Because most philosophies that frown on reproduction don't survive.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

Bookcase Update

Some may recall that there's a project ongoing here to build a full size (7' by 3.5') bookshelf out of African Mahogany for the growing Darwin library.

Travels and such had slowed me down on working on the project, but I'd also run into logistical difficulties since the table saw I borrowed from a friend only has rails that allow cuts up to 32 inches wide, while I wanted to cut my selves to 42 inches. I made an attempt to use the wall as a guide by placing the table saw a measured distance away from the inside garage wall. Perhaps a good idea in theory, but it just doesn't work. (Drywall isn't click enough to slide against, for one thing.)

So some thought went into how do cut my shelfs, since I certainly didn't want to cut the project down to a 32in wide shelf.

The solution (which seems to have worked well) is as follows. I bought a 4ft pine 1x12 and also a 2x4. I then borrowed a circular saw and bought myself a square and set of clamps. I cut a piece from the 2x4 and nailed it down to my workbench to get myself an end guide. Then I cut the 1x12 (using the squire to guide both cuts) down to 1.5in shorter than my finished shelf height (since the clearance on the circular saw is 1.5in).

I then took the rough shelves I had (which were cut to about three inches over finished length) and first clamped down the square and cut off a 1.5in piece, and then flipped it around, put the 1x12 guide on top, clamped everything down, and made the second cut. (You can see this rig in the photo above.)

This netted me out a set of shelves that are all exactly the same width, except the top one which I cut 1.5in over, since I want that to go all the way across the cap the sides.

So far so good. The next steps are routing out the slots for the shelves to go into, and sanding everything to a nice smooth finish. More updates to come...


Foxfier said...

*fights against lusting after building stuff*

Rick Lugari said...

Hey - that's the same way they do it at IKEA...