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First off, this is a great site loaded with information, and I am glad I found it.

I am building my first non-face frame/edge banded cabinet with reclaimed solid wood. The wood was used to ship natural gas pipeline via rail, and was very rough with few straight edges. I believe it is oak, both white and red (will post pictures later and see what you gurus think..)

All of my other cabinets I have built had a face frame or edge banding made of solid wood, but this one will be completely made of solid wood with no plywood, except for the back panel. My question is how to attach the shelving to the side panels. The top and sides will be apx. 1.5 inches thick and the shelves and vertical dividers will be apx. .75 inches. My plan is to either do a stopped dado and glue the center section of the shelves, or carry the dado through the front and glue the front inch or so. Or since it is all solid, can I glue the entire joint? I am still learning about wood movement (and may never master it.) How would you join these?

The cabinet will resemble this one, but the top section will be open for the dish box, and dvd player. No vertical divider.

Product Rectangle Wood Drawer Door


The top will be fastened with these, and the back panel is planned to be 1/2" Baltic birch.

Table Wood Flooring Floor Wood stain


Thank you in advance.
 

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Firewood, do you really intend to make the top and sides 1.5" thick? That will make a very heavy piece. Aesthetically, it may be justifiable if that is truly your desire.

In answer to your question, you have a number options. I would probably make a stopped dado which can be glued full length because the grain for the shelves and sides are both going in the same direction. If the span is going to be much more than 30", you might consider a sliding dovetail (also glued full length) which helps to prevent the sides from bowing (probably not necessary if the sides are that thick and depending on the load weight). If you think you might want adjustable shelves, then drill holes for shelf pins.

Regarding wood movement, it isn't all that difficult. Just remember that wood expands and contracts across its width and not its length. So if you are attaching width to width, no problem. If you are attaching width to length, you need allow to the width to expand and contract. HTH
 
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