Elongate Holes For Wood Movement

reinforce the joints. Glue the dowels and cut them flush (Photo 5).

Plane the stock for the drawer faces (P). Make some extra pieces for test cuts. As with the top, make these pieces from the same board.

Center and trace a drawer label onto the front of each face, then cut out the opening using a jigsaw. Using a bearing-guided cove bit with a 1/8" radius, rout a molding on the inside of each face (Photo 6). Do this carefully-you'll be cutting against the grain at times. Glue the faces to the drawer boxes (Photo 7).

Complete the Case

With the drawers done, turn back to the case. Make or purchase the bead trim (S,T, and U; Fig. E). Rout the edges of a 3/4" thick board (Photo 8), then rip the edges 1/4" thick. Rip some of these pieces 1/2" wide to make the trim for the drawer dividers (R). You can rout the beads directly on the front rails (J), if you wish.

Cut the two drawer dividers slightly oversize, then glue the trim to one edge. Mill the front rails (J) extra-long. Glue trim to the pieces and cut them to length.

Cut dados in the cabinet's sides and back for the drawer dividers (Photo 9). Lay out the dados by measuring the front rail, drawers and drawer dividers, or use the actual pieces as spacers. Add about 1/32" above each drawer for play. Begin by laying out the bottom dado (its distance from the bottom edge is the sum of one front rail, one drawer, and 1 /32"). Cut this dado on both of the sides and the back, then temporarily clamp the case together (Photo 10). Place the front rail, drawer, and divider in place, then mark the next dado's location, and so on. When you get to the last drawer and put the top rail in place, you may find that the cabinet Is too tall.That's because its height was calculated as if the dividers are a full 1/2" thick, and usually this plywood is undersized. If there is a margin above the upper front rail, mark it, and cut down the sides and back.

With the case still dry-clamped, measure the length of the drawer dividers. Cut them so they slide in smoothly and snugly-you'll glue them in after the case is assembled. Insert the dividers back ward and mark the rear edge for the correct depth (Photo 11). Remove the dividers and cut them to size.

Measure and cut the cleats (K, L). Drill and countersink pilot holes in the upper cleats and upper front rail for fastening the cabinet's top. Elongate the holes in the cleats to allow the top to shrink and swell.Glue and clamp the cleats in place (Photo 12). Reinforce the top cleats with screws after the glue dries.

Glue the case together (not including the drawer dividers). Note that the front rails are only connected to the sides by butt joints-adding the cabinet's top and bottom will sufficiently strengthen them.

Drill pilot holes in the top and fasten it to the case. Place the cabinet on its base and trace around it. Mark locations for screws to fasten the base to the sides and back. Drill and countersink these holes (elongate all holes, except the ones in the center). Fasten the base.

Stain and Finish

I like to stain and finish the inside of the cabinet, although it's not strictly necessary. Now's the time to do it,

Glue the face to the drawer. Before gluing, draw an oval on the drawer front using a black marker. If the face's opening is slightly larger than the label, the black oval allows the label to blend in.

Make bead trim for the shelf dividers, front rails, and sides. Rout the profile on a wider piece of wood, then rip the piece to create a 1/4" thick molding.

Cut dados across the sides and back to receive the drawer dividers. Lay out the dados by measuring the height of your drawers. Start with the lowest dado, then work your way up.

Make the sides and back, which are frame-and-panei assemblies. Begin by cutting grooves in the stiles and rails to receive the panels.

Order labels and knobs before building the cabinet. They're available in different shapes and sizes. Some types might require re-sizing the drawers a bit.

Reinforce the drawer's rabbet joints with a pair of dowels. Cut the dowels using a flush-cutting saw and sand smooth.

Make the drawers before gluing the cabinet together. With the drawers completed, you'll be able to lay out the dividers between the drawers with greater precision.

Each drawer front is a two-piece sandwich. The outer face, above, has an oval window to outline the label. Shape a molding around the window with a small cove bit.

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