After moving into my home a few months ago, my priority from day one was to continue to build out my garage into my dream workshop. Garages will always have their limitations, so I have been consistently trying to best utilize my space before making any bit decisions. This workbench was a long time coming - something big, robust, heavy as all hell, and that gave me storage with a ton of work area surface. Excited to share my build!


Thank you to Purebond for helping support this project! Purebond is a no-added formaldehyde product sourced and manufactured in North America and is the highest quality plywood material I have ever worked with.

Check out their website here for more information: http://purebondplywood.com/

You can see the sad state that was my "temporary solution". These cabinets weren't bad necessarily, but they were very ineffective for what I needed moving forward.



  • 2 x 4' x 8' x 3/4" Plywood

  • 2 x 10' x 4" x 4"

  • 6 x 2' x 4' 10'

  • 1 x 5mm x 4' x 4' plywood

  • TiteBond II Wood Glue: http://amzn.to/2peRFus

  • 2.5" Screws

Contractors 30” Saw: https://amzn.to/2Luh91q

10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1klHw
Miter Saw Stand: http://amzn.to/2p1072e
Circular Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
Impact Driver: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
Cordless Brad Nailer: http://amzn.to/2p1dYFD

K5 Pocket Hole Jig: http://amzn.to/2qb8S7t
Quick Clamp: http://amzn.to/2riyHU8

My 4 x 4's were 10' long, so I marked out 34" (Pic 1) and ripped to length on my miter saw (Pic 2). My saw is just big enough for this. I repeated that for all six legs (Pic 3).

Pic 1 shows how I plan to cut dados and half lap joints into the legs to accept stretchers.

For bottom supports, I wanted to have my stretchers recessed in the legs. Pics 2-3 show me marking and measuring out the space that I'd later cut away with dados. These are for the Outside Dados.

Pics 4-5 show me cutting those dados on the miter saw using a miter gauge. Note that I do not have the piece sliding up against the fence - that is dangerous. Instead, clamp a piece at the front of your saw where you start, then when you rest your piece up against it, it will be in the proper position. As you move away from it over the blade, your piece will stay in that position against your miter gauge but won't be up against the fence. And I cut them for all six legs (Pic 6).

I then ripped the full dados on each leg for the button stretchers (Pics 7-8). These are Inside Dados

After cutting my dados, I moved to ripping my stretchers to length. They were around 10' long - I clamped them all together and cut them with a circular saw (Pic 1). I then laid out everything to begin assembly (Pic 2).

Three legs per side - I put a single stretcher in the bottom dado (Pic 3) and used a spacer block to line up the piece. I designed this so the stretcher would fill the entire dado, less the width of a 2x4 which would later be filled with an actual 2x4 for cross supports.

I applied glue and used 2.5" wood screws to hold things in place, checking for square in the process (Pics 4-5).

I then repeated that process for the other outside leg, and then lined up the middle stretcher (Pic 6) and attached using glue and screws. Pic 7 shows one final full leg support.

Note - i should have cut my top stretchers 3" longer - you can see they don't go all the way to the edges in Pic 7 - it's not a big deal - actually, that space can be used to put a vice in! Making lemonade...

I cut a bunch of 2 x 4's on the miter saw to specific lengths (in my case I was looking to make my bench about 25" deep on the top) (Pic 1). I then used glue and screws to attached everything together - Pics 2-4 show me doing the top stretchers. Pic 5 shows me attaching the supports at the bottom - you can see here, per my earlier step, why I left the 1.5" gap on the ends, as now I could insert a 2x4 in that gap and bring everything together. Very sturdy!

I also cut middle stretchers for the middle of the bench (Pics 6-7) - I had 7 total stretchers on the top and bottom to provide rigidity and support for my work surface. The middle stretchers that were not on the outsides are just held together with screws.

My dad and I ripped down our sheet of plywood on the table saw (Pic 1). The top sheet was full length, and about 25" wide - this was purposeful as it left about 23" of width on the remainder of the piece to be used for the bottom shelf. Since the bottom stretchers were on the insides of the posts, it made the lower shelf skinnier than the bench to - so again, this was perfect.

I lined up the top surface to the bench and attached it using brad nails (Pics 2-3). I wanted the freedom later on to replace this top with new material if it ever got too dinged up. For the bottom shelf, I needed to measure and notch out places for the 4x4s to go. I did this by measuring the bottom shelf and then cutting out the spaces with a jig saw (Pic 4). And it fell nicely into place after (Pic 5).

Since the bench was between 9 - 10 feet long, I needed additional plywood to finish out the top. I cut down the remainder from a second sheet of plywood (Pic 6) and then attached the top and bottom pieces again using brad nails (Pics 7-8). I needed to notch out the bottom piece like I did the other parts, but that was a lot of the same so I don't show it here.

You're left with a 4' x 6' sheet of 3/4" plywood - this is a ton of extra wood - I ended up making a huge clamp rack out of it - so although it felt like I might be way overbuying for this bench, there is nothing like having a huge amount of scraps to make something else that is very useful!

After the bench was assembled, I cleaned out the space and wiggled the bench into place. It was really heavy. Once I added all my tools to it, I couldn't physically move it.


I decided last minute to add drawers with additional scrap plywood that I salvaged from my parents old TV credenza that they were looking to toss. It was pretty high quality furniture plywood, so it ripped easily on the table saw (Pic 1) and miter saw (Pic 2). The drawers would be 4" tall and were as deep as the bench measured.

I then cut dados on the table saw to accept the drawer bottom. The kerf of the blade makes it so you just need to make two passes on the table saw 1/8" apart - very quick and easy (Pic 3). I then drilled pocket holes for joinery (Pic 4).

I used a sheet of 5mm 4'x4' plywood for the drawer bottoms that I broke down on my table saw (Pic 5). I then assembled everything - first attaching three sides together (Pic 6), then sliding in the drawer bottom between the dados, and then adding the fourth side. And I repeated that for all four drawers (Pic 7).

I didn't want to buy drawer slides - this just felt unecessary and there wasn't really anything for me to mount them too on this bench.

Instead, I cut three pieces - a single 3/4" x 3/4" strip that would attach to the top sides of the drawer, an additional strip of the same size, and a strip that was 1.5" x 3.4", the ladder of which would combine to form an L. The L would be mounted to the bottom of the top shelf, and the strip could then be slide into it. Pic 1 shows this set up but upside down - it was really easy and I hope my explanation is clear!

Pics 2-4 show me making the "L" pieces. I drilled and counter sunk the holes so that when I glued up and screwed together, the screws didn't split the plywood or stick out and hinder the sliding of the drawer. Using little squeeze clamps while attaching screws was very handy.

I then repeated the same process for the strips that would be mounted to the drawers, and mounted them (Pics 5-6). I then could mount the slides to the underside of the drawer (Pic 7), and then slid in all four drawers (Pic 8).

NOTE - make sure your "L" stretchers are long enough to span the underside of the bench - I almost messed this up by cutting them too short!

These drawers were massive - about 2' x 2', and I loved them. I decided last minute to add some false drawer fronts. This would make the piece a bit "prettier" and would also prevent the drawers from sliding any further back than they needed too.

I used left over walnut plywood from Purebond for this step - but you can just as easily use any type of wood for this - hardwoods, different plywoods, whitewoods, etc.

I unfortunately did not have enough material in the right size to make the drawer fronts a continuous grain, but anyways - I ripped down the pieces on the table saw (Pics 1-2) based on the sizes I needed.

I then clamped into place, leveled off, and attached the drawer fronts using some brad nails (Pics 3-5).

I then marked center and drilled pilot holes for some single pine door nobs that I had from left over Ikea furniture back in the day (Pic 6). Then just some screws to attach them (Pic 7).


I didn't film me putting on a finish, but I used some cutting board oil just to bring out the grain - I didn't want to go fancy and I didn't want to spend any more time making this thing! You can see how big and robust this thing is with me next to it, how the drawers look, and how many tools it olds.

I love it!

Thanks for reading - make sure you check out the video in the first step on my YT channel!

See you around! 


DIY Beer Caddy's from Walnut Purebond Plywood


I am getting married this year, and I figured it would be fun to make something to ask my six groomsmen to join me on stage. I designed a simple beer tote that I could replicate easily 6 total times and do all from a single sheet of half inch Walnut Veneered plywood. You don't need nearly this much, and you need FAR less if you're just making one. Below is a video of how I made them, followed by designs and steps to make your own version.


Thank you to Purebond for helping support this project! Purebond is a no-added formaldehyde product sourced and manufactured in North America and is the highest quality plywood material I have ever worked with.

Check out their website here for more information: http://purebondplywood.com/

My design is very simple, consisting of four sides, a bottom, two middle dividers, and a dowel for a handle. You can scale the design up or down as much as you want (add logos, add more dowels for fun aesthetic joinery), use other types of wood - I did this way since it was a repeatable and great design with a nice aesthetic to it.




The first image shows how I designed the project to be ripped down my plywood - a design based on me needing to build 6 identical totes.

It was easiest for me to rip long pieces that I could then cut down into their final dimension on my miter saw. I used my rip cut and a circular saw to rip all of the long pieces (Pic 2), but you can do this on a table saw more easily if you have a bigger set up or partner or just use a straight edge. Pic 3 just shows the pieces stacked.

I set up stops on my miter saw (Pic 1) to rip down all of the various pieces (you'll see all the cuts in the next step). One final cut to do was to make angled cuts on the two end pieces so that they formed pentagons (Pic 2). I needed to do this for a total of 12 cuts (6 totes x 2 end pieces for each). I cut away the excess triangles on my miter saw in Pic 3 - it was easiest to cut six pieces at once to get one side, then flip the pieces over and make the same cut on the other side individually.

NOTE - The design of my cuts had all four of my outside walls going to the ground, with the base of it being sandwiched between all four pieces, versus the base piece being the entire bottom and my four walls resting on top if it (if that makes sense?).

Pic 4 shows me cutting the dowel lengths - which were the length of my tote + 1" to account for the width of the two half inch ends.


Pic 1 shows how I would take my three middle pieces and combine them to form a single piece that divided the tote into 6 quadrants. To do this, simply cut dados halfway into each piece so that they can fit together snuggly.

Most, if not all miter saws, have stops in place that you can set (Pics 2-3) so that you can make cuts to a certain depth. I measured out how deep I wanted to cut into my pieces, set that stop, and then packed together my pieces to make repeatable cuts until I had "hogged" out the right amount of material (about 1/2" wide to match the plywood thickness) in Pics 4-5. You can also do this with a band saw if you have one or a jigsaw (which might be messier).

One thing to note is that when you do cuts that don't go all of the way through, you'll want set up a throw away piece in the back (You can see it in Pic 5) so that you can push your saw blade all of the way through and get an even cut. Hard to explain, but makes sense if you try it.

Pic 1 shows all of the cut pieces for my 6 caddies.

Pic 2 shows the pieces necessary for A SINGLE TOTE and the dimensions I used. You can see dado cuts in the bottom right pieces that I mentioned in the previous step.

Pic 3 shows me just lightly sanding the outside edges of my pieces. Veneer is very thin and you can sand through it easily, so make sure you only do a very light pass (if at all) when you do so.

I measured out (Pic 1) and drilled a 3/4" hole on each end piece that would accept a 3/4" dowel.

I used a 3/4" spade bit for this and my power drill, but you can use a drill press if you'd like and/or a Forstner bit to help make more repeatable cuts (Pic 2). The important thing here was to keep it even and clean and prevent tear out on both sides. You can use tape or if you do have the drill press this might be easier. However, without those, I found the best way was to drill 2/3 of the way through the piece, then flip it over and use the small pilot hole to drill from the other side. Pic 3 shows how cleanly the hole would come out.

The holes were very snug and I ended up not using glue to secure the dowel (you obviously can if you want to).

Pics 1-4 show me assembling all of the pieces before glue up to make sure it all fits together.

I was 99% sure if would, but you never know...

You can see how my four outside walls go all of the way to the bottom instead of sitting on top of the base - this was a design choice.

I then glued up all of my pieces in Pics 1-3 using wood glue.

Few tips / notes here. Wood glue is plenty strong enough to hold this together, but you can add pin nails or dowels, etc. to help hold it together.

I recommend four squeeze quick clamps to hold it together while it cures for about 2 hours (Pic 4).

I bought $5 cast iron bottle openers (Pic 1) that you mount to a wall usually to attach to these. They also came with screws, but they are too long for the thickness of the material. You could cut them down, or just get smaller screws.

I don't have a means to cut screws, so my solve was as such: pre drill holes (Pic 2-3) for the two holes, with the bottom hole not going deeper than the thickness of the plywood, and with one that would go straight into the dowel so depth was not an issue. This also would allow the dowel to be further anchored to the tote (not necessary given the snug fit, but it only helped). Use a single smaller screw (Pic 4) that was smaller than the 1/2" thickness of the material.

These felt very secure to the final tote.

Now, I am very happy with how these came out - attached are some final photos for you to check out. I did go back and add some cutting board oil to them to bring out the grain (check out the video for that step!)

They look great with the walnut veneer, are very simple and easy to make (and could be with just a circular saw and drill), and will make awesome final gifts for my groomsmen. I think making six of them made me take a simpler approach, but if you just want to make one, then you will have much more time (and energy) to focus on making your design unique.

A few ways you could improve / change the design:

  • Use some sort of bleeding ink technique, stencil, or laser cutter to add text personalizations to each

  • Use a finish to bring out shine (I personally don't think it is necessary for these types of things)

  • Use other wood variations to make them appear more rustic or "thrown together"

  • Use additional types of joiner to make contrasting colors pop (dowels for joinery, etc.)

  • Alter the design to be something more specific to your use

As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects. Thank you again to Purebond Plywoods for hooking me up with materials for this project.

I put out videos every few weeks.

Cheers! Zach


Convert Shop Storage to Whiteboard Surfaces


I acquired two 5.5' wide red oak cabinets from a house that just had their kitchen remodeled. They are only 12" deep and make them ideal storage for a garage shop as you don't have to sacrifice a lot of shop space to create a lot of surface.

I wanted to add whiteboard space to my shop for a host of reasons, but didn't want to sacrifice open wall space, so I came up with a quick and easy solution to repurpose these shelves as new whiteboard space. Check out how I did it here:

If you don't have old cabinets, you'll have to go the old tried and true DIY method of actually building some shelves - this can work to your advantage as you can make them more bespoke to your space, add storage, and add whiteboard space.

My cabinets have sliding doors. If you don't have cabinets that have these types of doors and you don't need to make new ones, you can also look into whiteboard paint!

MATERIALS (Assuming you already have shelves)

  • 1 x 4' x 8' x 1/8" White Hardboard (about $13 at Lowes / Home Depot)

  • Shallow cabinets (can be made from 3/4" plywood!)



You can just as easily get away with a circular saw for this project instead of a table saw - it's just that simple.

My cabinets were red oak - which I find pretty ugly - so I painted them. One coat of primer, two coats of paint I used on my kitchen remodel. Above is a photo of me pretending to paint.


Remove your cabinet doors (probably do this before painting) and measure their length and width - grab assistant for this if needed.


Using a table saw, circular saw with a straight edge, or a track saw, cut down your white hard board to proper dimensions. I have a table saw so this took about 3 minutes total - white hardboard cuts very easily but is very strong. Test to make sure your cuts fit (and crack a smile!).

You'll need holes in each door to insert your finger to slide open. I used a scrap piece of plywood to mark and measure a hole the exact same distance inward from the bottom and side and used my punch to mark a hole. I then repeated this process but on the opposite side for the sister cabinet.

My cabinets were divided into four sections, each with two sliders, so your holes should be in the same position but mirrored so they both end up on the outside. Then I used a 3/4" forsner bit to drill out holes - again this drills very easily.

Now you can just mount your new sliders and have a ton of whiteboard space!

I love these - it is SOOOO simple in design but so practical in function. It took me a few days to come to this solution, so I hope sharing it with you on this website helps spark some ideas on how to make your shop more efficient.

So far, I've used the panels to list out future projects, steps for projects mid-build, and then post production needs on my videos.

Thanks for reading - make sure you check out the video in the first step on my YT channel!

See you around!



DIY Wooden Tablet Stand

For my fiancé's bridal shower, she received a Kindle Fire tablet for the kitchen. She had been wanting one of these for some time now - as she can use it for recipes, to watch shows, to set timers and alarms, etc. Now, she needed a proper stand for it, so I decided to tackle the project on a whim with some wine oak wood I had. Below is a video of my build, followed by full instructions, including materials and steps.

Below are all materials and tools for the project. Note - if you have thin strips of hardwoods - you can get away without using a planer - you'll just need an orbital sander to flatten and smooth after glue ups.

4 x Oak Slats (about 3 feet long, 1/4" thick, 2.5" wide)
TiteBond II Wood Glue: http://amzn.to/2peRFus
Mineral Oil: http://amzn.to/2p1hu2N

SAWSTOP Contractors 30” Saw: https://amzn.to/2Luh91q

10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1klHw
Miter Saw Stand: http://amzn.to/2p1072e
Stationary Bench Sander: http://amzn.to/2q1Cq8k

RIDGID 13” Thickness Planer: http://amzn.to/2u7YrmK

Many clamps...

My father-in-law does wine barrel revival art. He acquired a massive stack of this oakwood that is placed inside of steal vats while wine is fermenting. This allows wineries to ferment wine in large quantities without using barrels but without sacrificing the oak flavor.

You can see how in all three pictures the wine is crystalized purple with sugar - it smells incredible. They are zip-tied together in groups of 10 or so - I do not know how many are placed inside of a vat at once or for how long - but clearly these have been in the game for a long time.

Underneath the sugar is very nice oakwood that is colored in a beautiful brown after years of being used for wine making. Pics 1-2 show me planing down the sides of each piece to reveal that wood. Pic 3 show the difference in sugar wine v. the oak wood underneath - pretty amazing right? I tried to preserve as much thickness as possible in this step.

I don't own a jointer so to get these sides flat I first ran a piece through my able saw - and then checked how much bow there was too it - becuase I don't have a very straight reference this wasn't as flat as could be (Pics 4-5). Then, I could flip the piece, run it through the table saw to give me to square sides (Pic 6) and then flip it back over to the original side to square up the side (Pic 7) - so 3 passes in total - alternating each time, to get to a square flat piece ready to be glued up.

In Pic 8-9, I cut off the ends of each piece as they had holes cut in them for zip ties, and then cut them in half.

This left me with 8 equal pieces (Pic 1) that I could divide into two sets of four - doing some rearranging to get a grain pattern I liked. Then, I could glue them up (Pics 2-3) - making sure glue was spread evenly and that there was a bit of squeeze out in the process.

In Pic 4, I used these beefy clamps from Rockler to squeeze cauls into place to keep things flat - the clamps let you rotate the handle 90° so you can get more leverage out of them, and then applied clamps horizontally (Pic 5) to bring it all together - I then let it cure overnight.

The next day, I skip-planed down each side of the piece - this was only to clean up glue - not remove material - they were already thin and I didn't want to sacrifice any more material (Pic 1).

I then squared up one end on the miter saw (Pic 2), and then went back to my workbench and used my tape measure and the table to figure out a final height for the piece (Pic 3). My thought process was making sure that the height was tall enough to house the tablet when it rested vertically.Then I cut it to length on the miter saw (Pic 4).

This next step was a bit of an experiment. I figured out what angle I wanted my table to rest off camera using a speed square, and then tilted by blade (Pics 1-2) to 15° on the table saw. I then cut the front of the base to have that angle, as well as the bottom part of the vertical piece that would house the tablet (Pic 3).

Then, I lowered my blade to half the thickness of my base support and made multiple passes over the blade to cut a dado in the front of the base and one inch back. These dados would accept as mall front lip to prevent the tablet from sliding, as well as the back piece that actually held up the tablet (Pic 4). Lastly, I used a chisel to clean up the saw cuts (Pic 5).

Before moving on to assembly, I ripped excess oak wood I had glued up and cut off (this is why I ultimately made 2 of these panels in the beginning as it gave me some wiggle room in the cuts to experiment with what the right sizes were without fear of making a cut too short and ruining something.

I cut the piece into five strips about 1.25" wide on my table saw (Pic 1), and then glue them together in a stacked format (Pics 2-3). This essentially gave me a thick block of wood to use as support in the rear.

After it cured, I then ripped the front face to the same 15° angle as I did the stand pieces (Pic 4) using my miter gauge, then cleaned up the other four sides by making passes through the table saw blade set back to 90° (Pic 5)

Pic 1 shows how it will all go together. The components are:

  • A base with dados cut in the front and back at 15°
  • A front piece about one inch tall to form a lip (this would go in the front dado)
  • A back piece about 9" tall that would serve as the actual stand (this would go in the middle dado)
  • A support piece in the back (previous step) to serve as structural support to the back piece

I began by gluing up the support piece (Pic 2), using a scrap piece to line it up properly with the middle dado (Pic 3), and then checking to make sure it is square (Pic 4). I then clamped it in place for about 30 minutes to cure (Pic 5).

Next I could add in the back piece (Pic 6), which was a little tricky to clamp but I found having the back support piece in place and then clamping both sides down to my work surface worked best (Pic 7).

Lastly, I glued in the front piece. This was a bit trickier - I ended up using a little excess block to clamp the front piece too (Pic 8) with a squeeze clamp, and then gently applying other clamps all around it - just enough pressure to not break it or mess things up (Pic 9).

Pic 1 shows how everything came together. I thought it was a bit "block" after seeing it in this form.

In Pic 2, I tested it out and realized my front piece was about 1/2" too tall and it was blocking the bottom of the screen - no point in having a custom Kindle Fire stand that doesn't fit!

I went over to my disc sander and sanded down that front piece, as well as clean up all of the edges to be square and smooth (Pics 3-4).

I wanted to remove some of the blockiness of the piece, so measured out and marked an arbitrary angle to give it more shape (Pic 5). I then used my miter gauge set at that angle to make a pass on each side of the piece to cut those angles safely (Pic 6). Lastly, I added a bevel to the back support piece (Pic 7). Again, no set measurement - just trying to give this thing some angles.

I used some 320 grit paper in Pics 1-2 to sand down all of the edges and surfaces to their final form. Off camera, I cleaned off the piece with some compressed air. These photos show the results of adding the angled cuts on the back as well as the rear bevel.

Last up, I added some food safe mineral oil to bring out the color and grain - and it was beautiful and finished (Pics 3-4)!

And then the tablet stand was done. This wood is beautiful and it has such a unique smell to it and the functionality of it in the kitchen will have a daily benefit to us moving forward. It's super fun to take something old and turn it into something you'll use everyday!

As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects.

I put out videos every few weeks.





Building my Kitchen Island


I was quoted ~$3,000 for a custom kitchen island with a butcher block top. No thanks...I'll just make my own for around $850 :-)

This was above and beyond the most ambitious project I've ever tackled. I'm grateful to have done it, so proud of the final result, and happy to share my process. Full video is below, followed by all the tools and materials I used, plus full steps in the article.


Thank you to Purebond for helping support this project! Purebond is a no-added formaldehyde product sourced and manufactured in North America and is the highest quality plywood material I have ever worked with.

Check out their website here for more information: http://purebondplywood.com/

2 x 3/4" Full Sheets of Purebond Plywood
2 x 1/4" x 4' x 4' Plywood
1 x 1/2" x 2' x 4' Plywood
24 BF of Poplar (Framing)
3' x 5' Butcher Block (Purchased Separately from Perfect Plank)
Primer + Interior Paint
Wood Filler + Sand Paper (80-320 grits)
TiteBond II Wood Glue: http://amzn.to/2peRFus
The Good Stuff for Butcher Blocks: https://amzn.to/2OsLlLp
~200 x 1 1/4" Pocket Hole Screws
Cabinet hardware (recycled), drawer slides (fro m Home Depot), and drawer pulls (from Amazon)

Contractors 30” Saw: https://amzn.to/2Luh91q

Circular Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
Power Drill: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
Impact Driver: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1klHw
Miter Saw Stand: http://amzn.to/2p1072e
Stationary Bench Sander: http://amzn.to/2q1Cq8k
Cordless Brad Nailer: http://amzn.to/2p1dYFD
Plunge Router: http://amzn.to/2p15eiC
Glue Gun: http://amzn.to/2uLJt7V
Router Bit Set: http://amzn.to/2pwx87Z

K5 Pocket Hole Jig: http://amzn.to/2qb8S7t
Kreg Clamp: http://amzn.to/2riyHU8

12” Speed Square: http://amzn.to/2phZUIt

The main structure of this was built with 3/4" plywood - 2 sheets to be exact. Pics 1-3show me breaking it down into the various components for my build. The design of my island would have three drawers and cabinets on one side, and a 12" recessed area on the other side for two stools, and would measure 3' x 5'. Pic 4 shows my final cuts for the structure.

Everything on this project in terms of structure is held together with pocket holes. I think I drilled an used around 200 1 1/4" pocket hole screws for this build. I use pocket holes for nearly every project I work on, and highly recommend the tool!

Pics 1-4 show me drilling, gluing, setting in place, and using my impact driver to assemble. I was careful to keep everything as square as possible in this step - this really wasn't the project to rush through! Pic 5 shows one of the two legs that would help form the recess for the two stools - I used a scrap block to help keep the spacing even and not "cup inward". Pic 6 shows me cutting horizontal stretchers (all at once to keep even) that would go across the top and bottom to properly space out each side and add structural support.

Pics 7-9 show me using more glue and screws to assemble final pieces of the framing. This wasn't hard - it just took a while and some careful measuring to get everything precise and in it's place!

After getting the framing together, I divided the piece into three even quadrants (Pic 1) and ripped additional 3/4" in plywood on the table saw (pic 2). Pic 3 shows those two pieces in place after I used glue and screws to evenly attached. I'm also attaching a few horizontal stretchers in the same piece that will serve as dividers between the cabinets and the drawers.

Pics 4-6 show me using small strips of 3/4" plywood and pocket holes to glue and screw in place at the base so that bottom shelves could be attached on top.

The next step was super easy - I took 1/4" plywood and ripped it to length and width on the table saw (Pics 1-2) and then attached into place - the relative sizes of each piece of plywood are based on the relative size of your bottom shelves - I think mine were around 18" x 20" each. Then, I attached everything using brad nails (Pic 3).

My fiancé wanted one of the cabinets to store really large cooking sheets - something that just isn't readily available in most kitchens. Part me also thought it could store a custom cutting board I build down the road, so I was all for it. To make these, I broke down more 1/4" plywood on the table saw into two sets of wood (Pic 1).

The first set would serve as base and roof dividers (Pic 2), while the second set would serve as the actual dividers (not shown, but featured in Pics 6-7). I applied glue and then started laying them in place (Pics 3-4). I did so by using another scrap piece to properly space them. I then used brad nails to tack things in place (Pic 5).

You can see how using a spacer in this way allowed me to go back after floor and ceiling dividers were attached so I could slide in my larger pieces (Pic 6). These were held in place in their final form (Pic 7) using just glue. This method allowed me to do this quick and efficiently without worrying about cutting even rabbits in the thin plywood, and it was cleaner in design (at least in my opinion!)

Look - drawers are super boring, so I'll spare you. In Pic 1, I used left over 3/4" plywood from the structure to rip two sets of drawers that were about 4.5" tall. Then, in Pic 2, I lowered my table saw blade and made two separate passes to cut rabbits that would hold the bottom shelf later on. To elaborate - my blade is 1/8" thick, so I made one pass with the blade 3/8" high (half the thickness of the plywood), then moved the fence over 1/8" inch and made another pass, giving me a 1/4" rabbit to insert the bottom drawer shelf later on.

I then drilled and used pocket holes to assemble the shelf (Pic 3). After cutting my bottom shelf (1/4" plywood) to length, I inserted it into the rabbited joints (Pic 4), then attached the fourth side of the drawer (Pic 5) and closed it off with pocket holes.

Last up, I added drawer slides to each side, using a spacer block that I cut to keep things parallel and even on each side (Pics 6-7). I hated this part, but it was necessary (obviously!). Pics 8-9 show me installing the subsequent drawer mounts (also not fun, but necessary!).

Most cabinet furniture have what are called "face frames", which are really just nicer hardwoods used to give your cabinets a face frame and cover up the layers of plywood. I always planned on painting my island, so using four-quarter poplar was perfect for my needs. I started by ripping all of my material into 1 1/4" strips (Pic 1), and then cut all of my pieces to length on the miter saw (Pic 2). This was entirely relative to my own island, so no need to bore with measurements, but be assured that I took my sweet time measuring out exactly how much material I'd need, the exact lengths I'd need, and how it would all come together.

Pic 3 shows me laying it out to make sure I had everything for the front side of the island (the side with the cabinets). Pic 4 shows me using pocket holes to begin assembly, with Pic 5 showing me using glue and pocket hole screws to assemble the pieces. These screws were all on the backside of the material, so they'd be totally hidden. Much YouTube research would tell me that this is a very common way to assemble face frames. Having a big flat even surface to work on and clamp things down was imperative (Pic 5 again).

Pic 6 shows me checking to make sure things were even. This step was so important for the build - basically, if you start with one side that is basically perfect, you can then do all subsequent sides one after another and things should remain perfect and fall into place properly as you can do them one at a time.

Pics 7-9 show me using glue and brad nails to hold everything in place.

NOTE - I would not recommend using brad nails to tack things in place unless you plan on painting your island as you'll see them and it will look bad. Since I planned to paint this, I knew I could use wood filler to fill in all holes and cover up later.

As I said before, once I had my front faces in place, each piece after was relatively easy as I could use my front side as a reference point and work my way around the island. By doing things one at a time, each side fell into place and things actually somehow ended up pretty damn perfect.

Pics 1-2 show me doing the backside of the island (the recessed area), using clamps, glue, and then brad nails to get things perfect.

I then went back with food filler in Pic 3 to fill in around 80 brad nail holes, followed by sanding with 120 grit sand paper against a wooden block to flatten everything (Pic 4). The result of this was perfect.

Pic 5 shows something that actually kind of looks like an island!

Beyond the hardwood face framing I just walked you through, we wanted our island to have additional accents to it - mainly - in the form of pronounced "x's" that stuck out past the plywood but not as far as the hardwood framing.

To make this, I cut up the rest of my 1/4" plywood on the miter saw and table saw (Pics 1-2) to about 1" wide and roughly the lengths I'd need for the build. Then, in Pics 3-5, I could begin tacking in place each piece.

Our design called for a middle divider on each side, with two x's on each side of it. Starting with the middle divider gave me even sides to measure and work from. Pics 6-8 show me then (as best I could), measuring out, cutting on the miter saw, and then using the stationary disc sander to refine the angles needed to fit x's into each side. I then repeated the process of using glue and brad nails to tack things in place in Pics 9-10).

Pic 11 shows the final result of a few hours of careful measuring, cutting, and gluing in place. Pic 12 shows me adding two more vertical pieces on the face of the recessed side - I have no reasoning for this other than I thought it would look cool. It did.

NOTE - I would use thin hardwoods if you are not painting for this step - I only used hardwood plywood because I planned to paint this and thus could cover up any exposed plywood.


Then, I primed (one coat) and painted (two coats + touch ups) the entire island using a fine foam roller and a nice paint brush. The hardest part was getting into all the corners. I need a spray system.

My fiancé and I agreed that if I could match our current kitchen cabinets (not exactly a simple design!) 80% of the way, then we would be good. Buying cabinets, especially bespoke ones, is damn expensive - like $100 per cabinet. I build my entire set for under $100 and they are damn good (for me).

Part one includes me ripping poplar on the table saw (2.25" wide - Pic 1), and then cutting things to length on the miter saw (Pic 2). I bought, ripped, and cut enough material for three cabinets and three drawers. Then, I drilled more pocket holes. For this step, my plan was always to go back after and route a rabbit on the backside of each hardwood frame, so I laid out my pocket holes into places where the router bit wouldn't hit it later on (Pics 3-4).

Pic 5 shows how all six cabinet/drawers looked framing-wise. Then, I assembled everything using glue and pocket holes, using a speed square to keep things square and the clamp to keep things flush (Pic 6).

Pic 1 shows me using a rabbit bit on my plunge router to route a groove on the back of each cabinet (as seen in Pic 2). This would be used to accept a piece of 1/4" plywood to fill in the cabinet face.

Pic 3 shows me using a special router bit on the front side of the cabinet frame to give it a nice curved profile. This was close to what my cabinets looked like - but not exactly - I simply don't have the tools to make it look perfect. Again - compromise. Pic 4 shows that as a final result.

Pics 5-6 show me using fine grit sand paper to smooth things down a bit compressed air to clean things off.

Now look - I get it - this is not the "Pro Pro" way to make cabinets. But I'm not a pro - and I don't have pro tools - I have some tools, but not enough, so this method work for me - and it's not for everyone, but I will say that the final result is quite good for the mid-level DIYer (and at about 1/6th of the cost!)

To fill in the space between the hardwood frames, I cut 1/4" plywood down on the table saw (Pic 1). These filler pieces would go on the backside of the frames in the rabbits I cut in the previous step.

Because the rabbiting bit left curved corners, I needed to round over the edges on the stationary sander (Pic 2).Then, using glue and squeeze clamps, I could glue everything in place (Pics 3-5) and let cure for 3-4 hours.

The current drawers in my kitchen are made up of just a hardwood frame and a middle piece - there is no added profile in the middle that is elevated. However, the cabinets have a hardwood frame, a 1/4" backing, and then a middle profile. So I needed to make that for the three bottom cabinets.

I ripped 1/2" plywood down on my table saw (Pic 1) - this was relative to my cabinet sizes - I think they ended up being 1.25" smaller on all four sides than the boarder of my hardwood frames. I then used a router bit from Ryobi to give the pieces a fancier profile (Pic 2) - again - 80% the same to what we currently had. If I didn't tell you they were different, you'd probably never notice...

Pics 3-4 show the final profile, me laying it out and measuring properly for evenness, then using glue and something heavy to glue them down - no finish nails for this step.

Again - I know this is untraditional - but it isn't wrong and I know many others have done things like this before and gotten great results (spoiler - I got great results!). Then I primed and painted everything (1 x primer, 2 x paint + touch ups - Pic 5)

Look, I can make things, and I probably could have made this butcher block top. But there is a risk/rewards thing, and I don't have too much pride to risk hundreds of dollars on nice hardwood only to mess it up later on. Could I have made this myself - yea, probably. Did I want to? Kind of. Do I regret buying it. Hell no.

All in all, I paid about $850 total for this island - $550 being this walnut butcher block. The block was bought from a website called Perfect Plank, and I realized that buying and having this shipped would have cost about the same amount to buy the raw materials. So yea, worth it.

The block comes sanded to 120 on one side (Pic 1), so step one of this (Pic 2) was to sand up to 300 grit as well as break the sharp edges. Then, after cleaning off all sawdust with compressed air (not picture), in Pics 3-6, I used Emmet's The Good Stuff butcher block finisher to finish it. You rub in the goop in a circular fashion, working it into the wood, then come back after 15 minutes and wipe off excess using a straight motion that runs with the grain.

Few tips I got for this. First, finish all 6 sides of the block at once as to avoid uneven exposure to elements which could cause cupping and/or warp. Two, don't spray water on the unfinished wood to raise the grain - that can also lead to warping over such a large surface. I headed their advice and did everything they recommended and it came out freaking perfect (Pic 7). I did go back after 12 hours, sand down with 400 grit lightly, clean off with a damp rag, and then apply one more coat of the finish in the same fashion as before (not pictured).

This wasn't very fun and I dreaded it.Pic 1 shows me installing the trashcan slide from the backside. I made this little base out of scrap plywood and attached using 1 1/4" inch pocket hole screws, and then attached drawer slides to the boarder.

Pic 2 shows drilling a recess in the back sides of the other two cabinets that would accept hinges. This was nerve racking, but worked out in the end. I then pre-drilled, screwed in, and attached the cabinets to the hardwood framing (Pics 3-5).

Few tips here:

  • Buy new hinges - I used old ones from a kitchen remodel and although they worked, newer hinges allow you to install and adjust things on a micro level to get even. With mine, I had no wiggle room, so I had to be extra precise.

  • Take your damn time! I spent about 5 hours doing this (on and off) measuring, marking, drilling, checking again, attaching, and just generally getting everything lined up so it was perfect. This has to be perfect, and I had come so far in this build, I wasn't about to waste my efforts

Pic 6 shows me putting in the trash can drawer.

Last up was to install the drawer faces. I carefully mesaured out the centers of each drawer using a drywall square and speed square, and then used a punch to mark the locations for holes (Pic 1). It also helped having one set of hardware on hand to confirm your measurements were accurate.

Once I did, I pre-drilled holes to accept screws (Pic 2). To hold drawers in place, I used hot glue and pressed the drawer face up against the drawer itself, using a spacer to keep things even (Pics 3-4). I then could use the same pre drilled holes to drill through the drawer faces and through the drawer (Pic 5).

Finally, I could attach drawer handles from the reverse side using the hardware included in the kit (Pic 6). I repeated this process for the cabinets below and the trashcan in Pic 7 (easy peasey!).

I built my island knowing I could physically move it to its final home. If you don't have a way to move something that is 3 feet wide (Like having double french doors in your backyard - Pic 2), then make sure you account for what you can actually fit!.

My dad and I took the long journey from my garage / shop, around the house, to the back, and into the kitchen (Pics 1-3), and then sat it in its final place. This thing is so dang heavy, I have not and do not plan to actually mount it to the floor.

In Pics 4-5, we then moved the butcher block to it's final place. This thing made it even heavier - at this point I could lean and push my whole body against it and it didn't move a millimeter.

By the way - seeing this beauty in it's near final state in our kitchen was amazing.

Last step! Last step!

To attach the butcher block to the island, before moving into the kitchen, I drilled four holes in each corner top support piece that was 1/2" wide (Pic 1). To actually attach base to block, I'd am using a washer and pocket hole screw (Pic 2). Drilling a hole larger than the screw and using a washer allows for expansion and contraction as the weather changes throughout the year (advice from my father in law).

Pic 3 shows my fiancé and I marking and measuring the final location of the block.

Pics 4-5 show me using my impact driver to drive in the final screws.


I could not be more excited about this thing. It is just awesome and I'm going to go ahead and pat myself on the back for building something I never knew was possible (in my own skill set). I encourage you to get out there and tackle things outside your comfort zone - cause damn is the payoff amazing. Take a look at the final pics, as well as the last two which show a before/after of our kitchen space (why was there no island there to start?!?).

As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects.

I put out videos every few weeks.



Making a Huge Assembly / Out feed Table


I made my first big purchase for the shop - a SawStop. Safety has become paramount for me as a hobbyist maker, so in addition to the purchase, I knew it was time to build a big assembly out feed table! Below is the full video build where I talk about why I built my table the way I did and how I went about it. Materials and tools are below as well! Hope you Enjoy!


Thank you to Purebond for helping support this project! Purebond is a no-added formaldehyde product sourced and manufactured in North America and is the highest quality plywood material I have ever worked with.

Check out their website here for more information: http://purebondplywood.com/

3 x 3/4" x 4' x 8' Sanded Plywood
~100 x 1.25” Pocket Hole Screws: http://amzn.to/2p5vKYw
1” Brad Nails: http://amzn.to/2oNLc8W
TiteBond II Wood Glue: http://amzn.to/2peRFus

SAWSTOP Contractors 30” Saw: https://amzn.to/2Luh91q
RYOBI Circular Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
RYOBI Power Drill: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
RYOBI Cordless Brad Nailer: http://amzn.to/2p1dYFD
RYOBI Impact Driver: http://amzn.to/2q1l5wn
RYOBI 10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw: http://amzn.to/2q1klHw
RYOBI Miter Saw Stand: http://amzn.to/2p1072e
RYOBI Plunge Router: http://amzn.to/2p15eiC
1” Dado Bit: http://amzn.to/2eR6tOO
KREG K5 Pocket Hole Jig: http://amzn.to/2qb8S7t
Kreg Clamp: http://amzn.to/2riyHU8
12” Speed Square: http://amzn.to/2phZUIt

Canon Rebel EOS T2i: http://amzn.to/2pwwlDI
Canon EF-S 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 IS II Lens: http://amzn.to/2pwmuhi
Studio Lighting Equipment: http://amzn.to/2rtrkg0
H4N Zoom Mic: http://amzn.to/2uMeVWL

My design called for 3 sheets of plywood. Some were to remain quite large, others would be broken down via a circular saw, table saw, and miter saw. In pics 2-3, I am breaking down the (super detail and awesome hand drawn) cut list featured in Pic 1. I labeled my pieces in Pic 4, and then stacked the bigger pieces off to the side while I broke down the smaller parts.

My legs were composed of two pieces of plywood - one 3" wide, butt jointed against another piece 3.375" wide. I'm ripping them down in Pic 1, and then "gang" cutting them in pic 2 - I believe they were cut to just under 32" which would give me a final height of my table just under 34" (~height of my table saw).

In Pics 3-5, I drilled pocket holes every 8-10 inches or so, apply glue, and then use pocket hole screws to combine the two pieces together. Pic 6 shows all four legs built identically.

Framing this table to combine legs was relatively straight forward. Each leg was connected by a stretcher running from leg to leg, on the top and bottom, so that I'd have two shelves.

Pics 1-3 show me using glue and pocket hole screws to combine a set of legs together at the top and bottom (then repeating for the other set of legs), resulting in two sets of legs in Pic 4.

I ripped and cut a few additional strips with 45° miters on the end in Pic 5, then used glue and pocket hole screws in Pics 6-7 to attach them at the corners to add sheering strength. Lastly, in Pic 8, I attached 4 x stretchers at the bottom that would eventually bring the two sides together. You'll see what I mean in the next step.

Pics 1-2 show me taking the two sides and combining together again using glue and pocket hole screws with the four stretchers I attached in the previous step. Pic 3 shows the result of this - I added more miters to the corners to fully strengthen the bottom piece. I used glue and finish nails in Pics 3-5 to hold down the shelf - this shelf was cut at the beginning of the build when I was breaking down my big sheets.

Then, in Pics 6-7, I repeated the entire process for the top that I had just done for the bottom, adding horizontal stretchers, as well as miter'd corners for shearing strength.

Next up was to finish the top. From my cut list, you can see that I planned it out so that left over, I'd have a piece that was 4' x 5' (final top), and two pieces that were 2' x 4' and 3' x 4'. The second two pieces were going to serve the purpose of a permanent bottom shelf, with the larger overall piece serving as a top shelf that could take wear and tear and be replaced if needed.

In pics 1-2, I am moving the table into place and moving the two smaller sheets into place. I then clamped one piece down (Pic 3), and removed the other piece to add glue (Pic 4). This way, everything stayed where I needed it. In Pic 5, I put the piece into place, use brad nails to hold it down (Pic 6), and then off camera, repeated that process for the other smaller piece. Then, I had a complete top.

Pic 7 then shows me moving in the single large sheet on top of that and adding finish nails (Pic 8) to keep it in place. Again, this was so I could go back and remove / replace if I ever wanted as well as add weight and strength to the top.

Because this was going to be an out feed table, i wanted to add miters to the side touching the table saw so that I could pass jigs and other miter tracks through the table saw and onto it if needed. I made sure the table saw was square to the table (Pic 1), and then used the miter gauge that the table saw came with to figure out where to cut my dados (not shown).

I used my plunge router to find the right depth (pic 2), and then took 2-3 passes with a 1" dado bit in Pic 3 for each miter slot, resulting in two nicely cut miters in the table top (pic 4).

After finishing the miters, the table was done (for now). I have so many plans in mind for this down the road - additional storage, drawers, hardwood boarders, more hangers to add essentials (you can see things already being hung), adding casters for mobility.

I error'd on the side of simplicity for this build knowing that I would want to use it and see it in my space and then figure out what would be the best ways to build on it as I progress in my hobby.

If you want to know any materials, tools, or have any general questions answered, you can check out the second step or contact me via my website, thecuttingbored.com and I would be happy to do answer them.

As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects.

I put out videos every few weeks. 





Power-Carving the Infinity Gauntlet



My full video of the build is below, followed by detailed instructions with tools, materials, and measurements! 

I'm a huge Avengers fan, and am so amped up for Infinity War. I thought it would be fun to tackle a unique power-carving project, by trying my best to recreate the Infinity Gauntlet.


Thank you to Purebond for helping support this project! Purebond is a no-added formaldehyde product sourced and manufactured in North America and is the highest quality plywood material I have ever worked with.

Check out their website here for more information: http://purebondplywood.com/

You'll see from the video above and the instructions below that this took me two rounds to get correct (and I still could improve on it a lot). Hopefully my first time mistakes (mostly rushing and not referencing my designs) can be avoided if you're looking to get into power carving.

To begin, I found the highest resolution and most "clear" photo I could find of the gauntlet online. I then brought it into Illustrator and sized it to fit in section of blocks that were a little under 1.5" thick (knowing that I wanted to use a 2 x 8 for this project, and that I'd plane it down to something about 1.4" thick). 

Then, I used the pen tool to trace out the main armor components of the design of it onto the art board. I then took a picture of my own hand from the side, brought that into illustrator, and traced the same profile of it to give me a side profile view of what a fist could look like. 

Had I found any sort of 360 view of the gauntlet, this would have been much easier, but part of the fun of this kind of thing is figuring out ways around not having all the resources you need. 


Round 1
1 x 2" x 8" x 8' Douglas Fir (from Home Depot)
Titebond II Glue

Round 2
1 x 4' x 4' x 1/2" Spalted Maple Plywood from Purebond
Titebond II Glue
Tung Oil

I designed this project to be built with just one 2 x 8 from home depot - that way, anyone could do it. I used my table saw to rip both sides of it to a little under 6", then planed both sides so that they were very flat for laminating. If you want to skip all this, or don't have access to these tools, you can buy S4S lumber from a local dealer.

Based on the design, I ripped my material into specific lengths on the miter saw (Pics 1-2), and then laid them out on the ground to match my design template (Pics 3-4).

his is not necessary, and I ended up skipping this whole bit the second time around, but if you want to be able to stick your hand in your design, you'll want to cut out holes in the first 9 pieces before gluing up. 

Pic 1 shows me figuring out how many pieces I'd need to cut out a hole in. I used a masking tape ring to make a rough circle in Pic 2. Then, in Pics 3-5, I used a drill and jig saw to cut out holes in each of my pieces, using clamps to hold it steady while I did so. Pic 6 shows me test fitting my hand before gluing. 

hen, using some Titebond II in Pic 1, I applied an even amount of glue to all the surfaces of each piece for lamination. I used my template in Pic 2 to make sure the pieces were lined up, and then clamped it together and let it dry for 24 hours in Pics 3-4. Simple enough. All of these steps could be skipped if you somehow had a big chunk of wood to carve down (like a tree stump, etc.). 

originally planned to use a band saw from my buddy to cut out the outline, hence why I designed the entire thing to be the size it was (so it could fit in the cutting capacity), but it turned out to be too much to handle. So, I used a chain saw instead, which worked much better and was faster anyways. 

fter chainsawing, I switched to my angle grinder and a TurboPlane to power-carve (Pics 1-2). To smooth things out, I used a 40 grit flap disk (Pic 3). These are wonderful, and are an absolute necessity when power-carving. 

This is where I botched things. I thought I knew in my head how I wanted this to look, and I thought I had a great mental image of what the gauntlet looked like. However, I didn't, and by rushing into carving this, the result was something that kind of looked like a glove (Pic 4), but ultimately would never look like the movie version of gauntlet. 

I suppose if you were just trying to create your own take on the glove, then it would be fine, but I wanted mine to be relatively "movie accurate", so I ended up wasting a lot of time trying to fix the problem before just calling it quits and starting over. 

s I said in the previous step, I had pretty much botched the carving job. Rushing, not checking my references, and just thinking that I was on the right path all culminated in something that didn't come out how I was anticipating it. That is the tricky part of these carving projects, especially when you design something in 2D and need to translate that into 3D - you do need some sense of artistic design and spacial understanding because once you remove the material, there ain't no goin' back!

Pics 1-4 show me using dremel tools to add fine details like the the spaces for stones, the finger spacing, and armor details. This took a while, as dremel bits are small and can only do so much at once. 

I went through a sanding phase to smooth everything down in Pic 5, and then finished off with more fine dremel sanding and detailing in Pics 6-7Pic 8 shows a near final result. The stacked wood looked pretty cool, but it just didn't come out how I wanted, and up close, it just didn't quite look like a fist (damnit). 

So, as I have repeatedly said in previous steps, I wasn't happy with how this thing came out. I realized that I had rushed the carving design of it without doing my due diligence to double check the reference photos each time. It was inaccurate, the layers of the gauntlet were all wrong, and it was like trying to put a band-aid on a gunshot wound to make it look more "movie real". Again, that is the challenge of creating something 3D from a 2D design...

I decided it was time for a redesign - and good opportunity for me to figure out what I did wrong the first time around and fix those things as much as possible. Slowing down was the main thing I needed to do...so take that into consideration (and know that with this kind of thing, there is no sure-fire way to make it perfect).

I realized that because I can't 3D model, I'd have to figure out a way to track how deep I was carving. The gauntlet is just a form fitting glove with layers of armor stacked on top of each other, so in order to make them look like layers that slightly overlap, I'd have to come up with a "carve by numbers" system.

Pics 1-2 shows how I designed that. Each main component of the glove layer would have a number associated with it, which would tell me, in terms of layers, how "outside' or "inside" it would need to be.

Having redesigned the the gauntlet in Illustrator to be made from 1/2" plywood that I got from Purebond, I got to work. 

I cut out the squares in Pics 1-2 from a scrap piece of 1/2" spalted maple plywood I had, and then laminated all 30 of the strips together in Pic 3. This actually works better as you don't need a table saw or a planer to get to nice clean cuts for laminating. 

Pics 1-2 show me repeating the same method as before. I glued on my template to the piece of wood, except this time, as I didn't have a chain saw, I power-carved everything. In Pic 2, you see my carving out the hand portion of it - I was VERY methodical and careful about this part, stopping frequently to check that what I was carving looked both like a true hand as well as what my reference photos looked like. Remember, you can't put back material once it is gone. Pic 3 shows the glove after the first round of carving (before detailing) - already 100x better than before!

Pics 4 -5 show me using a forstner bit to separate the thumb and fingers (only way I could think of as I don't have a ball gouge or any other tool to get in those tight spaces, and then a dremel bit to separate the fingers. Pic 6 shows the early stages of carving the preliminary "armor" layer (more on this in the next step).

Now comes the moment of truth (and patience). Remember, armor on anything is just a bunch of individual pieces of metal slightly stacked on top of each other to provide uniform protection, and I really wanted to make sure I achieved this look. 

I was very patient with this step, as I didn't want to repeat my mistakes. I used a sharpie to mark out the design of what I was going to be carving and not carving. Pic 1 shows me marking the first layer of armor. Pics 2-3 then shows me using a flap disk to carve away the middle portion, leaving me with a first layer of armor. I then repeated this process over and over again for the five or so layers I had created, carving away a portion each time, and leaving all previous layers untouched. The result were armored layers that looked like metal stacked on top of each other.

Pics 4-6 show me using a flap disk and dremel drum sander bit to carve out the armor of the fingers (my own design), round over the edges, and add more detail to the main gauntlet armor.This took about three hours, as again, I took it slow, referenced my photos and designs frequently, and in general, took the time to get all the shapes right. I was stoked on the result.

The final steps, like before, were to do everything I could to make the gauntlet as detailed in possible.

This included adding spaces where the stones go (Pics 1-2) using a forstner bit and rounded dremel bit, adding layered detailing around all the stones accurate in Pics 3 and 4 (somewhat) to the movie gauntlet, and then doing a final hand sanding to smooth everything over with some 400 grit paper (not pictured)

This took about 1.5 hours (again, just referencing photos a lot, taking my time, going back and forth to add more detail) - clearly I was a bit obsessed...

The strata look of stacked plywood turned out as cool as I hoped it would. I thought that burning the outside of the wood lightly could add a cool look to it (darken it to look more golden, burn the edges to add definition, and just spice it up). Pics 1-2 show me doing that, and Pic 3 shows how it came out. Not bad, right? Glad I did that!

NOTE - I did this outside, with extreme caution, and very lightly as to not set the entire project on fire!

To finish it, I applied a few coats of tung oil. In hindsight, maybe just doing a few coats of poly would work better (Pics 4-5). It looks great, but the poly would be cheaper, easier, and give a better clear-coat satin look. Pic 6 shows a not great up close photo. 

Above are a bunch of close up grabs of the final piece. Pretty cool, right? Not perfect, but nothing is - I'm happy with it, and it was fun to step outside my comfort zone and learn in the process.




As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects.

I put out videos every few weeks.



How to make a Wine Barrel Stool


Thanks for checking out the full article!
Please Subscribe to our Youtube Channel by clicking here.

My full video of the build is below, followed by detailed instructions with tools, materials, and measurements! 

8 x Wine Barrel Staves (Similar width)
~30 x Wood Screws

Image 1.jpg

Above is a picture of the 8 x Oak Wine Barrel Staves I have. They have a ton of character and are so awesome and I was so stoked to make something with them. The thing to note is that, if possible, you should get staves that are of similar width and thickness to make the project easier. 

I had seen a cool / simple design for a barrel stool and I did some math in my head and figured out that I had enough material to make it (this was just based on a picture - no designs or measurements, so I just went with what I thought would work and made my stool the size that made sense with the material I had). So I made my cuts!

Cut Designs.jpg

Here are my cuts with rough measurements which I cut on the spot based on my own mental design:

  • 4 x Legs (about 17" each) made from 2 x Staves
  • 2 x Upper Supports (about 8-9") made from half of 1 x Stave
  • 4 x Lower Supports (about 14") made from 2 x Staves
  • 7 x Seat Staves (about 14") made from 3.5 x Staves

Now it is Assembly Time!

Note - I pre drilled all of my holes before screwing in screws to avoid the wood splitting. It's old - didn't want to risk it. I started by making my to legs pieces using one upper support and two legs for each piece. The last picture shows the final design. 

Assembly Part 2.

I took my four lower supports and assembled them. Two pieces were turned out, two were turned in - this was to make the bottom supports fit around the legs - see the next step for clarity. 

Assembly Part 3. 

I then combined Assembly Steps 1 and 2 as such. You can see that the legs pieces were wedged in between the bottom supports with the wider part of the leg faces facing the inward facing staves. This is how the design comes together to be very strong and even. 

Assembly Part 4.

I attached my 7 x Seat Staves to the top of the legs using pre drilled holes and the asme wood screws. I made sure to square up one side so that I could just square up the other with a circular saw once it was all attached. The staves are not going to be the same sizes, so just run with it - it will be unique - just like you!

As stated before, I then used my circular saw to square up the other size and lightly sanded down my edges with some 120 grit paper. 

At this point, the stool was done. There are a few things I could do to it additionally, such as put a sealant on it or really round over the edges. I might do that at some point, but for now, the stool looks great, is very sturdy, and I'm proud of my afternoon project!

Final pics below!

YT Thumbnail - No Text.jpg

RYOBI 10 in. Sliding Compound Miter Saw
RYOBI Miter Saw Stand
RYOBI Power Drill
12” Rafter Square
RYOBI Drill Bit Set
Hand Sanding Sponges  

As always, thank you for reading! I would be so grateful if you could please subscribe to my Youtube Channel for future projects. I put out videos every few weeks.




Hardwood Wine Bottle & Glass Holder



My full video of the build is below, followed by detailed instructions with tools, materials, and measurements! 

I'm slowly moving into doing finer woodworking / crafting. It means more precision, more attention to detail, and using tools I am still a beginner with. It means going slower in the process, but creating something I'm proud of. My mom wanted me to make her a few wine bottle / wine glass holders as future Christmas gifts. I saw it as a fun opportunity to work with lots of hardwood species!



Use any material you want. I wanted variety, and I knew what tools I had on hang, so I went with five different species for my build. I had Ipe and Walnut scraps, and I purchased Maple, Mahogany, and Poplar. All wood is about 4/4 stock in thickness and 2 feet in length. 


I didn't have a huge amount of methodology to how I ripped my strips, other than that no piece would be wider than 2" and no thinner than 1/4", and I would try to mix up the variety as much as possible. 


Once you have all your strips cut and the surfaces are clean for gluing (should be fine coming off the table saw), mix them up how you want to and get ready for the glue up.