Help needed! Conestoga or 6 Square Cabinets?

kpowersDecember 4, 2010

I'm in a bad place and need help. Six years ago, I put in a new kitchen and made many mistakes that I could not live with. After 3 years of research and planning, we ripped out the cabs and stone about a month ago with the idea that I was buying Ikea cab boxes and Scherrs doors. That is...until I bought the entire kitchen and started setting up the cabs. The flakey looking particle board and assembly methods freaked me out and I pulled the plug. (I know, back to Ikea all the cabinets are going). No disrespect to those of you who have Ikea. Being that this is my second kitchen, I have to get this right. I don't want to be doing this again in 5 years!

I have narrowed my search down to Conestoga and 6 Square cabs as suitable replacements (both full overlay shaker doors, painted white). I want quality this time around, but I can't afford custom quality. And I am not afraid of RTA (Conestoga is RTA and 6 Square comes assembled). Price-wise...Conestoga is more than 6, but it is better quality in my book. They also have more customization options as well. I know there have been a few recent posts going on RTA, which has been very helpful, however, I am hoping to see pics of either cabinet that may not be posted on finished kitchens. Anyone have 6 Square? If so, can you tell me your thoughts/experience? I have seen a small 6 Square display, but it was hard to get a good feel for it. I have read nothing but positives for Conestoga. My gut says to go with Conestoga, but I really would love support either way from GW folks. You guys have kept me sane through this mess! So I thank you in advance for any guidance/input you can offer.

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Why do you feel 6 square is inferior in cabinet quality? Can you finish the conestoga cabinet as well as 6 square can do it? If you do not need custom sizes then 6 square is the better purchase. IF you need custom things that 6 square can not give you then you need conestoga. If you want a wainscott pannel on the back of an island or you want the exposed sides of the cabinets to have intergal raised or matching door panels go with consetoga if that is an option.

If you are given a discount from list price the dealer cost is 74% off list. or .26 of list price. There is more then enough profit in .39 or 61% off list price. I would not pay more than that. 6 Square is not an RTA Product nor does it have the quality of one. I took delivery of 45 cabinets from Brandom which has a life time warranty and 6 square is leaps and bounds better made method of box construction full 1/2" thick back panel all exposed sides are ordered with flush finished ends making the boxes 3/4 thick on those sides. All base shelves are full depth and 3/4 thick. All wall cabinets are 3/4 thick. You can order the cabinets with soft close hinges. The drawers are perfectly smooth. 6 Square is the only company that ships out 100% complete in 10 days in its business model of ordering finished components over seas. If they do not have the item you ordered in stock it is built on site in a 100,000 sqft facility completly made in the USA 100%. The kitchen on their website is in shaker linen color and it is beautiful.

Truthfully wether your kitchen will look good to your eye is not a function of which brand just because of names. It is a matter of what design elements you will be using to make it look the way you are hoping. You want to see a kitchen that has your style and to help convince you of what to do. This is not the best approach. You need to look at construction quality and what cabinet types are available and be confident that your design will appear in a manner that will be attractive to you. A shaker door is a shaker door as much as a slab is a slab. You need to consider instead things like what width stile on the door looks appropriate to you. With conestoga you can order several different ones from skinny to really manly and strong. Generally called mission style approx 5" wide instead of 2-3.

You have to be creative to get a look you want by combining things if you can not get it exactly the way you want with a more limited company with a lower price like 6 square. The answer is in your budget and what you want it to look like and if you can paint a cabinet as good as a company with 100,000 sqft with machines that assist them to do it that cost more money then most peoples homes!

I do not have an account with consetoga yet but if I did I would tell you dealer cost of list price on it as well.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2010 at 12:27AM
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Conestoga offers finished doors; have for the last 3 years IIRC. It's a limited selection; The faceframes are raw, and would have to be painted to match; not as big a deal w/full overlay, as most of the ff is hidden. The huge upside of unfinished kits from conestoga is the remarkably short delivery time (most of the year) which is usually around 2 weeks. Ordering with a finish adds a few weeks to the lead time.

    Bookmark   December 5, 2010 at 10:54AM
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Thanks dave and casey for your replies. I have not seen conestoga cabs live. I have only seen alot of pics and emailed with some folks that installed them. And I do have a door sample. Comparing the door samples between the two, conestoga seems to be made better, more heft, no paint stuck in the crack between the panel and the rails. I saw one 6 Square display, but it was not a full kitchen, so I could only base my decision on what was on the floor. The slides they use felt inferior to blum, they were grainy sounding and did not operate as smoothly. (Could just have been the display I was looking at). There is some leap of faith in buying this way, but either of these two companies are no comparison to Ikea. When I called 6 square, they gave me an online dealer to work with called Cliqstudios. Designer has been very good to work with, and I had already had the msrp pricing from another dealer that is no longer handling 6 square. Not sure why. In any case, he told me my price was 1/3 of msrp - which is consistent with cliqstudios pricing. Dave, do you know anything about Cliqstudios? Or is there another dealer you'd recommend? I do agree that 6 square has alot of bang for the buck, but I have already run into some design issues due to the limited options they have (ie glass doors I like, shelving etc). Also, the pricing I received from the Cliq vs a local shop here is vastly different - by about 5k! Conestoga has been quoted out with two shops and is nearly the same prices. Still on the fence between the two, so I am going to try to find another display to look at with more options. One thing I don't love about 6 square door is the bevel on door - but I am trying to learn to like it. I don't want that to be a deal breaker yet.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 9:26AM
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We are in the process of installing our RTA cabinets purchased from Conestoga. We went through the Cabinetmakerschoice webite. The cabinet boxes have all been installed and we are now putting the door fronts and drawers on. I have to say we love them so far. We bought the all maple cabinets and drawers. They are heavy and seem to be very sturdy. Hard to say how they will hold up in the long run. But for now we think they look fabulous. I especially liked that they offered custom sizes which we had to use in a few spots. I'll be posting picutres in a few weeks. Let me know if you have any specific questions.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 2:41PM
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FYI, if you go with Conestoga you will need a brad or pin/staple gun and a compressor. We borrowed these items but after found a like new used one on craigslist with all the toys included for $80. Our model was $350 âÂÂnewâ just for the compressor so we made out well. It will come in handy for the phase two area next to kitchen that will be a sort of wetbar/hutch/buffet and where we will again use Conestoga. We will also use Conestoga for master bath remodel as we are so happy with our installed kitchen. If you donâÂÂt already have a compressor and the toys craigslist sometimes has them cheap.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 3:00PM
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Thanks so much all! We have a finishing nail gun, so that won't work I guess. We will look into the brad staple gun. Thanks jterrilynn (again). Happyhome, would definitely love to see your progress - thank you!

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 3:11PM
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I can not believe 6 square sent you to an online dealer. They have a specific policy that your website can not give out the name of the thier cabinets or company name if you are trying to sell online. Nor will they let you order cabinets that are sent to residential adress outside of a 50 mile radius as a general rule. I spoke with the general sales manager about this just last week. So annoying for them to be inconsisent. If I wanted to send cabinet to your for example I they must be sent to my store first and I have to reload them on another truck I hire to send them to the end user if they are not a local sale.

Glass door is not hard to get around. You just have to use a router and cut out the center panel in the back of the door and intstall the glass from behind. They only have 15 and 18" glass doors if my memory serves me right. The cabinets I have in my shop are every bit as smooth as any blum rail I have ever seen. I am surprised they were not upt to par for you.
.33 of list price is a good number on the cost. You have to think out of the box when you are trying to save money and use a cabinet that does not have every size out their.

I priced a kitchen tonight that was for 24 lineal feet. Allwoood (competiton to 6 square with same business model was $4,600 and Bridgewood Advantage (the most popular doors in the custom series at lower prices) was $6,700. I could get every size I needed with Bridgewood and can customize the sizes if needed. I bet Conestoga is in the same price range as Bridgewood. Putting cabinets together is not hard if the process is streamlined by the cabinet maker. If conestoga can do it for you and you get what you want in sizes and door shape go that route. I am not sure what you are talking about with the bevel edge I will check my shaker door samples from them tomorrow.

Any one with an account to 6 square should be able to get you what you are looking for and produce a design and 3d's to show you what it look will look like outside of glass doors that are not available.

    Bookmark   December 6, 2010 at 11:51PM
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One fact I neglected to mention was that when I ordered my entire kitchen cabinet package, (a couple tons, 9 pallets, 90+ boxes of stuff) Conestoga delivered it free, on their own truck. I think I saved at least $100 right there on freight. Delivery was to my curbside, not some freight terminal. Something to think about.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2010 at 8:20AM
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Thanks again, Dave. Appreciate your response. Interesting about their policy. When I called 6 Square, I asked them specifically for an online dealer I could use because the original dealer I contacted told me he was no longer selling 6 Square. When I talked to Cliq, they would not tell me they were 6 Square outright, despite the fact that I had seen the same cabinets on some websites using the same images, but not branded as 6 Square. But I knew they had to be the same company. I needed to know that because I was not comfortable buying the cabinets outright without seeing them first hand locally. But they would not confirm it either way.

I think with the 15% additional discount I am being offered, I am getting 34% of list. So that is about right. My kitchen is roughly 30 lineal feet, with 3 pantries (total estimate is $9,500 - shipping included). I called 6 Square again and got some more dealer names that have larger displays and in the door style I am wanting. It's a hike, but I am going there today to get a better feel for the product. Will let you know the outcome.

One other area of concern for 6. I understand the company has only been around for 3 years. A little young, and I'm not privvy to knowing how the company is doing to ensure that they aren't going anywhere soon. Conestoga at least, has been around for many years.

Casey - thank you! I was quoted shipping by Conestoga as being 6% of the total order. Casey, I'm curious, have you ever seen 6 Square live? (Your kitchen is beautiful, btw). What other cabinet would you compare Conestoga to? Dynasty?

Glad to hear that about the glass door. The designer confirmed that as well yesterday. As to the door, check it out - maybe I have the wrong term for it.

This is a tough decision and I can't thank you/GW enough for the guidance.

    Bookmark   December 7, 2010 at 9:03AM
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Kpowers - I'm looking at Cliqstudios currently and am wondering what decisions you made regarding cabinets for your remodel. Any info would be appreciated!


    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 2:51PM
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    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 3:06PM
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Thanks, looked like kpowers was leaning that way.

    Bookmark   August 22, 2012 at 3:19PM
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I am following this thread since I was considering Cliq Cabinets in their white shaker door style and had no idea these cabinets were 6 Square Cabinets. I can understand why they do not want to ship directly to the customer since then they will be subject to retail sales tax and have to file sales tax returns in every state that they do a direct shipping.

Thanks for sharing. I am still not sure what I am going to do since I had the set-back of over 1.5 weeks with Hurricane Sandy and now I am so behind in my work and need to put my kitchen off for another month.

    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 7:47PM
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Hi All,
I've followed this thread and found it very helpful. We've been trying to decide on new cabinets and recently had a contractor tell us he recommends Carolina Heartwood Cabinetry. It's RTA, but he would assemble and install them. I have not been able to find ANYTHING about them on the web, good or bad (other than their own advertising). The local distributer is Web-don.
Does anyone have an opinion on them? It seems to be a good product at a good price, but I'm not willing to take a chance on them without more information. So far I haven't had any luck finding it. Any help would be appreciated! Thanks!

Here is a link that might be useful: carolina heartwood cabinetry

    Bookmark   December 17, 2012 at 6:46PM
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Hi cooksnsc, you may get better luck in starting your own thread titled 'Carolina Heartwood Cabinetry'.

Just as a follow-up to the OP title, we went with Conestoga and are very pleased. They supply the fabulous upper end door choices you may see in many cabinet shops as well as an RTA cabinet.

Good luck! (Plus shout-out to Brian at The Cabinet Joint)

    Bookmark   December 17, 2012 at 10:40PM
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