This pocket hole corner cabinet is the last installment for the projects going to my relative. I’ve already made her a pair of bathroom vanities and a new set of kitchen cabinet doors for her new home and this was the last piece of the puzzle. It also was a nice project for me to complete here in the shop as it used up a fair amount of scrap wood I had. Well….some of it was scrap. The dimensional lumber I used was extra from a previous job.
The corner cabinet had to fit into a certain area in her bathroom. The space allowed a maximum cabinet size of 18” on the left and right walls and 36” in total height. Pretty much everything I do these days is completed in SketchUp first. I normally make a design video as well as a plan before I even hit the shop.
But once in the shop it was a matter of finding the appropriate size scrap pieces. I pretty much knew I had enough out there. It’s amazing how fast a lumber rack can fill up with smaller cutoffs for projects.
The piece of plywood I had already available was actually the exact width of one of the short sides of the triangle so all I had to do was cut it into appropriate size squares.
I wanted to cut all three shelves at the same time. Doing so will pretty much guarantee that the pieces are the same exact size. The only think you have to make absolutely sure of is that the pieces are secure to one another and are perfectly stacked on top of one another. I normally use tape for situations like this. Tape is plenty strong enough to hold the pieces just fine and won’t get in the way like clamps will.
To make an accurate cut I clamped the taped shelves to my multi purpose hold down jig. This jig has proven to be incredibly valuable in many projects since making it. If you haven’t already, I strongly suggest you make a similar kind of hold down jig.
This particular jig will hold virtually any piece of material in any orientation. What’s really cool about it is that it doesn’t have a runner on the bottom so there is no worry about cutting an absolutely perfect runner to go in your miter slot only to have it warp or swell up due to humidity and eventually not slide correctly.
I mentioned earlier that I did use a piece of dimensional lumber in this project. It was in fact a full 10′ 1×6 that I cut some material from. Considering the fact that I had it left over from another project I have no problem calling this a scrap piece. It makes me feel more resourceful when I look at it like that anyway.
Standard operation for me when it comes to cabinet face frames is to rip the material out of 1×6. This is enough room to get two 2-1/2” pieces from each section. The 1×6 just needs to be ripped down the middle and then ripped to final width to remove the rounded corners.
At the moment I don’t have a reliable final trim miter saw. I view it as a rough cut only tool. It’s a sliding miter saw that has an incredible amount of left and right flex in the arm during use. So all of my crosscutting is done on my small cutoff sled. This is a good view of why I prefer a one sided sled like this. You can stand to one side instead of in the path of flying sawdust or debris.
Because I don’t like getting my Festool Domino machine dusty I decided to construct the face frames with good’ole pocket holes. Just kidding, I don’t have any dust in my shop. (joke)
The three triangular shelf pieces are secured to the face frame with pocket holes as well. I’m using my Kreg Foreman pocket hole machine for all of these pocket holes but it isn’t 100% necessary. You can do the same thing with a much less expensive pocket hole jig. I make a ton of projects with pocket holes so for me it makes sense to use it.
And of course 1-1/4” pocket hole screws are used with this project. That’s the size needed when working with 3/4” stock. Like I said, I make a lot of pocket hole projects so I have a lot of pocket hole screws on hand.
The back panels were cut from 3/8” luan plywood. One side of each panel needs to be ripped at a 45 degree angle. This will allow the back panel to hug the inside of the face frame.
I normally just tack any back panel on with a million brad nails but I knew this time I would be removing the panels when I stained. I don’t want to get any stain on the back panels during the finishing process so I screwed them on so that they could be removed later.
After the structure of the cabinet is 100% complete I ran the cabinet through the table saw on each side to cut a 45 degree angle on the front face frame. This will give the cabinet a more 3D built out look on the sides instead of a seamless built in look.
Then the part of woodworking that is incredibly booring. Sanding….and sanding…and sanding…and sanding…and sanding.
I stained the project with Early American Minwax stain and top coated it with several coats of satin Watco Spray lacquer. You can purchase this at most big retailers and it really saves time compared to brushing finishes. I’m seriously in love with lacquer and the fact that you can get it in a spray can is icing on the cake. Lacquer is a very fast drying protective finish that ends up being a little harder than polyurethane. Since using lacquer on 99% of my projects over the past couple years every polyurethane project I touch feels soft like plastic to me. It feels that way anyway.
So that’s it. A pretty easy scrap wood project that pretty much anyone can make. Below you can download a free PDF plan for this project. Although this plan is free to you remember that it isn’t free to produce. If you would like to show your thanks please consider using the donate button at the bottom of this page. If you liked this project and found it useful please share it so others can do so as well. Thanks for stopping by folks and have a great day!