Book Shelf

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Project by TObenhuber posted 05-19-2014 11:22 PM 1707 views 0 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This book shelf was inspired by my wife yet again. Surprise, Surprise. I built a book shelf two years ago but I was still very green in the woodworking world. It shows screws, it is starting to shake loose and isn’t 100% stable. So, having no interest in polishing a turd. I just built another one. This one is much nicer.

The wood is my favorite 2×4s from the orange borg. The tops is laminated 2×4s, handed planed down, and sanded to a nice smooth finish. The joints are pocket holes for the box and face frame and used to attach the top. My wife is not typically satisfied if she can find glue drips anywhere on the project. So, none of the joints were reinforced with glued against my better judgment. What can you do when your wife has spoken? 

The stain was a dark minwax with a glossy poly finish. There are definitely some blotchy spots but the overall finish turned out pretty good. I should have probably let the stain dry a bit longer but live and learn.

I learned and have started to enjoy laminating smaller boards in to larger boards for tops and shelves. Using 2×4 for my laminations go very well together when I cut the rounded edges off before gluing and make any small adjustments to the glue surface with a hand plane. This was my first laminated top that I would call a 100% success story meaning, my wife was very happy with it.

Side note, using my latest experience after this book shelf, being very picky at the borg by pulling out only the quarter or rift saw 2×4s pays dividends when doing a lamination with this material. It helps the seams line up and become more transparent than would have been otherwise. This on top of the fact that it’s more stable and improves the quality of the lamination all around.

I was also able to experiment with cutting my own trim. I used some scrap and rip it to size. I then simply cut a 30ish degree angle on one side and attached it with screws from the inside of case. It worked out and did add a small touch of quality.

Overall, my wife was happy, I was happy and was very satisfied with my progress in skill level. I would still leave this in the rustic category but a vast improvement in quality. Thanks for reading.

-- Travis, Virginia,

3 comments so far

View Oldtool's profile


2955 posts in 2964 days

#1 posted 05-20-2014 12:21 AM

Pretty nice build, especially considering it was made from construction grade 2 X 4s. Great job with selection and grain matching. Question: what is picture 3 of 5? Looks to be about 2’ by 4’, but I can place it in the bookcase.

-- "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

View Brian's profile


185 posts in 2805 days

#2 posted 05-20-2014 06:06 PM

Agreed. Making something that nice out of 2×4s is always impressive.

-- “Always take a banana to a party, bananas are good!” - Tenth Doctor

View TObenhuber's profile


185 posts in 2366 days

#3 posted 05-21-2014 12:32 AM

Thanks for the comments. I really appreciate the encouragement.

As far as picture 3 of 5, it’s a weird angle but it’s a top view of the laminated top after I finished. I left it inside my house for a couple days to dry because the weather was still a bit on the cold side. I just wanted to show how seamless it went together. I was very proud of it. It turned out to be a pretty nice solid wood 1.5”ish top.

-- Travis, Virginia,

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