Boarded Bookcase


Making a bookcase to hold my woodworking library...will follow the basic construction pattern and techniques of Christopher Schwarz bookcase...






Wood Selection, Milling Wood

Carcase Assembly

Sanding, Finish Application

Final Product



I originally saw this design in Schwarz' book, "The Anarchist's Design Book", chapter 18.
Downloaded the Video from Popular Woodworking site...

Schwarz' Sketchup...rough design.

I will pretty much follow all of the dimensions...will do the milling and the construction in a hybrid manner...hand tools and machine tools.


Wood Selection, Milling



I purchased some stock from Larry at Heartwood in Star, MS.

Boards were ~8 inches wide and 8 feet long.


The 7 slats for the rear were ripped to 6 inches...this will result in a show of 5 3/4 inches and a tongue that will project 1/4 inch.

We used a Sommerfeld matched v-cut tongue and groove router bit set...

Routing the tongue plus a chamfer...on six slats.

Routing the groove plus a chamfer...on six slats.

Five of the slats have both a tongue side and a groove side.

Carcase Assembly

The inside surfaces of the carcase elements were sanded and finished with shellac prior to glue up.

James and I started the glue up with the shelf, with the board fitting into the two cross grooves.

This section was then clamped.

The completed carcase frame...





After the rear slats were sanded and had shellac on the show faces, they were dry fit into the rebates on the back edge of the carcase.

I used the thickness of rulers as a spacer...

I switched to washers as spacers...
Six slats go in as full units...the final slat will be about 1/2 the size of the others...after the dry fit I marked out the width of the final 1/2 slat...3 1/4 inches...

Ripped the board to that size and attempted to dry fit it...a skosh too wide...ripped off a 1/32 and it dropped in.





Taped off the dry-fit panels to maintain the spacing...
pounded them into the holes with a little glue...will flush cut.
Sanding, Finish Application
Prior to carase assembly, the interior surfaces were sanded with Rotex 150mm with a grit progression of 120x-220x-400x.

I padded on three coats of made with BT&C Amber flakes and Everclear 190 proof alcohol.

Board locations that would be glued were taped off so that shellac would not affect the glue joint.

The slats got the same treatment protocols...3 grits sanding and 3 coast of shellac.
The carcase was sanded at 150x, 220x, and 400x...
...and three coats of 2 lb. amber shellac was padded on.
All of the front edges were sanded by hand and then three coated with amber shellac...padded on.
After the fit was verified on the cabinet door, it was pulled off...appropriate edges were finished with shellac...padded on.
After the iris was glued in place...the panel, the edges of the rails and stile, the iris and the stems all had to have shellac applied...this was done with a brush.
...after the application.
The Final Product



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