Brookhaven vs Medallion vs Dura Supreme?

hags00May 26, 2012

I'll pull the trigger soon and stop asking questions!

I have three cabinet quotes with Brookhaven being the most expensive and Medallion and Dura Supreme being about equivalent.

Isn't Dura Supreme supposed to be a "better" cabinet then Medallion? I thought Dura and Brookhaven were going to be about the same because I thought they were about the same grade of cabinet. The Brookhaven and Medallion quotes are from the same KD and the Dura Supreme is from the KD I usually work with and I think he gives me a decent price and he knows I am upgrading from the Merillat's that I got last year on my current house and was not happy with.

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jakuvall

Dura Supreme Alectra and Crestwood should price the way you indicate. I've sold Brookhaven and Medallion at a prior employer and looked into taking on Dura Supreme here. Medallion and Dura Supreme (all grades) are both pocket hole construction for face frames, Brookhaven is doweled.
For frameless the DS and BH construction are the same.
In my opinion the pricing you got reflects the quality of the cabinets. All are a step up from Merrilat Classic.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 4:27PM
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SparklingWater

Interesting information you provide jakuvall.

Are mortise and tennon cabinetry joints becoming a relic and if so, does the cabinet buying public know the industry has turned to pocket hole construction due to ease of mass production? At near $1000 base and upper cabinet cost, shouldn't one expect a doweled face frame kitchen cabinet typical on furniture? Of course, buyer beware is the fall back.

My question with Medallion and DS or any of the many other pocket hole construction face frame cabinet makers, if you know, is do they glue the end grain? Or is this step now non-industry standard and skipped too?

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 5:54PM
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jakuvall

SparklingWater- they are glued. How. Well depends on the mfg.since it is end grain to cross grain the glue loint depends a lot on what glue and how weLl it is done. It is still relying on the screw. They are very common. I was recently surprised when looking for a cabinet brand that priced between my pocket hole brand and my mortise and tenon brand.
True mortise and tenon frames (NOT doors) are rare, even with small custom builders-many use pocket holes..dowels or biscuits if you are lucky. I once dealt with a brand that proudly used a loose tenon but it was a poor execution and they would be a better cabinet with pocket holes IMO.

This business like most is based on selling the sizzle and not the steak. I find it dissappointing but many clients don't want to know the real details. "Dovetail drawers, soft close, plywood- must be a good cabinet". There is so much else that is more important.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 7:08PM
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SparklingWater

I hope the OP finds this information helpful. It seems many cabinetry manufacturers are using pocket screws on the box, better ones not on the face frame itself (although there are wood patches available to cover the screw).

I just spent several hours reading on sawmillcreek.org woodworking forum for a better understanding of this topic. Thanks too, to jakavall for initiating this discussion. You helped me a lot.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 9:23PM
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SparklingWater

I hope the OP finds this information helpful. It seems many cabinetry manufacturers are using pocket screws on the box, better ones not on the face frame itself (although there are wood patches available to cover the screw).

I just spent several hours reading on sawmillcreek.org woodworking forum for a better understanding of this topic. Thanks too, to jakavall for initiating this discussion. You helped me a lot.

    Bookmark   May 26, 2012 at 9:28PM
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hags00

The OP doesn't know what you are talking about! I design transmissions for your car for a living and can tell you what every part does in there but what I know about cabinet and furniture construction can fit in a thimble!!

My house two houses ago had 30 year old Merillat's, maybe classics and may be builder grade and they all held up well and there were no issues save for a few hinge adjustments. My current house has cherry Merillat Classics that I installed myself. No functional issues with the cabinets at all over the past 12 months. I was not happy with the quality of the finishes, particularly side panels and some doors for the money I paid. They also had a fair amount of handling type damage which just shows a lack of attention to detail at the factory to me.

My KD wants to keep me as a customer (this is the third kitchen in three years I have done) and when I mentioned going up to the Merillat Masterpiece line (made in the same factory as Kraftmaid) he suggested the Dura Supreme and they are currently running a special with no upcharge for cherry or maple so the price point it good.

I am impressed with your knowledge of all three brands, Jakuvall. Which would you recommend between the two lower price points DuraSupreme and Medallion?

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 7:40AM
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SparklingWater

Sorry about the double post. Finally figured out how that happens so as to avoid. Pocket joint cabinetry construction is widely used now in the mid low to mid range (maybe beyond) cabinetry, fast to make the box, easier on the manufacturers profit margin. May be helpful for owners to ask about, see if it includes the front of the box too (the face), so to judge the overall make of the cabinetry and what one is willing to pay for it.

Below is a thread jakuvall started on White Painted Shaker Cabinet Pricing Comparison-maybe it will help you see comparisons of two cabinets (upper and base). Dura Supreme isn't on it unfortunately.

Hope this helps you in some manner.

Here is a link that might be useful: Helpful link:

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 4:00PM
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hags00

Thank you! That is an interesting link!

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 10:03PM
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jakuvall

hags00
"The OP doesn't know what you are talking about!"
the pricing you got is in line with what it should be
Brookhaven is a better built cabinet than the other two, hence it costs more (sometimes)

"Which would you recommend between the two lower price points DuraSupreme and Medallion?"
I have extensive experience with Medallion and Brookhaven. I went through the process of considering carrying DuraSupreme but did not simply because they did not suit the spot I was trying to fill. I have no direct experience so can't comment on that brand.

If both have everything you you want, and you have a KD you like, trust, and you think knows what they are doing then get the cabinets from them.

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 1:41PM
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mamadadapaige

I don't know much about DS or Medallion, but I have been working at a showroom that sells Woodmode/Brookhaven for the past year and a half.

One way to keep your costs down with Brookhaven is to choose a no-upcharge door style. Not sure which door you had priced or which wood species but it can make a significant difference on the price. The edgemont raised and recessed door are our most popular no-upcharge. stained maple is 0% for wood species, cherry adds 10%, painted maple adds 5%. Hope this helps.

Oh, also, linking below a finished kitchen that was posted recently. It is another of Brookhaven's no upcharge doors: Bridgeport and it is in stained maple. So this kitchen is $0 upcharge door and $0 wood species and I think it looks amazing!

HTH

Here is a link that might be useful: Finished Brookhaven kitchen

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 2:24PM
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hags00

Thank you Jakuvall and mamadadapaige, that is a beautiful kitchen in the link. I do want a simple shaker door so I think I am there with no door upcharge and I do not want paint or special finishes. I did quote one in both Maple and Cherry and the Brookhaven and Medallion in just cherry but I do think that kitchen is beautiful and really just my style.

Going to talk to both KD's and make a decision this week. Gotta get these cabinets on order!

Thanks to all for your help!

    Bookmark   May 28, 2012 at 3:39PM
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maggiebkit

What did you finally decide?

    Bookmark   September 20, 2012 at 12:42AM
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hags00

Dura Supreme!! Very pleased with them, excellent construction, good choices of wood pieces so the stain takes consistently and you don't have the dark/light boards that someone showed on their cherry cabinets. Well packed and no handling damage prior to packing which was one of my big complaints with the mid-line Merillat I had used the summer before.

One drawer front had a ~1" worm hole area or something on the cherry and it was in the middle of my 4 drawer bank and I thought it really stuck out. They replaced the drawer front with no questions asked.

The KD at the place selling the Brookhaven and Medallion really felt Dura Supreme was closer to Brookhaven than Medallion in quality and I was able to get the Dura Supreme for less than either of the other two.

Lastly, minor but everything counts!!! I am a DIYer and hang my own cabinets. DS included excellent cabinet screws! I am a 52 year old, 5'4" woman and I can snap the heads on the cabinet screws available at both big box stores. In the entire kitchen, hanging the DS, I did not snap nor did I strip the (square drive) head on any of the screws. That keeps me calm and the air clear of obscenities!!

1 Like    Bookmark   September 20, 2012 at 8:11AM
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maggiebkit

Hags00-
So excited for you ! Glad you are happy with your choice!
Can't wait to see!

    Bookmark   September 30, 2012 at 3:25PM
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Mh Schwarz

How were you able to by DuraSupreme direct as a DIY?

1 Like    Bookmark   February 23, 2015 at 5:22AM
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Maine Susan

Yes, I was wondering that myself... 'How were you able to by DuraSupreme direct as a DIY?"

    Bookmark   March 22, 2015 at 12:36PM
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