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Custom Bookcase Door

Posted by bob_cville (My Page) on
Thu, Sep 25, 08 at 11:55

After recently completing a kitchen remodel, the plan was to make a small broom closet outside the kitchen, that would open into the living room. However having a normal looking door in that location would have looked out-of-place. So I built and installed a hidden door that looks like a built-in bookcase.

I still need to figure out what to put on the bookcase, and how to keep the stuff from falling off when the door swings, and I still need to reinstall the baseboard and touch up the paint, but for the most part it is finished.

The hinges are heavy duty swing clear ball bearing hinges. The sides, top bottom and shelves are 1x8 poplar, the bottom panel and the back are 1/2" plywood. The face frame is 1x3 poplar.

The bookcase is assembled with screws only and the face frame is attached via pocket screws (I love my new pocket screw jig)

The back of the cabinet is narrower than the front so that the back of the cabinet will clear the opening when it opens.

Of course part of the reason for doing this is just that having a hidden door/secret room seemed like a really cool idea.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Custom Bookcase Door

Very cool. I imagine if you pack your books pretty tight on the shelves they won't move around too much.
I love the secret room, but a secret room with Pledge and a vacuum cleaner? Just joking.

RE: Custom Bookcase Door

I've heard museum putty can hold things down tight. Not sure where to buy it though. Maybe the folks at Lowes or HD can help you.


RE: Custom Bookcase Door

Exactly, I use museum putty for knick-knacks.

I've built ones that can hold normal books. Our local library has a "free book" bin, for remnants that don't sell at the annual spring sale. If no one takes them, they get tossed.

While I hate recommending this, if you found some old discarded hardcover books you can remove the pages from the hard cover and insert a section of styrofoam in place of the pages. That'd give you a shelf of lightweight books.

I have seen someone use "book spine" wallpaper for a similar effect. It looked okay in dim lighting.

Another alternative would be a few "real" books on the hinge side of the shelf, and knick-knacks on the latch side. Keeping the weight closer to the hinges will help prevent sagging.

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