About a year ago I wanted to make a cabinet for my recently finished screen
porch but really didn't want to have to haul stuff from HD so I used what I
Vertical partitions were made from whitewood 2x4s ripped up into 1/2 x 1
3/4 +- pieces. They were glued up into rails and stiles with a 1/4" through
dowel in each corner. There was a mid-stile between rails as I planned to
use shelf clips for a less than total depth shelf. The frames were covered
both sides with glued on 1/4 ply or hardboard, or 1/8 ply doorskin
material...whatever I had available. Takes a lot of clamps for that, I used
1" rings of 2 1/2" PVC pipe with a slot so they can be spread apart. I
didn't have to make the clamps, had them left over from onetime I made a
pram and needed them to glue on gunnels.
Face frames were more ripped up 2x4s.
The cabinet is about 72 x 24, all one piece but looks like two because half
of it is about 10" lower than the other to fit under a window. Cabinet
bottom was a piece if 1/2 (or maybe 5/8) mel board I had left over from
something or another. Tops were pieces of 3/4 fir ply. The top of the
lower portion is actually two pieces of ply, didn't have enough odds and
ends to make it one piece.
Door frames (four doors) is poplar I had left over. I did buy a piece of
1/2" MDF for the panels, hated to do it but I had nothing suitable.
Now as to the finish...
We have one of those PVC patio sets on the porch. The table top is round
and fiberglass, top surface is irregular; i.e., "controlled
I wanted my cabinet tops to have a similar appearance but wasn't about to
make a mold from the table and make a fiberglass one so I used drying type
joint compound; smeared it on and around with a trowel, let it dry, smoothed
as desired with a damp sponge. Once dry, it got 2, maybe3, coats of glossy
white polyurethane (I had it on hand) rolled on. Looks great, was cheap and
is easy to clean. True, it won't resist a sharp blow but it is just fine in
normal use and whenever we have flamenco dancers as guests I tell them to
stay off the cabinet :)
My main reason for this post was to tell you about creating a furniture
finish with drywall compound. One of the hardest things for me to do is get
painted surface as I lack spray equipment; consequently, I don't
try. One can get a uniformly pebbled finish by rolling on paint - I use a
1/4" foam roller - and rolling again when the paint is tacky enough to form
little peaks and not so tacky that the peaks won't sag a bit.
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