Cherry Gun Cabinet

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Project by Tyler posted 08-05-2012 04:57 AM 4049 views 3 times favorited 11 comments Add to Favorites Watch

About a month ago, my best friend asked, “Ty, how hard would it be to make a gun cabinet,” to which I replied “Probably not that bad.” Now I don’t think it was necessarily hard, but boy, did I learn a lot. This is a solid cherry ten-gun cabinet that I designed and built from scratch, using only a few preliminary measurements from our own gun cabinet. It is probably my biggest project so far, and I think it came out alright for a prototype.
My first lesson learned was in squaring out the rough-cut lumber; use the JOINTER first, then the planer haha. This was also the first time I used a biscuit cutter between the boards I was gluing together to make the tops, sides, etc. I also learned to use the face clamp you can get with the Kreg jig to keep your pocket-hole joints nice and flush. I used the Kreg jig to assemble the face frame and to attach the top sides to the face frame. After I got the body together, I went to work on the drawers, another first for me. After a look at the assembled drawers, a family friend pointed out that because of the drawers’ deepness, things would just get piled in there, so I added the sliding shelf in each drawer (picture 5) to try to keep it organized. I figured the bottom of the drawer would be perfect for ammo storage, and the slider would be good for smaller things like calls. So after all that, I had to educate myself on the selection and installation of drawer slides; this went relatively smooth. My next seemingly daunting task was the six concealed hinges I needed in those big doors… BUM BUM BUMMMM. They turned out to be probably the easiest part of the project haha. After installing the door knobs, pulls, and locks, I went to work with that crown moulding (picture 6). I ended up gluing together two pieces of wood with a Roman ogee edge, and actually liked how it looked in the end.
After putting a darkish stain on all the cherry, I finished it with four coats of brush-on lacquer and a good hand waxing over the whole thing. Critiques and comments welcome… thanks for looking!

-- Tyler- Montandon, PA ------ "It aint broke, it just needs fixed!"

11 comments so far

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

30513 posts in 2978 days

#1 posted 08-05-2012 09:16 AM

Nice work on the cabinet. That is one of my next builds as well. Looks like you did a pretty solid job on it.

-- Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View HalDougherty's profile


1820 posts in 3877 days

#2 posted 08-05-2012 09:35 AM

Nice cabinet. I love working with cherry, the results always are impressive. I’d like to build one, but after two times having thieves break into my house and workshop, I keep all my firearms in steel safes. A gun cabinet would look good next to my gunstock carving workshop to hold some display models. I may have to build one when time allows. Thanks for sharing your project.

-- Hal, Tennessee

View jaykaypur's profile


4017 posts in 3048 days

#3 posted 08-05-2012 11:45 AM

Good job and this will only get better looking as the cherry ages over time.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View woodrookieII's profile


295 posts in 3303 days

#4 posted 08-05-2012 12:03 PM

Nice cabinet Tyler.


View Pat Cavanaugh's profile

Pat Cavanaugh

165 posts in 4011 days

#5 posted 08-05-2012 12:41 PM

Nice work. My only critique would be the use of the oak ply for the back, The grain is so wild compared to the cherry. It detracts from it.

-- Pat - Biloxi, MS

View Tyler's profile


104 posts in 2905 days

#6 posted 08-05-2012 12:50 PM

That was my only major screw-up… or at least I think that was the only one haha. It was a lesson well learned. Thanks for all the input and comments, everyone!

-- Tyler- Montandon, PA ------ "It aint broke, it just needs fixed!"

View Dusty56's profile


11856 posts in 4328 days

#7 posted 08-05-2012 04:32 PM

Agree on the backer plywood…a beadboard ply or T&G boards would have looked nice : )
Also , an oil finish would have brought that Cherry to life , and it would darken nicely over a short period of time when exposed to sunlight (UV rays) stain required : )
Good for you , taking on such a large project, Tyler !!
The moulding looks great as well : )

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View markswoodcraft's profile


175 posts in 2760 days

#8 posted 08-05-2012 11:00 PM

nice gun cabinet, i wouldnt make one. in bc have to lock them up,
so many gangsters and criminals

View Xtreme90's profile


193 posts in 3832 days

#9 posted 08-06-2012 01:44 AM

Very nice!! I deff agree on the oak ply distracting your attention. But you should be proud, That’s a beautiful cabinet.

-- "I don't cut wood. I machine it!" G.M. The wood machinest

View kdc68's profile


2934 posts in 2917 days

#10 posted 08-06-2012 09:40 PM

What I have learned in 23 plus years woodworking is that there is always challenges and learning new things with every project. Thats part of the fun. Great looking cabinet and congrats to learning

-- Measure "at least" twice and cut once

View davidroberts's profile


1027 posts in 4126 days

#11 posted 08-19-2012 05:39 PM

The primary reason I started using more cherry than oak was the over the top oak cathedral grain pattern. Especially red oak. Hard to get away from those wild, pointy spires on flat sawn lumber and panels. The cathedrals take over any project. But if that is the look someone is going for, then more power. I did the same thing on a cabinet not as tall as yours and not as noticeable. I got lucky. On cabinets, I use narrow gauge, short, air gun staples to tack the back panel into the rabbet. Probably the same as you. If so, just consider a project one day to replace the back panel. But in the meantime, enjoy a really beautiful and nicely executed Cherry gun cabinet. Well done.

-- Better woodworking through old hand tools.

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