DIY Bookcase Plan

Written by jonah morrissey
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DIY Bookcase Plan
Build a bookcase to organise your book collection. (Shana Novak/Stockbyte/Getty Images)

Bookcases conveniently hold books in an organised manner. Wooden bookcases provide the warmth and detail of quality furniture in a room. You can build your own bookcases to match the furniture and woodwork in any room of your house. The classic bookcase consists of a back, sides, top, bottom and shelves. The shelves are fastened to the side and supported by notched out sections in the sides called dadoes. The bookcase can be left with clean lines or you can add moulding for a more traditional style.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Things you need

  • 2 boards, 1-by-6-inch, 48 inches long
  • Tape measure
  • Pencil
  • Table saw, with dado blades
  • 2 boards, 1-by-6-inch, 24 inches long
  • Box, flush trim wood screws
  • Screw gun
  • Plywood panel, 3/4-by-24-by-48-inch
  • 3 boards, 1-by-6-inch, 23 inches long
  • Wood putty
  • Putty knife
  • Fine-grit sandpaper
  • Paint
  • Paintbrush

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Place the 1-by-6-by-48-inch boards with the 6-by-48-inch sides flat on a work surface. These are the sides. Measure and mark them at 12, 24 and 36 inches from the top. These are the marks for the shelf dadoes on the inside of the sides.

  2. 2

    Set up the table saw to make a 3/4-inch-wide-by-1/4-inch-deep dado cut. Run each side board through the saw to make a dado cut at each of the pencil marks across the 6-inch width of the boards; to be sure the dadoes line up, let the pencil mark be the bottom of the groove. These are the shelf dadoes.

  3. 3

    Stand the sides up on a work surface, parallel to each other and with the outside of the boards 24 inches apart. Place a 1-by-6-by-24-inch board across each of the ends, to form a rectangular box. These are the top and bottom boards of the bookcase.

  4. 4

    Drive three evenly spaced flush trim wood screws through the top and bottom boards into each end of the sides.

  5. 5

    Align the 3/4-by-24-by-48-inch plywood panel over the rectangular assembly. This is the back of the bookcase. Make sure that the edges are flush with the sides, top and bottom of the assembly. Drive flush trim wood screws through the edges of the back into the side, top and bottom boards every 3 to 6 inches.

  6. 6

    Stand the bookcase upright. Slide one 1-by-6-by-23-inch board into the dadoes at 12, 24 and 36 inches. These are the shelves. Drive three evenly spaced flush trim wood screws through the sides into the ends of the shelves at each joint.

  7. 7

    Fill the screw holes with wood putty using the edge of a putty knife. Allow the wood putty to dry. Sand the putty flush with the surface of the wood with fine-grit sandpaper.

  8. 8

    Paint the bookcase and allow the paint to dry thoroughly prior to use.

Tips and warnings

  • Paint the bookcase to match the trim or wall colour.
  • Wear eye protection when woodworking.

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