TV and Hi-Fi Unit

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Project by Don Johnson posted 10-16-2010 01:20 PM 1944 views 2 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

When we swapped our old CRT TV for a modern slimline version, my wife decided that the old cabinet had to be replaced, by something in oak to match other lounge furniture, and this is the result.
I struggled with Sketchup to produce the design, but since watching I am sure i could do it more easily now.
The bottom sections house a Hi-Fi unit, a 300-CD player, a DVD player and the TV Tuner. The smoky glass doors keep the system looking neat, whilst still allowing the remote controls to operate OK. There is no back to get in the way of the cables, but there is plenty of room for multi-way mains sockets.

-- Don, Somerset UK,

7 comments so far

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Don Johnson

671 posts in 2474 days

#1 posted 10-16-2010 02:34 PM

Hi Deke, thanks for the kind comments. Yes, the base, sides and the top are veneered plywood.
I used (several) biscuits to attach the sides to the front and back frames, and to attach the base to the frames and the sides. I initially intended to use rails, but realised that the 3/4 inch ply was thick enough for the biscuits, so rails were not really needed. I would not consider this ‘fine woodwork’ but it worked for me.
The top was finally attached by pocket screws as it was easier to put all the units and cables in place from above and then put on the lid.
I used 3/4 inch veneered ply as it was available from a local place called ‘Woodpile’, as slightly damaged 8×4 ft sheets, but was cheap! If I’d had to buy full price board, then I would probably have used thinner material and then rails.

-- Don, Somerset UK,

View workerinwood's profile


2716 posts in 2761 days

#2 posted 10-16-2010 03:15 PM

Beautiful !! I like the design, clean lines. Nice build.

-- Jack, Albuquerque

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786 posts in 2226 days

#3 posted 10-01-2011 01:40 PM

Fits with the style of the T.V. very nice design and finish.

-- The pig caught under the fence is always the one doing all the squealing !

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4609 posts in 2729 days

#4 posted 11-15-2011 09:31 PM

I was just browsing and I found this project. Good design, Don. Nice clean lines and ‘sexy’ smoked glass doors.

Well done on working through Sketchup. I mastered a thing called TurboCAD a few years ago so I think I may stick to that

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

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Don Johnson

671 posts in 2474 days

#5 posted 11-15-2011 11:01 PM

Thanks for the kind comments BritBoxmaker – but it would take me years to get up to your standard.

However, I do think I can give you some advice – if you haven’t already, give Sketchup a try!

As the IT Director/Manager/Analyst/programmer/maintenance engineer/head cook and bottlewasher, I was familiar with TurboCAD and AutoCad before I retired, and they were good in their day, but Sketchup is in a different league for functionality, ease of use and versatility – and has the distinct bonus of being free!

As I has been mentioned elsewhere, like all these ‘clever’ programs one has to invest some time in learning how to use it – my normal approach of ‘poke it and see what happens’ got me started, but I was unable to really get anywhere until I found the excellent – free – tutorials provided by Jos P Zeh at

The tutorials can be downloaded onto your own PC, so can be run ‘offline’ and stopped/started/re-run without continued use of the ‘net, which was the first good point. (Download them in the background whilst doing something else – perhaps using a free download manager – eg GetGo!)

I took my time and worked through the tutorials starting from the basics, and quickly realised where I had previously made life difficult for myself. As Joe says, ‘As soon as a part takes 3D shape make it a component’ – and preferably put it on its own layer as well. It takes but a few moments to do so (hardest part is thinking of a name) but the reward is that parts can be manipulated/copied/edited easily – and they do what you expect. Suddenly I ‘got’ Sketchup, and started to make real progress.

Joe’s tutorials are videos of him actually using Sketchup (I found Jing as a result of this) and he has left in the odd error and necessary correction so you also see how to do things ‘wrong’ as well as ‘right’, which is very comforting – especially when you get more experienced and can see that he has pressed the wrong button before he does! He has a pleasant teaching voice and manner, which makes learning quite enjoyable.

I cannot recommend these tutorials enough, they would be worth paying a lot of money for – but then I would probably have never bothered with them if I’d had to pay for them before using them.

When I look at the Sketchup drawing above, I realise just how far I have progressed with Jos Zeh’s help. I’m currently making a pair of two-part bookshelves for my son, and by designing it in Sketchup I could easily modify it to suit my son’s changing ideas. Also, with the free ‘Cutlist’ plugin, I was easily able to produce a list of pieces to be cut from 8’ x 4’ veneered MDF boards by Avon Plywood, so that I could get them into my Citroen C3 which could not have coped with the full boards unless it was temporarily changed into a Tardis!

You may have realised by now that I’m a bit of an evangelist for Sketchup – and Jos Zeh. LOL

I’m sure you could make even more complex boxes with Sketchup.

-- Don, Somerset UK,

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4609 posts in 2729 days

#6 posted 11-16-2011 03:45 PM

Thanks, Don. When I get some time I’ll give it a try.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

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