Downstairs Built-ins Extravaganza! #5: I got a little more done today than I thought I would!

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Blog entry by BethMartin posted 04-12-2009 05:15 AM 1178 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: The saw and I get chummy Part 5 of Downstairs Built-ins Extravaganza! series Part 6: Inside of drawer case is done. »

I wasn’t sure that I would have any free time today to do any work on my project. And yesterday was my 40th birthday, so I expected to be tired and hungover. ;P But I wasn’t too bad off.

I was waiting for a dado insert for the table saw, and I got that the other day. So really I had no more excuse not to start on this thing, other than nerves.

All my plywood was already cut into 2’x8’ pieces, but I still had to rough cut that into smaller pieces with the circular saw. Then I ripped them to the widths that they needed to be. Then I used the panel cutting sled that I’d made to square them up and cut their final length. That sled was really nice! Made things very easy.

Then came the dadoes and the rabbets. The adjustable dado takes some getting used to – I did a lot of practice cuts with it in order to get it to just the right width. I am really good at taking sawblades on and off now.

I only made one mistake cutting, and had to use my extra plywood that I had. I did it when I had about 2 cuts left and was getting cocky thinking, “hey I did all that without making any mistakes, I rock”. Totally jinxing myself.

Anyhoo, here are some pics from when I was checking to make sure there wasn’t any glaring errors. It might look a little wonky because I didn’t snug it together all the way, and the pieces are mostly leaning on each other. (This is the back)

My son in there for scale – though I think he makes it look smaller!

Before I glue it all up, I want to figure out the drawer slides and get them situated on there. I have slides for the top three drawers, but I forgot that I need to get some for the bottom four. I’m thinking that instead of using the extra face frame hardware, I will just build out where the drawer slides will go, then the slide will be supported it’s whole length (better for the big drawers), and the slide won’t be too visible from the front since I can set it back from the face frame if I do flush-front drawers.

So far, so good. I did my first dadoes. :) Another big thing I learned was that the shopvac doesn’t really do too much with your table saw sawdust when you forget to turn it on. I swear half my cuts I forgot to turn on the shopvac.

OMG I’m so tired now. I didn’t realize how much I beat myself up until I just sat down. I am going to be sore tomorrow!

-- Beth

8 comments so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18290 posts in 3703 days

#1 posted 04-12-2009 05:43 AM


You didn’t give any credit to your little helper! :=) Happy Birthday! Congrats on your discovery of muscles you never knew you had ;-))

I was wondering how you are doing a few minutes ago, now, here’s your blog ;-)) It’s a migraine thing. Premonitions are common in migraineurs. I just wish I could dial up the Lotto numbers on demand ;-((

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Karson's profile


35125 posts in 4427 days

#2 posted 04-12-2009 05:44 AM

It’s looking great. Kids like to climb into things. I put mine into some 30” deep drawers.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View lew's profile


12102 posts in 3782 days

#3 posted 04-12-2009 05:46 AM

40! NoWay!!

Looks like a really great start!!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View PurpLev's profile


8536 posts in 3675 days

#4 posted 04-12-2009 06:25 AM

looks good ! happy bDay!

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4126 days

#5 posted 04-12-2009 06:30 AM

You are on your way!

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View BethMartin's profile


111 posts in 3405 days

#6 posted 04-12-2009 07:20 AM

Thanks, everybody!

Barry~ I’m trying to remember what the plywood I got is called. It’s actually really nice with mahogany on one side, but the picture is taken from the bottom where all the not-so-pretty sides are. But I think it should be good. :)

-- Beth

View robbi's profile


176 posts in 3982 days

#7 posted 04-12-2009 08:56 AM

Nice job…looking forward to the next post.

-- Robin, California

View BethMartin's profile


111 posts in 3405 days

#8 posted 04-14-2009 03:12 AM

Can you guys see my big mistake? I just figured it out today. I made the top three drawers equal sized, but that won’t work with the face frame being wider on the sides than in-between the drawers. But luckily, the face frame will be wide enough to compensate for the wrong placement of those dividers between the drawers, and no one will be the wiser. ;)

-- Beth

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