Man Cave Work Shop #3: Epic Fail

  • Advertise with us
Blog entry by IceCactus posted 02-10-2011 08:05 PM 1800 reads 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: The Properties of Wood Part 3 of Man Cave Work Shop series Part 4: A New Beginning »

Wow, 2 posts in a day! I am trying to catch up to where i am actually at, and am hoping for some advice.

Two days ago, i assembled my storage locker frame (sanded and finished a couple days before that).

I took 2 platforms, and finger tightened them to the posts in the MIDDLE of the posts. I figure this way, i can work outwards and it would cause less stress on the platforms. So i then tightened up those 2 platforms and installed the remaining 2 towards the bottom of the posts. All went good and they drew the carriage bolts into the wood just fine. Except for 1, one of the middle ones i realized i didn’t draw it in enough, so i went back and tighten it some more and i hear CRACK, the glue joint let go and screw was allowing joint to deflect. Now this board was a bit thinner so i figured it just didn’t have enough glue surface.

So i continued on, installing the 2 platforms towards the top. Got 3 of the 4 bolts in on the first platform and boom, another joint let go, ok, that sucks, on to the last platform. Well the last platform i barely tightened down and the joint let go…at this point im ticked off, and stopped for the night, next morning i come out and see that 3 of the 4 joints on the top two platforms, the glue let go. I am pretty sure they let go the night before just not sure at what point.

Notice the gap in the lower left hand corner block? Now only the screw is holding it in, which you cant tighten at all as the screw just allows the block to deflect.

A couple more pics showing the gap on other pieces..

So, at this point, I’m starting to wonder if i should continue using these plans. Obviously i have to redo some things and make these platforms stronger. I am not sure what happened or why some of them i could crank down and some just seemed to let go with very little force.

Some things i noticed and rambling thoughts…

1) Gluing and nailing the shelf to the platform would certainly strengthen it by a lot and i kinda doubt this would have happened. What i dont understand though, is the plans show every single screw and tell you which pieces to glue. The only thing they say about the shelf is,

The shelf is then wrapped with a
rabbeted front, back, and ends.
Now, there are a couple things
I want to point out. First, the rabbeted
pieces don’t extend the full
length and width of the shelf, as
illustrated in the Top View of Figure
2. What this does is create a
notch on each corner. This notch
is where the posts fi t and give the
cabinets their rigidity.

Theres no fastener in the diagram or anything. So i assumed they just sat in the platform. Treeman here on Lumberjocks who also used this plan, said that he brad nailed his shelf to the platform and never had the issues im experiencing. Somewhat confirming it could possibly help.

2) I took one platform apart and it looks like very little wood was torn out. I am going to take a pic of this tonight and post it. Isn’t glue suppose to tear the wood out before the glue lets go? I know i messed up on one platform and i tried to break it apart and had to really whack at the corner piece to get it off and it took out like 1/4” of the wood with it.

3) The screw isnt holding as well as i would like, so i thought about trying to use my kreg pocket hole jig and use 2 pocket holes on each side of the corner block to fasten making it stronger.

4) Some of the joints (only tried 1 or 2 that didn’t break), i could tighten enough that it was actually crushing the wood corner block!

3 comments so far

View Dragonsrite's profile


136 posts in 3426 days

#1 posted 02-10-2011 08:43 PM

Drawing the carriage bolts into the wood means that you’re putting a significant force on a wedge with nothing to hold it but the, more or less, end-grain glue joints.

1) You could glue the platform material on the frames before installing them in the posts which would give you some long-grain joints.

2) Countersink the holes for the carriage bolt heads; then you wouldn’t need to apply anywhere near as much force on the joints.

-- Dragonsrite, Minnesota

View JamesVavra's profile


304 posts in 3345 days

#2 posted 02-10-2011 11:01 PM

That end grain to long grain glue joint just isn’t going to be very strong. Attaching the shelf surface first, as suggested above, will give you a much more rigid assembly. I’d glue that down in addition to the brads that treeman used.


View IceCactus's profile


45 posts in 2722 days

#3 posted 02-11-2011 12:23 AM

I’m beginning to think you glue/nail the shelf to the platform, thats how the plan creator intended but just didnt specify. I looked over the plans again today, and i noticed that for the MDF top, it says to wrap it in solid wood and shows it in the diagram, but doesnt tell you how to attach it, it just says wrap, there no nails/screws etc. So You have to attach it somehow.

Found another spot in the plans where they make a small wall shelf, well the diagram has to be missing some screws somewhere, as theres no way it would hold to the wall. How does piece BBB attach? gluing/nailing shelf top would make more sense.

Based on the last 2 finds, im thinking it was left out for some reason or the creator thought it was obvious.

Have your say...

You must be signed in to post the comments.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics