Media Cabinet

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Project by GaryK posted 12-05-2009 11:06 PM 3245 views 0 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I built this out of necessity. My 2 year old daughter was getting into everything. I had an open glass thing that had all my electronics on and I had put a little fence up to keep her out. Well, that stopped working a while ago so here is my child proof media cabilet. It’s not a piece of fine furniture but it only took 2 days to build (the first was glue ups) and it works. I left the back open to have access to all the wires.

There are a lot of firsts here.

The first time I used Cherry.
The first I used pocket screws for a project.
The time I have used stain (I know I did once years ago but I forget when).
The first time I used no mortise hinges.
The first time I used window screen gasket material to hold in glass.

Looking on craigslist I found a guy selling a pile of cherry and maple lumber, so I bought it for $50. The wide cherry boards were glue ups from thinner lumber so I just glued the up some more to make these 20” wide boards.

I know that this will offend a lot of people but for me cherry sucks. My two biggest complaints are it’s brittle and it won’t take dye. I was using a router on the edge and it shattered. I tried to tweak a door frame that wasn’t laying flat and it snapped. I broke of at least 3 steel screws in pre-drilled holes. It does have a good point in that it has closed pores that sands to a silky smooth surface. I will never use it for anything again. I’m probably just used to mahogany which in my opinion is the best wood for furniture, with walnut second.

All the firsts worked great except for the stain. You can read about that HERE if you are interested.

To hold in the glass in I used that rubber stuff that holds window screen in the frame. I figured that with all the problems I was having with the cherry I wasn’t going to use that. I pre-drilled holes in the rubber and into the frame so that I just had to press the brads in place. Worked great , it’s cheap and it’s easy to replace.

Almost the entire project it held together with 3” deck screws which were covered with plugs and sanded flush. There are wheel to make it easy to move, although I should have had them sticking out more than the 1/2” I used. Still kind of hard to roll on carpet.

I included the fourth picture so that you can see whose legs those are in the other pictures. That’s just my butler.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

25 comments so far

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 4758 days

#1 posted 12-05-2009 11:17 PM

I don’t care if you hate cherry or not Gary that is still a cool looking job. I’m inspired. I gotta make one for us. We got one of those big suckers that take up half the living room. Great job, like everything you do. mike I love that butler, ROFLMAO

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

View Jack Barnhill's profile

Jack Barnhill

366 posts in 3878 days

#2 posted 12-05-2009 11:19 PM

Nice looking cabinet, Gary. Too bad you had so many problems building and finishing it.

-- Best regards, Jack -- I may not be good, but I'm slow --

View Dwayne Sneed's profile

Dwayne Sneed

21 posts in 3609 days

#3 posted 12-05-2009 11:45 PM

Nice Gary. I been wanting to do a project in cherry for some time, but if you had this much trouble, I think I will stick with walnut. I had always heard it was difficult to stain.

-- Dwayne Sneed – Pursuing the passion.

View stefang's profile


16752 posts in 3846 days

#4 posted 12-05-2009 11:50 PM

The project turned out real good iGary. in spite of your problems with the cherry wood. I recall reading an article on cherry some years ago where they warned about cherry being difficult. In addition to the problems you mentioned it also burns easily while sawing and routing.

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Don Newton's profile

Don Newton

720 posts in 4131 days

#5 posted 12-05-2009 11:53 PM

Gary, I’ve used cherry lots of times and experienced none of what you did. I suspect the material was kiln dried improperly. It is possible to case harden lumber and it somds as though that’s what happened to your material.

-- Don, Pittsburgh

View a1Jim's profile


117722 posts in 4089 days

#6 posted 12-05-2009 11:54 PM

Hey Gary
They all can not be high boys or Pie crust tables sometimes we just make things that work. In no way am I putting this entertainment center down it looks great . Even if it is Cherry :-)) You don’t have to like Cherry with that great collection of wood.

View Herbiej's profile


66 posts in 3865 days

#7 posted 12-06-2009 12:06 AM

Nice job, Gary The cherry looks good.

-- Acts: 2:38

View lew's profile


12863 posts in 4267 days

#8 posted 12-06-2009 12:08 AM

Great functional piece, Gary.

Have to share some of your opinion on cherry. My first experience was less than optimum, too. Thought it was sanded perfectly- even used a mineral spirit wipe. As soon as the stain hit it… Oh S**t!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4185 days

#9 posted 12-06-2009 12:34 AM

Nice looking, cabinet.

View patron's profile


13654 posts in 3853 days

#10 posted 12-06-2009 01:10 AM

looks great ,
and is functional
a real stress reliever i’m sure .

i like it too ,
‘cause i got to help with the finish !(LOL)

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18672 posts in 4188 days

#11 posted 12-06-2009 02:03 AM

I know you say you just slopped it out, but it looks fantastic to me:-)) Things will improve a little when the terrible twos are over with..

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Rj's profile


1047 posts in 4143 days

#12 posted 12-06-2009 02:34 AM

Looks Great Gary! I like the open look the glass gives it. I”ve never built furniture with it or tried staining it . I have some steamed and regular kiln dryed cherry and have build quite a few projects that reguired fine detail and tight joints (1/4”x1/8”rounded trim etc). If you look at my Flag case you’ll see small trim where the sides meet the base .
I’ve never really had a problem with it being brittle or burning it has givin me small proplems when finishing it because of the small sap pockets that can be in some areas I usually wipe it them with acetone or lacquer thinner.
I do know that it can be a problem when staining it! I think it might have to do with areas of sap in the grain ,I’m not positive on that though. If that is the case I wonder if you could wipe it down with acitone to dry the sap areas so the stain doesn’t get that splotchy effect??
If that is the problem your having.

-- Rj's Woodworks,San Jose & Weed Ca,

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10739 posts in 4564 days

#13 posted 12-06-2009 02:49 AM

I think you did a good job on your ‘quickie’ project…

I haven’t made anything serious with Cherry yet… BUT, I didn’t think Cherry was supposed to be stained. :) (?)
I always thought it was the natural color people liked & how it got darker over the years. (

When I first used Pocket Screws, I was very much surprised by how easy it was… Fast! And no waiting for glue to dry! Did you like it?

”The first time I used window screen gasket material to hold in glass.”
Is that the round small rope-like stuff that is squished down into the slot to hold the screen in?
If so, I didn’t know you could use it for glass!

Very interesting…

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:

View GaryBuck's profile


268 posts in 3738 days

#14 posted 12-06-2009 02:51 AM

Hey Gary,, This is Gary L.O.L. Anyway I got a couple of things to say here,one I think it came out looking nice.And you did it in a few days? Great job there bud. I LOVE cherry wood over any other. The oaks are o.k. Walnut, mahogany I like a little bit better but cherry,,, man there is nothing sweeter than a nice cherry crafted piece. The only time I’ve built with cherry was about 10 years back and that was when I salvaged a broken bedroom vanity that some one was throwing out. Beyond fixing, I dismanteled it and cut the wood for something else. {if I remember right, a box to keep odd and ends in} but I had no trouble with cutting or touch up staining or screwing in screws none of what you discribed. Maybe I was lucky. Anybody else have these problems? Please let me know cause I’d hate to spend the money on some cherry and go through what you did.Thanks for letting me post this here and thanks for sharing, Call me crazy but I liked it.

View Karson's profile


35202 posts in 4912 days

#15 posted 12-06-2009 06:27 AM

Terrible two continue until the terrible twelves.

The center looks great. I leave my cherry alone. I’ve got a cherry shaker table that has not had any finish put on it yet (3 years old) The hamster cage is on top of it now. It’s going to have to have a complete sanding after this version of it’s life.

Your stain looks great. Nice job.

-- 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]

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