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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

So I've been asked to do a custom wall unit. The HO wants it made of this 5/8 melamine from HD. The unit is to be 86" W x 85" H x 16"D
She wants it's to be all shelves like a cubby hole system. What's the best way to construct this?
Build separate vertical boxes with shelves in them and them screw together or router out grooves to fit verticals? I'm a little overwhelmed its my first gig all on my own.

Any advice will help.
Thanks.
 

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how many shelves across that 86" wide? your going to add a faceframe or some sort of edgebanding?

i would break it up into at least 3 units. each unit has a left and right side and how ever many cubbies you want to create. discretely fasten the units together and face frame to cover the particle board ends.

5/8 melamine from HD is saying "i want this for cheap". for your sake don't let them have less than 3/4 and then you'll be able to get your screws to hold right and all that. if they must have 5/8 because they are totally stupid and don't know anything, make up for it by dadoing the shelves into the sides.

now the back... what are you going to do for the back? one option is to make the shelves a 1/4" less deep then the sides and rabbit the sides a 1/4" to accept a 1/4 ply back, see what i mean?

first step would be to go to the festool website and see what your missing for this type of project...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
This picture explains what they want.

The 5/8 comes in a brown and already in 16"x96" strips.
Because its 5/8 I was thinking I would have to stager the shelves so the verticals wouldn't be too thin from Dadoes on each side. I think the HO can be persuaded into that. Should I dadoe glue and screw? What kind of screws are best?

I was also thinking for the back I would keep everything flush and screw 1/4 ply. They're not too picky about that.

Thanks for the help makes me feel much better about it.
 

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Solid back an a couple hanging rails and screw tight to the walls. Weight isn't a concern since it looks like its going to sit on the floor. Then just do adjustable shelf pins. At 20 plus inches wide there is no need to have the shelving fixed.
 

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Maker of fine kindling
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What kind of equipment do you have?
Have you cut melamine before with success?

Adjustable shelves are easier than fixed. If I were you I would push for that.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I should also mention that the material has a pre finished rounded edge that would be tricky to get everything all lined up on the face. So I thought maybe I could leave the shelves back about a 1/4" from the vertical edges.
 

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the material they want is going to cause you a lot of pain. that stuff is basically made to go on an angle bracket. you should really sell this with a better product based on the fact that making that junk work is going to take more time then the added cost of a better material. just don't foot the bill for doing something the hard way is all im saying.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Adjustable would be best. But no guarantees with the HO I guess.
As for equipment I have a job site table saw, plunge router, skill saw, drill and driver.

the unit is part of a walk in closet, a new wall in the bedroom has to be framed and drywalled plus a door installed and a shoe rack built. All for $800 time and material. Is that reasonable? I feel like all that router work will really take some time.
 

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Adjustable would be best. But no guarantees with the HO I guess.
As for equipment I have a job site table saw, plunge router, skill saw, drill and driver.

the unit is part of a walk in closet, a new wall in the bedroom has to be framed and drywalled plus a door installed and a shoe rack built. All for $800 time and material. Is that reasonable? I feel like all that router work will really take some time.
honestly theres just no way this is possible. i would take on the framing work and help (spend 5-10 minutes) find a good ikea shelf. if your just starting this stuff you can end up in a mess really fast and not only will you not make money but you'll feel like a rube in the process.

even that number without the shelf is scary! i'd feel better if that was just the labor budget at least. its amazing how quickly things can add up even though that sounds like a chunk of money.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks a bunch guys. Ill have to sleep on it and have a chat with the HO tomorrow. Got pretty excited about just getting a job in place I guess.

Seriously all advice was much appreciated.
 

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Maker of fine kindling
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Am I hearing this right?

You will be framing a wall.

Dry walling and finishing it.

Hanging and trimming a door

Painting all of that.

Build and install a shoe rack.

Build and install this wall unit.

All for $800
 

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Im sorry bud, but all that for $800.....?!?! that, to me, sounds like a low price JUST for the shelving unit.....finished and trimmed out. trust me....you will be kicking yourself just after buying the materials when you see what you are left with. even then some more will disappear as you go back for the little things you forgot....and all while having to deal with the 5/8 HD crap..
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Well when you put it like that... I feel like i have a kick me sign on my back or something. Haha

I don't want to be one of those guys that's gonna devalue the trade. I'll have to really think this over and come up with a new game plan.
 

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eh, dont look at it like that. just be sure you are putting a decent value on yourself. your time, your skills, and think about all the actual time thinking about executing this job. There is a lot involved in this project, maybe a weeks worth of work and planning, for the possible $300-$400 you MIGHT be able to walk away with. this is assuming she already has the door and you are just doing the labor of it. kick another $60 or so if you have to purchase the door as well. And we are all guilty of it. the closet I shared the link to above was HUGE....and I (not discussing pricing...cough, cough) I only charged her $5K. and about $3.5k was materials. took me a month to do. and some long nights. think I ended up about $15/hr by the time it was done. granted, she was a friend...and it was a learning experience for me (as far as costs and pricing)
 
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