Continued from Plywood Door – Part 1
I picked up a sheet of multi-ply from home depot for $40. I like the Araucoply more than the “cabinet grade” plywood because it doesn’t have a delicate veneer layer that is prone to chipping during cutting and blistering when exposed to the elements; instead it has full-thickness layers front to back, making a more durable product for my purposes.
I cut the sheet down, according to my Sketchup plans, into strips wider than necessary for the final product.
A quick tip: Buying a gallon of glue is cheaper than buying the small bottles for a project like this that requires a lot of glue. To dispense the glue during the glue-up, I just poured it into a disposable water bottle with a slot in the lid and threw away the bottle when I was done.
This is an important step. I could have theoretically eliminated the need for this by cutting the plywood strips to the final dimensions in the first place, but it is nearly impossible to prevent a little slipping between the pieces during glue up, and after the glue dried I would have to even out the edges and ended up with a board that was narrower than intended.
This was my second time using the spiral cutter on my router table for a major project, and I must say I love it. I always got a significant amount of chatter on all but the shallowest cuts with a standard straight bit on all but the shallowest cuts, but the spiral cutter handled full-depth (1-inch) cuts smoothly and without complaint.
Quick dry-fit to make sure I hadn’t done anything stupid… all clear… this time.
These notched squares would act as something between a tenon and a biscuit (or possibly a spline) to hold the corners together. The notch was needed to act as a continuation of the slot the glass would set in.
I attached three sides together, leaving one side open to later install the glass (the below picture shows the final side in place, but it is a dry-fit to keep things aligned while the other end dries).
After the glue dried, I temporarily clamped the fourth edge in place and routed a decorative bevel around the inner edges of the front and back. Since I routed after assembly, I had to define the corners in a second step with a cabinet maker’s rasp.
You may be thinking: “why didn’t he use the router table to cut the bevel before assembly? Then he wouldn’t have had to clean up the corners…”
This is true, but at the time I would have routed the bevel prior to assembly, the baby was sleeping, so I decided to take advantage of the time doing the quieter assembly activities, rather than waiting till the next day to make any further progress.
Once the bevels were cut, I applied a small amount of silicone caulking to the inside of the slots in the frame and slid the glass into place.
The glass didn’t seat as deep in the slot as I hoped and so I had to dredge the slot in the final piece by another 1/8-inch on the router table to get everything in position to glue the frame segment in place and complete the major assembly.
Coming Soon: Hinge Mortises, Paint, and Lynching!