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Overlay Cabinet Construction & Inset Cabinet Construction

Cabinet Construction 

We offer two design styles of cabinets here at RTA Wholesalers the Overlay and the Inset. You can find both overlay and inset kitchen cabinet styles at great pricing for quality RTA Cabinets.

The Inset Kitchen Cabinet will expose the maximum amount of Face Frame. This style is considered the nicest by many designers and decorators. 

The Overlay Kitchen cabinet is the most common in the United States.

We carry the 1/2" Overlay style cabinet as well as the hard to find "Inset" style. 

Our 1/2" Overlay cabinet is a great cabinet for residential use. The 1/2" thick plywood cabinet provides a very sturdy cabinet and clean finish. With a solid hardwood face frame, drawer frame and door frame, these cabinets are considered premium shaker for the home contractor tradesmen. The drawers are made of solid hardwood with dovetail corners with full extension and soft close hardware. The doors have concealed hinges that are adjustable 6 ways.

Inset Cabinets

An inset cabinet is usually a custom ordered and made to order by a custom cabinet maker locally but we now offer this line in RTA Cabinetry. We have the inset door design cabinets in four styles at affordable pricing.

Your new kitchen cabinets are constructed from quality hardwood  solid birch material for the cabinet fronts and well as 5/8" birch plywood materials in the cabinet, solid wood for the face frames, doors and drawers. 

Cabinet Size

Base cabinets, Pantry cabinets and Wall Oven cabinets are 24″ deep for both overlay and inset cabinets. Overlay cabinets do extend out from the wall 3/4" further than 24" deep cabinet.

The wall cabinet are 12″ deep for the overlay style.

Our Inset upper cabinets are 14" deep which gives you more shelf space in each cabinet.

Measurements for cabinet depth are from the back of the cabinet where it would attach to the wall to the front of the face frame.

The Toe kick height is 4-1/2" on all cabinets and require a Toe Kick skin to span from cabinet to cabinet and cover the seams between each cabinet. It is recommended to keep the Toe Kick at the manufactured height without modification.

Solid Wood Face Frames

The Inset Face Frames are 1″ thick solid wood with a second "Stop" face frame behind.. The width of the Face Frame is 1-1/2″ wide for both the stiles and rails (unless specified) and an additional 1/2" on the Stop Frame. 


Cabinet Box - Sides, top and Bottom

Our overlay cabinetry is made of 1/2" plywood for the cabinet box. Inset cabinetry is made of 5/8" birch plywood.

Exposed Ends of Cabinets

The exposed end of a cabinet will require a "Skin". Most cabinetry has natural interior and exterior "Box" plywood which will require the skin to give a finished color. Skins can be glue applied or fastened with brads or nails.

Back of Cabinets

Overlay cabinets have 1/2" plywood backs. Inset cabinets have 5/8" thick engineered backs. Cabinet backs fit into routed grooves of each cabinet.


Overlay cabinets have 3/4" plywood shelves while the Inset style has 3/4" thick plywood shelves. The plywood material is edge banded to give the furniture finish look.

Color of Cabinet Interior

  • The interiors of most cabinetry is a clear UV acrylic finish on natural maple wood. The interior of the cabinet is a quality finish that compliments the exterior of the cabinet.
  • Some cabinets with painted finish are also painted on the interior as all exposed sides. Check cabinet description for details.

Dovetail Drawers

Our drawer are all 1/2″ solid wood with dovetailed joinery. Overlay drawer boxes are birch wood. Inset cabinetry has drawer boxes made of solid birch sides with dovetail joints. The bottom of all drawers is 1/4" plywood. All cabinetry come with quality drawer hardware that will extend out of the cabinet completely (full extension) and glide smoothly when closed to "catch" and soft close the last few inches.  

Knobs and handles are not supplied and no preparation is done to the doors for hardware. Customer must supply hardware and drill the doors/drawer fronts accordingly.

Our cabinets are far superior to many cabinet lines available. Many companies use MDF as their main material while we use solid Birch hardwood for the cabinet fronts and solid cabinet quality plywood for the cabinet sides, bottom, tops and back. The backside of our cabinets are engineered for stability of the cabinet. 

Each door is made of quality Birch hardwood. Shaker doors have MDF material on the center panel to guarantee against warping. Raised panel doors have Birch hardwood on all parts.

Inset cabinets have a unique look compared to European style or the standard overlay look. The inset door is flush with the face frame of the cabinet. This superior styling is a hard to find feature and widely desired as the best looking of the shaker line.


Each cabinet comes with the quality hardware to assemble your cabinet. Door hinges are hidden inside the cabinet and come with the "Soft Close" feature. When you close a door it will "catch" itself as it moves and slowly close without any assistance (no soft close on joined doors like lazy susan). Handles are not supplied.

 Drawer glides are beautifully operating hardware. They extend to expose your drawer with "full extension". The drawer box is completely out of the cabinet when opened. The "soft close" hardware will catch itself after you slide the drawer back in and slowly close.

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