|Project by Waldo88||posted 06-22-2016 03:14 PM||1330 views||28 times favorited||14 comments|
I designed and built this credenza for the TV room as an entertainment center and toy storage. This is the centerpiece of the room we spend the most time in. We have a preschooler and baby, so being kid safe and durable was a big design concern.
There are no sharp edges or doors to slam little fingers in (plus the doors in the tv stand this replaced were broken by “taking rides”). It is sized so that the TV is at optimum viewing height from the couch. The rule of thirds was used to get the proportions right, and the legs are placed at the halfway point of the outer quarters. The legs are angled 15 degrees on the long dimension and 7.5 degrees on the short dimension.
It is made of walnut, walnut plywood, maple, maple plywood, and birch plywood. I’m not sure what to call the casework construction technique, but I built it this way to have solid edges all around; edges tend to be the failure point for plywood casework, plus I really like the rounded look. To me rounded edges is a refinement you’ll only ever see in custom pieces, its just not commercially viable to build something that way.
It is finished with homemade Danish oil (1/3 BLO, 1/3 Poly, 1/3 MS) first and then a coat of lacquer.
The drawer pulls are a bit unusual, they were on an old built-in that was original to our house that previous owners had moved into the garage. They were well made and in great condition. Since this piece was made to look like and inspired by original midcentury pieces, it seemed fitting to use them; chrome is some old-school cool.
I have a little shop and don’t have a table saw, power planer, or jointer, but do love using handplanes. It seemed a bit daunting to build a large casepiece using mostly hand tools (incl powered), but once I figured out how to do everything it really was no big deal.
More construction pics:
This thing was too big for my shop, so it was built in the garage. All of the plywood cuts were made with a circular saw on 2×4’s against a fence (plywood makes a great fence).
Dadoes and rabbets were made using my router against some fences. The back (1/2” birch ply) is glued into rabbets all around. The two dividers are glued into dadoes.
I wanted the face frame/edge banding to be double thickness. I added an extra band of plywood all around to support it; it was also much easier to cut the t-track slots that way. The divider, while maple ply, has walnut edging. I wanted the inside light colored to make it easier to see things.
I used dowels to align the face frame/edge banding. It was cut piece by piece to really nail perfect miters.
The first step in finishing. I put the DO on before building the legs if for no other reason than to add a bit of durability.
I didn’t have enough walnut plywood to make the drawer fronts, so I made some myself using some walnut veneer I had. I was going to use some walnut boards I had, but it didn’t match the walnut ply well at all (steamed vs. unsteamed I think). A simple vacuum press makes veneering easy.
I had to make a prototype to get the legs right.
The legs are made from solid walnut. They were shaped using a spokeshave, angle grinder, rasp/files, and sanding. All solid wood stock prep (incl drawers) was done with handplanes; I don’t have a power planer or jointer.
The connections are doweled, but I also used a reinforcing block inside the joint, cut with the grain direction so that there is no end grain in a glue joint.
The legs are only attached to the case via 3 screws in each of the cross stretchers (that line up exactly with the internal dividers). There isn’t really a need for more, but attaching closer to the center was important to keep bow out of the visible stretchers.
Drawers are made from solid maple, with box joints all around. The drawers slide on a waxed pieces of maple on the inside of the case, on a dado cut into each side of the drawer. Smooth as butter.
I put walnut edging on the shelves as well. The shelf pin holes were drilled using a jig I made from a piece of scrap pine, the holes in the jig were made on the drill press.