Our walls are made of Reinforced Cement Concrete (RCC) with a thickness of 15 cm. The walls have 15mm gypsum plaster on both the sides. We are doing interior design - installation of wardrobes and modular kitchen. The installations are made of teak wood. No ply wood is used.

What will be the suitable thickness of the following considering the wall thickness of 15cm Reinforced Cement Concrete(RCC)?

  1. The back-panel used in wardrobes and kitchen
  2. Horizontal wooden planks
  3. Vertical wooden planks
  4. Doors of the wardrobes and kitchen cabinets

My carpenters are simply suggesting 1½" inch for every board. I am of the opinion that

  • ¼" (6mm) for back panel
  • 1½" (37mm) for load bearing longer panels and outer most vertical panels
  • ½" (12mm) for all other horizontal and vertical panels.

would be enough. I would like to confirm what is prevalent in the industry.

  • 1
    What is RCC? Why do you think the construction of the wall is relevant to the construction of the furniture? I think we need rather more information about the construction you are planning to use. Horizontal wood that is 3m long between supports will need to be rather thicker than wood which is 0.5m between supports. The thickness will also depend on the loads you are planning to put on the shelves (a sack of potatoes will need a thicker shelf than a few elegant glasses). P.S. Fourth word should almost certainly be "made". Oct 17, 2018 at 9:46
  • Made edits to expand RCC and fixed a typo....thanks. A normal household kitchen and wardrobe is what I am talking about. My carpenters are simply suggesting 1.5 inch for every board. I am of the opinion that 6milli meter for back panel, 1.5 inch for load bearing longer panels(like the 3m example u mentioned) and outer most vertical panels, 12 mm for all other horizontal and vertical panels. I would like to confirm what is the prevalent in the industry. Thanks.
    – Vinodh
    Oct 17, 2018 at 11:08
  • 1
    I've made a proposed edit to include that information in the body of the question (and been consistent about English/metric measurement). If you like it, please approve it; if not, it would be better to include the information directly in the question and not hide it in a comment. Oct 17, 2018 at 12:36
  • Will anything be secured to the walls? Through which pieces?
    – mmathis
    Oct 17, 2018 at 12:54
  • Not an expert in this. Still I assume all the vertical, horizontal, back-panels should secured to the walls at reasonably frequent intervals so that It is a permanent installation. A regular one as we seen in any normal household.
    – Vinodh
    Oct 17, 2018 at 13:24

1 Answer 1


There is no way I would use 37mm teak for the unseen back panel of piece of furniture. Personally, I would use plywood or hardboard; certainly 6mm solid wood would be fine (and for the kitchen cupboards in particular, I would consider using a cheaper wood than teak).

Your carpenters seem to be grossly over-building the furniture. I wouldn't use more than 12mm for any of the vertical panels. Horizontals are more complex - have a look online for plans of the sort of furniture you want. My gut feel is that 37mm (or possibly even 50mm) for the worktop would be right; for shelves in kitchen cupboards 25mm; For the bottoms of drawers, 12mm or possibly thinner.

  • 1
    25mm shelves in kitchen cupboards, in solid hardwood? Significantly thinner than this is the norm even for chipboard (which can bow under its own weight!) so there's very little likelihood of material this thick being needed for any reasonable shelf span.
    – Graphus
    Oct 17, 2018 at 13:12
  • 1
    @Graphus - that's why I suggested "go look for plans". I find it very hard to visualize a thickness unless I can hold a piece of wood of that thickness in my hand. Oct 17, 2018 at 13:30
  • Thanks so much...Work top is a granite top. Will these thickness specs will be ok for any board width - say for both boards (1) monolithic boards of 1 ft width for a depth of 1 feet (2) boards joint by two 6" width planks? Pls refer my another question: woodworking.stackexchange.com/questions/7870/….
    – Vinodh
    Oct 17, 2018 at 13:34

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