Jefferson Bookcases #17: Three sizes of plinths

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Blog entry by Dave Polaschek posted 11-23-2020 06:29 PM 400 reads 0 times favorited 10 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 16: Littlest case Part 17 of Jefferson Bookcases series Part 18: The Little Things »

I made a big case recently, and since that will be at the bottom of a stack of cases of books, I needed to make a special-sized plinth for it. And I have a spot behind the bedroom door where I will build a stack of cases with the largest case being the middle-sized case, so I needed a smaller plinth to hold that.

The nice thing about building other sizes of plinths is that they’re all the same width, so the front, back and glue-blocks are all the same, it’s just the sides that change to accommodate the different depths of cases.

As before, the plinths have the following measurements:

Front and back: 2 – 1×4x31
Internal front brace: 1 – 1×4x29½
Glue blocks (front): 2 – 1×1x2⅝
Glue blocks (rear): 2 – 1×1x3⅜

And the sides for the various sizes of plinths are:
Small: 2 – 1×4x8¼
Medium: 2 – 1×4x12
Large: 2 – 1×4x15¼

I used the same template for constructing the curve on the front piece, and the same template for the dovetails. As before, the tops of the pieces got a chamfer equal to 8 passes of my block plane at whatever thickness it was set to before. I’m not sure of the exact measurement, but it looks right.

With the dovetails cut and everything glued up, I smoothed the sides with my smoothing plane and hit everything with shellac. A second coat of shellac after a quick pass with the 400 grit sandpaper, and they’ll be done and ready to hold more stacks of cases.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

10 comments so far

View Oldtool's profile


3158 posts in 3166 days

#1 posted 11-23-2020 06:51 PM

Making some really good progress on these, and the dovetails are looking pretty good.

-- "I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The point is to bring them the real facts." - Abraham Lincoln

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Dave Polaschek

6673 posts in 1558 days

#2 posted 11-23-2020 07:03 PM

I still have hopes of getting them all built before the end of the year. At the rate I’m going, probably not, but I’ll probably be out of lumber around Christmas and need to take a break over the holidays before buying the last batch of pine early next year. I’ll probably have cases for all the hardcovers, but there’s also a dozen boxes of paperbacks…

Oh well. Keeps me out of trouble.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View crowie's profile (online now)


4235 posts in 2927 days

#3 posted 11-23-2020 07:54 PM

I like the curved front Dave, very classy.

-- Lifes good, Enjoy each new day...... Cheers from "On Top DownUnder" Crowie

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Dave Polaschek

6673 posts in 1558 days

#4 posted 11-23-2020 10:36 PM

Thanks, Peter. It’s really simple, but a number of people have commented that it classes the shelves up. Plus my sweetie likes it, which is always a bonus!

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View doubleDD's profile


10017 posts in 3019 days

#5 posted 11-25-2020 03:18 AM

Fine job on those Dave. Those could pass for a nice desk tray set too. It’s really coming along. And as long as your sweetie likes it you make points.

-- Dave, Downers Grove, Il. -------- When you run out of ideas, start building your dreams.

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Dave Polaschek

6673 posts in 1558 days

#6 posted 11-25-2020 04:26 AM

Thanks, Dave. Yep, she’s happy as long as I keep making progress. Three cases per week is my goal, but with Thanksgiving this week, and the extra cooking I’ll be doing for that (it’ll just be the two of us, but we’re still going to have fresh bread and stuffing with our dinner), I’m getting a bit of a reprieve.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View bandit571's profile


27523 posts in 3659 days

#7 posted 11-28-2020 07:36 AM

Looks good from here…

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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Dave Polaschek

6673 posts in 1558 days

#8 posted 11-28-2020 01:17 PM

Thanks, Bandit. They’re coming along, and the dovetails keep getting tighter and more regular. I don’t think I’m to fine furniture standards yet, but maybe by the time I’m done with all of these…

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View mafe's profile


12875 posts in 4065 days

#9 posted 11-28-2020 11:36 PM

Really fine work Dave.
I must take a look into this.
Beautiful doves.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect.

View Dave Polaschek's profile

Dave Polaschek

6673 posts in 1558 days

#10 posted 11-29-2020 03:15 AM

Thanks, Mads. Two more cases started this weekend. Tomorrow I go buy more lumber.

-- Dave - Santa Fe

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