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holes. The top edge of each oak piece should be flush with the top surface of the particleboard. It's good to sand the particlcboard after edging it, to ensure youVe got a smooth, flat surface for the laminate. Fill the counterbored holes with wood plugs.

Spread an even coat of contact cement on the substrate and on the underside of the laminate. When the adhesive is dry to the touch, you're ready to laminate. You don't get a second chance to align the laminate on the substrate, so take care with this step. With a small top like this one, you can align the back edge of the laminate with the back edge of the substrate and slowly drop the laminate down until full contact is made. Use a roller or a flat, heavy block of wood to press the laminate down firmly.

To finish up the top, rout a chamfer along the outside edge. A 45* carbide-tipped chamfering bit will trim the excess laminate from around the top edges and also cut a smooth chamfer into the oak edge strips. This gives the top a crisp finished appearance.

Doors and a Drawer

The full overlay doors are two identically sized pieces of edge-banded plywood. I allowed for a '/g-in. gap between the doors when they're closed. To hang the doors, you'll need four concealed, European-style hinges that open 125*. Mail order suppliers and woodworking supply outlets stock different brands of these hinges. Order self-closing versions so you won't need to mount dcx>r catches. You'll also need to buy a matching mounting plate for each hinge.

If you haven't used European-style hinges before» you'll be suq^rised at how easy they are to install. Following the manufacturer's instructions, drill rwo 35-mm-dia. holes in each door for the hinge cups. Then screw the mounting plates to the cabinet sides and attach the hinges to the plates. The hinges allow you to adjust door alignment easily.

Strength is important for workshop drawers. So I joined the drawer sides to the front with sliding dovetails. (See Fig. 2.) This type of joint is easy to make with a router and a dovetail bit. Always cut the dovetail socket first, Lay out each socket centerline I Vj in. from each end of the drawer front and stop the socket in. from the front's top edge. Cut the sliding tails in the sides on the router table, using the same dovetail bit. Guide the faccs of each side against the router table fence to cut snug-fitting dovetails. (For an alternate method of making these "French" dovetail drawers, see page 40.)

Complete the remaining drawer joinery as shown in Fig. 2, then assemble the drawer and install the slide hardware. The shelf slide hardware mounts to cleats inside the case and has angle brackets so that it can be screwed to the underside of the slide-out shelf.

Finishing Up

After a final sanding, two coats of polyurethane will make your cabinet not only look good, but also hold up well. Make sure to finish the interior of the cabinet too.

Here's some advice about installing the casters. You might need to adjust the thickness of the caster blocks to get the top of your cabinet even with the top surface of your tablesaw.

Oncc you've completed a shop cabinet like mine, you'll be surprised at how useful it is. And if your spouse gets a look at it, you might have to explain why it shouldn't move into the kitchen. ▲

Tune in to the tenth season of The New Yankee Workshop as host Norm Abram builds furniture inspired by antiques from the southeastern United States.

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Strength, speed, and precision. The author's drawer-making system offers the strength of sliding dovetails where drawer sides meet the front. Here, he uses an air nailer to secure the hack to the sides.

French-Dovetailed Drawers, the easy way

Build strong drawers fast with a router jig and a dovetail bit by Paul Saporito

The sliding—or Frcnch—dovetail is a wonderfully scrong joint for a drawer. Full-length dovetails on the ends of the drawer sides are glued into dovetailed sockets in the drawer front, making an unbeatable mechanical joint that resists pulling apart. With a French dovetail, the drawer front extends past the drawer sides, making this joint a good choice when you're using mechanical slides, or where a drawer overlavs the front of a cabinet.


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This jig allows you to rout a l^-in.-wide dovetail socket with a '/¿-in. offset in V4-in.-thick drawer fronts. By inserting a sled in the jig, you can rout a half-dovetail socket in l/^-in.-thick drawer sides. The dimensions shown fit a router with a 53/4-in.-dia. baseplate; you'll need to alter the position of the fences and strips to suit your own router's baseplate diameter or to change the desired offset.

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Wood Working 101

Wood Working 101

Have you ever wanted to begin woodworking at home? Woodworking can be a fun, yet dangerous experience if not performed properly. In The Art of Woodworking Beginners Guide, we will show you how to choose everything from saws to hand tools and how to use them properly to avoid ending up in the ER.

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