Router Table #5: Half Throttle - Cabinet is Framed!

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Blog entry by PurpLev posted 12-26-2009 04:20 AM 9173 reads 3 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: cabinet frame started Part 5 of Router Table series Part 6: Cast(ers) Away »

I picked up today where I left yesterday. today however, I had a bit more time to work on this. I printed the face frame design/layout from Sketchup, and out to the freezer we go:

face frame Sketchup print

I added the 2nd piece that makes up the back (had to use 2 pieces of plywood as I don’t have 1 large enough part for the back), and then I noticed that my plywood carcass is a bit out of wack- the back aligns with the left side, but the right side is a bit lower, ah crap, I guess I’ll have to shimmy shim the thing after all. I know where I messed up – I started putting the parts together in the wrong order, starting with the bottom and back, then had to align the left and right to 2 parts each. I should have started with the left-back-right, and align the bottom to all 3 parts which would then be align a the top… oh well, too late for me now.

Another unfortunate thing happened today. I am using pocket holes (and glue) for the construction of the carcass and face frame. somewhere towards the end of the carcass build my drill-bit-stop was pushed up (I guess it lost it’s grip) and the last part in the carcass was drilled too deep!!!!! which means, that the pocket screws once driven all the way in, end up being driven through the 2nd part, and are left with their tip exposed. I only discovered it later on after I placed the cabinet on my table saw, and felt it ‘grip’ the top of my TS – made some nasty scratches in the granite :( it’s only visual, and minor, and easily fixed with epoxy, but I would have had it better if it didn’t happen at all. just something to keep an eye on when doing pocket holes… uuuuggggghhhhh. I wonder what would have happened with Cast Iron – would it scratch as well?

so, aside from the scratches on the granite, and the low right side which will need to be trimmed and shimmed to match the rest of the cabinet to make it steady, and have a good support for the top, It ended up pretty nice. this sucker is getting heavy, and from now on (after I put the casters on) will stay on the ground:

cabinet and face frame

In terms of progress, I’m at the end of day 2 and have accomplished what I was planning to accomplish at the end of day 1. could say that I’m 1 day behind… or more mathematically correct – that I’m working in half-throttle, and at 1/2 the production rate. as it seems, I’ll at least have the cabinet made by the end of the weekend, so it can stand on it’s own and not take benchtop space. drawers, and the rest, can be taken on one at a time later on.


-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

16 comments so far

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4942 days

#1 posted 12-26-2009 05:00 AM

Sharon, this is looking pretty good. Bummer about the scratches but they really are only cosmetic.

The same thing would have happened in a cast iron top. I have put a few scratches in my cast iron top from my miter sled. I used carriage bolts to mount the hold downs and apparently there is enough friction from the head of the carriage bolt to scratch the cast iron unless they are tightened down. So I hesitate to think what the end of a screw would do.

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

View woodworm's profile


14477 posts in 4711 days

#2 posted 12-26-2009 05:02 AM

Very nicely done! Great face-frame construction.
The colour of the face frame (hardwood) and the plywood ilook almost the same. Are both of the same wood species?

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View a1Jim's profile


118162 posts in 4698 days

#3 posted 12-26-2009 05:16 AM

Good progress it’s going to be very good when your done


View Gary Fixler's profile

Gary Fixler

1001 posts in 4502 days

#4 posted 12-26-2009 06:59 AM

That’s definitely starting to look like a solid, clean cabinet. I can confirm with Scott that screws scratch cast iron. I’ve actually done it with exactly the same, painful, annoying problem you’ve had, except mine was my fault. I hadn’t set the stop since the last time I used it on thinner stock, so I was drilling way too deep, and my table saw was my assembly table. Sigh… At least it kind of buffed out after a few of my occasional Scotch Brite scrubbing to remove rust and restore the slippery sheen.

Anyway, glad to see the continued progress. Onward!

-- Gary, Los Angeles, video game animator

View degoose's profile


7281 posts in 4475 days

#5 posted 12-26-2009 10:43 AM

This will look great in your living room… lol’

Really a very nice piece of furniture… shop furniture that is..

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View ellen35's profile


2749 posts in 4553 days

#6 posted 12-26-2009 01:23 PM

Making great progress, I see.
It really does look like furniture!
Shop furniture!!!

-- "Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." Voltaire

View cabinetmaster's profile


10873 posts in 4679 days

#7 posted 12-26-2009 01:56 PM


-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View Karson's profile


35276 posts in 5521 days

#8 posted 12-26-2009 04:00 PM

That a great looking cabinet. Your router will look mighty proud burried with the depths. And router bits close by and wrenches close by

What a cool idea.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View Lee A. Jesberger's profile

Lee A. Jesberger

6875 posts in 5100 days

#9 posted 12-26-2009 04:22 PM

Hi Sharon;

It’s looking good.

Too bad about the saw table. Cast iron would get scratched too.

I know I’m in the minority here, but I still won’t use pocket screws. I just can’t get used to that hole! Even plugged, they still bother me.

Could be I need some sort of professional help.


-- by Lee A. Jesberger

View PurpLev's profile


8652 posts in 4769 days

#10 posted 12-26-2009 05:38 PM

Thanks everyone for the kind words… as for pocket screws – they are quick and straight forward, but I would not use them for fine furniture. maybe for shop cabinets, and build ins.

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4808 days

#11 posted 12-26-2009 06:34 PM

I know the feeling of screw tips scarring my cast iron top all too well…...If I had a Granite top , I think I would be truly upset though. Mine are just deep enough to catch your fingernail and be an eyesore , but also serve as a constant reminder not to do it again : ) I might try your epoxy tip to fill the voids…thank you

Your cabinet frame is looking great so far , Sharon ! Happy Holidays to you and your family : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View EEngineer's profile


1137 posts in 4734 days

#12 posted 12-26-2009 07:47 PM

Yah, that perfectly flat surface is just too tempting to use as an assembly/work table!

My work gets many shipments in cheap boxes made from cheap 1/4” ply. I salvaged quite a bit of it and make covers for the saw table. I just throw them away when they get too much glue, scratches, whatever. If I am not using the table saw, the top is covered (usually – one time when I didn’t, a visiting friend set a beer on the table and I now have a rust ring to polish out).

-- "Find out what you cannot do and then go do it!"

View PurpLev's profile


8652 posts in 4769 days

#13 posted 12-26-2009 10:10 PM

EEngineer – I have plenty of masonite boards (1/8”) which I constantly use to cover the table saw when I’m doing glueups… since I was done with the glue up – I took it off… but as said – a lesson to be learnt. the scratches are just an eyesore, I can’t even catch my fingernail in it though, I may just leave them as a reminder. at least I dont have to worry about beer though ;)

-- ㊍ When in doubt - There is no doubt - Go the safer route.

View SimonMayport's profile


8 posts in 3784 days

#14 posted 02-17-2011 11:30 AM

Your project progress looks fantastic. The timber, in photo at least, appears strong and your expertise evident.

-- Simon -

View joeCommercial's profile


7 posts in 3701 days

#15 posted 05-03-2011 09:23 AM

A solid looking cabinet indeed. Nicely done!

-- Joe -

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