twin bed with drawers

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Project by ewinger posted 03-04-2013 04:35 AM 1453 views 2 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I am building a twin bed with three large drawers in the bottom of the bed. i have completed two of them as you can see here but with great difficulity as i am trying to build the drawers with the bottoms mount in dados. this is the thrid project I have built with drawers and the other two I gave up and just screwed or nail the bottoms to the drawers. My problem is trying to get the bottom to the right size. No matter what i do it comes to big and i try to cut it down and ends up to small. Is there a simple trick i am missing when i measure the drawer? I am using pine for the enter project as my niece wants to paint it black to match a new dressing table she got for christmas. The drawer are running on hard wood strips.

-- Bill ewinger

3 comments so far

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


2302 posts in 1833 days

#1 posted 03-04-2013 04:46 AM

The math should be simple, that being said life is rarely simple. The correct measurement should be the inside width of the drawer plus the size of the dados you cut into the frame. For example 22’ drawer width plus 1/8” dados on each side should be, (notice should) 22 1/4” width. At best you might have to shave a “tad” down to account for movement and such but this has worked for me and I make drawers all the time, including fixing ones people bring me that are broken. Those drawers look rather long and you might be having a problem with spread in the middle where the drawer sides bow some. I have fixed that when it was a real issue by putting in a extra peice across the middle that only stuck up into the drawer about a 1/4 inch. This piece drew the middle together to keep the correct distance. Hope this helps.

-- Live to tell the stories, they sound better that way.

View DocSavage45's profile


7658 posts in 2266 days

#2 posted 03-04-2013 06:21 PM

Is it pine? Expansion and contraction? Hardwood rails?

I might consider makinga repeatable jig to get same results. The jigs sometimes take as long as the project…LOL

Your have a great customer. :)

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View frosty50's profile


46 posts in 1771 days

#3 posted 03-04-2013 07:26 PM

With extension or Euro drawer glides, the standard of thumb is to make the face of the drawer box 1” narrow than the opening of the face frame. I try to use baltic birch 1/2 plywood for the boxes and use either 1/4” or 1/2” plywood for the drawer bottoms with a 3/16-1/4 dado for them to set in. For insert (recessed) drawer fronts make the overall width and length an 1/8” less than the overall opening size, for overlay, I normally add an inch to the overall dimensions. To hide the lamination of the plywood that is exposed at the top, i glue on a 1/4” strip of wood, usually something in contrast to the baltic birch, use a router with ball bearing flush bit and trim. Everyone really likes the contrast. Only have to use a trammel base to the router which will span from front to back, side to side of the box for stability. Hope this helps.

-- frosty

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