Low Entertainment Center #4: Prefinishing and Final Assembly

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Blog entry by thewoodwhisperer posted 10-01-2009 07:19 AM 2048 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Biscuits, dry assembly, clamping strategies, and glueup Part 4 of Low Entertainment Center series Part 5: Base Construction and Final Finish »

An important aspect of building furniture that many new woodworkers overlook, is the importance of finishing BEFORE the project is completely glued together. That’s the primary focus of this part of the series.

A few of the topics covered in this part:

  • How to deal with color differences between plywood and solid wood trim.
  • Raising the grain and applying water-based dyes.
  • Theory and application of wiping varnish.
  • Creating shelf pin holes for adjustable shelving.
  • Applying angled trim to the shelves.
  • Final glueup and clamping strategy.

Enjoy Lumberjocks!

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5 comments so far

View Mike's profile


252 posts in 3352 days

#1 posted 10-01-2009 02:30 PM

Looks nice Marc, again thanks for the video.

-- Mike, VT

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 4069 days

#2 posted 10-01-2009 07:16 PM

Great Video Marc.

I must be doing my workflow right because it is the same as yours:) On many projects I find it necessary to finish parts before assembly. Like you, I tape off the areas that I do not want sealed with the finish.

A nice side effect of prefinished parts is that glue squeeze out is a snap to wipe off the sealed surface.

For those that cannot spray, I also highly recommend a wiping varnish. I use pro-grade finishes and spray everything but among my finishing supplies you will still find a can of wiping varnish. The thin applications make it an easy finish to achieve success with.

Nice design detail by using the angled piece on the shelf. Those subtle details make all the difference in setting your work apart from the others as well as the manufactured lines.

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View Handi75's profile


377 posts in 3444 days

#3 posted 10-01-2009 07:50 PM


Very nice job on using Plywood. I’ve seen alot of plywood projects that didn’t look as good as what you have done so far on this piece. Congrats…


-- Jimmy "Handi" Warner,,, Twitter: @Handisworkshop, @HandisCreations

View Innovator's profile


3584 posts in 3383 days

#4 posted 10-01-2009 08:01 PM

Marc thanks for the tips.

Great looking piece and wonderful video.

-- Whether You Think You Can or You Think You Can't, YOU ARE RIGHT!!!

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 3792 days

#5 posted 10-02-2009 01:29 PM

This is another nice video and a good tutorial on finishing with a wipe on product. I am also glad to see that you provided info on formulating a home made wiping solution. It would have been easy to just have omitted this altogether since these are readily available but I have always advocated making your own since it is more economical than buying a commercial product. Another advantage of reformulating varnishes to a wiping product is the extension of the shelf life of the product since the varnish is in solution and does not have the oxygen exposure that the neat product does.

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

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