Cherry Shaker Panel Cabinet

I have a simple cabinet of persimmon wood that came down to me from my Great Grand parents.

I decided to make myself a Shaker style flat panel version of this cabinet in cherry.


Wood Selection and Primary Milling

Flat Panel Construction

Carcase Joinery

Top with Worked Edging


Cabinet Base Construction

Surface Prep and Finish Application

Final Product




Some Sketchup design looks...

The cabinet will have Shaker style flat panels on the sides and front door.




The sides of cabinet will be Shaker style flat panels...the rails and stiles will be two inch...with coped joinery.
The flat panels will be
Side panel...full view...

The top will be made from a glued up panel....


Wood Selection and Primary Milling


In the attic I had some 4/4 cherry from Picken's Hardwoods, ~9 inches wide, 2 boards @ 60 inches, 2 @ 48, 1 @ 24. well as some 4/4 figured cherry that my brother Tom had gifted me..., ~6 inches wide, 4 boards @ 3 feet.

After running the 5 foot boards, I realised that they were not cherry...they were some mahogany boards that Tom had gifted me.

this is the board while rough...

Comparison after is mahogany, the bottom is the cherry.
After realizing the problem with the mahogany, we had to turn to an 8/4 cherry slab in the shop attic...rough boards were resawn at the band saw.
Most of the boards were surface jointed and edge jointed on the Powermatic...
...and then surface planed to thickness on the Dewalt planer.
Most of these boards are 3/4", a few are 1/2" or 5/8" for drawers.

These boards will be glued to make the top.

Due to their width, these boards could not be jointed on a surface (too wide for Powermatic) so we surfaced them at the planer, then jointed the edges.

During resawing there was a problem with drift...I ordered up and installed Carter Products guides for the P14CS. Install is shown here.

After the upgrade and a move to a new 3/4" Woodslicer blade, the results were vastly improved. Here, some very figured cherry that was ~3/4" thick was resawn to ~5/16" thick and then run through the thickness planer to ~1/4 inch (this is as thin as the Dewalt will allow).

These will be the flat panels used in the side and front panel frames of the cabinet.

The final thickness of the panel edge that fits into the frame rails and stiles needs to be a little thinner than 7/32"...the edge thickness was done on the backside of the panel at the router using an up spiral bit.

Final blanks for all parts after milling... panels, drawers, rails, stiles, baseboards and the top.


Panel Construction


Used a Sommerfeld 3 piece raised panel router bit set.

It is the Shaker panel set.


All of the rails, intermediate rails, stiles, and muntins for the two side frame panels and the front door panel were laid out and marked to verify the pattern/groove cuts and cope cuts at the router.

Blue = pattern/groove cuts on edges
Yellow = cope cuts on ends

The cope cuts were made first...all of the rails and the muntin were coped on two ends.

A shop built push board with a handle made this easier and provided a backer surface to reduce spelching.

Then the pattern/groove cuts were made.
All the pieces were dry fit...
The cherry panels were laid out under the frames to allow for figure alignments.
During a dry fit for the panels we felt that the amount of time it took to get everything in place was going to cause problems due to woodworking glue set up time...decided to try hot hide glue...did a crash test dummy...liked it...will use to glue up panels.

I used " Old Brown Glue" pre-mixed hide glue.

I heated it to the upper range of the manufacturers suggestion...around 140 degrees.

The glue worked well in the rather complicated glue up.
Some panels were too tight a fit...opted to make the rabbit deeper and use more panaligns.
We put single panaligns in short runs and two in the longer runs.
Also decided to sand and shellac the panels prior to assembly. Tested out a new shellac mix...amber crystals.

Sanded the panels with 90mm at 220x and 320x.

Hand sanded the profile groove faces at 150x.

Applied shellac...this 1 lb. mix amber really made the figure in the cherry pop.
All twelve panels got about 5 coats of rubbed on amber shellac.
During the glue up we secured one of the side stiles to the assembly table...then we worked "up" by gluing in the the intermediate rail and dropping in a panel...
...then dropping in another panel...
...view of the backside...the panels were marked as to location and directionality...
...after the muntin and top and bottom rails were added then we added the other stile.
The door panel was then laid flat...aligned...

...and then clamped up...then we did the two side panels as well.

All went well...loved the glue.

Out of the clamps...

Carcase Joinery



Top with Panel Edging


Used a raised panel bit to put a bevelled edge on the top piece.


Drawer fronts were originally milled at
Drawer bottoms were sanded to 800x and had Renaissance™ micro wax applied.
Cabinet Base Construction


Surface Prep and Application of Finish


Finished Product


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