After several years worth of frustration with the sagging shelves of el-cheapo bookcases crammed full of books, and a limited budget, I decided to take matters into my own hands. This bookcase is made from 3/4" plywood, 2x4's and a bit of trim. It measures 7 feet tall, 4 feet wide and 1 foot deep. It is a larger version of one I built for my wife last year (4' x 4' x 1'). It is easily scalable if you want to make it smaller. If this were a conventional bookshelf with 1" x 12" or 1" x 6" such a wide span for each shelf would sag when fully loaded with books, however since this one has a 2x4 frame under each shelf you can boost the width.
Step 1: Materials/Tools
All the wood I used is Pine because its cheaper. The 2" x 4"s don't really matter on quality just so long as they are straight. The plywood should be with the least amount of blemish you can find. The rest of the wood should be nice stuff even if you have to pay a little bit more for "premium" grade pine, it needs to be straight and with the least amount of knots, and with a grain pattern you like. One last tip, Since this will take a while to put together consider buying it in stages to be easier on the budget ex. buy the 2x4's first, make the joints put that together then buy plywood, cut to size then buy trim...
(2) Full sheets of 8' x 4' x 3/4" Plywood and 1 piece that measures 14" x 48"
(6) 12' x 2" x 4"
(1) 6' x 1" x 4" (for the bottom)
(1) 6' x 1" x 6" (for the top)
(1) 6' stick of crown molding your choice
(2) 8' sticks of trim (at least 2" wide)
(2) 1" x 2"
(4) 1" x 3"
pre-stain treatment (I used Minwax brand for all of the stain treatment)
20" or 24" Crosscut saw
Circular Saw (optional)
Kreg Jig® Mini (can actually be done without this but that means you'll have to be really carefull where the screws go to hide them under the trim)
(48) Kreg brand 2" Coarse self tapping pocket hole screws
(72) 1 1/4" drywall screws
Box of !.5" Finishing nails
Box of 2" drywall screws
1" bench chisel
Rabbet plane (optional but very handy)
Stain able wood putty