lonnie Bird

Shape the panel

Next, I dry assemble the framework and measure for the panel (Photo 17). I size the panel 1/2" wider and longer than the opening in the frame.This allows for the panel to fit 1 /4" into the groove around the perimeter, leaving a 1/16" clearance.

Like tabletops, drawer fronts and chest lids, door panels are a show surface. I use one wide board for a door panel and look through my stash for stock with dramatic, showy figure. When making a matching pair of doors I'm careful to select matched stock for the panels.

Once I've flattened the panel and milled it to size, it's ready for shaping. Traditional door panels have a beveled edge which creates a raised field, or center.There are a variety of router bit profiles to choose from to make a beveled edge (Fig. G).When using these bits, be sure that your router is securely mounted in the table. Make certain that the bit is secure in the collet (Photo 18). Large horizontal panel-raising bits require a powerful router with variable speed. You may want to choose a vertical bit if your router has less than 3 hp. I prefer using a router table with a large top in order to support the panel (Photo 19), and use a barrier guard to keep my fingers out of harm's way (see Source, below). This guard, which I designed, sits right on top of the work-piece, ensuring an even cut.

Removing a lot of material requires taking a number of passes. I bevel the panel edges for a snug, but not tight, fit in the frame's groove (Fig. H). A snug fit allows the panel to float with seasonal changes in humidity while preventing the panel from rattling in the groove each time the door is opened.


Before assembly, 1 smooth all the surfaces of the panel and the inside edges of the frame; these areas will not be easily accessible after assembly. It's a good idea to finish the panel before assembly, especially if the finish includes a stain or dye. An unfinished surface will be exposed the first time the panel contracts during the dry winter months.

When clamping, I always work on a flat surface in order to avoid gluing a twist into a door (Photo 20). I apply the glue sparingly and carefully to avoid excess glue reaching the panel and gluing it in place. Once the glue has dried, I trim off the ears at the tablesaw.

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Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

Woodworking Tools and Installation Tips

There are a lot of things that either needs to be repaired, or put together when youre a homeowner. If youre a new homeowner, and have just gotten out of apartment style living, you might want to take this list with you to the hardware store. From remolding jobs to putting together furniture you can use these 5 power tools to get your stuff together. Dont forget too that youll need a few extra tools for other jobs around the house.

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