Quick and easy nightstand

Hey ! This project is about making a nice nightstand very fast in just a few steps.

In order to speed up the work I’ve used prefacbricated  pine wood panels ( 40 cm x 200 cm ). All you have to do it’s just to cut the panels to right lengt and then to assembly the cabinet with some dowels,  most probably the quicked way to join pannels.

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Once all the pannels were done, I’ve screwed the drawer hardware (it’s easier at this stage) and glued all toegheter.

I’ll skip the drawer making part, it’s nothing fency about it, I’ve just a standard lock rabbet technique.

Regarding drawers, I’ve payed a special attention to the drawer pulls, I do not like the old fashion traditional pulls so I’ve designed a  new “trendy” drawer pulls. The idea was to have an oval inset which holds the pulls. Precision is very importat at this stage so I’ve used the CNC machine to cut the oval and the pullers as well, but you can use a router for oval and handcut for the pulls.

I’ve very pleased about the result, I think it looks very original !

AFter putting all togheter and applying a couple of varnish the night stand is ready, voila!

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Living Room Coffee Table

Hello everyone!

I’ve been a bit lazy in the new year and I haven’t posted any new article since December. The truth is that I’ve been working on multiple projects in parallel and I had to wait to finish all of them to put together the posts.

This post is about a coffee table for the living room made out of hard wood (beech). I’ve never built a table, not event from soft wood, so it’s was quite a bit of challenge to work with hard wood.

I had some beech lumber in the workshop so it was just perfect for this job.

stock material

Table Specification:  L x W x H: 140 cm x 75 cm x 50 cm.

Making the table top

To make the table top I’ve used 1.8 cm thick lumbers and glued them with a tongue and groove joint. The key is to press them very hard while the glue dries.

Once the top was ready I focused on the table margins. The margins were 3.5 – 4 cm thick to create the illusion that the entire top is thick and massive.

To mount the margins I’ve did a groove of a 1.8 cm depth, this way I could easily glue everything together.

To finish the top, I’ve did repeated sanding with different grits: 60 , 80, 100 , 120.

I’ve started with the belt-sander  and finished with the random orbit sander to obtain a clean and smooth finish.

 Making the table legs

The table is quite short (~50 cm) so the legs so don’t need any bottom reinforcement. I’ve decided to make some rectangle legs opposed to the rounded legs, it gives a modern look.

To join the legs a I’ve made a frame using mortise and tenon joint. I’ve my pantorouter (How to build a wood pantorouter) to cut the tenon and mortise.

Once the tenon and mortise slots were cut I’ve glued them together in two steps for a  better result. It’s important to check the square before securing the glue pieces.

Finishing the table

We are at the finishing phase, both the top and the legs are ready. The next step is to stain the wood an apply 3 coat of varnish.

Staining the table:

After applying the varnish:

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… and here we are, the table is living room and ready to be used  !

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Garage tool cabinet

This post illustrates how to build a cabinet with 7 drawers to holds your tools in the garage. However this is not an indoor project, I’ve tried to use different joint techniques to practice the joinery.

I had some leftover pine wood in the garage corner which was just perfect for this job. The idea behind the cabinet was to build a pine wood frame and to use some 6 mm MDF for the sides and the back.

To build the frame I’ve decided to try out the below joinery:

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To get to this, first I did the dowetail joinery using and dowetail template followed by the tenon and mortise joint using my custom-made pantorouter (more details can be found here).

After finishing all pieces I’ve got everything ready to be assembled for the frame. But, before gluing the frame, I’ve cut a grove on the router table to lock the 6 mm MDF sides. This way the MDF will be secured inside the frame without the need of nails or screws.

Building the drawers

To build the drawers I’ve picked to use lap joint. I’ve never tried this type of joint before so it was just a good opportunity to exercise. I’ve already got from a older project the router jig, so I just had to use it.

To attach the bottom of the drawers I’ve cut a 3 mm grove on the circular saw table to accommodate a 3 mm thick MDF.

For the drawer pulls I’ve decided to make something quick so I’ve used a cove router bit to cut a concave edge then I’ve cut it ~10 cm length.

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Now, that all bits  are ready we can glue toegheter all the pieces.

I’ve almost forgot one important part ! I decided not to use any hardware because it’s expensive and probably not worth to invest to buy 7 sliders hardware in a garage cabinet. To build the drawer slider I’ve followed the tongue and groove joint principle so I’ve cut a groove on each side and mounted the “tongue” to the frame.

We are done! This is the final product. I hope you’ve found it useful.

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How to Repair A Knot in Wood

Sometimes, when you are working with softwood, like pinewood, you can end up with some knot holes. This can be annoying especially when they are visible.

In my case, I had a knot hole on the wardrobe door. I had no choice, I had to come up with a fix.

wood knot

As you can see in the picture there is quite a big and ugly hole right on the front side of the door.

To fix the issue, you need just a piece o hard wood and some glue. The trick is to cut a piece of hardwood to fit the hole, insert the dowel in the hole and put some glue. Once the glue is dried, cut of the excessive materials with a handsaw and sand flush the surface.

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Here is the result, it is quite amazing.

fixing wood knot

The wardrobe

In this post I’ll details the process of building a wardrobe starting of with some rough lumber.


Building a wardrobe might be a bit more complex job, especially if it is your first time so my advice is to start with something smaller first, like a cabinet or shelf.

The process has many steps and stages so I’ve divided this article in the following main sections:

  1. Wardrobe plan & design
  2. Side panels
  3. Measuring, cutting and assembling the frame structure
  4. Building the legs
  5. Building the front doors
  6. Building the drawers
  7. Finishing and painting

1. Wardrobe design & plan

All great project needs a plan, so you have o start with one too. It’s essential to draw in detail what you want to build otherwise there are low chances to end up with something useful.

In my case the room where I will place the wardrobe indicated the length, height an width. This is the beauty when you are making custom furniture, you can build exactly what you need.

Here is my design, it just sketch on a piece of paper, nothing fancy,  but you do not need more.

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The idea behind this design is to build something useful and efficient. I want to have a section where I can hang my shirts, some sort of shelf and a couple drawers for the underwear.

2. Side panels

Following the design I’ve determined that I need 6 piece of 2000×450 mm panel in order to cover the top, bottom, shelf’s, doors and the sides.

I’ve created the panel following the below steps:

Step 1: Preparation – select the lumber and try to avoid cracks, knots which might fall off and other imperfections. All the lumbers must have exactly the same thickness and to achieve that you can use your thickness planer.

Step2: Making the jointprocess the lumber to have a tongue and groove joint.

tongue and groove joint

Step 3: Glue and press all pieces together. To achieve a good result I’ve created the below jig rather than buying an expensive one from the store. It takes some time to fix the work piece but it does the job.

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Step4: Sanding – once the glue dried you have to sand down all the excessive materials to get a smooth and uniform surface. You can use a drum sander or a hand sander. If you did a good job you should not notice the joint.

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3. Measuring, cutting and assembling the frame structure

After you’ve finished all panels, you are ready to cut them to the right length and to assemble the frame. This part is pretty basic so I’ll skip it, but I’d like to underline to do not forget to always check for square. Everything needs to be perfectly lined up and must be square.

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4. Building the legs

I’ve decided to go with round legs for this wardrobe, I’ve considered more appropriate than the rectangular ones.

I’ve started off with a piece of 10×10 cm wood, mounted to the lathe, rounded the edges and tried to do some sort of curves.

wardrobe legwardrobe leg

wardrobe legs

5. Building the front doors

To build the doors I evaluated a couple of options. The fist one was to build the door out of a single panel (basically from one piece), while the second option, a bit more complex,was to building the door from a raised panel.  The first options was too simple and I’ve already did similar stuff so I’ve decided to try the second one.

Making the raised panel is fun if you have the proper router bits. I had nothing like this in my workshop so I bought the my first kitchen cabinet set. It was quite expensive but as you will see you can do amazing project.

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The kitchen cabinet router set has two bits, the ogee bit for the side frames and raised panel bit for middle part.

As you can see in the pictures the process is relatively easy. Routing the end grain frames can be a bit tricky, that’s why I’ve build a small jig to ensure the work piece is always secured and it’s perpendicular to the router bit.

The door knobs

Another interesting part is making the knobs.  The challenge is to ensure that all are the same. To achieve this you can use the lathe duplicator or you just simply can measure the length and the radius as I did. A quick sketch is big help, it’s always easier to start of with plan, then you just have to follow the same steps and ensure the measures are precise.

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6. Building the drawers

Building the drawers is fun, I really like this part. I have a dovetail jig which makes my life easier maybe that’s why ….

There is no trick here, you just have to cut all the pieces,  route the dovetail joint, cut the grove for the bottom part on the circular saw table and you are done.  To follow the door design I’ve build the a raised panel for the front piece. After dovetail join is glued and the bottom part is assembled I’ve used some dowels to secure the front panel.

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wardrobe drawer

7. Finishing and painting

I’ve decided not to use any stain to give any color. My intention was to capture the natural color of the wood, so I applied just 2 coats of transparent paint.

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Here we are, this is the final product. There are a few low level details which are not 100% accurate but being my first furniture project I think it looks good.
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