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Thread: Mid Century Modern Dresser

  1. #1

    Mid Century Modern Dresser

    I am planning to build a dresser for my sister's new baby in the next few months. She wants it to be a 3 drawer in the mid-century modern style but also doesn't want to spend a lot of money. To save some money I am planning to build the case out of veneered 3/4" plywood with solid drawer fronts. Is there some way to cut mitered edges without using a table saw that would be recommended? I have a small table saw that is pretty hard to keep things stable on so I'm not sure it's the best way to make mitered cuts that long. I can try to make a new panel sled but again, its a pretty small tabletop to work with. I am also thinking of doing a small face frame then to hide the plywood edges with drawer fronts that overlap the face frame unless anyone has better ideas.

  2. #2
    How about a lock mitre router bit?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xbJszKqyfBA

  3. #3
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    If you’re talking about mitering the casework top to the sides, that’s pretty challenging. Your margin of error in the cutting and glue-up is only the thickness of the veneer - ten thousandths of an inch or so. If you miss, the light-colored substrate shines through. You’d do better by edgebanding the top, and butting the sides up to it.
    Last edited by Jamie Buxton; 09-04-2019 at 8:48 PM.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Jamie Buxton View Post
    If you’re talking about mitering the casework top to the sides, that’s pretty challenging. Your margin of error it the cutting and glue- up is only the thickness of the veneer - ten thousandths of an inch or so. If you miss, the light-colored substrate shines through. You’d do better by edgebanding the top, and butting the sides up to it.
    Good point, my locked miter router bit suggestion may not be viable in your case.

  5. #5
    Thanks so much for the suggestions....definitely some food for thought. Or Ill just work on her to pony up for solid walnut!

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shad Schreiner View Post
    Thanks so much for the suggestions....definitely some food for thought. Or Ill just work on her to pony up for solid walnut!
    You might make a rough drawing of the dresser, estimate what pieces of plywood you need, and lay those out on a 4x8 sheet of plywood. You're likely to have to buy plywood by the whole sheet. For a small-ish dresser, you may find you'll have lots of the plywood left over, but which you paid for. In contrast, you buy solid lumber in smaller chunks, so you only need to buy the amount of material you need for the project at hand. All of this is a way of saying that the cost step up from a plywood case to solid lumber may not be as big as you're thinking.

  7. #7
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    Plywood is a good choice in some ways. It is straight and stays that way. Not the case with lumber. You may need to design to keep it flat.

    It is readily available

    No planing or jointing needed so it's a quick build.

    You can edge band it with wide stock, like 3/4 x 3/4.

    Consider using thinner plywood, 3/4" is overkill.

    Edge band with slightly thicker stock and even it up after glue up.

    Build the case as a stand alone piece with a top attached.

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