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Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

February 18, 2010 |
posted by Ana White
PDF versionPDF version

This simple sturdy and a tad deeper bookshelf plan works with the rest of the Modular Office Collection to create easy storage. You can also opt to add optional drawers or a secretary on top for even more functionality. stack for additional wall storage. See the entire Modular Office Collection here.

Special thanks to Anne at Get Your Martha on for sharing her photos with us.

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Handmade from this plan >>

Projects built from this plan. Thank you for submitting brag posts, it's appreciated by all!

Dimensions

Dimensions: 
Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base
Dimensions: 
40" wide x 30" tall x 17" deep

Materials and Tools

Shopping List: 

1 – Sheet of 3/4″ MDF or A1 Plywood cut into 1×16 boards
1 – Sheet of 1/4″ MDF or plywood (for the back)
2 – 1×2 Boards
2 - 1×3 Boards
Wood Glue
Wood Filler
2″ nails (for pnematic nailer)
1 1/4″ nails (for pnematic nailer)
2″ Wood Screws (for A1 Plywood) or Drywall Screws (for MDF)
Sandpaper
Finishing Supplies

2 inch screws
1 1/4 inch finish nails
2 inch finish nails
wood glue
wood filler
120 grit sandpaper
primer
wood conditioner
paint
paint brush
Tools: 
measuring tape
square
pencil
safety glasses
hearing protection
drill
circular saw
nailer
sander

Cut List

Cut List: 

1 – 1×16 @ 40″ (Top)
2 – 1×16 @ 29″ (Sides)
2 – 1×16 @ 38 1/2″ (Shelves)
1 – 1/4 Plywood @ 40″ x 29 3/4″ (Back)
1 – 1×2 @ 38 1/2″ (Top Trim Piece)
1 – 1×3 @ 38 1/2″ (Bottom Trim Piece)
2 – 1×2 @ 15 1/2″ (Top Side Trim Piece)
2 – 1×3 @ 15 1/2″ (Bottom Side Trim Piece)
1 – 1×2 @ 41 1/2″ (Top Front Trim Piece)
1 – 1×3 @ 41 1/2″ (Bottom Front Trim Piece)

General Instructions

Work on a clean level surface. Always wear appropriate eye and ear protection. Always use glue. Predrill and countersink your screws. Avoid fastening MDF within 1″ of edges. Measure and mark out your joints prior to fastening. Check for square after each step. Keep outside edges flush.

Step 1

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Build the Box. Begin by fastening the shelves to the sides, as shown above. Then fasten the top to the sides. Use the screws and glue.

Step 2

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Back. Fasten the back to the bookshelf using the 1 1/4″ nails and glue.

Step 3

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Inside Front Trim. Fasten the inside front trim, top and bottom, as shown above. Use the 2″ finish nailers and nail through the sides, and top shelves into the edges of the inside front trim, top and bottom pieces.

Step 4

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Inside Front Trim. Fasten the inside front trim, top and bottom, as shown above. Use the 2″ finish nailers and nail through the sides, and top shelves into the edges of the inside front trim, top and bottom pieces.

Step 5

Build Your Own Office - Wide Bookcase Base

Front Trim. Fasten the front trim pieces, bottom and top, as shown above. Use the 1 1/4″ nails and glue when fastening into the inside front trim pieces. Also use 2″ nails to fasten the front trim pieces to the side trim pieces and the top.

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I never thought I'd say this,

I never thought I'd say this, but you need to SLOW DOWN! We can't keep up with you! I might end up permanently living in the garage with all these projects to do!

posted by Amanda (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 10:23

I love furniture like this,

I love furniture like this, however, we have hurky heater registers all over our house. How do I utilize such awesome furniture as this when I have to "mind the gap" between the furniture and the wall? Do you have any ideas?

posted by Andrea (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 10:49

Wow! One Million hits?! That

Wow! One Million hits?! That is awesome! I just discovered your site a couple of weeks ago. It is perfect timing, too, because we just bought a new home and we'd love to build some of your furniture and put all the money we save into building a shop! We prefer Lowes to Home Depot. But, I gotta give Home Depot some credit for inspiring me to make up this "joke" to be said upon seeing a lady who is scantily clad in an unflattering manner: "Girl, where'd you get that outfit? Ho Depot??" I suppose it could also be "Howes??" but I think I'll stick with "Ho Depot". :)

Love love love your blog!

posted by Annie (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 10:51

Ana, your blog is fantastic.

Ana, your blog is fantastic. We're in the beginnings of rebuilding our house after a major fire, and I'll be pouring over your plans like a maniac when the time comes to add furniture! Thank you for sharing your gift.

posted by Life in Rehab (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 11:16

Andrea.I've read that you can

Andrea.

I've read that you can put things over cold air return vents if the vent is still able to get enough air. Although many sites recommend against it in general.

I can't find the site I found the formula for makings sure you get enough air on. But I think you needed the same area of air that the vent takes in open.

With this plan you could probably solve this by leaving off the bottom piece and if that still isn't enough raising the bottom shelf higher.

I think the best types of furniture to put over them would be something with the long legs, like the bailey console, or something that could straddle it, like the puzzle bookcase.

posted by Anonymous (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 11:55

Could these be kitchen base

Could these be kitchen base cabinets? Hmmmm....

posted by Another Amanda (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 12:56

I love that secretary desk!

I love that secretary desk! Dream come true. But it'd be better with a wide shelf above the desk. I'm too short to peek into those drawers!

posted by Chelsea Gifford (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 14:18

Thank you thank you! Not so

Thank you thank you! Not so much for these (which like you said are pretty darn simple) but for the hope of the secretary desk. I have been dreaming of that, but not even with the pottery barn outlet nearby can I justify the price!!!!

posted by Ellen (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 17:47

My to do list of your

My to do list of your projects just keeps getting longer and longer. I have actually stopped bookmarking them now because I figure I want to make just about everything you post, so one bookmark to your blog pretty much says it all!

posted by Lorie (not verified) | on Thu, 2010-02-18 19:36

That secretary desk is

That secretary desk is amaizing! My grandmother had one when i was growing up and I would love to have one of my own!

posted by Anonymous (not verified) | on Fri, 2010-02-19 11:13

I have a question about

I have a question about bookcases. We have quite a few in our livingroom of the cheapo walmart variety. They are *full* of books and I find that after not too long, all the shelves are sagging in the middle. Are there any tips to making one's own bookshelves in a way to avoid that problem? (Getting rid of the books is not an option) :) Or is it just a given that it will be better because it's made from better materials?

posted by Heidi (not verified) | on Sun, 2010-02-21 15:32

Heidi,MDF and Plywood shelves

Heidi,

MDF and Plywood shelves will sag. To help reduce the amount of sag on a shelf you can attach a piece of edging to the front and back in the same thickness. This will help drastically reduce the sagging.

If you wanted to see the sag of a shelf you can check out this calculator http://www.woodbin.com/calcs/sagulator.htm

After entering in the dimensions of this bookshelf, using the dimensions of the shelf and a 30lb uniform (not in the center) load on the shelf I got a value of .017" per foot. Which is pretty good.

Ana, this site is great. Thanks for taking the time to create these plans!

posted by Dustin (not verified) | on Sun, 2010-03-07 00:24

Thanks Dustin, that is a cool

Thanks Dustin, that is a cool calculator! I had to bookmark it! Looks like we could get away with 45 lbs per shelf to be under the .09 human eye factor.

Love how this caculator will also factor in any trim or edging on the shelf! Thanks for sharing.

posted by Ana White (not verified) | on Sun, 2010-03-07 12:36

Thanks for the information,

Thanks for the information, Dustin. That helps a lot. :)

posted by Heidi (not verified) | on Mon, 2010-03-08 07:24

These kind of bookcases can

These kind of bookcases can be made beautiful and glamorous as possible.
antique book cases

posted by dancilhoney (not verified) | on Sun, 2010-08-01 19:01

Typo

Hello Ana, I just wanted to tell you that the cut list has a typo. The 15 1/2" trim pieces in the cut list should be 16 12".

Thank you for you designs.

Bryan

posted by Bryan (not verified) | on Sat, 2011-07-23 08:40

I was looking for some Office

I was looking for some Office Furniture but after I saw your blog about interior decoration I decided to make my own office furniture. Now I have to buy all the necessary things to do it. I figure that in three weeks the office will look like new. I am sure that my clients will love the new aspect.

posted by negruvoda (not verified) | on Mon, 2012-06-18 17:29

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