My first REAL constructioning!

Construction? This weekend i did my first real carpentry project ever. I built shelves and drawers for our kitchen pantry. If i wasn’t a huge fan of the New Yankee Workshop i don’t think i would have even known where to start! I never took a shop class in high school, but i did help my dad build some things back in junior high/high school (i tried to get out of that as often as possible though!) I wish i would have paid more attention then! I think i used almost every tool that i own this weekend!

all done!

The one thing that you never see on tv is how long it takes to set up some of these things to get them just right. I’ve seen good old Norm use a dado blade on a table saw a billion times, but i’d never actually used one until this weekend. not to mention that my table saw didn’t come with an insert (throat plate?) for a dado blade… so i made one! I had some 1/4″ plywood for the drawer bottoms, and i traced out the shape of the insert onto some scrap plywood and used a skilsaw to cut out the shape. I then sanded it to fit, drilled a whole for the screw that holds the insert down. Then i installed the dado to the size i needed, lowered the blade all the way, put in the new insert, screwed down one end, mounted a 2×4 to hold held one end of it down, then turned on the saw and slowly raised the blade to cut out a perfect new insert. I’m not sure how many safety rules that violated, but it worked!

the insert i had to make for the dado

For the 1/4″ cuts i needed to make, setting up the dado was a breeze, as its just the two end blades and a shim. But for other cuts, i needed to do 5/8″, which is an end blade, shim, 1/8″ cutter, shim, 1/8″ cutter, shim, another 1/8″ cutter, shim, and outer blade. getting all that stuff to stay properly aligned was a pain. the bigger pain was that the shims were just thin enough to sit between two threads on the you couldn’t move the next blade flush with the previous one. And after doing most of the dado work and going back to a standard blade i realized i had a couple more 5/8″ cuts to make… and somehow after putting it all back on, one of the shims i used was a different size, so the 5/8″s was like 1/32″ off, so i had to take it back apart to find the thinnest shim and replace it.

The old pantry, full of stuffs The old pantry, destructed
fully stocked pantry empty pantry
the beginning with some shelves
construction begins most of the shelves are in

The final product!

all done!

I now know why the projects on the new yankee workshop have a little segue like “a little more sanding and i’ll finish up tomorrow…[fade out]…[fade in]Welcome back. I just started this morning by….”. Because projects like this take a lot of time! just setup and measuring and cutting and test fitting and setup and on and on! I made a few mistakes here and there, a couple bad cuts (the saying should be measure 11 times, cut once!) but we had plenty of extra of everything i needed so the mistakes weren’t trips to home depot or anything! For my first real project i think it turned out well!

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2 comments on “My first REAL constructioning!
  1. See, you should have paid more attention at home…….. glad to hear you are using your tools! My dado blade is a ‘dial-up’so I don’t have to mess with the shims. You did just fine! Pa

  2. John Gardner says:

    a dial up dado, huh? i’ll have to check that out next time i’m home!

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