Lower Case

The lower, two-drawer chest lias to be able to carry its own weight and also that of the tall bookshelf that sits on top. So you want to give it a solid beginning. The sturdy case shown above will fill this bill.

THE BASICS, Take a close look at the drawing above and you'll see how the case goes together. The sides of the case are plywood. But to divide the case I built lightweight, solid-wood web ├▒ames. Since wood movement in the sides won't be a problem, the web frames can be solidly joined and then glued to the case sides. The end result is a rigid, but lightweight case.

THE SIDES. As you can see in details 'a,' the web frames are joined to the case sides with a tongue and dado. This is a great way to build a case that will resist racking. So, once the case sides (A) are cut to size, you'll need to cut three lA"-wide dadoes in each one to hold the tongues of the web frames. A rabbet cut along the back, inside edge to capture the back panel will complete the two sides (detail'd').

THE WEB FRAMES. Now you can begin work on the three web frames that connect the sides. This will be a little more interesting.

Tile stub tenon and groove joinery (detail 'b') I used to assemble the frames is really pretty straightforward, but there are a few other "fine points" I want to mention. First, the frames don't show. So as I often do, I used a less expensive secondary wood. The front rail of the frames will be covered by the face frame added later on.

The tongues along the sides of the frames are cut after they're assembled. I just made siire that I allowed for the tongues v- hen I cut the front and back rails to ength.

The side rails of the frames will serve as the drawer runners. So these pieces need to be wide enough to extend beyond the inside edge of the face frame stiles you'll add to the case late r on.

You want the frames to fit flush with the front edge of the case sides and flush to the she ulder of the rabbet at the back edges. This lets you attach the back directly over the back rails of the frames.

When I glued up the frames, I tried to get them as consistent and square as possible. This will pay off during the case assembly.

NOTE: Sides are 1/4"-thick plywood

NOTE: Web frames constructed with stub tenon and groove joints

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