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Thread: Pros and Cons of dados for shelves --- looking for old thread?

  1. #1
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    Pros and Cons of dados for shelves --- looking for old thread?

    Folks,
    I seem to recall a discussion here 6-18 months ago about the pros and cons of using dados for shelves.
    I tried searching, but the keyword "dado" is not really that unique, so I'm having no luck finding anything that seems relevant.

    Anyone else remember this?
    ...art
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
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    It could be worse You could be on fire.
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  3. #3
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    capt beatme to it art i knew it was one i had been involved and he had it nailed already
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
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  4. #4
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    The other discussion is for the depth of dados (I do 1/4 inch so I can have shelves on both sides of a 3/4 inch center divider)

    I think the current question is "to use or not to use" more than the depth when they are used.

    With bookcases 4 feet or so tall, or more, I want at least one shelf in a dado to hold the sides in, but that does not require all shelves in dadoes. Ideally the fixed shelf would be in the middle, but many cabinets have a fixed shelf 30 inches above the floor, so that is what I generally use for bookcases and other cabinets.

    Adjustable shelves have a slight advantage for the ultimate user (only slight, since the height of the shelves are rarely changed). But I find it FAR easier to finish a bookcase or cabinet with the adjustable shelves out and the back off - so much easier that my price is based on adjustable shelves; more expensive if someone wants all fixed shelves.

    If you use holes for shelf pins, I had customers comment that "there are sure a lot of holes" when I spaced the holes each inch. So I went to 1 1/2 inches, and there were some comments about lack of flexibility. Finally to the 32 mm "European standard" spacing (1 5/16 inches), and I haven't had a complaint since.
    Charlie Plesums, Austin Texas
    (Retired early to become a custom furnituremaker)
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  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by larry merlau View Post
    capt beatme to it art i knew it was one i had been involved and he had it nailed already
    Yup, that was it. Thanks, Chuck and Larry. You're right, I knew that both of you were involved, but didn't think to mention it!

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Plesums View Post
    The other discussion is for the depth of dados (I do 1/4 inch so I can have shelves on both sides of a 3/4 inch center divider)

    I think the current question is "to use or not to use" more than the depth when they are used.

    Charlie, you're mostly right... I knew that there was some discussion in that thread about depth and thickness, but I was also thinking about the whole yeah-or-nay aspect. I thought that there was also discussion about strength and relative merits of this, but there wasn't that much.

    I'm pondering a low bookcase right now --- I mull over designs for quite a while before settling. It would be all solid wood (cherry probably), with a ship-lapped back. I've built a low bookcase before with my dowelmax, and it worked fine. This time it's extra wide, at 36", so I'm planning on an off-center divider to break things up, and for design reasons. The divider fits between the top+bottom shelf, which are fastened to the sides. This is a bit more complicated to assemble with dowels, so I'm mulling over stopped dados for the top+bottom shelf, and for the divider also.
    There's usually more than one way to do it...
    www.wordsnwood.com ........ facebook.com/wordsnwood

  6. #6
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    Well Art I thinking your on the right track.
    It could be worse You could be on fire.
    Stupid hurts.

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