Is a jig saw less likely to create nasty tear-out here than a circular
saw? I would not have thought of it. My recollection of using one long
ago is that it doesn't leave as pretty of an edge but that it is a bit
easier to control. Of course, the router cleans up the edge.
I wouldn't bother covering the exposed edges, I'd figure out some way to
hide them completely. Here's the deal: I tried covering edges with a
piece of wood and then planing it smooth to the face of the plywood.
Some of the plywood was damaged during the planing process, even with the
plane taking a very fine cut.
On a later project, I added a strip of wood to the edge of the plywood
using tongue and groove joinery. This covered the edge of the plywood
nicely, and the difference in height was small enough that a sander took
care of it easily.
If you need a frame to support your plywood better, you can recess the
plywood down in to the frame. This has the benefit of not only
supporting the plywood but hiding the edges at the same time.
I've edged a lot of plywood with solid wood strips.
I use a router with a fat pattern bit and it creates flawless, perfectly
even seems with very little effort. It's much easier and more fail-safe
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
All are interesting ideas. IIUC, They still seem to leave the
"challenge" of flush-trimming to very thin veneers. Thank you for the
2 tips: practice makes perfect, and don't buy super-thin veneers.
Oh, one more: file it flush if you have trouble routing it. Use a fine
file and careful strokes toward the joint, always from the piece of
veneer which overlaps the other. Filing works well for plastic
The ultimate result of shielding men from folly
is to fill the world with fools.
-- Herbert Spencer
When working with plywood and frameless casework, don't discount iron-on
An iron, and two relatively inexpensive tools, will get you doing
professional looking work in no time:
Tip: It is best/more efficient to edge band component edges _before_
A fine bastard file, or sandpaper, can be used, lightly, to dress up the
edges after trimming.
On 10/25/12 12:47 PM, email@example.com wrote:
I tried that route (pun!) but for it's unnecessary and time consuming. The
strength is in the glue. Unless you're stacking anvils on your shelves,
you don't need that T&G.
I know those bits are supposed to help align perfectly, but they don't
Besides, if you're going to have to make all those passes with the
router, why not make two quicker passes with a pattern but and have
perfect seems? It's so much easier to just cut the edge strips a little
proud, glue them on without worrying about perfect alignment, and make a
quick pass on each side.
You have even do the pattern bit cutting on edge on a router table by
making a simple form to hold the shelves 90 perpendicular to the router
table. I actually use my slot/tenon cutting jig from my table saw.
"Playing is not something I do at night, it's my function in life"
A fine tooth handsaw, like a tenon saw, will often give better results but
it must be sharp. Running masking tape or Sellotape along the line of the
saw cut before cutting is an old trick to reduce break-away.
I presume you are talking about the thin veneer strip with the heat
sensitive adhesive that you iron on. Yes this works but the traditional
method would be to glue a thin strip of wood about 3/8" thick, of
appropriate width, along the edge. Usually you use a piece slightly wider
and plane/sand till flush with the plywood surface.
However, I have often been impressed just how thin they can cut veneer
these days. I have had ply where just a few strokes of the sandpaper, by
hand, has seen the veneer vanish so be careful.
On 10/26/2012 8:22 AM, Swingman wrote:
> On 10/25/2012 10:12 PM, Bill wrote:
>> I have several pages of notes and I definitely learned a lot from this
> To stiffen up that casework you posted a model of, capture your vertical
> dividers in dadoes instead of using butt joints with biscuits.
Thank you for looking at my drawing!
Since I lack a biscuit jointer and a TS, I was considering Lew's idea of
"fitting in" pieces of 1/4" plywood between vertical panels (attached to
the top and bottom) and on the ends. That would be largely equivalent to
biscuit joinery, wouldn't it? The top and bottom would also be "banded"
at the ends (resting on or in a rebate, respectively).
> Also capture the ends of the top and floor in dadoes in the top and
> bottom of the end panels ... that will strengthen the casework further,
> as well as hide the ends of those components.
Yes, that may be more attractive than just a band/rebate!
> (When you really must stiffen this type of casework to withstand hard
> use, drill holes and glue in dowels into each of the joins, thusly):
It's nice to see that you practice what you preach!
> Dowels can a contrasting wood in an attractive pattern if need be, or
> the casework top can be an secondary wood, with the real top attached to
> This method is an example of an old cabinetmaker's principle used to
> build casework that will not rack of sag that, paraphrased, goes like
> "If a case part joins another at a corner, dovetail it; if one part
> meets along another's length, use multiple through tenons."
> You can get much the same effect with dadoes and dowels, or use loose
> tenons, thusly:
> While you're in the planning stages you may want to contemplate using a
> separate top of primary wood, and putting the unit on a frame base,
> perhaps slightly smaller than the actual casework foot print ... you
> will likely find that sitting the casework directly on the floor, as
> drawn, is going to be unsatisfactory in the long run.
I see your point. I suppose I could use a hard wood like maple for the
frame base. I wouldn't expect Cherry ply to possess "compression
strength"; I think it might crumble. Of course, Cheery lumber would
probably work very well (if I could locate some 4/4). Is this thinking
Thank you for the thoughtful lesson!
A matter of looks and taste ... doing it that way sort of speaks of a
kludge to make up for lack of a tool and the skill to use it. If you
have to take those kinds of shortcuts, you should try to do it in a
manner that still makes the piece look like well made furniture.
Judging from your model, you can do all we've discussed with a router.
If you don't have one, a router, a complement of bits, and some jigs can
do excellent service in lieu of many tools, including a table saw and
From looking at your model, a frameof 3/4" plywood would be more than
sufficient for the job as a base, or stand.
Lots of ways to approach a frame to hold your casework, just a couple:
(for illustrating a separate _base_ upon which your casework sits ...
you don't have to make it in "toekick" style, but could use it, and
dimension and position it, more as a _stand_)
Or with solid wood, or banded plywood:
Or as fancy as having a base with drawers in it:
Lots of ways to skin that cat, both with plywood and wood. Keep in mind
that for most casework of the type in your model, including bases for
same, plywood is usually a better choice for wood due to its dimensional
stability ... IOW, you don't have to necessarily design your piece with
hard to effect joinery that would be necessary to take into account wood
movement, either from a lack of tools, or the fact that you're still
developing the skills to use them.
Not to mention that most of that "solid wood", expensive "fine
furniture" casework you see in furniture stores is often plywood with
edge banding ... for reasons of dimensional stability, cost and ease of
manufacture, but it still looks and performs like "fine furniture".
With a TV stand that's both a valid method, and an excellent goal to aim
I sent a reply to this message a few hours ago, but I don't see it.
To be brief, I have said more than once, "Woodworking keeps taking me
places I couldn't have anticipated...", and this is no exception. I'll
have to look into those biscuit eaters, or something. No, not a green
I noticed your base had about a 45 degree (or less) bevel on top. Did
you chest meet it with the reverse bevel, and is the purpose to help
give it a "solid feel"? I enjoyed looking at the pictures.
I smiled a little when I asked myself how long it would take me to make
one of those little drawers in the bottom of your chest! It doesn't
look at though you cut any corners on your chest! Nice joinery
throughout! : )
Thanks ... labor of love, for my youngest daughter, as a gift from her
aunt (my SIL wrote a check for the material, I did the hard part ... (we
all do what we do best)). <g>
I don't recall the top of the base being beveled, although it's been a
I'm sorry, it is/was an "illusion". The light colored center panel looks
higher than the edge of the panel even though it's not.
I was thinking of taking a picture of my "existing tv-configuration" so
you could appreciate why my first drawing may have looked good to me.
We're currently using a $25 Saulder (assemble-yourself) TV-stand that I
purchased in 1985. You could almost buy buy 2 tanks of gas for $25 back
then, but I can't complain about the value it has provided every day
since it went into service. I *am* shooting for the "fine furniture"
look now though, and I'm armed now with some new ideas while I
contemplate my second sketch.
BTW, I noticed some 2" metal braces screwed into the corners of your
base frame. Would such hardware make sense in plywood, afixed with
drywall screws, or would that be a waste of time? It seems like even
small blocks of wood, glued into the corners would be better than
nothing for my purposes, especially in the absence of dowels. Gosh, the
dowels may be a good idea to hold the base frame onto the base. I'll
keep thinking about it (all)!
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