Sunday, August 7, 2016

Floating Shelves

My wife commissioned me to make some floating shelves for our bathroom. We saw examples online where floating shelves were made from an interior door. In the examples I found, they were painted. My shelves are similar, but I wanted to maintain a consistent wood grain all around, which then got a pretty dark ebony stain.

I started with a used interior door with wood veneer in good condition from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore.  I cut out some pieces to the sizes I needed, then removed the corregated paper core from the inside:
I glued a piece of pine into one end to support the cut edge (yes, I share my wood shop with the laundry):

Now to get the same wood grain around the edges as the faces, I had to clear out space to inlay pieces of the veneer-clad material.  So you understand where I was going with this, here is a picture showing a piece of this face laid on the edge of one of the shelves:
I had to make space for the inlay, so I used a flat moulding cutter on the table saw:

Alternatively, you could use a regular stacked dado set like this:

Then I cut a 45 degree bevel in the edges as well as in the pieces I cut for the inlay:
 I cut the inlay pieces free from their cores and cleaned the residual material off with a chisel:
The brackets for the wall are made with sturdy framing lumber and deck screws, with a 1/2" deck screw (predrilled) into the stud to make sure it stays nice and level:
You can see one of the finished shelves on the bottom and one of the brackets above.
Sorry, I didn't photograph the finishing.  I applied an ebony stain (maybe a few times) and then sprayed on a couple of clear coats to make it durable enough for use in the bathroom.

As always, if you have suggestions for better ways, please share in the comments.

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