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Skil’s website features a slick how-to on building a bookcase with pocket joinery.  The guys over at Extreme How-To magazine put the article together, and though they often do some pretty far-out projects, this one seems easy enough that even beginners could tackle it with a solid chance of success.

The real tricks to the simple design are the pocket holes and fasteners. The Extreme guys’ pocket hole rig makes short work of the joinery and provides good connections, so the bookcase won’t fall apart the first time the kids crash into it. They choose pine to keep the price way down, but you could substitute something like oak and come away with a much sturdier piece of gear -– at double the price, of course.

In any case, you could put this whole project together in a weekend and get all your movies in one place, instead of stuffed in any nook and cranny you can find.

Shelves With Pocket Hole Joinery [Skil]


8 Responses to Projects: Shelves With Pocket Hole Joinery

  1. Chris Byrne says:

    I wish it were just double the price.

    I’m planning out a livingroom library project right now, with about 40 linear feet of 8 foot high floor to ceiling bookcases. The difference in wood cost from yellow pine to white oak was about 4 to 1.

    At this point I’m thinking about red oak ply, with facia strips.

  2. T says:

    I feel your pain, Chris. I’m in the planning stages for a library. I thought solid wood at first. Then I priced it out. Ouch. Plywood with solid trim it is.

    But my ceilings are 10 foot. That extra 2 feet is a killer.

  3. Tim B. says:

    Ugh… you guys are scaring me! I’m at the tail-end of a remodel, and my wife and I had just decided to do some custom oak built-in shelves (my first foray into this sort of woodworking)… maybe I should re-think the plan!

  4. Chuck says:

    Just finished a library built in. Birch ply with poplar face framing. Birch ply is around $46/sheet in the Atlanta area – lumber was around $500 total.

    Pocket joinery can’t be that much easier than biscuit and glue. I mean I guess it would eliminate the clamping, so that’s a plus. No expensive tools, so another plus. Overall, in for a penny…

    I would highly recommend that once you get your layout done, that you plug it into a cutlist program. For something like repeated bookcases, cutlist plus is AWESOME. I used the free version because my cases had <5 unique pieces each. top/bottom, sides, adjustable shelves, fixed shelves. It will maximize the amount you get out of each sheet (or dimensional for the face frame).

  5. Tim B. says:

    Wow! Thanks, Chuck! I was actually just wondering the other day if there was a piece of software that could more easily help me execute my latest woodworking project(s)… I’ll take a look at it.

    ….Actually… this would make a good reader question! Any other ‘vital’ software to woodworking (or even just general shop-work..) Wonder if I could convice ’em to do it as one? =)

  6. Wayne D. says:

    Heh heh, I thought you wote “cultist” at first. That would be one way of doing it. Founding a cult, get them to make furniture for you…

  7. Tim B. says:

    @Wayne — (Actually, so did I =) but realized that was not nearly as feasible as one might wish… then re-read it properly… )

  8. Hector says:

    Anyone still have a copy of this? It’s been taken down.

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