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View Full Version : Options to fix and oops while making drawers



Anthony Whitesell
01-27-2009, 4:27 PM
I was glueing some drawer boxes together this weekend when I realized that I had milled the slot in the sides to hold the drawer bottom in.

What would you do to attach the drawer bottom to the drawer boxes now that the boxes are glued together?

I know of two options: glue the drawer bottom to the drawer box or rabbet the drawer box bottom and inset the drawer bottom. Any other options you can think of?

P.S. These drawers are for the shop in the router table cabinet.

Josiah Bartlett
01-27-2009, 4:31 PM
Rabbet and glue the sides but not the back. If you don't feel that is strong enough, make a deeper rabbet and then glue some splines between the drawer bottom and the bottom edge of the sides to strengthen it, but don't glue the drawer bottom. That will let it expand and contract.

Dewey Torres
01-27-2009, 4:32 PM
Solution...

http://www.leevalley.com/wood/page.aspx?c=2&p=47818&cat=1,46168,46176

Enjoy!

Anthony Whitesell
01-27-2009, 4:41 PM
Dewey,

That's a great option for cutting the slot, but since the sides are glued together I still can't get the bottom in.

Anthony Whitesell
01-27-2009, 4:44 PM
Can you try to reword that, Josiah? I can't follow your plan.

Lee Schierer
01-27-2009, 4:49 PM
Dewey,

That's a great option for cutting the slot, but since the sides are glued together I still can't get the bottom in.

Cut out the portion of the back to the top of the groove and slide the panel in from the back. Bottom will be supported on three sides. Insert a couple of screws up through the bottom panel into the back drawer side to hold the panel in place.

Joe Scharle
01-27-2009, 4:55 PM
Glue a 1/2" X 1/2" ledger rail around the bottom perimeter and drop your bottom on top. If I understand your Q. Otherwisw pls ignore.

Jon Grider
01-27-2009, 5:19 PM
Do what Lee said, I was thinking the same thing though, really, not kidding.:)

Russ Sears
01-27-2009, 5:48 PM
Cut off the back of the drawer, insert bottom and re-attach the back?
I'm picturing cutting the sides of the drawer to remove the back which would leave you with a drawer one sawkerf shorter in length.

Josh Rudolph
01-27-2009, 8:18 PM
Do what Lee recommended, I have built a couple drawers that way with no problems.

David DeCristoforo
01-27-2009, 8:32 PM
Normally I don't like to "reiterate" a solution already offered by another member. However, in this case I will make an exception. Over the years my shop has produced thousands of drawer boxes and, regardless of the joinery used, they have all been made as Lee describes. Sides and front of equal depth and grooved for the bottom panel. Back stopped at the "top" of the groove so that the bottom panel can be slid into place. Bottom panel is secured to the back with brads or small screws.

Why? Well there is actually a reason for this. Traditionally, drawer bottoms were solid wood, not plywood. So they needed to be able to expand and contract without affecting the overall size of the drawer. The construction method Lee describes allows for that. Also, for the same reason, drawer bottoms are made with the grain running "across" the drawer (that is, long grain goes from side to side) so that any expansion of the bottom panel would not cause the drawer to bind.

Josiah Bartlett
01-27-2009, 8:41 PM
Rabbet and glue the sides but not the back. If you don't feel that is strong enough, make a deeper rabbet and then glue some splines between the drawer bottom and the bottom edge of the sides to strengthen it, but don't glue the drawer bottom. That will let it expand and contract.

More or less what Lee said to do. Imagine how you would construct a door frame to put glass in it. You can do the same thing with a drawer bottom. I would just rabbet the sides and front and then use battens to hold the bottom in.