A while back while doing a little home shopping, my wife and I came across an A frame corner shelving unit. I really liked the idea and style of it, but the quality really left a lot to be desired. I came home and started to look for some design plans to make this type of a shelving unit. I didn't have any luck so I put this idea on the back burner for a while. Then a few weeks ago I came across the shelving contest and figured what better time to give this a shot.
I will be running down how to make the shelves using the same dimensions that I used first and then I will break down the process I used to create the shelf so you can adjust the dimensions to fit your needs.
Take a look and leave some comments.This is my first time creating a piece of furniture without following plan. If you have some tips I would love to hear those as well.
Step 1: Tools, Supplies and Cut List
Pencil (about 10 different ones because I always manage to forget where I left the last one)
Level (or other straight edge)
Router with 5/16 straight router bit
Kreg Pocket Hole Jig
1.25 inch pocket hole screws
1 inch pocket hole screws
4 - 1x2 x 7ft Oak boards
1 - 2ftx4ftx1/2in hardwood plywood
Scrap 1/4in plywood or MDF for Router Trammel
I choose to use Oak and a hardwood plywood for this project because I wanted to try my hand at staining (although I still have not had a chance to try that out yet). If you will be painting you could go with pine and mdf to save a little bit on the lumber costs.
When selecting your 1x2 boards, remember to select your wood carefully (especially when shopping at Lowes/Home Depot). Lumber bent like hockey sticks do not make good shelves.
2 - 1x2x70 in (square on both sides)
2 - 1x2x70 3/4 in (cut at 10 degrees on both sides)
2 - 1x2x2 5/8 in (cut at 10 degrees on 1 side)
2 - 1x2x5 3/8 in (cut at 10 degrees on 1 side)
2 - 1x2x8 3/8 in (cut at 10 degrees on 1 side)
1 - Rounded shelf cut from plywood with radius of 5 9/16 in
1 - Rounded shelf cut from plywood with radius of 8 5/16 in
1 - Rounded shelf cut from plywood with radius of 11 3/8 in
Step 2: Cutting the Legs
Measure and cut a 1x2 board to 70 inches
Set your Miter Saw to 10 degrees and cut the bottom of the next 1x2 at 10 degrees
Measure the long side of the 1x2 to 70 3/4 inches
With the Miter Saw still at 10 degrees, cut at your mark so that the longer side of the cut is at 70 3/4 inches (remember to keep the top and bottom going in the direction).
Repeat for next two boards so you have 2 angled boards and 2 not angled boards
Step 3: Cutting Braces for Legs
Using one the scrap pieces from the straight legs, measure 8 3/8 inches. Set your saw to 10 degrees and cut so the board is 8 3/8 inches on the longer side of the cut. Repeat with the other scrape piece from the other straight leg.
Set your saw back to 0 degrees.
Using a piece of scrap from the angled leg, measure 5 3/8 inches from the long side of the angled piece. Cut it! Repeat with the other scrape piece from the other angled leg.
Set your saw back to 10 degrees.
Using the rest of the piece of scrape, measure 2 5/8 inches. Cut so the board is 2 5/8 inches on the longer side of the cut. Repeat with the last piece of scrape.
You should now have 6 braces, each with 1 square side and 1 angled side.
(sorry for the lack of pictures for this step)
Step 4: Installing the Braces
Working on a flat surface, place a level (or other straight edge) at the bottom of one set of legs. Line up the bottom and top of the legs so the top and bottom are in line. If necessary mark and make any adjustment cuts to get things lined up.
Get out your Kreg Pocket Screw jig and drill. Drill a pocket hole into each side of the brace. For the angled side, you want the hole to be parallel to the angle.
Slide the brace into place so it is just touching the legs. Insert a screw into each side.
Repeat for the other 2 braces.
Repeat for the second set. Here make sure the braces are at the same locations as the first set. Make any adjustments to keep everything in line.
Step 5: Cutting Out the Shelves
For this project I wanted to test out using my new router that I received a little while ago as a present. This step could be done with a jigsaw to create the rounded shelf or you could just cut the shelves straight.
The first step is to create a router trammel (jig) to aid in cutting the rounded shelf. I would suggest checking out the following page for help on making your very own (or one of the several Instructables out there).
Measure the length of your cut and drill a pilot hole through the trammel
Using a 45 degree angle (I used a random leftover floor shoe that had already cut to 45 angles) and draw a line out from the corner of your plywood.
Measure 1/4 inch in along the line.
Drill a pilot hole (if you can set your drill so that it will not go all the way through the plywood)
Set your router to make a shallow depth for pass. Trying to take out too much at once makes for a rough cut.
Slide a nail through the trammel and into the pilot hole in the plywood.
Working counter clockwise, fire up the router and begin to make your cut through the wood.
After each pass, adjust the router height and make another pass.
Note, it is very helpful to calibrate your trammel by cutting a scrap piece and measuring the radius length. Then you can make the necessary adjustments for the pivot hole in the trammel for each shelf.
After you complete your cuts it is time to use your Kreg pocket hole jig to create holes for attaching to the legs.
Note that since the plywood is not as thick as the legs you will need to adjust the pocket hole drill bit and you will need to adjust where you set the jig when drilling the pocket holes.
Repeat for shelves 2 and 3
Step 6: Installing the Shelves
Align the bottom of the shelf with the bottom of the brace.
Insert the pocket screws and attach the shelf. It helps to use a bit of downward force to keep the shelf in position.
With the shelf attached to the first set of legs, align the shelf on top of the second set of legs so that the shelf sits on brace and is aligned. Here a second set of hands is helpful to make sure you keep everything lined up.
Repeat the process for the second and third shelf. Remember to make sure everything stays nice and aligned.
Step 7: Process Used
As promised, here is a run down of the process I used to determine the lengths and angles.
The first step is to determine how tall you would like your shelves to go. Here I did a rough measurement before getting the lumber. After getting the lumber I setup a piece to get a good feel for the height that I liked.
Cut the lumber to your selected height.
Next determine the rough angle you would like by setting up the lumber. Measure the distance at the base of the boards.
Now you could do some sweet trigonometry to figure out the precise angle, but I was not looking for super precision here so took my pieces out and laid them flat against a level.
Using a protractor I rough measure the necessary angle to be used for all the cuts. I cut the bottom of my lumber at this newly found angle.
Using the flat surface and level, I setup my lumber and mark the point where the angled board touches the straight board. I used this mark to cut the angled board to size.
The next step is to determine the length of the braces. I determined the middle of the board and then go half way up and down from there and mark those points. Then I measure the distance between the legs. This is the length I use for the long side of the braces. If you wanted to go with 5 shelves (which I think I might do if I make another, I would divide the shelf into 6 sections instead of 4).
The braces are now slide into place and the rest of the process remains the same for putting the rest of the legs together.
For the shelves I wanted to put 3 shelves on the braces. I made a mark that is the width of the plywood up from the bottom of the brace. I measured the width at this mark. The rest stays the same.
That is about it.
Thank you for reading my Instructable!