting wall is constructed of steel studs or walls constructed of
hollow cinder blocks. The proper
concrete fastener must be used when wall mounting cabinets to a concrete surface.

CABINET LEGS - ADJUSTING LENGTH CAPACITY

For those individuals who choose to install a cabinet system on legs, the adjusting capacity of the cabinet legs is a critical consideration in choosing a
cabinet system.    To maintain a constant level on adjacent cabinets; cabinets installed along the back wall of the garage should have legs with an adjustable
capacity of 1-2 inches.  Cabinets installed along the walls that slope toward the garage entrance may require legs with an adjustable range of 3-4 inches.  

IMPORTANT SAFETY NOTE - ALL STORAGE CABINETS TALLER THAN 60 INCHES NEED TO BE SECURELY FASTENED TO THE WALL!

CABINETS WITH ROLLERS

With the exception of a rolling tool cart, there are few good reasons to purchase cabinets that are mounted on rollers.  However, there are many reasons
why rollers can be bad idea:

  • Garage floors are sloped.  Cabinets placed along the back garage wall will tilt towards the front of the cabinet. Cabinets along the side walls will tilt
    sideways and adjacent cabinets in a system will not maintain a constant level  along the top and bottom of the cabinets.   
  • Garage floors are uneven.  To maintain a stable cabinet, shims may be required under one or more rollers to keep the cabinet from rocking.
  • Rollers even in the locked position will still allow cabinet movement.
  • Rollers make it more difficult if not impossible to position cabinets flush against the wall in garages with a protruding stem wall.
  • In all but the largest garages, the best location for cabinets is fairly obvious.  Few individuals will relocate their cabinets once installed.
  • Dirt, debris, and cobwebs will accumulate around cabinet rollers.

CABINET BACKS

Choose a cabinet with a full back.  This eliminates the possibility of small items falling from shelves and becoming lost behind the cabinet. It also gives the
cabinets a much nicer finished look.  Wall Mounted cabinets must have a high strength back or have mounting accessories that can hold the cabinet and
load weight.  

FASTENING ADJACENT CABINETS

Most individuals will purchase cabinet systems where cabinets are placed adjacent to other units.  Cabinets should be designed for easy fastening of
adjacent cabinets to one another.  Bolting adjacent cabinets together adds extra strength and stability to a cabinet system, and makes it easier to keep the
cabinet face frames flush and maintain a constant level along the top and bottom of the cabinets.

LOCKING TALL STORAGE CABINETS

Locking cabinet doors and drawers are a nice feature for individuals who wish to secure hazardous materials or dangerous tools from children.  If used in a
vacation home, it allows the owner to secure personal property so guests and tenants are denied access.  Individuals who live in earthquake prone regions
have an easy method for securing the cabinet door so  contents will not fall off shelves.

HINGES

Only choose cabinets which use
6-way Euro-Syle adjustable hinges. Most installed cabinets are going to be slightly out of level and square.   Garage walls
are seldom plumb and the wall surfaces can be very uneven.  Often the installer will need to make slight compensations with each cabinet to maintain a
constant level along the tops and bottoms of the cabinets.  With 6-way adjustable hinges, the installer can adjust the cabinet door panels so proper door
alignment can be maintained.

All Euro-style hinges should have the self-closing feature (if not self closing, doors need a latch or magnets).   Avoid inexpensive piano hinges, butt hinges,
or " L-shaped" spring hinges.  These cabinet hinges will rust and have either no adjustment capability or only an up/down adjustment direction.

DRAWER SLIDES

Quality cabinets will have full extension, ball bearing drawer slides.  Heavy Duty cabinets will have a
minimum drawer slide rating of 100 lbs per slide  The
higher the capacity rating, the greater load a drawer can hold.  More importantly, higher rated slides use better quality ball bearings and the user will
experience a smoother and easier pull under heavy loads.  

WORK TOPS

Work tops are typically constructed of the following materials:             

1) Laminate over particle board - The only advantage of using a laminate on particle or MDF board for a work top is its low
cost.  Laminates are relatively soft and will scratch easily when using hand tools or making small repairs.  

2) High Density Composite boards - These work tops can handle repairs and heavy duty use.  The cost is about twice that
of laminates.  High Density boards will show scratches and wear, and available finishes are typically unattractive.

3) Hardwood  - Hardwood tops are usually constructed of laminated maple.  Maple tops are expensive, but have a
beautiful finish when new. Please note that Canadian or Sugar Maple is about 35% harder than the inexpensive and much softer Western Maple.  Hardwood
tops can be used for nearly all heavy duty tasks except welding.  The main problem with hardwood is that it even under light use, it will quickly scratch and
show wear.  Solvents, grease, and oil can leave permanent stains on a maple work top.

4) Stainless Steel - These work tops are constructed of sheets of stainless that are wrapped and welded around a composite core.  Stainless Steel wraps are
about the same cost of quality hardwood maple tops.   The advantage of astainless steel  top is that it can handle all of the heavy duty tasks, and still retain
its attractive finish.  Stainless Steel i svery hard, with a high resistance to scratching and is unaffected by water, grease, oil, or solvents.  Stainless Steel will
dent and needs to be protected when working on projects involving hammering.
How To Evaluate Steel Cabinets

sabercabinets.com     05/2015
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