My First Project - Media Cabinet

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Project by tool_junkie posted 03-04-2012 06:50 PM 3557 views 13 times favorited 24 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hello All,

Just finished my first major woodworking project – a media cabinet from woodsmith shop plans.

Many thanks to all those who helped me along the way, and special thanks to James Calpperton for his valuable advice on staining birch plywood.

The cabinet and the top is made of birch plywood; the face frame and doors are from “premium quality boards” from Menards (I think pine).

Cost: I didn’t keep track of every penny, but a safe estimate is less than $250 on material cost.

Tools Used: Mainly used a circular saw with a guide to cut all the cabinet parts. Router to make dados for the vertical and horizontal dividers of the cabinet. Used a friend’s table saw to cut the face frame parts and trim the top to correct dimensions. My table saw needed extension wings and didn’t support wide pieces to be cut.

Reasons I undertook this project: We needed a new media cabinet and equivalent size cabinets at furniture stores would cost around $600 to $800. So I thought I could do it much cheaper and better, and so this project started. Worked on it off and on (including no work on it for a few months) and a year later we have this nice cabinet sitting in our living room.

Stain Color: Half and Half mix of General Finishes Georgian Cherry and Java with three coats of Arm-R-Seal Semi Gloss. I wanted to keep it two tone but wife wanted it in all dark color and of course she won. You can see the two tone pictures here:

You can probably spot a few flaws in the pictures, but I am overall happy with it.

One down side though, the TV now sits a bit higher than we are used to, but that can be solved by buying new couches… oh wait, I mean, building new couches… LOL!


24 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


118161 posts in 4585 days

#1 posted 03-04-2012 06:52 PM

Wow This is a very cool entertainment center. Very nice work.


View NormG's profile


6508 posts in 4011 days

#2 posted 03-04-2012 07:04 PM

Very interesting first project to take on, great job

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View tdude30's profile


16 posts in 3564 days

#3 posted 03-04-2012 07:39 PM

Nice work. I will have to try one of these for our TV. Thanks for sharing.

-- Newbie woodworker

View Clayton Whisman's profile

Clayton Whisman

76 posts in 3291 days

#4 posted 03-04-2012 08:42 PM

Great Job, nice work! I never would have guess it was your ‘first major woodworking project’

View doncutlip's profile


2832 posts in 4564 days

#5 posted 03-04-2012 08:58 PM

That really came out great

-- Don, Royersford, PA

View terry603's profile


321 posts in 3921 days

#6 posted 03-04-2012 09:08 PM

you have talent, looks great

-- may not always be right,but,never in doubt.

View Reddial's profile


48 posts in 3284 days

#7 posted 03-04-2012 09:28 PM

Very nice. Don’t let the word get out that you were able to do this kind of work without a shop full of power tools. If spouses were to find out about this, it might cause a real down turn in the tool business.

-- Darrel..."The biggest threat to 'good' is 'better'.

View vman154's profile


160 posts in 3436 days

#8 posted 03-04-2012 09:35 PM

grate job keep it up very cool

View Luke's profile


290 posts in 3695 days

#9 posted 03-04-2012 09:54 PM

Love woodsmith magazine and woodsmith shop, but I do find sometimes they lack the help when it comes to finishing projects… Great job, super nice cabinet.

View Douger's profile


74 posts in 3694 days

#10 posted 03-05-2012 12:05 AM

Good job, and a great reminder that a skillful, determined craftsman can make beautiful things even with modest tools. Keep up the good work!

—Doug in Kansas

-- Doug, Kansas,

View DMC1903's profile


285 posts in 3335 days

#11 posted 03-05-2012 03:32 AM

Congrats on your project, it looks great.
What’s next?

View kdc68's profile


2992 posts in 3284 days

#12 posted 03-05-2012 04:08 AM

Now you have a good reason to add extension wings to your table saw. Do more big projects….Your media cabinet looks great…good job

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View 308Gap's profile


337 posts in 4011 days

#13 posted 03-05-2012 04:09 AM

Great looking cabinet. But do share this imfo on finishing plywood. Maybe James Calpperton could do a write up here to go with the pics?

-- Thank You Veterans!

View Andrew's profile


316 posts in 3375 days

#14 posted 03-05-2012 11:48 AM

I really like this. Great first project.

I actually like the dark better than the two-tone. I think those two tones were cool, but they were too contrasting.

Awesome job.

-- Andrew - Albany. NY

View Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop's profile

Drew - Rock-n H Woodshop

646 posts in 3699 days

#15 posted 03-05-2012 03:57 PM

Hey tool junkie, where did you find your glass inserts. I am building an EC too and I need bubble glass inserts.

-- Drew -- "I cut it twice and it's still too short!"- Rock-n H Woodshop - Moore, OK

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