With the plywood cut, I am now ready to start building the individual cabinets. My design is a little different that a standard kitchen or bath cabinet. These cabinets will be suspended, up in the air, above the washer and dryer. I want them to be rigid and strong. My plan is to build an oak frame that I can attach the plywood to. This will keep everything square and give me a rigid top and bottom, to each cabinet, that I can attach the face frame to.
To create the frame, I rip a pile of 1-1/2″ wide strips from some 3/4″ thick oak that I have. I figure up the lengths based on the dimensions of the inner plywood shell of the cabinet, and cut each strip to the desired lengths.
To clean the strips up, I gang joint them on the planer, running 4 strips through at a time.
I set aside all of the 23″ long side pieces for later, then take the front and rear pieces over to my Kreg pocket hole jig. I drilled two pocket holes into each end of them.
I clamp the frame together tightly, making sure that all of the edges are flush, then install a fine threaded 1-1/4″ pocket hole screw into each hole.
The reason that I prefer to use pocket holes is that they always draw up tight and square, as long as you cut the end square to begin with. I check each frame for square, but there are no problems.
I have a top and bottom frame for each of the three cabinets. The two outer cabinets are wider than the center one so two of the frames are slightly smaller.
Earlier, I placed a mark at the top of each side piece of plywood, so that I assemble the sides in the same direction. Remember that I installed the shelf standards flush to one end of the plywood. That will be my top end, insuring that my shelves would be level. I will be glueing everything together so it would be bad to have some of the shelf standards upside down…
I applied glue to the top and bottom of the side pieces and screwed the frames to them, holding them flush to the outer edges.
With the sides attached, I ran a bead of glue around the back edges.
I used my 18 gauge brad nailer to attach the back panel using 1-1/4″ brads.
To attach the top and bottom panels, I ran glue around the top of the bottom frame piece and nailed the bottom in place.
I flipped the cabinet and repeated the process for the top.
This completes the first cabinet box. It is rigid and heavy, and perfectly square. Tomorrow, I should be able to get the other two cabinets assembled, then I can start milling down the oak for the face framing.