The Importance of Cabinet Shop Drawings in QCP Projects

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As well as raising the final quality of wood casework and millwork, QCP is designed to streamline the architect’s design process. Rather than hyper specify in their architecture drawings, they can highlight certain AWI Standards that the woodworker should follow. This saves a great deal of time and the use of a common universal language makes their designs much easier to interpret.

But just because the architect can quickly summarize their woodwork requirements, that doesn’t mean the woodworker can be lax in producing cabinet shop drawings. In a QCP project, you’re expected to provide details in line with AWI 100 Submittals, which helps the architect find non-conformities in material and construction. And adding further details where necessary can cut out a great deal of confusion and stress once the project begins.

What is the purpose of cabinet shop drawings?

While architecture drawings show the woodwork manufacturer what the final product should look like, they don’t include casework components or methods of construction. These are vital for meeting the requirements of a QCP project and without them there’s a much higher chance of producing flawed products. These will then need to be altered or replaced, increasing time and costs to the dissatisfaction of architects and project owners.

When you produce high-quality cabinet shop drawings, you protect yourself against delivering poor service. They improve coordination between you, the architect, and the general contractor, and make it easier to get approval on your designs. And with Computer-Aided Design (CAD) software, creating and adding detail to shop drawings is a reasonably simple process.

Benefits of cabinet shop drawings in QCP projects

Eliminate errors and conflicts early

Because architecture drawings lack specific details, it can be tough for the woodworker to figure out how to construct the necessary products. This is particularly true for large projects when multiple architects might be delivering architecture drawings with different levels of detail.

By outlining precisely how these products can be made, you’re able to spot costly errors and conflicting designs long before they become a real problem. These can then be raised to the architect, who will provide clarification.

Save money with cost-effective construction methods

As well as giving precise measurements and specifications, cabinet shop drawings also detail the most appropriate construction methods for each product. The woodworker can make suggestions for changing hardware or construction methods that the architect might not have considered to save money while still meeting AWI Standards. Their accompanying justifications and replacement drawings also help in getting approval from the client quickly, leading to a fast and affordable positive outcome.

Reveals better design alternatives

Wood cabinetry isn’t just a beautiful addition to a construction project. It’s also a practical feature that needs to function as intended.

While architecture drawings might be aesthetically pleasing, mapping out precise measurements in cabinet shop drawings can reveal inefficiencies that prevent cabinetry from functioning at its best. When these are discovered, the woodworker can make suggestions for how these items can be improved. This enhances the final outcome of a construction project, and provides greater satisfaction to the project owner.

Meet nationally-recognized standards for quality

By requiring AWI Standards, QCP projects encourage outstanding levels of quality and compliance in interior architectural woodworking projects. Detailed cabinet shop drawings ensure these standards are met during construction, allowing the products to pass QCP inspections. As a result, clients can have confidence in your ability to deliver high-caliber woodwork, building your industry reputation and encouraging repeat business to grow your firm.

What should you include in QCP cabinet shop drawings?

In a QCP-certified project, cabinet shop drawings should first include a title sheet that states the:

  • Project name
  • Project address
  •  AWI grade
  • Scope
  • Duty Level
  • Aesthetic grade
  • Contact information for all firms involved in the project

This should be followed by a table of contents that identifies all items in the submittal package.

When it comes to the general overview of cabinet shop drawing illustrations, each one will cover:

  • Construction methods
  • Materials and finished
  • Joinery details
  • Dimensions
  • Technical suggestions

And lastly, with regards to the cabinetry components themselves, these must feature a detailed representation of the:

  • Full-sized profile of trim/scribe 
  • Plan, elevation, and section of the casework
  • Attachment method of face frame members (when applicable)
  • Type and thickness (heights and depths) of drawer members and cabinet doors
  • Section of each cabinet configuration
  • Joinery and connections, including locations of metal work or other specialty items
  • Method by which the cabinet will be attached to the walls and floors
  • Requirements and locations for blocking or strapping

Is there such a thing as too much detail?

In line with QCP requirements, woodworkers are expected to include substantial details in the cabinet shop drawings. And if lots of detail is good, even more must be better, right?

Not quite. Cluttering your drawings with every possible detail of each screw and dowel would make it incredibly difficult to understand what’s required. This confusion has the opposite effect of quality shop drawings by increasing the risk of errors during construction.

If certain details lie outside of the project scope, don’t feel the need to include them unless their absence is likely to cause issues. There’s also no need to repeat the same details for multiple copies of the same product, such as matching windows across the length of a wall.

Cabinet shop drawings should only be as detailed as they need to be to meet QCP requirements, ensure the final product fulfills design intent, and showcase construction methods. With few exceptions, any more takes up valuable time that could be better spent elsewhere and runs the risk of overcomplicating the project.

Register your project with QCP

The first step to creating cabinet shop drawings that meet QCP requirements is to ensure that your project is registered. Use our convenient online form to register in less than five minutes and give your next project the quality and risk assurance it deserves.