Cherry Bookcase

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Project by Topapilot posted 07-11-2009 06:31 AM 3131 views 4 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I was looking for a low bookcase for a section of blank wall in the family room, and searching LJ I found one by Dr. Sawdust that I liked. This is made of cherry and cherry ply, BLO, and Shellac.

In the second picture you can see my test areas under the top where it wouldn’t show; starting from the back: varnish, varnish over BLO, shellac over BLO, a spot for wiping varnish (not tested), and finaly two coats of BLO. I finally decided on two coats of BLO applied at 130F followed by shellac. I think shellac looks nice, and properly thinned is easy to apply and to correct mistakes.

The last image is something I saw in a magazine: every time I set up the table saw to make a cut, I would also make one in this piece of hardboard and label it. Then when I needed to go back and make another part, I had the exact saw setup. This was pretty handy!

17 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118334 posts in 5071 days

#1 posted 07-11-2009 06:36 AM

Very nice book case great wood selection and finish


View DrSawdust's profile


323 posts in 5592 days

#2 posted 07-11-2009 06:42 AM

Excellent work !!! I hope you are as happy with it as we are.

-- Making sawdust is what I do best

View Don K.'s profile

Don K.

1075 posts in 4821 days

#3 posted 07-11-2009 08:18 AM

Agreed with all said…very beautiful. I would be proud to have this in my house !!! Thanks for the tip also…should be very helpful in the future.

-- Don S.E. OK

View Chris Davis's profile

Chris Davis

1560 posts in 5476 days

#4 posted 07-11-2009 12:20 PM

Looks very nice. Like the board with all the cuts in it, thats a good idea.

-- Watch live video from our shop.!current-projects/c3c1

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27248 posts in 5316 days

#5 posted 07-11-2009 12:42 PM

Topapilot, this is a gorgeous bookcase and you did a good job on the design. The finish looks good as well. Blo adds a nice tone to the cherry and shellac is a good topcoat that is pretty easy to apply.

Thanks for the tip as well. I remember seeing this and had forgotten it. I am working on a couple of cabinets now and will have to use this.

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

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5713 days

#6 posted 07-11-2009 03:23 PM

Beautiful design and finish!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5741 days

#7 posted 07-11-2009 06:14 PM

Gorgeous bookcase, just awesome. Love the finish also.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View ChicoWoodnut's profile


904 posts in 5310 days

#8 posted 07-11-2009 06:45 PM

Nice Job Rob. I really like this one. It looks like you are really concentrating on your finishing skills.

The kerfed up hardboard idea looks interesting too.

-- Scott - Chico California

View reggiek's profile


2240 posts in 4764 days

#9 posted 07-11-2009 07:12 PM

Very nice! The finish looks great and the joinery impeccable.

I made a similar one for a friend of mine in Oak and added sliding glass doors on the bottom and stile and rail glass doors on the top…made an excellent display case for their antique store…

I do like cherry better though…thank you for sharing that with us.

-- Woodworking.....My small slice of heaven!

View douglbe's profile


375 posts in 5455 days

#10 posted 07-11-2009 11:02 PM

Cherry is a beautiful wood. Tight grain and so nice to sand and finish. Congrats on a project well done!

-- Doug, Reed City, Michigan

View NorthGaMan's profile


74 posts in 4856 days

#11 posted 07-12-2009 02:32 AM

Very nice bookcase. I like your idea of places to try out your finish also. I have seen the same bookcase in the magazine also and liked the design very much. Do you think you could add a little depth to this piece and use it as a tv stand? My wife wants to put a HD tv in the bedroom and I was thinking this would make a nice stand for it. What do you think?

View Topapilot's profile


172 posts in 5335 days

#12 posted 07-12-2009 04:17 AM

Thanks for all the feedback!
NorthGaMan: I think this could be used as a TV stand as is; in fact my wife wanted to use it for that, but I’m still not ready to spring for a flat screen. Otherwise the only thing I would change is at add a center leg in the back to ensure it couldn’t tip.

View griff's profile


1207 posts in 5256 days

#13 posted 07-12-2009 04:54 AM

Very nice looking cabinet, cherry is a beautiful wood, and the finish is great. Very good build Sr.

-- Mike, Bruce Mississippi = Jack of many trades master of none

View brukilla's profile


74 posts in 4737 days

#14 posted 07-12-2009 05:14 PM

Very impressive. Nice and smooth.

-- "Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much may be done if we are always doing." - Thomas Jefferson

View Bradford's profile


1434 posts in 5317 days

#15 posted 07-12-2009 07:18 PM

Topa… could you explain the third picture? Is it a template guide? (I’m still learning, couldn’t figure it out) Thanks.

-- so much wood, so little time. Bradford. Wood-a-holics unanimous president

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