Head Scratcher Project

Some time early in July I received an email from someone who had found my through the Custom Made website.  I’ve been part of this website which is supposed to help others on the net find you but haven’t had any success securing commissions with it.  He used it to locate me and then did a search to contact me directly — maybe that’s why Custom Made isn’t the successful site that they’d like to be.   It’s free so I’ll keep with it.  In any case, I received an email stating he needed me to build a cabinet for a 31″ monitor.  To be honest, I wasn’t real sure what this would entail but since I’m always up for the challenge I met with him.

I met with him at his construction office at Auto Nation Toyota.  They’re doing a huge remodel and he’s the contractor for the job.  First impression was that he was a very friendly and busy guy.  During our meeting the phone rang constantly and workers would be in and out asking him questions.  The way he reacted to my “head scratching” told me that he realized this would be an interesting challenge/job to say the least!  I collected my design fee, he agreed to get the required ventilation fans and I left to work out some sort of plan.  The plans were tentatively set, a price was quoted but then I didn’t hear from him for a while.  I sent an email asking him to let me know when he had the fans and was ready to move forward.  That happened a couple of days before our Kentucky trip so we got together after our return.  We got together, I picked up the monitor, fans, and molding he had to trim it out.  After figuring a materials list I bought some Alder.

WoodworksbyJohn-CustomFurniture-LasVegas-ComputerMonitor-1I decided that to do this project in 4/4 stock it would look too puny.  Besides, I needed to laminate the wood for the sides which will be 13″ wide.  When you laminate you always need to plane the board smooth so it would have ended up being more like 5/8″ thick and that wouldn’t have looked good.  I found these two pieces of 5/4 Alder and decided to buy both of them for the entire project.  Even though the doors, top, and shelf only need to be 3/4″ thick and I’ll be planing off a lot of material the color of these two boards is a good match.  The 4/4 stock they had was considerably lighter.  Matching the natural coloration of the wood is worth the extra cost for the material as far as I’m concerned.

MonitorTemplateThe approach I took once the monitor was in my shop was to make a pattern of it.  There are a number of ins and outs on the back side that I’ll need to build around.  There will be a space below the monitor where he can put binders and papers he may need.  It’s not the best picture but it gives the information and dimensions I need to build this project.  He also gave me the required cables and cords for the monitor which I’m glad he did.  That allowed me to space out the holes needed at the bottom; not only for ventilation but also to figure out how to run the cords.  Like I said, this is a “head scratcher” project!



The first step was to laminate two pieces for each side.  That begins with the tablesaw and ends by jointing the edges that need to be joined with a jointer plane.


WoodworksbyJohn-CustomFurniture-LasVegas-ComputerMonitor-3After jointing the edges they were laminated together, Gorilla Glue is my choice of adhesive for this process, never have had a failure with it.  That was yesterday and now that both panels are ready to go I’ll be doing the joinery work on them.  It’s hit 98 degrees in the shop this afternoon so decided to tackle the rest of it after church tomorrow.




About woodworksbyjohn

I'm a retired woodshop teacher. I build one of a kind furniture pieces and custom picture frames. You can see some of my currently available work, boxes, carvings through my Etsy store: https://www.etsy.com/shop/WoodworksbyJohn?ref=si_shop Contact me about your project -- always up for the challenge of unique work.
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