recessed plywood panel, cabinet construction

davetzFebruary 17, 2009


I'm building a kitchen banquette which has two recessed panels on the back rest (shaker styling, like this one: ), each panel is about 24" X 33" I have the option of using 1/2" or 3/4" plywood and am leaning towards 3/4" since I think it has more structural stability for this fairly large panel.

I am wondering, with either of these materials, if I can screw them into the frame from the back or is it absolutely necessary to have them floating for expansion? That is, it there really lots of expansion with a 3/4" plywood piece or can it be fastened in place? Otherwise I can fasten it with strips from the back without actually screwing into it. I know this isn't the most professional way to do it, but it's what I can do with my current equipment.

Any feedback/advice much appreciated.



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With plywood, you can simply screw them in place. Only with solid wood is it critical to leave panels floating.

1/2" ply, BTW, is almost certainly plenty.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2009 at 11:52AM
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Thanks Jon--you think the 1/2" will be stiff enough for resting backs against?
Thanks for the input--love the forum!

    Bookmark   February 17, 2009 at 1:15PM
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Assuming that the material will be supported all the way around by a rigid frame of some sort, yes -- I do think 1/2" ply will be plenty. Another thing to consider, though, is how far recessed you want the panel to be. In the pic it looks like the panel is only about 1/4" back from the face of the frame. If you screw your plywood to the back of 3/4" frame stock, there will be a 3/4" step which may be uncomfortable. If you cut a rabbet in the frame to accept the panel, there won't be much wood in front of the panel to screw into.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2009 at 10:30AM
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