Row Boat Bookcase

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Project by rwingnut posted 03-02-2014 03:24 PM 1646 views 7 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Had a new baby on the way and we did her room in a sea life / nautical theme. This is the row boat shaped book case that I made for her.

The shelves are attached with biscuits to the back and provides most of the strength. I was pretty new to biscuits at the time and was impressed how strong the joints were. The sides are 2 plies of 1/4” plywood with 1/8” relief cut every 1”.

The gunwales are strips of 2×4 that I joined, planed, and ripped. My uncle had recently given me his jointer and planer so I got a bunch of 2×4s to practice with. I ripped them to 1/8” thick and used the book case as the form to glue the strips up to the right curvature.

I used a Wagner HVLP conversion gun to spray sherwin-williams pro-classic. This was the first time I did any HVLP spraying. I really struggled to get the pressures right. I was either spraying as a mist or big globs. In the end the finish looked good, but I never was happy with how it was spraying.

I used trans-tint dyes on the gunwales. I really like the versatility you can get from dyes. 1:2:64 (orange:med. brown:water) is my go-to starting point. Then cabot pecan stain. When all the finishing was done, I used clear construction adhesive to join the gunwales to the book case.

12 comments so far

View JoeinGa's profile


3694 posts in 758 days

#1 posted 03-02-2014 03:30 PM

Nice! Sure to become a family heirloom!

-- Perform A Random Act Of Kindness Today ... Pay It Forward

View steve_in_ohio's profile


1167 posts in 361 days

#2 posted 03-02-2014 04:42 PM

wow, that is amazing, awesome job.

-- steve, simple and effective woodworking---

View woodbutcherbynight's profile


1311 posts in 1160 days

#3 posted 03-02-2014 05:06 PM

very nice

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

View deon's profile


2241 posts in 1777 days

#4 posted 03-02-2014 05:37 PM

Looks great!

-- Dreaming patterns

View SuburbanDon's profile


486 posts in 1745 days

#5 posted 03-03-2014 02:00 AM

Very cool.

-- --- Measure twice, mis-cut, start over, repeat ---



271 posts in 754 days

#6 posted 03-03-2014 02:07 AM

Awesome project.

View lanwater's profile


3100 posts in 1685 days

#7 posted 03-03-2014 05:50 AM


Well done.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA

View Steve Cherry's profile

Steve Cherry

115 posts in 582 days

#8 posted 03-03-2014 02:47 PM

Beautiful – your daughter is a lucky little girl to have a talented Dad like you. Keep up the good work.

-- Steve - Seaford, DE

View majuvla's profile


3924 posts in 1618 days

#9 posted 03-04-2014 07:05 PM

Beautiful bookcase, very nice idea, perfect execution.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Fishinbo's profile


11353 posts in 927 days

#10 posted 03-07-2014 04:20 PM

Cool bookcase! Like the shape and color which is perfect for the sea life theme of the room. Great job!

View rwingnut's profile


8 posts in 872 days

#11 posted 03-07-2014 05:22 PM

Thanks everyone for all the nice comments.

View helluvawreck's profile


16043 posts in 1618 days

#12 posted 03-07-2014 05:42 PM

I’ve always liked these. You did a really nice job on this one.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

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