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Bookshelf by Myself

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Project by Thuan posted 2353 days ago 1646 views 4 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is the first project I built with my Biscuit joiner, this was five years ago. I had to wait until I moved to take the picture since books filled it. Funny thing is, the Freud joiner was the first dedicated power woodworking tool I bought (drill doesn’t count). I didn’t have a circular saw so I had the people at the big box store rip the plywoods down to 11-1/4” pieces so I can fit in the back of my hatchback. This is biggest size bookshelf I can make from a sheet of4×8’ -3/4” birch and a one 1/4” birch. I dug around enough to find a cool book match piece for the back panel. Stock inside corner molding and 1×2 made up the trims. Unfortunately I think it looks better without books covering up the panel.

-- Thuan





16 comments so far

View GaryK's profile

GaryK

10262 posts in 2587 days


#1 posted 2353 days ago

Looks great to me! Interesting story to go along with it also.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Bradford's profile

Bradford

1434 posts in 2422 days


#2 posted 2353 days ago

Excellent work, Thuan, the color of the finish is soft allowing the grain to shine through. water based finish? and the trim accents the shelving nicely. I like the whole look of the shelving. And yes, it does look good without a lot of books.

-- so much wood, so little time. Bradford. Wood-a-holics unanimous president

View cajunpen's profile

cajunpen

14363 posts in 2665 days


#3 posted 2353 days ago

Great looking book case – the book match look of the back panel really sets it off.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased." http://www.cajunpen.com/

View Tomcat1066's profile

Tomcat1066

942 posts in 2395 days


#4 posted 2353 days ago

Nice job Thuan! Very nice bookshelf. Love that back piece you used!

-- "Give me your poor tools, your tired steel, your huddled masses of rust." Yep, I ripped off the Statue of Liberty. That's how I roll!

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2421 days


#5 posted 2353 days ago

This is a really nice looking bookcase. To think that it was made without any power tools makes it all that more remarkable. I agree about the books. Let the inherent beauty of the wood show.

Thanks for the post.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View SPalm's profile

SPalm

4755 posts in 2481 days


#6 posted 2353 days ago

Very nice piece of furniture! Well done. Good choice of woods, proportions, and finish.
I like it.

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View KDL's profile

KDL

36 posts in 2366 days


#7 posted 2353 days ago

Nice case. I like the proportions, including the face frame on the center shelf while the rest are recessed. And I’ve always been fond of letting the natural color of the wood show, so I like the finish. I’ve had mixed luck with Big Box store plywood – mostly I can’t find a good sheet, let alone something to book match. Nicely done.

Did you biscuit the face frames, and if so, did you use face frame biscuits or 20’s that you trimmed? I assume the shelves biscuited to the case – did you screw them from the sides and plug, or clamp them?

The case looks like it’s held up to use. Would you use the same construction again?

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 2469 days


#8 posted 2353 days ago

I like it. Most book shelfs look great without books but we alway wait until we have so many books the book shelf becomes an necessary piece of furniture.
I also like the size and that you used up all the plywood very little waste.
Keep up the great work.

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View Thuan's profile

Thuan

203 posts in 2417 days


#9 posted 2353 days ago

Thanks everyone,
Bradford is right, three coats of waterborne poly. I finished it in the living room, so I needed something fast drying and none flamable.

Good eye KDL – Proportion is very important when resources are limited, I made sure the bottom portion is squared, then the top portion is close to the golden ratio, while not wasting wood nor cuts because cutting sheetgood by hand take lots of concentration. I think golden ration should not be an exact science -close enough is good enough. I biscuited the face frame together with # 20 and then trimmed it off. I wanted to use #10 but felt it was too weak. I needed a faceframe that would hold the 3/4” carcass square when I move it upstairs by my self.
The middle shelf is biscuited permanantly in place, the other shelves are adjustable. If I were to build it again, I would dowel the styles and rail, or do half laps joints with contrasting pegs, then biscuit the frame to the carcass.

-- Thuan

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15663 posts in 2818 days


#10 posted 2353 days ago

THis has a nice, clean, well-proportioned look to it. I really like it a lot.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Blake's profile

Blake

3434 posts in 2474 days


#11 posted 2352 days ago

This is great. It really shows what amazing work you can do with so few tools and space. Great use of “found” book matched veneer on the plywood.

-- Happy woodworking! http://www.openarmsphotography.com

View mrtrim's profile

mrtrim

1696 posts in 2479 days


#12 posted 2352 days ago

you are truly an amazing guy thuan , great looking project ! well done

View arcarius's profile

arcarius

16 posts in 2305 days


#13 posted 2305 days ago

Looks very good!

-- Young Padiwan Woodworker

View rikkor's profile

rikkor

11295 posts in 2474 days


#14 posted 2305 days ago

Very nice. You did a good job on this bookcase.

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13337 posts in 2272 days


#15 posted 1715 days ago

Nice looking bookcase.

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

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