Linen Cupboard Doors

glenn bradley

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There is a near-floor-to-ceiling linen cupboard at the end of a hallway. This is situated so that you see it if you look down the hall when entering the house, walk down the hall to the bathroom or to go to a guestroom . . . in general it is in-your-face. It is not bad per se; it's just that it screams 35 year old contractor grade built-in.
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Working with LOML as design consultant "we" are wanting something more like this.
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We talked about various materials and styles. I even made a run to the lumber yard. If they would have had some red birch or red alder that was wide enough I would have gone with it. Alas, it was not to be. SWMBO says it shall be sepele. Ever since I built her a buffet out of sepele she has been hooked on the stuff. I pull some stock out of the racks.
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I use my "chop saw" to break down a thick plank that will supply all the floating panels. I like to take pieces from the same board (or boards from a flitch). This makes figure and color matching much easier.
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These get the usual face joint, plane faces parallel, edge joint routine.
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We all have a feel for what material we free hand at the bandsaw and what material we employ some handling aids to process. The board size is right on the line of what I like to muscle through a resawing so I add some feather boards and an outfeed.
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I rip 1/2" off the blanks.
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I use the jointed face of the remainder of each blank to re-plane the faces parallel. I then adjust the feather boards and saw another 1/2" off the remainders.
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These blanks get set aside to get comfy while I work on some frame stock.
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I will mill them to final size in a day or two.
 
There's some sawdust on the ground and hither and yon on the machines that certain operations make it hard on the DC system to collect. Any time I am using the vac at the router fence, drill press, or whatever I will run it around these areas. My "cutoff saw" comes into play again.
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That was a close one . . . :oops: . My original design was going to use typical rail and style joinery. Given the scale of the doors and the weight (not bad at around 14 pounds) I decided to go with bridle joints at the corners. This makes all my horizontals nearly 5" longer than I originally marked out :rolleyes:
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Parts is parts . . .
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joint and plane, joint and plane . . .
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Here's all the blanks at approximate size with parallel faces.
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Time for a lunch break.
 
When I am milling parts to final thickness that require more joinery later I make a spare or, in the event of large parts, mill some scrap to the same dimension.
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I use these for joinery setups.
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My first guess was pretty close but, the closer I get the machine work the less follow up work I have to do.
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The length of these parts and the depth of the cut are about at the limit of the dimensions I would use the tenon jig for. Much larger and I would do them horizontally at the bandsaw.
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Something about the nature of this operation was rooster-tailing a lot of spoil out the back of the backup block despite running the DC. Probably the opening made by the first cut is the path of least resistance for the spoil of the second cut. I keep a couple of tube socks filled with marbles in the shop as soft weights. This is a good job for them.
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A bit of sheet magnet and a 1-2-3 block with a magnet make enough of a corral for the shop vac to gather the spoil.
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There we go.
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I was just told that as opposed to going somewhere for turkey day, we are hosting(???). At any rate I will take a break and help LOML get the back yard ready.
 
Have you ever noticed how you don't seem to get as much done in a day as you thought you were going to? I'm glad I didn't put the Domino table away yet. As I was laying out for the frame grooves I realized I had missed the side mortises in a batch of parts.
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Once that was resolved I marked the mortise positions. I don't want the groove to go right through the mortise area.
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I want to stop and start the groove leaving a shoulder for more long grain glue surface for the tenons.
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I stop and do a dry fit now and then to make sure I don't wander off.
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I really thought I would get more done today . . .
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*** sigh ***
 
I clamp up a frame so I can profile the edges that face the panels.
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I will use a portion of this 1/8" round over.
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For the panels I use an 1/8" round over that I ground the bearing mount post off of.
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This lets the bit fit under the rabbet. The fence controls the position of the material.
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I use a dimensioned piece of scrap as a backer. It has to fit under the rabbet to support the raised panel portion during the cutter's exit.
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Here's a before and after on some setup scraps.
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Here's the dry assembled frame and panels with both profiles complete.
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I rigged up this doo-whopper to hold the southern door ajar. We have a near-constant breeze and sometimes hellacious gusts in the fall so I have the means to hold doors open, closed, and in between.
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If I open anything else, like the attic trap, I get a good air flow. There's a full length ridge vent on the roof.
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With some decent ventilation and my PPE I put a pre-assembly finish on the door panels.
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This prevents any peek-a-boo unfinished wood showing during seasonal changes.

I forgot to mention. I use these antiperspirant lids for non-pointy "pyramids".
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Once upon a time I mixed up the carefully book-matched panels in a piece and didn't notice till the glue was dry. Since then I check, double-check, and triple- check my layouts.
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I have a batch of spacers for such tasks, even so I had to make a couple more to have enough for these doors. Two pieces of old gift card and two layers of tape.
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There are a lot of moving parts in these doors so the clamping starts to look like the proverbial porcupine.
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I clamp them for about an hour and then set them on a flat surface.
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Last one is in the clamps. I'll confirm the fit and drill for hinges tomorrow.
 
I usually clean up bridle joints with a block plane but decided to give the edge sander a go on these.
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I watched a demo on this jig and they were having a special, free returns if you weren't satisfied. I think the regular price is only about $60 anyway.
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It has a built-in De-Sta-Co style clamp that works well. The drill guide goes on and off easily. However, the drill guide insert for the hinge screws does not align with any of the Blum hinges or Blum-like hinges that I have(???).
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Not a big deal for me as being able to bring the 35mm drill to the work on larger pieces is what I was after. On smaller doors I just use the drill press and fence. These doors are just big enough to be awkward. Another negative is that the shank on the 35mm drill bit seems proprietary. The documentation states that you should use their bit and it seems they've made it better if you do. That being said the drill bit will probably last way long enough to make the low price of the jig worthwhile. The dust collection is near perfect.
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So, setup the jig, do 12 holes, and clean up in a very short time . . . I'm OK with it.
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I only got one of the doors finish sanded when I ran out of gas. There's always tomorrow.
 
Going to be a little boring for the next few days. The panels are about 1/8" shy of the frame surfaces in the front, about 1/4" in the rear. I find the minute it takes me to put some tape on the pre-finished panels is a lot faster than the 15 minutes it takes me to fix an errant touch of the sander should one occur.
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All surfaces prepared for finishing.
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Base sealer coat applied to the backs.
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I'll be back in a bit to apply a second coat. then I will close down the shop and hope that watching TV is more exciting than watching finish cure :D
 
Things to do while watching finish cure . . .

If you've seen some of my other stuff you know I like to make my own pulls. It is not always appropriate but often I like to use free form organic-like shapes. I make a few prototypes out of poplar and get approval from SWMBO for one of them. I make some blanks and head to the bandsaw.
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I use the large roller on the edge sander for the more open curves.
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Here they are getting close.
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I think this 1 x 30 sander from Harbor Freight was about $30 with a coupon. There are videos online about how to dial them in and make them pretty usable.
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I remove the platen completely and use the unsupported belt as a sort of forming tool. When it is not in use it hides out of the way behind one of the bandsaws and waits patiently.
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With some follow up fine file work and hand sanding they get a coat of finish.
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Once the finish cures I will hit them with 2-3 coats of rattle can lacquer since they will get handled a lot.
P.s. that piece of cardboard is my template for the original blanks.
 
Gonna give the pulls one more day to cure before I top coat them. They are cured enough to handle so I grab my bundle of known-thickness-strips. These let me space things like bead board, doors, back slats, etc.
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I lay some tape in the general area where the pulls will go.
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Position the pulls and trace around the areas that will make flat contact with the doors.
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I drill 3/16" holes that allow a bit of wiggle room for the #8 screws.
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I use a transfer punch to mark the pull.
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I use a drill stop to make sure I go deep enough but not too deep when drilling the pull. Screwed on it looks like so:
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