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Finishing Inside Drawer Parts

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Forum topic by Whiskers posted 03-30-2014 08:08 AM 676 views 0 times favorited 20 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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Whiskers

389 posts in 684 days


03-30-2014 08:08 AM

Very soon I am going to build a lot of drawers for all the various mobile stands etc I’ve built for my new tools. I know that often people don’t use any finish on the inside parts of a drawer, but I’m wondering if anyone ever does, or has a recommendation for something simple which enhances the look, and makes them easier to keep clean. I don’t want to get fancy with it, and keeping things easier to clean, stain free, and easy to dust would be my main thoughts. I was thinking maybe some type of oil or something? What do you guys do? Leave the wood naked or do you put something on it?

To anticipate someones inevitable question, during one of my lumber shopping trips I ran into a bunch of 12’ boards of perfectly clear and beautiful southern yellow pine which I will be using for most of my drawers. Seems a shame to cut such long beautiful boards into little pieces, but that what I bought it for.


20 replies so far

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2528 posts in 1008 days


#1 posted 03-30-2014 11:31 AM

I use wiping varnish on mine.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View John's profile

John

182 posts in 2240 days


#2 posted 03-30-2014 12:33 PM

I use prefinished hardwood plywood.

-- John, Long Island, NY

View Clint Searl's profile

Clint Searl

1457 posts in 1018 days


#3 posted 03-30-2014 12:49 PM

Assuming you mean the inside of drawers, I finish them with a quality flat acrylic interior paint, topped with waterborne poly – two coats each. Not the outside.

-- Clint Searl....Ya can no more do what ya don't know how than ya can git back from where ya ain't been

View Fred Hargis's profile

Fred Hargis

1793 posts in 1150 days


#4 posted 03-30-2014 12:55 PM

My shop drawers are unfinished, but then so are most of the shop cabinets.

-- Our village hasn't lost it's idiot, we sent 'em to Washington.

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2710 posts in 1234 days


#5 posted 03-30-2014 02:53 PM

Dewaxed shellac or waterborne poly.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View Redoak49's profile

Redoak49

346 posts in 645 days


#6 posted 03-30-2014 11:31 PM

When I have made shop drawers, I make the drawer side stock in 4-6 ft lengths with the groove in them. I then finish all of these with either shellac or water based poly. I typically use two coats as the first raises the grain so I sand them quickly and put a second coat on them.

View AandCstyle's profile

AandCstyle

1325 posts in 914 days


#7 posted 03-30-2014 11:48 PM

+1 for dewaxed shellac. Don’t use an oil because it will smell for a very long time.

-- Art

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10888 posts in 1347 days


#8 posted 03-31-2014 12:37 AM

I finish the insides of my drawers with wiped on shellac before I assemble them. This makes cleaning up glue squeeze out quick and easy (probably less important for your shop drawers).

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Whiskers's profile

Whiskers

389 posts in 684 days


#9 posted 03-31-2014 01:25 AM

Thanks for all the answers, the water based poly sounds like the best bet as I am familiar with it and have some here. My father used to use shellac all the time, but in my entire life I only used it one time when I was young, and for some reason it never seemed to dry hard. It was always sticky, which was a pain considering I had made a little book rack for my paper back books. The books wanted to stick to it and bits of paper became part of the rack. Any ideas why that happened?

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Whiskers

389 posts in 684 days


#10 posted 03-31-2014 01:35 AM

Since I’m asking about drawers, I have another question. I was going to try and dovetail all the drawers, but I was watching some videos I downloaded and saw how someone else made drawers and decided that method looked really easy. They cut finger joints on a table saw with a dado bit using a jig that looked like a cross cut sled with a small square peg inserted strategically for positioning. You would cut the first finger, than walk the fingers across the board by sliding them over the peg. Anyone know a name for that jig? I wouldn’t mind googleing up designs to get more ideas before I start construction.

View TechTeacher04's profile

TechTeacher04

172 posts in 188 days


#11 posted 03-31-2014 01:39 AM

I use whatever i have on hand. Any time i haven’t i end up with rust on tools. The finish seals the moisture in the wood preventing it from rusting my tools.

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10888 posts in 1347 days


#12 posted 03-31-2014 01:47 AM

Question #1 – Shellac that won’t dry/cure is beyond its ‘use by’ date!

Question #2 – Box joint jig. Lots of options from no cost shop made to relatively expensive commercial (I Box for one)

I use a lot of rabbit/dado drawer joints which are much quicker to do if you have several drawers to build.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View Whiskers's profile

Whiskers

389 posts in 684 days


#13 posted 03-31-2014 02:22 AM

Amen to the expensive commercial, I think the I-box is one of those things I get spammed for every week, but anything by incremental tools is crazy expensive. What I saw was super simple, effective, home made, and would be a snap to build. Just thought I would like to see what other options are out there. Always a good idea to see several viewpoints on how to build something rather than copying the first thing you see. I have seen the other options like dado, rabbit, etc, but since eventually I may want to make more delicate furniture, I wanted to practice making the type joints you would find in those applications. I’m sure I will dado some of the joints, but I have a bunch to make so am looking at something more simple. The finger/box joint jig really looked perfect.

View NiteWalker's profile

NiteWalker

2710 posts in 1234 days


#14 posted 03-31-2014 03:37 AM

A shop made box joint jig is pretty easy to build.
IMHO, the ibox is worth the cost, especially if you do a lot of box joints of different sizes.

And +1 on tongue and dado drawers. Super easy and strong.

-- He who dies with the most tools... dies with the emptiest wallet.

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

3365 posts in 1470 days


#15 posted 03-31-2014 03:43 AM

I usually just finish them like the rest of the case. Sprayed lacquer in my case.
If I am using aromatic cedar drawer bottoms I have a different finishing schedule… sprayed shellac on the drawer sides, and no finish on the drawer bottoms.

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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