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Thread: Entertainment Center

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
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    Decatur, Alabama
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    518

    Entertainment Center

    I've finally started working on my entertainment center. I started looking into this project last summer. Since then I've asked a lot of questions, looked at a lot of pictures for design ideas, and changed my own ideas a good bit. Here is the rough sketchup model. The bottom half of the sketchup is complete. The top half will have some type of crown, arched tops of some radius, probably fluted columns, and panels on the ends. I am also gonig to put a dimmer and some lights into the top.

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    I'll update the sketchup more later. I'm pretty firm on the height/width of the top sections, but the details are still up in the air. I started veneering the plywood for the bottom boxes a couple weeks ago. I'm not sure I have the perfect amount of glue down pat, but I have definitely learned what to much and to little look like It's not the fastest moving project I've ever done, but the veneer is turning out good now. It's going to be one huge chunk of walnut when I'm done, with the end panels and some of the FF from Larry's stash.


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  2. #2
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    Jul 2009
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    Amherst, New Hampshire
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    10,604
    I like your design Jeb. Looking forward to following along
    Faith, Hope & Charity

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    Delton, Michigan
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    17,472
    well jeb you need to show us what to much and not enough looks like
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
    One hand washes the other!
    Don't put off today till tomorrow!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
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    No, not all of SoCal is Los Angeles!
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    Alright. This will be a great follow along Jeb. Nice proportions. Will the larger "rails" across the tops of the three sections will be for the crown?
    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C. Clarke

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Thomasville, GA
    Posts
    5,992
    Nice design, Jeb! I'm looking forward to following your build.
    Bill Arnold
    Citizen of Texas residing in Georgia.
    NRA Life Member and Member of Mensa
    My Weather Underground station

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    518
    Quote Originally Posted by glenn bradley View Post
    Alright. This will be a great follow along Jeb. Nice proportions. Will the larger "rails" across the tops of the three sections will be for the crown?
    Yeah, the sketchup just isn't final yet. I'm not 100% sure what I want my crown and arches to look like, but it's going to have some form of crown molding at the top and an arched top rail on each of the three sections. Part of it is deciding what cutters I might buy to make the crown. I've looked at just combining a cove cut and some router bit profiles, or the twin router bits from freud for 5.5" crown.

    Larry - I'll see what I have. It was a pretty busy time on my first few panels trying to get everything into the vacuum press, then scrambling to fix the one that had the bubble in the center, so no pictures of the repair. I'll take one of the finished repairs when I get back out to the shop.

  7. #7
    Are you using paper backed veneer? If you are I've found it adheres better if you take a ros with 120grit and scuff the paper. As far as the amount of glue put a pencil line on the substrate and when you can just see it thru the glue you have enough on it. Are putting a platten on top before you put it in the bag or are you just relying on the bag for the pressure?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
    Posts
    518
    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Bienlein View Post
    Are you using paper backed veneer? If you are I've found it adheres better if you take a ros with 120grit and scuff the paper. As far as the amount of glue put a pencil line on the substrate and when you can just see it thru the glue you have enough on it. Are putting a platten on top before you put it in the bag or are you just relying on the bag for the pressure?
    I'm using breather mesh on both sides that I got from veneersupplies.com, and all raw wood veneer. The area I wasn't getting enough glue on was the edges, some spots just weren't adhering good enough. I didn't notice until I had a piece chip out. Click image for larger version. 

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ID:	67287 It wasn't to hard to fix where it wasn't chipped, just a razor blade to lift the edges up and spread glue under them. This piece is just the inside of a lower cabinet, so I'm just planning on a little dyed sealer to make it blend in a little better. I've been leaving my panels a little oversized then cutting after I veneer them. Is this the normal way of doing it, or do you normally cut the panel to the exact size then trim the veneer down after the press?



    There was a spot on one panel that had a bubble of glue under it when I pulled it out of the press. I ended up slicing it with a knife to get the excess glue out, then cutting a piece shaped about like a toothpick out to get it to flatten back out. This worked really well with the dark tinted veneer glue I am using, just left a dark line after I scraped and sanded the area. Before I cut it, it looked like there was a quarter under the veneer
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    Today I put the first couple face frames together, sanded, and applied a dye stain. The natural color doesn't really show up well on camera, but there's a very distinct difference between some of the boards. I mixed a walnut transtint dye at about 1/4 strength and I think the boards are close enough now. I wish I could leave it all natural, but there's to much color variation between pieces for our taste.
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Decatur, Alabama
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    518
    Here is what I was thinking on the sides of the upper half. I had planned on raised panels everywhere (not going to draw those in sketchup for now). I'm not exactly sure what to do about the side panel here. I think the top rail should be as high as the arched face frame on the front of the entertainment center. It's drawn at 2" high, but the arched panel is 5" high on the edges.

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    Should I make the raised panel on the sides arched at the top, or just make the top rail about 5" x 9" instead of 2" x 9"? Any other ideas on how do deal with this visually?

  10. #10
    I've always cut my panels and veneer about an inch larger and cut to size after I glue the veneer on. I also always try to use a scrap piece of 3/4" material when ever possible the same size as my panel when ever I put it into the vacum bag. As for the breather mesh I just got some felt from the fabric store that I then put over the top. Here is a pic of my setup.
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    In the picture you can see the yellow tub that goes in the left side. That is the line to the vacuum pump. It goes thru the bag and into a 3/8" hole drilled about 3" deep into the edge of the 3/4" platen. The platen has 1/8" x 1/8" grooves cut on the top and bottom in a grid pattern that has one set that intersects where the vacuum tube is insert and a 1/8" hole is drilled thru the groove thru to the 3/8" hole. This allows an even vacuum under the piece without having to use some type of breather mesh underneath. 45 minutes later I pull it out and the next one goes in. I then sticker my panels for a couple of days to allow them to cure and then cut to size.

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