Build Your Own Bookcase

What You'll Need
Table Saw
Dado Head Cutter
Paint Brush
Wood Stain or Paint

Bookcases can provide an aesthetically pleasing storage function. Building your own bookcase can be easy. The following guidelines are designed to help you build your own book case that is 72 inches in height, but you can modify the bookcase and build it to fit any space requirements.

Step #1: Design Bookcase
The first thing that you are going to want to do is to design the bookcase that you want to build.  For example, determe the of shelves you would like along with your preferred height and width.  Other special details can be in the overall design, for example, you can shape the bookshelf to be vertically long or provide a longer shelf in width.

Step #2: Gather Materials
Now you are going to want to gather the necessary materials, purchasing the amount of lumber that you will need to create the bookshelves of your dreams. Pine lumber and fir lumber both work good for this particular application. You are going to want to buy 1 x 10 lumber.  Be sure to purchase enough lumber to accommodate the number of shelves that you intend on building.

Step #3: Measure Shelving Space

Now you are going to want to measure your shelving spacing on each of the sides, offering 3 inch allowances from the floor to the lowest bookcase shelf. Measure the tallest books that you have and allow for enough space for them to fit on the bottom book shelf so that there is no trouble fitting books in the right places later.

Step #4: Cut Lumber
Now you should cut the two side pieces that you need. Make use of your dado head cutter's attachment on the table saw in order to cut grooves that are ½ inches deep and ¾ inches wide in order to hold each of the shelves in its place. Allow an extra three inches from the top piece of the shelf because it will need to fit over the side pieces.  Cut the remaining shelves once you have completed all measurements. 

Step #5: Final Steps

Next, you should put the shelves in their place. Once they have been properly fit into their grooves you can use wood screws or nails to hold them all in place. Lay the bookcase down on its front end and measure the back before cutting a piece of plywood to accommodate those measurements. Nail or screw the piece of plywood into place on the back of the bookcase. Finally, you can sand the wood as needed. If you want to you can paint, stain or otherwise finish your custom made bookshelves to suit your needs.