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Building a Corner Bookcase

So I decided to build my own corner bookcase, but I have no idea how to get started. I want a naturally dark wood that's strong enough to hold all of my books but will be light enough to move around in my room. Anyone have any suggestions? I could really use some help please.

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Posted 2012-06-29T03:37:10+0000  by Serenity Serenity

Let's start with a few basic questions...

  1. How big do you want your bookcase?
  2. What tools do you have?
  3. What kind of budget are you looking to stay within?
  4. Do you have some pictures of something you like?

Your specification of a naturally dark wood is going to mean something like walnut, as an example. It's not going to be cheap and probably have to be sourced from a lumber yard, as opposed to a home center like The Home Depot. If you're willing to stain the piece, then that opens up a lot more avenues to accomplish your bookcase.


If you're willing to invest a little money into a tool, a Kreg Jig for pocketholes will make this job a no brainer. If not, then it can certainly be accomplished with simple construction and maybe some dowels.


Let me know and I can certainly come up with something for you.

Posted 2012-06-29T20:34:16+0000  by Paul

Having been without power the last couple of days, had some free time to think about your question regarding the corner bookcase. I remembered seeing a very simple bookcase design on another site. When power came back, I drew this up.

Corner Unit.jpg

Relatively simple to build. All you're going to need is a saw, straight edge, drill and and bit and some screws and glue or construction adhesive and some mending plates. If you have a pocket hole jig and/or table saw, you're making the project even easier.


To get started, you'll need a just a bit more than 1/2 a sheet of plywood that's 96" long and 23/32" or 3/4" thick. Cut a 12" wide strip of plywood from the length of your 96" piece. Cut this strip into (16) approximately 5-7/8" pieces. Cut another strip the length of you plywood at 18" wide. Next, cut this strip into 5-7/8" wide pieces. Eight of these should be left at their full length of 18", the remaining (8) pieces you'll need to trim down to 12". You'll need two more pieces of plywood that are 5-7/8"x12". To summarize, you need (26) 5-7/8"x12" pieces of plywood and (8) 5-7/8"x18"


The reason they're not 6" wide, your saw will have what's called a kerf that's approximately 1/8" wide. The kerf is the width of the blade lost when making a cut. The last piece of each 96" long strip will have to be carefully trimmed about 1/8". 


If you want your bookcase deeper, you'll just need more plywood. Instead of 5-7/8, you might make them 11-7/8". This would make them close to being cubes. You'd need two sheets of plywood to get the required number of pieces. The beauty of this design is that you can continue to added sections as your library grows.


Now, onward with the construction.


You're going to build some basic blocks, like these.

Basic Block.jpg

Be sure to pre-drill your holes for the screws. For a #8 wood screw, you'll probably want a 7/64" pilot hole. If you don't have a 7/64" bit, you could use a 1/8". You'll want at least three screws into each vertical piece. After drilling your pilot holes, apply some wood glue or construction adhesive to the end of one piece and screw it together. Here is a potential screw guide for you.

Screw Guide.jpg


When you've built your two columns, glue them together and use the mending plates on the back side and on the underside of a few shelves.


Now you have a simple bookcase or media storage piece that will work in a corner.


If you have a piece of webbing, you might screw one end to the top of the shelf unit and the other end screwed to a stud or drywall anchor to keep it from tipping.


Hope this gives you one idea to get you started. 


Posted 2012-07-01T13:56:52+0000  by Paul
Wow, that helps me. Thx.
Posted 2013-02-08T21:56:54+0000  by Christee

Glad you like it...

Posted 2013-02-08T23:54:23+0000  by Paul
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