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storage box for classroom posters

I would like to build a box with slots to put charts and posters for my classroom in.


The dimensions would be 40" x 30" x 24"


I have some experience with smaller projects. I'm not sure of the type of wood or if extra support would be needed. If so, how much?


Something similiar to the picture below:

storage container.jpg

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Posted 2011-07-13T15:29:11+0000  by als als

Hello als,


Welcome to the community.


This looks like a fairly simple project. I would either use Baltic birch plywood or MDF. They all are easy to work with.


I prefer using plywood over MDF for things that are going to be moved at all. The plywood tends to be a little lighter and also hold up better.  If you are going to just build it and set it on a counter then MDF or Melamine will work out great.


The best way to build it would be with a table saw and a set of dado blades. Dado joints are really sturdy and make things easy to assemble.

                                                  dado blade.jpg

I would use ¾” thick for the outside box and ½” for the shelves. If you’re going to put a back on it you can get away with using 1/8” or ¼”.


If you go with plywood it will come in a 48” x 96” sheet and if you go with MDF it comes in 49” x 97” sheets. Keep this in mind as you layout your pieces.


Cut one piece 48 1/4” x 30” and then cut ½”wide x 3/8”deep dados at each shelf height. Once you have completed all the dados, cut it in half to make both your sides. Assuming you’re saw blade has a ¼’ kerf both pieces will end up 24” x 30”. If your sheet goods start out at 48” wide then the pieces will end up slightly less than 24”. Just make sure that all of the pieces are the same depth.

                                                                            dado joint.JPG


You can also do the dados with a router if you don’t have a dado blade set. Check out this previous post to see how.


Cut 2 pieces at 38 ½” x 24” for your top and bottom. This will allow you to make a butt joint with the sides and either screw or nail them together. I would also use glue on all of the joints.


I would suggest pre drilling all of the holes so you don’t have any break out. You’re only going to be 3/8” away from the edge.


If you’re going to be putting a back on it then you will need to cut a piece of 1/8” at 39 7/8” x 23 7/8”. This will allow you to center it 1/16” away from all sides. It will make it less visible from the front.


Each shelf will be 39 ¼” x 24”. If you do 4 shelves then you will be able to get them out of 1 - 4’ x 8’ sheet.


Insert them into the dados and your poster storage box is complete.


**If you don’t have a table saw then you can still build a great storage box with a little help from your friends.**


I believe most Home Depot have the ability to cut sheet goods for our customers at a nominal fee per cut.


Out here in California we do not carry Baltic Birch plywood so you would have to go with MDF. I would not suggest using any other kind of plywood it will splinter on you and it also will have voids.


All you would need to purchase is: 1 - Sheet of ¾” MDF

                                                               1 - Sheet of ½” MDF

                                                               1 - ¼ sheet of 1/8” or ¼” Hardboard

                                                               160” - ¾” x ¾” Solid wood

                                                               1 – 1lbs box of screws  

                                                               1 - Bottle of wood glue



                                                Cut list:

                                                               2 - ¾” x 24” x 30” Sides

                                                               2 - ¾” x 24” x 40” Top and Bottom

                                                               8 - ¾” x ¾” x 20” Shelf Supports

                                                               4 - ½” x 24” x 38 ½” Shelves

                                                               1 - 1/8”or ¼’ x 23 7/8” x 39 7/8” Back


cut list.JPG


Once you get everything cut to size it time to assemble it all.


  1. Pre-drill all the holes for the fasteners.
  2. Mark where all of the shelves go. Make sure both sides line up.
  3. Attach all of the shelf supports.
  4. Assemble the outside box.
  5. Attach the back.
  6. Slid in the shelves.
  7. ENJOY your hard work.


I hope this has not been too much information all at once. I just get excited when it comes to woodworking projects.


Let me know if you have any questions. Oh and please share pictures of your finished project. I would love to see it.

Best Answer

Posted 2011-07-13T20:22:07+0000  by Christine_HD_OC
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