I made a custom American Flag, Old Glory! It has a concealed compartment for gun storage. This wall decor hangs nice in any room as a conversation piece. It can hide your valuables and weapons, keeping them out of sight! The piece is made from pine. It's distressed using a number of techniques we'll touch upon. So let's take you through the build. You may want to watch the video to get a feel for the process.
- Tape measure
- Speed Square
- Miter saw
- Table Saw
- Glue Gun
- Precision Knife
- Map-Pro torch
- pin nail gun
- 18 ga brad nailer
- router flush trim bit
- cordless drill
- Forster bit set
- Jig Saw
Materials & Supplies
- Euro hinges full overlay
- 1x4 lumber
- 3/4 plywood Underlayment (Common: 7/32 in
- wood stain
- clear packing tape
- Spray Paint
- enamel paint
- water based polyurethane
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Step 1: The Frame (Cutting Parts to Size)
The flag's over all dimensions are 31in wide 20in height and about 3in depth. (see the photo's above) You want to make the box frame first. This means the 4 sides and a center brace board as well. (see the photo's above) This will be done with 1x4 boards. You need to take your boards to the table saw and rip then down to 2in 7/8 in width. 3 of these boards will be cross cut down on the miter saw to 29 1/2in length. The other 2 boards will be cut down on the miter saw to 20in in length. Two of the 29 1/2in boards will be your top and bottom of the frame.The remaining board will become the center brace board. The two 20in boards will become the sides of the frame. Use wood glue and a nail gun to assemble the box. . Place the center wood brace 10 1/4in down from the top. square it up with the speed square, glue and nail. You can use long clamps or clamp straps til the glue dries. Make sure it's all square using a speed square on each of the inside corners.
Step 2: Now Let's Add the Back Panel and Give This Box More Strength.
Take your Underlayment and cut it a bit oversized with your jig saw. You'll flush trim it with a router once it's glued and nailed to the back. So after you cut the Underlayment, go ahead and place it on the back. Use glue and your nail gun to secure it to the box. Take your router and a flush trim bit and clean up the edges.
Step 3: Stripes
Let's cut out the boards for the 13 stripes on the flag. You will most likely have need to tweak the width of these boards, so they line up proper. For instance, you want the top 7 stripes to match flush in height with the door with the stripes. We'll use the following measurements In order to keep the math simple, but again, you may need to shave off a bit if the stripes overlap the box too much. you will need to cut 12 boards to 1 1/2in. The remaining board that goes below the stars will be cut at 2in. This gives you the total of 20in in height for the box. Using the miter saw, 6 of these stripes will be cut to 31in in length and 7 of the stripes will be cut to 18in in length.
Step 4: The Door With Stars
Cut 3/4in plywood 13in wide and 10 1/2in in height. As with the Stripes, you may need to shave off material so the parts won't rub up on each other. This will become the door for the compartment. Add your euro hinges and test the open and close fit, adjust accordingly. In further steps, you'll have a template for spray painting the stars and finishing tips in general but let's move on to the next step.
Step 5: Hanging Hardware
Reference the video for what I used for hanging hardware. There are many options including keyhole brackets, French cleats and what I used on this one, D-ring hangers. The hanging method is for you to decide. Just make sure whichever method you use, it's strong and can hold up.
Step 6: Stars Template
Download the template. wrap the printed paper in packing tape and cut out the stars with a Precision Knife. You may want to use a good amount of tape so that your template is strong enough for many uses. Take your time cause this takes a while. When you're done, use blue spray paint to cover the door and let dry. When you come back to it, use a glue stick on the back of the template. Stick it on the 10 1/2 by 13in door board and spray it with white spray paint. It will have bleed, good, this is suppose to be rustic. Seal it all with poly after the paint has dried. You can weather the stars and the edges of the door if you like. It's up to you. Just take a sander to it. Always go easy so you have more control of the weathering process
Step 7: Painting and Finishing
Paint all the stripes using white and red spray paint. You can sand them down when dry. Or, you can leave them as is. For my flag I distressed all the edges after I applied water-based poly. I also used a torch to weather the piece. I finished it all off with a few more layers of poly, sanding in between. The box got painted black inside but you can stain it or leave it natural. The outside of the box was stained and sealed with the same poly. The finishing is where the art comes into play. So reference the video to get some ideas of your own.
Step 8: Gluing and Nailing Down the Stripes
This is easy but take your time. Add glue to all areas that make contact with the stripes on the frames edges and start to nail them down using your nailer. 2 brads per side, evenly spaced, all around the frame, you'll know what to do at this point.
If you followed the steps, you should have something that closely resembles mine...I hope! Thank you for checking it out. This is a very involved build but I think you got it under control. Thank you for checking it out and let me know if you make one.
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