We still haven't settled on our book storage plans. Now I'm
considering a design that would involve shelves on both sides of a
wide cabinet divided in the middle, but not in line with each other.
The cabinet would be 54" high by 48" wide, with a vertical divider a
little off-center. To one side of the divider there would be 4 shelf
spaces each 12" high. On the other side would be 3 shelf spaces, each
18" high. (all numbers approximate, I know the thickness of the wood
will change the exact dimensions). The dadoes on opposite sides of the
divider would then be about six inches apart.
All shelves would be fixed. There would be a face frame, and a back.
I'm wondering if I should simply make the cabinet as two separate
boxes, joining them together after both are assembled. That would give
me a double-thickness center divider, but there would be a 1x2
covering the seam anyway. This idea appeals to me because I think it
will be easier to handle two smaller, simpler units than one large
one. But if do decide to make the cabinet as a single unit, is it OK
to make dadoes in both sides of the center divider, as long as none of
them are in line with each other?
Dadoes on both sides of a sheet of plywood would be fine.
However, if it's easier to build two cases, do it. It's not that much
more material and there's nothing wrong with it, if the design calls for
a center divider. IMO a bookcase that is wider than it is tall looks odd
and.... sideways.... so a divider is nice, esthetically.
I'm starting a build-in bookcase project that will be 64" wide x floor
I'm breaking it up into two 32" wide cases for two reasons-- sheet goods
are 48" and who in their right mind would try to build a single case
that big. :-)
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
My "design" (more of a half-assed idea so far) was based on two factors:
the size and the weight of the books to be stored. These bookshelves
will hold books mostly, rather than the usual bric-a-brac. The spaces
available are 4' wide, but I don't feel quite right about shelves 48"
long. Plus, some of the books are very tall, but most are not. Thus I'll
need some tall shelf spaces and some less so.
I was originally going to make the lowest shelf tall and the rest
shorter, but if I need a divider anyway, I think it will add some visual
interest to break it up the way I described.
IMO a bookcase that is wider than it is tall looks odd
These bookcases will actually sit atop a set of existing cubbyhole units
that span a whole wall. The two new bookcases will be placed at either
end, with a TV in the middle. Assuming all goes well (and I live long
enough, given my less-than-efficient woodworking methods) I may complete
a faux built-in with a "bridge" over the TV between the two units.
Anticipating the obvious question, yes, I will be anchoring the units
into the wall as well.
That is, until the plan changes entirely. We'll see.
No problem structurally; however, you are going to be busier than a
one armed paper hanger in a wind storm trying to get everything
before your adhesive fires.
You are going to want the longest open time adhesive you can find.
I'd use epoxy with a slow hardener which will give you about 30
open time at 75F.
A good helper will be a big help.
That's an oldie. My Dad's version was "a one-armed paper hanger with an
itch". And yes, I now recognize that the choice is between building
separate units and bursting a blood vessel in my temple. I'm leaning
toward the former.
I've only used regular yellow wood glue, for wood anyway. I have used
two part epoxy for other things. Is there epoxy especially for woodworking?
There are lots of epoxy suppliers out there.
There are only 3-5 manufacturers of part A; however, there are
hundreds of part B suppliers which is where all the black art of
WEST Systems probably has the widest distribution.
I have a preference for System3.
Epoxy is basically an adhesive, it works very well gluing wood
You want standard laminating part A resin and the slowest
part B hardener for this project.
You will make life easier at assembly time by toe nailing shelves into
at assembly time, then clamping at final assembly.
When using a router for dado grooves, easiest solution is to make
two passes using a jig.
Leon has a jig he developed for the purpose.
Maybe he will post details again.
Sure, you have our permission to do that. Mine at least.
For that matter - should you want the shelves in the same plane - you can
cut the dado all the way through except for a few inches at each end and
notch the shelves appropriately.
A variation on notching the shelves would be to make rabbets...on one shelf,
make a 3/4 x 3/8 rabbet on the top; same on the other shelf but at the
bottom. Rabbet size depends on ply thickness but the goal is to have one
shelf rabbet resting on the other.
Still another variation that comes to mind would be to make a series of half
through slots, each maybe 2" long from each side but staggered so that none
go all the way through. Then cut fingers on the shelfs.
One of the joys of woodworking is that with a fertile mind one can come up
with all sorts of ways to complicate things. :)
On Wednesday, December 12, 2012 3:02:53 AM UTC-8, Swingman wrote:
I'd add a caveat, there ought to be LONG GRAIN extension of the central
ply through the thinned region. It's possible to orient the plywood
so that thinning it leaves only/mainly one ply, with grain parallel to the shelf.
That's gonna break REAL easy. Maybe won't survive attempted assembly.
OK, which ply is the "central" ply?
Most, if not all plywood has an odd number of plys by design,
specifically to mitigate warping.
It's possible to orient the plywood
Not so sure about that, especially if the dado fits what's going into it.
> Maybe won't survive attempted assembly.
That's a pretty strong statement ... got anything to back it up with?
Literally thousands of this type joint under my belt and have never
seen, or heard of any instance, of that happening.
All that means nothing in the greater scheme of things, basically, I'll
continue to take my chances that, providing everything fits as spec'ed,
it ain't gonna happen. :)
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