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Plans for a filing cabinet anyone?

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Forum topic by GCM posted 91 days ago 728 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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GCM

70 posts in 926 days


91 days ago

Topic tags/keywords: question pine rustic

I have been searching for more than a year now for a plan for a wooden filing cabinet THAT DOES NOT USE PLYWOOD without much success. I started off building a prototypical MDF version but found it to be way too heavy (even when modularising it into stackable drawers).

I could use pine project panels but that would be almost as expensive as using plywood.

Ideally the construction material would be pine DAR and pine lining boards (‘planks’ I think they are called in the US). This is a material combination commonly used on the Anna White site but surprisingly there is not a lot on the site regarding filing cabinets and the small amount that is there uses… plywood.

A “rustic” look would be very appropriate.

If anyone is aware of such a “beastie” I would appreciate the heads up.

Cheers,

Gary

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.


17 replies so far

View KayBee's profile

KayBee

999 posts in 1845 days


#1 posted 91 days ago

Don’t know if this works for you, but have a look. You can usually substitute a frame and panel piece where plywood is called for in most plans too. (Think cabinet doors.)

http://plansnow.com/cabdesk.html

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View Paul's profile

Paul

449 posts in 164 days


#2 posted 91 days ago

Hi Gary,

Take the plywood dimensions and Glue (dowl, biscuit, dominoe) join your own boards to those dimensions. Dimension your lumber appropriately and use it just like you would in the plywood designs.

Paul

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Paul

449 posts in 164 days


#3 posted 91 days ago

Some glue ups I have in finishing stages. no board is wider than 2.5 inches.

Paul

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GCM

70 posts in 926 days


#4 posted 91 days ago

@KayBee

Thanks Karen, yes the frame and panel method is an alternative I have considered (in fact whatever I end up with will be some form of that). To be honest my MDF prototype was of that format, it was still too heavy and it just didn’t look right somehow. I actually use that as a base for my small band saw now. Certainly use frame construction with some kind of bead board is my fall back position at this stage – I worry about “drumming” with this approach however.

@Paul

Thanks Paul, the reason I wish to avoid plywood is because we pay around 3 to 4 times the price for it than do those who live in North America or Europe. Your method (lamination) is one that I go to time and time again and it is a great solution, however this time when I grind out the calculations I find it is slightly more expensive to do it that way (using pine) than to use plywood (A/C pine).

I need to churn out at least 3 of these and using plywood or laminated solid wood when you include slides finish screws etc comes out around $400 each – I can actually BUY them cheaper than that.

In any case If I am going to spend $1200 on something I want to be sure that I have selected the best possible option, in particular, although I don’t always use or need plans, in this case I don’t want any whoopsies, so I am grateful for ALL suggestions.

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

View Paul Maurer's profile

Paul Maurer

109 posts in 153 days


#5 posted 90 days ago

Consider keeping the bottom and back heavy, you do not want it tipping over. How about open frame construction, other than some place to mount the drawer slides, the sides just hold up the top.

-- Psalm 62: 11 Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this: that power belongs to God, 12 and steadfast love belongs to you, O Lord. For you repay to all according to their work

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doitforfun

139 posts in 206 days


#6 posted 90 days ago

Is this project for you or on commission? I made a couple of filing cabinets last year – big ones too at 34 and 30 inches – for my home office. I figure they cost all in about $200 or less using plywood from the box stores and slides from amazon at about $6/pair. Is it really twice as expensive where you are?

-- Brian in Wantagh, NY

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GCM

70 posts in 926 days


#7 posted 89 days ago

@TooliganGalloot
Very good point about the the weight of the base and back for stability

@doitforfun

> “s this project for you or on commission?”

For my home office.

>“Is it really twice as expensive where you are?”

No! it’s 3-4 times + shipping, and our box stores only have BC construction grade plywood, although I could get some so-so marine grade plywood for about $220 a sheet (inc shipping) – the design I have in mind would take around 1-1/2 sheets (roughly).

The slides cost around $25 a pair here, although they are just ordinary kitchen drawer type slides (45 kg/90lbs) – heavy duty full extension tend to be dearer – I don’t actually know what I should get there yet – what type did you use? (especially load bearing capacity).

What type/grade of plywood did you use?

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

View mrjinx007's profile

mrjinx007

1318 posts in 366 days


#8 posted 89 days ago

There is a lady LJ here you can consult with.. She made a nice one. http://lumberjocks.com/projects/98677

-- earthartandfoods.com

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doitforfun

139 posts in 206 days


#9 posted 88 days ago

These are the slides I bought for my home office. No frills but they work very well.

http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0019FWFC6/ref=cm_sw_r_udp_awd_2.Ixtb1MK4T09

I used 3/4” oak veneer plywood. It’s suitable for cabinets and available everywhere around here for about $55/sheet.

-- Brian in Wantagh, NY

View GCM's profile

GCM

70 posts in 926 days


#10 posted 88 days ago

Thanks Brian, I can get the equivalent slides here for about 4 times that price.
http://www.bunnings.com.au/king-slide-450mm-push-open-drawer-slide_p4020363

As for the oak plywood about the same as your price:
http://www.plyco.com.au/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=44_63_66&products_id=106

...except it’s for a quarter sheet… :-(

(until you factor in shipping)...

I am pretty sure our retailers look at NA prices and multiply it by 4…

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

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doitforfun

139 posts in 206 days


#11 posted 88 days ago

Wow that is very expensive. I just looked up the exchange rate and it’s almost even $1 us at $1 aud so yeah that is extremely expensive. How is raw lumber pricing compared to plywood? There must be some native species that’s relatively inexpensive and may complement your home better.

-- Brian in Wantagh, NY

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doitforfun

139 posts in 206 days


#12 posted 88 days ago

Also, I like Paul’s idea above. Anyway, side panels may interfere with drawer slide installation, depending on how you construct the box.

-- Brian in Wantagh, NY

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GCM

70 posts in 926 days


#13 posted 88 days ago

@doitforfun (Brian)
“Wow that is very expensive. I just looked up the exchange rate and it’s almost even $1 us at $1 aud so yeah that is extremely expensive. How is raw lumber pricing compared to plywood? There must be some native species that’s relatively inexpensive and may complement your home better.”

Unfortunately our native species tend to be even more expensive as all indigenous species are very heavily protected by a minority party called “The Greens” who have held the balance of power in our senate for decades. I can assure you that, per capita, we have more “useful” trees in this country than you do in the US – we are just not allowed to use them.

Our cheapest readily available species is actually an imported species from North America which grows readily in plantations – and that is Radiata Pine. If by “raw” you mean rough sawn I must add it is generally not available in that format.

As an indication a 184×19mm x 1.2m DAR is $7.60 – for you convenience converting that to your “nominal” size system that would be 8” x 1” x 48” (roughly).

This material is relatively knot free, attractive, and easy to work, but is incredibly soft – you only have to glance at it and it dents. Interestingly, I have just discovered that even that is imported from New Zealand – LOL.

The nearest to that is a hardwood we call Tasmanian Oak and it is about 4 times the price of the pine.

I can get a “plank” of pine lining 120mm (4 3/4”) x 12mm ( 1/2”) x 2.4 m (8’) for about $4.40.

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

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GCM

70 posts in 926 days


#14 posted 88 days ago

“Also, I like Paul’s idea above. Anyway, side panels may interfere with drawer slide installation, depending on how you construct the box.”

Yes, that’s a possibility – in fact it will be mandatory for part of the project at least – but as I say doing it that way for the whole project would end up being more expensive than I could buy it from a furniture shop.

I used that technique for the chest of drawers you can see in my gallery.

The point you make about the panels interfering with slides is well made and is really the main reason for me posting the question – I am trying to avoid that possibility by obtaining a proven plan – not reinventing the wheel by mistakes – so to speak.

-- Make things as simple as possible, but no simpler.

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doitforfun

139 posts in 206 days


#15 posted 88 days ago

I think the important thing is what you said earlier about being able to buy cabinets for less than you can make them. I think it really depends on the purpose and how they will be used. Of course you can go to IKEA and buy something that will provide utility. But can it compare – at any price – to something beautifully hand crafted by your own hands? That’s a cost-benefit decision only you can make.

-- Brian in Wantagh, NY

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