I bought the entire South Shore Shaker set including this dresser, the bed and the headboard. This dresser was the first item I chose to put together. Had I started with the bed, I would have returned the entire set and driven the 200+ miles to Chicago to a better manufacturer to buy a real bed set. South Shore has attempted to become a cheaper cost alternative to camlock modular design, but their quality standards define the word "cheap". I'll stick to the dresser for this review.
I have built numerous items using the same type of system that South Shore has chosen to use. I expected minimal problems as previous camlock modular systems such as this one have gone quite well.
1) They do use the camlock system, which I really like.
2) The white and wood finishes are smooth and damage-free.
1) The wood itself is incredibly fragile and pieces broke several times just trying to drive in the nails that they provided.
2) The box it was shipped in was damaged and the bottom base piece of the dresser was damaged in the process. It was minor corner damage, however, so I chose not to return the item and it didn't seem to cause any issues during construction.
3) The studs they use for the camlock system are metal, however, they are wrapped in plastic that is supposed to help hold them in the poorly pre-drilled slots provided. They held together, but I don't hold out much hope for the long-term.
4) The "dowel rods" are not wood as I expected, but rather plastic and several of the pre-drilled holes for these dowels were drilled too deep causing the dowels to disappear inside the furniture which caused them to provide no support as they are intended to do.
5) The angle brackets used to mount the drawer sides to the drawer fronts are also plastic and their holes were poorly pre-drilled and did not line up properly. This caused a simple project to become a royal pain and take far longer than necessary.
6) The handles shown on the drawers are NOT WOOD - they are plastic like most other parts of this item. They strip out incredibly easily and you have the choice of handles that spin and loosen regularly or handles that don't remain on at all if you tighten them too much and strip them out. I bought wood replacements from a hardware store as this was intolerable.
7) By far, the worst aspect of this entire thing was the generic, cheap, horrible plastic drawer guides. No, you didn't read that wrong - they used PLASTIC drawer guides for the drawers. These are entirely plastic molded units with no wheels, bearings or anything else. This is absolutely unacceptable, especially in this price range.
Overall, this dresser took me 4 hours to put together due to the deficiencies mentioned above. The drawers took the vast majority of that time since they seemed to be the victims of the poorest quality control of the entire product. I will never again purchase a South Shore product, nor will I purchase furniture from Wal-Mart after this experience. I am appalled by the lack of quality control made obvious by this unit and its matching pieces. Sadly, of the 3 pieces, this dresser was the easiest to assemble and in the best shape, although I really hesitate to use the words "easy" or "best" when describing this unit.