Shop Cabinets #1: SketchUp build and quality shop time

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Blog entry by ichbinpete posted 01-03-2013 06:36 AM 3540 reads 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of Shop Cabinets series Part 2: Drawer slides installed »

Been spending a lot of time over the last 10 months thinking about getting back in the shop, but just have not been able to get away long enough to do a bunch of maintenance that needed to be done before I could get any actual work done. But now that I have most of that taken care of (lots of cleanup from a tiling project), it was time to get things back on track.

My first project back in the shop was to get myself organized and build some cabinets along the back wall. I wanted them to be sturdy and not just some boxes stacked against the wall with crappy doors and low quality craftsmanship. My first step was to do the plan in SketchUp. It had been a while so I made sure to spend some good time in it and figure things out that I may have glazed over in the past. Overall, the design in SketchUp came out good, but some things just wouldn’t work out (cut list broke somewhere, I think because I didn’t make components out of some single parts and did some intersections correctly. Overall though, it definitely helped me rip down the 8×4 sheet that I had much more efficiently. Here is the sketch (includes 2 cabinets, although they will not be laid out that way):

With some plans ready, I wanted to get in the shop and do some cutting. I happened to have some 8×4 ply from a previous project that would be ok for the cabinet. Being by myself, I had no desire to try to push that guy through my TS, so I finally got to use the jawhorse my wife got me for Xmas last year. I threw one end up in the jawhorse and then stuck 2 saw horses under the middle and opposite end. With my cutlist in hand, I measured out my cuts and went at it.

Lots of cutting later, I have the carcus built out, with stretchers and face frame. I do however, still need to mount the filler inserts for the drawer slides. They’re cut, but I ran out of time before I could get them done.

Today I ordered the drawer slides for this cabinet and will pick up some birch for the drawer boxes tomorrow or friday.

-- It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.

3 comments so far

View RonInOhio's profile


721 posts in 3978 days

#1 posted 01-03-2013 10:52 PM

Looking good.

Did you use a Kreg jig for the pocket-holes ? Rabbets on the edges ? Also what about glue ? Any need to use it ?

I see myself doing something like this at some point. Sorry for all the questions.

View whitebeast88's profile


4128 posts in 3305 days

#2 posted 01-03-2013 11:24 PM

awesome looking cabinets.
i’d like to have the dimensions on them if you don’t mind,i’ve been researching to build some cabinets to make a miter saw stand,and these would be perfect.looking forward to more posts as you finish them.


-- Marty.Athens,AL

View ichbinpete's profile


110 posts in 3806 days

#3 posted 01-04-2013 03:51 AM

Ron – I did all Kreg Jig. I have run a dado for the bottom piece in the past, but this was quicker and I didn’t have to calculate for the dado. With some careful measuring…twice…and a flat piece of wood to square it up against, it’s not to hard to get it in right. I used Titebond III for glue, gives you extra setup time. I was a bit sloppy with the glue because this will be painted, normally I would be much cleaner. You could get away without glue, but since it’s ply and the wood shouldn’t move much and there’s no worry of splitting. And no need to apologize, that’s why I posted it! Where in Ohio are you from? I grew up in Norwalk (Sandusky\Cleveland area).

beast – I will post some pics tomorrow of the break out but here is a quick run down

Cab sides – 21” x 32”
Cab base – 21” 30”

Face frame stiles – 2” x 32”
Face frame rails – 2” x 28.5” (this will allow me to stack another 3/4” stretcher for the drawer mounts”
Face frame small drawer stile – 2” x 4”

For the drawer boxes, they will be different than what I drew up because I will probably use drawer lock joints and I didnt want to take the time in Sketchup.

-- It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt.

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