Beads on Door Frames: Machine or Apply?

Cabinetmakers discuss the options for making beaded door frames. December 27, 2010

I was wondering if someone could educate me on how a bead is made on a door frame such as doors from Maplecraft - in particular, the Madison and the Windham doors. I could see how if the frames were mitered but they are not.

Forum Responses
(Cabinetmaking Forum)
From contributor B:
We make a bead moulding and attach it to the inside of the frames.

From contributor P:
Probably much like a beaded face frame is made. Search WOODWEBíS Knowledge Base. The least expensive way is to use applied moulding. Then there are various table saw and router jigs. Shops that do a lot use something like the Hoffman machine.

From the original questioner:
What I'm seeing from the doors shown in my link is, the bead is part of the door and not the face frame and not applied. The Kreg gizmo is in my mind, is more about the haunching of the parts. I watched a video on its use and still don't quite get how they got the bead at the 90 degree corners. The beaded profile on the doors seems kind of a nifty way to have overlay doors that mimics inset beaded face frames. The only way I can figure how to do it is to have mitered doors and I don't like that look.

From contributor P:
Think about it - a door and face frame are very similar. Both have rails and stiles. The way you build these is to run your sticking profile, which includes the bead detail, then remove the bead where the rail joins the stile, and miter just the bead on both the rail and stile. Sounds easy, but it's difficult to do without some kind of specialized tooling. Applied mouldings will work, but on a 3/4" thick door, you end up with a tiny moulding and even tinier glue area to glue the moulding to the door frame.

From contributor G:
The jig works the same for face frames or doors, they are very much alike. I just realized that one of the door models you ask about has the beading on its perimeter, and that one, I'm pretty sure the Kreg jig won't do it!

From contributor W:
The Windham door is a cope and stick with the bead returning across the grain. This is either applied and may have been done on a CNC. If bead is on end grain I would think this is not a good idea.

From contributor D:
The door with the bead on the inside of the frame is haunch cut, just like the others have stated. The door with the bead on the outside of the frame is cut on a CNC router.

From contributor M:
I've done beads on the outside edge of frame doors many times by using a small router held against the edge of the door with a beading bit. You touch up the corner intersection of the two beads with carving tools, which takes about a minute for each corner. It's amazing how quickly one gets good at it.

Running beads on the inside of the face frame of a cabinet is a pathetic waste of time and only causes trouble down the road when those beads get beat up from objects being put into and taken out of the cabinets. Purists will always insist on doing things the traditional way despite problems and even if the appearance is identical either way. Cabinet doors can be taken off and replaced or repaired in shop. Whole cabinets cannot.