Custom Door Maker Plan


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I'd been meaning to clean this up, maybe do a rare (for me) vid and post it for too long. Since I saw a request the other day decided to just put it up.

Attached is a plan I use to make custom doors both cabinet and standard. For years I used 3D molding lines and solids to make the wainscot panels, been using cabinets to get to the final as long as I can remember.

3D molding lines can be a pain instead this uses countertops which makes manipulating edge beads/profiles/molding easy. Even if you need doors like these -


I have a few of these  laying around from when I make a new door. Becomes very fast. You should be able to sort it out from what is there- no guaranty no support no questions...

  • After getting a countertop you are happy with, convert to symbol, cabinet door, advanced.
  • Rotate on the X axis, set stretch planes to fall between any molding. ( I often like stretch zones instead depending on material intended)
  • Be sure that the molding and panel have different materials so you can make glass panels
  • Then move on to the cabinet portion to make the final door. Set separations as desired, materials and stretch plane in the advanced DBX.
  • When making standard doors for the house- make them 3/4" same as the others, set back to match front. Set depth stretch plan at 3/8", make symbol, place in plan, resize depth and convert to a NEW symbol.
  • image.thumb.png.7604609ffe5d68d48d75b965d2d78b13.pngimage.thumb.png.17e7e5c1a894619f0f174a7cd7981828.pngdoor

Plan is in X14.


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I have done something similar in the past and was demonstrating this in the recent advanced training class at the Chief Academy.


- I used a counter top with an edge molding profile to create a simple raised panel.  You could do this using many different tools but I like the counter top because I can swap out the molding profile to create different raised panels.  This counter top can then be converted into a cabinet door symbol.  You will need to rotate it and setup stretch planes for it to work well.


- You can use this new symbol as the panel symbol for a 3/4" deep cabinet with no back.  The big advantage of using a cabinet for this is that you have full control over the width of your stiles and rails and you can create basically any configuration for a raised panel door using the cabinet face editing tools.  The split and equalize tools are super helpful.  Once you have a door style you like, you can convert it into a cabinet door symbol for use on other cabinets.


- You can also use this technique for creating normal doors by making the 3/4 deep cabinet thicker and using match front for the back.  Again, as a cabinet you can configure the face however you like.  It's also easy to extend this to create a garage panel as well.


An X14 plan demonstrating the technique attached.


Door Symbol Designer 1.png

Door Symbol Designer 2.png


Door Symbol Designer.plan

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7 hours ago, Dermot said:

You can also use this technique for creating normal doors by making the 3/4 deep cabinet thicker and using match front for the back

up with lines on the edge. There is a way around that but a PIA. Instead as I indicate make a 3/4" deep cabinet door, set stretch plane in the center, resize, then make a new regular door from that -no lines.

Left first method, right second


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Yes, I believe you are correct.  If you make the cabinet deeper than 3/4", you will get one or more extra lines along the door edges in vector views (or other line drawings).  If removing these lines is important, you can leave the cabinet 3/4" and stretch the symbol instead. 


This may affect what kind of panel symbol you can use though.  If you are using a 3/4 panel symbol like I am, and you are using match front for the cabinet back face, then the panel symbol will overlap itself.  This is more obvious if you create a cross section or a glass house view of the door.  To prevent this, you could just turn off the back face instead.  Since I wanted the door to be the same on both sides, and I did not want to create a new panel profile, I was OK with the extra lines along the edge.  


BTW, if you would like to see these lines before you create a symbol out of a cabinet, you can turn on the layer for cabinet module lines and they will show up in a vector view.  This will also give you a better indication of how the cabinet builds the stiles and rails for the face frame.  See the picture below.


I have updated the Door Symbol Designer plan in my previous post to turn this layer on.  I have also set the cabinet depth for the door to 1.5" to reduce the edge line to a single line.


Door Symbol Designer 3.png

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9 hours ago, Dermot said:

you can leave the cabinet 3/4" and stretch the symbol instead.

thought I said that?


9 hours ago, Dermot said:

If you are using a 3/4 panel symbol like I am

Why- only occasionally should a center panel end up flush with the back of a cabinet door. Use a1/4 or 1/8" thick counter, adding typical 1/4" molding, new wainscot panel set to recess 1/16". Then go ahead and have back match front. That's what I did and I just grabbed an old random wainscot panel from my user library. Made a 3/4" cabinet door, stretched depth and converted. EZ, no extra lines (showing).

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thought I said that?


Just trying to confirm that I understood you since I was having a hard time following your posts. 


I also thought it was important to note that depending on how a person models the panel, reducing the cabinet depth and then stretching it may not work the way they want.


I modeled the 3/4" thick raised panel to accurately match my kitchen cabinets.  There are a lot of different ways to build doors and this is just one example.


A symmetrical profile for the raised panel might work better for a normal door and should work similar whether you use a 3/4" or 1.5" deep cabinet.  You would want to remove the back in this case though.


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