I'm looking to install a medicine cabinet. It's an inconvenient wall. It's not load bearing, but it has two studs with power plus a third stud in the middle that we expect to need to cut through to position the cabinet where we want.

All of the tutorials I see include framing the cabinet with 2x3 or some similar material. However, I cannot seem to find any site explaining why this is done. It makes sense that it would be done to support the structural integrity of the wall, but I see such framing being done even when no studs are cut to install the cabinet. This seems odd to me, and makes me wonder what the real purpose of this framing is.

What is the purpose of installing all this framing inside the wall? I'd like to know so that whatever framing I do actually achieves the intended goal.


That framing is included for three reasons: #1 It is there to support the wall board. The wall board is not strong enough to support itself at its edges or beyond 16". Wherever you find an edge of the finished wall board you should find some kind of framing behind it. This helps the edges of the wall board to butt together nicely. #2 The framing is there and should be connected to the existing wall framing to support the medicine cabinet. The wall board is not considered strong enough to support anything on its own. The medicine cabinet would never hang true and plumb for long, hung from the wall board alone. That is the job of the framing. #3 Even though this may not be a load bearing wall, once you eliminate one or two of the continuous studs, you have now compromised the integrity of the wall. Now the finished wall surface may never be able to look really good. It can show buckles and creases because the framing inside the wall is out of alignment, i.e. no longer straight and true. Quality carpenters understand that everything they do and the quality thereof affects the final look and outcome of every project.

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