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Thread: Building an oak cabinet with sliding glass doors -WARNING: LOTS AND LOTS OF PICTURES

  1. #1
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    Building an oak cabinet with sliding glass doors -WARNING: LOTS AND LOTS OF PICTURES

    This project is only about half done, so I am taking a chance with this thread because the cabinet might not work out as well as we expect it to. Also, I have written this so that those that have not done much cabinet making can follow each step. For many folks, I realize that you know these steps better than I do and I appologize in advance.

    My friend Terry West (who I have known since I was two) and I are building a cabinet for his recently renovated house in Ottawa. Terry has done quite a bit of rough carpentry and house maintenance but little cabinet making. He has tool bench in his furnace room but does not really have the space or equipment to undertake a project of this scope. So, I offered to build a cabinet at my place (about a 5 hour drive from Terry’s house).

    The plans that we are using for the are based upon those in the issue 163 of Wood magazine (June/July 2005). I made plan modifications to use better wood and so that the cabinet will fit into the spot that Terry and his wife Peggy have reserved for the cabinet.

    We are planning to build the cabinet during two three day weekends. The weekend occurred in late November. The next one will probably be in mid January.

    The wood for the cabinet is quarter sawn oak boards and plywood purchased from Century Mill Lumber about 25 kilometres north of our house. This place has been in operation by the same family for over 150 years. It’s great to be able to do business with such places. The hardware is mostly from Lee Valley Tools.

    Following is a picture “essay” on “crafting” of the cabinet during the first weekend. Because of forum limitations, I need to split this into six posts.

    (1) Terry with a “raw” oak board to the left of the picture and three processed, glued and sanded, oak boards to the right of the picture.

    006 Terry with rough board and with partly finished cabinet top -small.JPG

    (2) The first step in preparing an oak board is to smooth one edge and one side on the jointer. The corner between the two sections is 90 degrees.

    010 Jointing oak board -small.JPG 050 Preparing board 5-fully jointed side -small.JPG

    (3) Now the other side is planned to the correct thickness. The planner insures that the two sides are parallel.

    060 Preparing board 6-plane the other side -small.JPG 070 Preparing board 7-partly planed side -small.JPG

  2. #2
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    Part 2

    (4) The chips from the jointer and planer fill up the bin on the dust controller very quickly.

    081 The dust bin is filling quickly -small.JPG

    (5) Some of the wider boards are cut into narrower pieces with the scroll saw before they are planed. This process is called “re-sawing”. For instance we needed some pieces 1¼ inches thick and others ¼ inch thick, so after jointing apiece that started out as 2 inches thick I cut off a piece slightly more than ¼ inch as shown in the picture to the right. This is the first time that I used my new bandsaw with wood this hardness and size and things did not go well. As a minimum I need a much better blade than the “factory” blade. I probably need an adjustable fence as well. Most of all, I need to practice!

    100 Re-sawing oakboard in Band Saw -small.JPG

    (6) Terry’s next job was to cut all the pieces of plywood to size.

    120 Terry cutting up plywood -1 -small.JPG

    (7) Narrow strips of oak are glued to all the exposed plywood edges.

    130 Terry gluing a front edge onto shelf -small.JPG

    (8) Here I am with the results of our efforts at the end of work on Friday. The three glued together oak boards will form the top of the cabinet. The plywood will for the cabinet case and will not be seen nearly as much as the boards. However, it is very good and very expensive plywood.

    140 Frank with several pieces of wood near the end of day 2 of project -small.JPG
    Last edited by Frank Pellow; 12-20-2005 at 9:32 PM.

  3. #3
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    Part 3

    (9) Many holes had to be drilled into the plywood before assembly of the case.

    150 Frank drilling shelf bracket support holes into cabinet side -small.JPG

    (10) And, of course, there was lots and lots of sanding to do.

    160 Terry sanding cabinet top -small.JPG

    (11) Groves (called rabbets) were routed at the edges of the plywood case sides.

    170 Frank routing rabbets into cabinet sides -1 -small.JPG

    (12) And a lot more oak strips were glued to the front edge of plywood pieces.

    200 Lots of clamps in use -small.JPG

    (13) Terry got to cut some pieces to length using the table saw (very carefully because of the unguarded blade).

    205 Terry sawing small cabinet pieces -small.JPG

  4. #4
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    Part 4

    (14) Late in the afternoon, we had a visit from Terry’s daughter Virginia and grandson Rowen.

    210 Virginia and Rowan pay us a visit -small.JPG

    (15) Rowan is only a year and 5 months old, but already he can hammer (and say the word).

    230 Rowan Hammering -3 -small.JPG

    (16) Gluing and clamping the case together is difficult. We called upon Terry’s wife Peggy for help.

    240 Terry and Peggy assembling plywood cabinet case -small.JPG

    (17) It’s now Sunday morning and I am rounding over the corners of the top with my router.

    250 Frank routing roundover on edge of cabinet top -small.JPG

    (18) While Terry is back to sanding.

    260 Terry sanding plywood case -small.JPG

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    Part 5

    (19) And a little later I routed chamfers into the stiles using temporary stop jigs clamped to a bench.

    270 Jig used when routing chamfers in styles -small.JPG

    (20) Terry left mid-afternoon and before he left we glued the case’s middle divider and , as well, the stiles and rails to the case.

    280 Frank and Terry at the end of day 3 -small.JPG

    (21) After Terry left and the glue had dried for a while, I glued the door stops to the stiles. The ⅛ inch Veritas spacer bock came in hand for setting the door stop back the appropriate distance.

    290 Clamping a door stop onto a stile -small.JPG

    (22) The corners of the base had to be cut at a 45 degree angle, an easy task for my table saw.

    300 Sawing a 45 degree corner on the base -small.JPG

  6. #6
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    Part 6

    (23) The hole and the hold down clamp on the bench came in handy for sawing and drilling the corner braces to be used on the base.

    310 Cutting a corner brace part with a jig saw -small.JPG 320 Drilling holes into the corner brace -small.JPG

    (24) And finally, for the first phase of this project, here is a partly assembled cabinet. The base and top have not yet really been joined to the case, the glass doors have not even been started, and we have not even selected the finish to use, but one can get a pretty good idea of how it will look.

    340 Frank with the cabinet -small.JPG


    Phase 2 of this project (which takes place in mid January 2006) is described in the thread: http://www.sawmillcreek.org/showthread.php?t=29501.
    Last edited by Frank Pellow; 01-15-2006 at 9:14 PM.

  7. #7
    Frank, thanks for the step-wise tutorial. The figure on the board in step #3 is fantistic! Really nice shop, by the way. How do you like your drill press? This Delta DP is on my wish list.

    Dan

  8. #8
    Frank, I am sure this cabinet will turn out every bit as good as you expect. Thanks for posting all of the pictures, I like to see the progress of a project. You have an amazing shop! I hope someday to keep my shop as meticulous (sp?) and well organized as you do. I keep trying. Nothing like spending time in the shop with a good friend. Thanks again and keep us posted on the finished projects. Now I am going back to look at the pictures some more. Later, Bill

  9. #9
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    Frank,

    I pretty much have the same set of tools as you. General cabinet saw and a lot of Festools. Same clamps same squares. I'm also building a bookcase cabinet out of quarter sawn white oak. I enjoyed the pictures. Thanks.

    ~mark

  10. #10
    Frank,
    Always nice to see such a well laid out and equipped shop. Love the Festools, but what really caught my eye was the Excaliber scroll saw in the background and the large one at that. That is one fine tool. Thanks for the tutorial.
    John Lucas
    woodshopdemos

  11. #11
    Nice cabinet, Frank. Thanks for the pics. I really enjoyed watching the step-by-step building process.
    BTW, I think you definitely need a real workbench. You've found a way to clamp pieces when routing but a traditional workbench would still be a great addition to your shop.

    Regards.

    Christian
    "On Wednesday, when the sky is blue,
    And I have nothing else to do,
    I sometimes wonder if it's true
    That who is what and what is who."


    (A.A. Milne, Winnie the Pooh)

  12. #12
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    Frank,
    Great cabinet and terrific pictures....Rowen is really cute!
    "All great work starts with love .... then it is no longer work"

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Larson
    Frank, thanks for the step-wise tutorial. The figure on the board in step #3 is fantistic! Really nice shop, by the way.
    Thanks on all counts Dan.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dan Larson
    How do you like your drill press? This Delta DP is on my wish list.
    Dan
    The drill dress is OK, but I need to build some sort of bigger table for it. And I need to add some sort of "outrigger" support to handle longer boards. I have seen a few plans but none that quite suited me.

  14. #14
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    Anthony, I expect that if you were to visit, you would not call my shop meticulous; nevertheless thanks for the compliments.

    Mark Carlson, a the parallels between our shops and work are interesting. What are you planning to use as a "finish" on your cabinet? Please post pictures when you are done.

    John, thanks for the comments re my shop and tutorial. I have not used the Excaliber scroll saw very much. I got as good deal on it as part of a "package" and scroll sawing is one of the many new skills that I hope to acquire.

    Christian, I am glad that you enjoyed the step-by-step photos and words. AT times I want a "traditional" workbench but at other times (like when I need to move things around), I am happy that I don't have one.

    Mark Singer, thanks for the compliments.
    Last edited by Frank Pellow; 12-21-2005 at 2:26 PM.

  15. #15
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    Frank, I'm not sure what I'm going to do for a finish. I've been researching various quarter sawn finishes and there are a lot of them. Most involve a stain or a analine dye followed by a glaze, etc. Some get pretty complicated. I bought a can of warm cherry oil based stain from General Finishes that I'm going to try on some scrap. Followed by some Arm a Seal. Lke what David Marks is always using. I'm hoping this will give me a good look. I want a redish tone versus a traditional dark mission look. I havn't posted any pictures yet but I will when I'm done. ~mark

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