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Forum topic by jvallee posted 06-03-2015 02:23 PM 735 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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jvallee

14 posts in 771 days


06-03-2015 02:23 PM

Complete newbie here so pls pardon my ignorance.
I want to build a bathroom vanity from birch. It will have 2 doors (18w x 19h) and 3 drawer fronts.
I want to rout the edges (no decision on which edge yet)
I think I need solid lumber 3/4” at least 18” wide but where do I find it? What do I ask for?
I’m not confident in piecing them together and I’m trying to avoid purchasing premade door and drawer fronts.

Any info will be greatly appreciated.


17 replies so far

View Gary's profile

Gary

8968 posts in 2894 days


#1 posted 06-03-2015 02:34 PM

So, you’re saying you want solid wood, no plywood. Not even plywood framed with solid wood… If you want wood that’s 18” wide, you are going to need to either special order it or visit a mill. “Piecing” wood together is not that big of a deal. It would be a good learning experience for you.
What kind of wood are you using? Lots of questions…...

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View ShaneA's profile

ShaneA

6471 posts in 2059 days


#2 posted 06-03-2015 02:41 PM

You will need to do a glue up to get to that width more than likely. If you buy S4S lumber and take your time with the glue up, you should be able to get it reasonably flat without too much need for jointer and planers. However, it will still need a final flattening and smoothing.

Can you use a frame and panel type construction for your door? It would be more stable and way less prone to warp. Birch can be a wood that is prone to twisting in my experience.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#3 posted 06-03-2015 02:50 PM

I would second the comment about piecing wood together not being a big deal. I also think that it will have a better chance of remaining stable, especially at that width and in the bathroom environment. Sounds like you’re trying to make solid slab doors? I would be hesitant to do that, the chances of them remaining completely flat in a humid environment is questionable. Frame/panel doors with plywood panels can be made easily from 3/4” stock with just a table saw.

You’re going to have trouble finding a solid piece 18” wide, and if you do, you’re going to be paying a premium for it. I would suggest ripping narrower strips, in the 4” range, and gluing them up to make a solid panel. Do a little looking around this site, and others, for how to do this. With a couple clamps (I use the harbor freight F-style clamps usually), and some cauls made from 2×4, gluing up a panel of that size is pretty easy. Titebond III would be a good choice due to the humid environment.

What kind of finish are you planning to use? This goes back to the humidity thing. Also, if you live with young kids, they’re going to get stuff on the vanity. Just last night I was wiping my two-year-old’s toothpaste off the front of ours.

What material are you using for the base? It would be good to make sure it’s sealed well, whatever it is, because inevitably it will probably get wet. MDF, particleboard would not be best choices here. If using ply or hardwood, make sure to seal the bottoms well where they contact the floor.

Also, here is a good source for hardware. You’ll find the local big box retails stores will be far more costly for lumber, finishes, and hardware.

http://www.cshardware.com/

Sounds like it’s going to be a fun project, and I’m looking forward to seeing the results.

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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jvallee

14 posts in 771 days


#4 posted 06-03-2015 02:51 PM

Gary, plywood framed doors sound like an option. Thanks for the suggestion. (I’m using Sketchlist to design this – they should have this option)
ShaneA, my carpentry skills are minimal. Glueup is a completely new concept to me.

Thank you both for your input! Back to planning mode…

View skatefriday's profile

skatefriday

380 posts in 943 days


#5 posted 06-03-2015 03:03 PM

I’ve had good success building frame and panel doors with the Frued two piece
tongue and groove router bits and true 1/4” veneered MDF. I’m using maple
for the rails and stiles and maple veneer.

I could not for the life of me produce good joinery with only a table saw.

You could do a glueup for your doors, but I think that would make for an
awfully heavy and awkward door.

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jvallee

14 posts in 771 days


#6 posted 06-03-2015 04:35 PM

While these comments were being posted, I researched how to glue up panels. But Skatefriday, your comment about weight gives me pause. Plus I do not have access to a jointer (nor $$ to buy one) and my router skills are practically non-existent. (I’m taking a class soon). Look like framed doors are the answer, esp since this is going in a bathroom.
FYI, I’m building this out of birch and plan to stain it charcoal with poly sealer of some sort. Just me so no kids running around. I am about to place an order for a Delta contractor table saw from Lowes and will add a router table extension, and purchase a dado set plus the inserts I’ll need. This has been a long term project for me starting with demoing current bathroom and adjoining closet down to the studs and rebuilding. Vanity is the last big part of this.

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#7 posted 06-03-2015 04:50 PM

If you haven’t yet, sign up for Lowe’s moving coupon. 10% off your purchase. If they sell that saw at HD, HD will honor the 10%, I usually do it online (just add all the items to you cart, then go to their chat feature, and tell them you want to match the Lowes coupon. Buying gift cards from a reputable online reseller will get you 8.5% off the face value of the cards, as well.
The reason I mentioned HD, is they may have that saw as well, and if so will match Lowes price. They also sell the Freud 8” dado set, which I’ve used for years and have been pleased with. You should also plan on ordering a better blade, so you can toss on of those in the cart (I have Freud’s rip and crosscut, I’ve been happy, other have liked the Irwin blades from Lowes).

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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skatefriday

380 posts in 943 days


#8 posted 06-03-2015 05:09 PM

You are jumping into a rabbit hole. I can’t judge because I jumped
in 13 months ago, but it’s going to be a lot more work than you think.

Here’s my first cabinet…

http://lumberjocks.com/topics/75329

I made a LOT of mistakes.

Here are my second and third cabinets in progress…

It’s been a year since my table saw arrived in my garage
and I’m almost finished with only my third cabinet. But I had
to make an assembly table, a thein dust collector, shelves to
hold lumber, countless jigs to produce accurate work.

And mostly I found that I really, really need a jointer if
I’m going to get square and flat stock. I buy s4s lumber
from a local hardwood dealer, and I’ll often let it sit in my
garage for a few weeks, but it NEVER comes off the saw
without moving as it’s ripped. Cups and bows always. Not
much, but enough to throw stuff off if you are looking for
square and when you are building cabinets you are looking
for absolutely square.

I have a #7 and a shooting board that I use to edge joint,
and I recently made a torsion box as a sled to run through
a planer to face joint (with a board hot glued to the sled).
That’s a sucky solution though as you need to wait for the
hot glue to set up which is minimum 10 minutes I’ve found,
otherwise it will move, and then plane and then remove it
takes 15 minutes to face joint. And then over to the shooting
board for another 5 to 10 minutes. So easily 20 minutes per
rail/stile. I did 32 of them the other day. I really wanted a
jointer that day.

View skatefriday's profile

skatefriday

380 posts in 943 days


#9 posted 06-03-2015 05:28 PM

And…

My table saw is, at present, torn apart because
something is making a noise that I can’t quite identify.

http://lumberjocks.com/topics/100906

http://lumberjocks.com/topics/101322

View jvallee's profile

jvallee

14 posts in 771 days


#10 posted 06-03-2015 05:33 PM

Skatefriday, yes I know this is a rabbit hole. I already have lots of jigs already for my portable table saw. But I want to make more furniture than just this so the investment will be worth it. My Amazon wish list has LOTS of items on it to go with it. Dado set, ZC insert, dado insert etc etc. My main problem will be making room in my shop for this monster.
I read today somewhere to use your router and a straight bit in place of a jointer. That will be one of my questions when I take the router class.

BinghamtonEd, thanks for the heads up about the 10% Lowes coupon. I’m not moving but…

View BinghamtonEd's profile

BinghamtonEd

2281 posts in 1830 days


#11 posted 06-03-2015 05:35 PM

I’ve been in my house for 5 years now, but have used the mover’s coupon probably a half dozen times. Also, using HD chat online, you don’t need one. You just need to say you have a 10% coupon for Lowes. I also got HD to take it in the store when I bought my Weber grill. Since it’s a printable coupon, I think I drove down the road and used the coupon again at Lowes for something else (they’re one-time use).

-- - The mightiest oak in the forest is just a little nut that held its ground.

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skatefriday

380 posts in 943 days


#12 posted 06-03-2015 05:42 PM

There are lots of different ways to edge joint. That’s actually the easier
of the two. Face jointing is the problem. And you can face joint with
a router and a sled type jig, but that seems to be the biggest hassle
way. I’m making it work, but it’s not fast and it’s not really what I’d
call easy either.

Note that I bought a ZCI with my saw. I’ve never used it. I instead
made two of my own from scrap baltic birch.

View AlaskaGuy's profile

AlaskaGuy

2406 posts in 1770 days


#13 posted 06-03-2015 05:55 PM

Solid wood slab doors can be problematic. They have a tendency to warp over time. Many professional cabinet shop won’t make them and if they do they won’t guarantee them to stay flat. There are many door companies that take the same approach, they make them for you but wont guarantee them against warping.

Most pro shops would tell you to veneer over a stable substraight for slab doors.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View jvallee's profile

jvallee

14 posts in 771 days


#14 posted 06-03-2015 07:17 PM

AlaskaGuy, I love the veneer over substrate idea but what about the edges I plan to rout (ogee profile)?

BinghamtonEd, the Lowes coupon site asks for a moving date… what did you say? I’ve been in my house 25 years! with no plans to move ever again!

View skatefriday's profile

skatefriday

380 posts in 943 days


#15 posted 06-03-2015 07:37 PM

Frame and panel and then route your rails/stiles any way you like.

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