Here is a project I just finished made without any joinery other than simple butt joints.
I built this shelving unit for my wife’s high school reunion silent auction fund raiser. I hope it generates a lot of interest. Funds raised go towards scholarships for the students.
The dimensions are 30×18 x 9 inches deep. We found some wire/burlap baskets that look pretty good. Three coat/robe hangers make this a multi use piece.
Oh, I forgot to mention. The wood used to build this project was salvaged from two pallets!
I saved almost all of the boards, milled them, and assembled with glue and brad nails. The wood is pine with some oak pieces. More on the pallet dismantling procedure can be found here
The stain is Rustoleum Kona. The finish is Parks Pro Finishes Semi Gloss Clear poly applied with a HVLP sprayer. The end result is a rustic look yet it looks like a piece of furniture with very little resemblance of the original pallets.
I think this would be a good project for the woodworker just starting out with minimal tools, or the more experienced woodworker with the tools needed for the job. The overall size can be altered to fit your needs. Even though I used pallet wood, lumber purchased at the big box stores can be used with minimal amount of cutting required.
A table saw
or a circular saw
with a straight edge, or preferably a ripping jig, could be used instead. About the only requirement is to make accurate cross cuts.
I used a band saw
to cut the curves, but a jig saw
would work just as well. I used an oscillating spindle sander to sand the curves.
Here are the steps to build this shelving unit using the pallet boards.
Mill enough 2x4 lumber to create a glued panel 9 inches wide x 18 inches long. Make two of them. Mine were roughly 10 x 20 inches long. I cut them to final width and length before cutting the curves on each end. These will be the end pieces.
Make a template using 1/2 inch mdf for the curved portion so it can be used to mark the top and bottom of both end pieces. To make my template, I drew a grid of 1 inch squares and then added a couple more of 1/2 inch and one 3/4 inch. See pictures. Since the ends are 9 inches wide, I used the centerline (4 1/2 inches) for the template. There really isn't anything technical about the template. I used several different things to help create the curve. Use your imagination and sketch out your design. Cut it out and sand the curves smooth.
Use the template to draw the shape on the top and bottom of both ends. I taped the two end pieces together and cut both at the same time on the band saw. While they were still taped together, I sanded the curves with the spindle sander.
Prep the boards for the back. For this project, I cut 6 pieces 30 inches long for the back. They are about 1/2 inch thick. I had previously run them through the planer and ripped off the rough edges so they would be a fairly good fit.
Assemble the back to the ends. With the two ends ready and the pieces for the back prepared, I glued and nailed the back pieces to the ends. Note: You can adjust the width of your project simply by cutting the pieces for the back to whatever length you desire.
Cut and install the framework for the shelves. I made the frame pieces 1 3/8 inch x 3/4 inch. A center piece three inches wide was added for strength. The shelf boards are only 1/2 inch thick, so the frames make for sturdy shelves. Note that I made the front of the frames inset by 1/2 inch. Why? Just because. The shelf is even with the edge of the end piece so I thought the frame would look good if it was set back a little.
With the frames in place, cut and nail the shelf boards in place. The boards vary in width, and I had to rip the front board to fit.
I have a lot of pictures taken during the project. I hope they help you build one of these. It would please me if you could and post pics of your finished project.