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Build It | Entryway Wall Shelf

Ask This Old House general contractor Tom Silva and host Kevin O’Connor build a wall shelf for an entryway using stock poplar from a home center.

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Time: 4 hours

Cost: $100 and up

Skill Level: Moderate

Tools List for Building an Entry Shelf:
Miter saw
Speed square
Table saw
Rabbeting bit
Roundover bit

Shopping List:
1×10 poplar
1×4 poplar
¼” birch plywood
Coat hooks
Wood glue
Trim head screws
1” nails

1. Mark desired lengths for the poplar and cut on a miter saw.
2. Rip desired widths on the table saw.
3. Rip the plywood to size on the table saw.
4. Use a router with a rabbeting bit to cut rabbets on the pieces for the sides and the top for the plywood.
5. Square off the rounded corner from the router with a chisel.
6. To set the radius on the bottom of the sides, trace a round object like a plastic bucket or paint can and then cut the radius with a jigsaw.
7. Use the roundover bit in the router to smooth the leading edges.
8. For the top edge, drop the roundover bit lower to create a shadow line.
9. Predrill holes for the dividers in the top and bottom.
10. Glue each joint using wood glue, then screw the pieces together using trim head screws.
11. Mark the location of the dividers on the back. Add glue, then secure the back with 1” nails.
12. Sand the piece.
13. Prime all surfaces.
14. Fill the screw holes with wood filler.
15. Apply a top coat of paint in desired color.

Tom built the shelf out of 1×4 and 1×10 poplar plus ¼” plywood. He used trim head screws and wood glue to secure everything, then finally attached coat hooks. All items used for this project can be found in a home center.

Ask This Old House TV
Homeowners have a virtual truckload of questions for us on smaller projects, and we’re ready to answer. Ask This Old House solves the steady stream of home improvement problems faced by our viewers—and we make house calls! Ask This Old House features some familiar faces from This Old House, including Kevin O’Connor, general contractor Tom Silva, plumbing and heating expert Richard Trethewey, and landscape contractor Roger Cook.
This Old House releases new segments every Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
Keywords: This Old House, How-to, home improvement, DIY, tom silva, ask this old house, kevin o’connor, build it, entryway, shelf, woodwork

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