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Low Entertainment Center #3: Biscuits, dry assembly, clamping strategies, and glueup

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Blog entry by thewoodwhisperer posted 09-21-2009 07:36 PM 2037 reads 1 time favorited 13 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Edge banding, dadoes, and rabbets Part 3 of Low Entertainment Center series Part 4: Prefinishing and Final Assembly »

The absolute worst time to find out you’ve made a mistake is while the glue is drying. So this part focuses strongly on the importance of a dry assembly, which I consider to be an essential part of the glue up process. By the end we’ll have a partially glue-up entertainment center.

A few of the topics covered in this part:

  • Gluing trim pieces.
  • Using biscuits.
  • Clamping strategies.
  • Using a wood filler to hide miter flaws.
  • Cutting the big bevels on the top and bottom trim.
  • Sanding.
  • Dry assembly strategy.
  • Measuring and cutting the back panels.
  • Initial glueup.

New Project Plan!!
If you are interested, we now have a digital plan available for this project. The set includes a PDF plan/cutlist and a full-featured Sketchup file. The download is available in the Wood Whisperer Store.

-- For free video tutorials and other cool woodworking stuff, check out http://www.TheWoodWhisperer.com



13 comments so far

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2698 posts in 2034 days


#1 posted 09-21-2009 08:09 PM

Good presentation as always, Mark.

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View thewoodwhisperer's profile

thewoodwhisperer

601 posts in 2931 days


#2 posted 09-21-2009 08:17 PM

Thanks Kent.

I also wanted to add a few thoughts since these questions came up on my blog. A few folks were wondering two things: why biscuits (and not Dominos), and why not cut the trim on the tablesaw? Good questions, but both have the same answer. The challenge with this project was to stick with minimal (or lower priced) tooling. So although you don’t need the biscuits for the trim, they really help a lot for alignment. And the biscuit joiner is probably the most realistic option for most people. But hands down, the Domino would have been a better choice if I were making this without the self-imposed challenge.

And the trim would be easier to cut on the tablesaw, but then you have to come up with a good clamping strategy using beveled cauls. Again, if i were making this without the “challenge”, I would probably still cut the bevel after the glueup. Only I would have used a tracksaw to make the cuts for better control.

-- For free video tutorials and other cool woodworking stuff, check out http://www.TheWoodWhisperer.com

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2698 posts in 2034 days


#3 posted 09-21-2009 08:28 PM

I was going to recommend using the Festool plunge saw, but realized you were showing the more common way to do this. Obviously the Festool saves a lot of measuring, and gives a cleaner cut. I do agree with the way you showed. Anyone has access to that method so it is more practical.

Thanks again.
Kent

-- She thought I hung the moon--now she just thinks I did it wrong

View thewoodwhisperer's profile

thewoodwhisperer

601 posts in 2931 days


#4 posted 09-21-2009 08:30 PM

It wasn’t until this project that I realized how hard it is to go back to more basic tooling. Every cut I made with my circular saw, I heard the siren’s song of the TS55 calling my name and my PM2000 was sending telepathic signals my way….....”Use me instead….....you know you want to…....” lol

-- For free video tutorials and other cool woodworking stuff, check out http://www.TheWoodWhisperer.com

View gbear's profile

gbear

412 posts in 2847 days


#5 posted 09-21-2009 08:33 PM

Nice job as usual Marc…very informative. Maybe a little blue tape along those dados would help remove that over-glue.

-- gbear, Carmichael, CA

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2569 days


#6 posted 09-22-2009 01:46 AM

This is another nice tutorial, Marc.

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

View Mike's profile

Mike

247 posts in 2130 days


#7 posted 09-22-2009 06:09 AM

Great job Marc! Like the video.

-- Mike, VT

View sandhill's profile

sandhill

2128 posts in 2671 days


#8 posted 09-22-2009 06:44 PM

I was looking at one of your earlier video POD casts and I have to say you have come a long way. Very professional and well done. Check your mail

View robbi's profile

robbi

176 posts in 2702 days


#9 posted 09-23-2009 04:05 PM

Marc,

Always enjoy your tutorials, can’t believe how much I learn just by watching you do stuff. Often it is very logical to do certain things but I seem to never think of the “simple” way, I always end up doing it the “hard” way…until I watch one of your videos….thanks for sharing your knowledge.

-- robbi-Yadahooty!

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112882 posts in 2324 days


#10 posted 09-23-2009 04:10 PM

Good Job Marc
I find it kind of Ironic that the the woodwhisperer has metal cabinets.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View thewoodwhisperer's profile

thewoodwhisperer

601 posts in 2931 days


#11 posted 09-23-2009 04:33 PM

Why? I’m the wood whisperer, not the plywood whisperer. ;)

Actually, I have a strong preference for storing my finishes and other potentially dangerous liquids in metal cabinets. I know they aren’t fire-rated or anything but it makes me feel a little safer. God forbid there was some sort of ignition, I would hope the metal cabinet would prevent or at least slow down the spread of the fire.

-- For free video tutorials and other cool woodworking stuff, check out http://www.TheWoodWhisperer.com

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112882 posts in 2324 days


#12 posted 09-23-2009 05:31 PM

Hey Marc
My comment was meant as an observation not as a criticism . As usual your approach is well thought out.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Beginningwoodworker's profile

Beginningwoodworker

13347 posts in 2420 days


#13 posted 09-26-2009 06:33 AM

Nice tutorial, Marc.

-- CJIII Future cabinetmaker

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