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Arthur Dollhouse Kit
Doll House woodworking plans.
Mirror Frame with a Shelf 
 Free plans at the bottom of this page!
Shot Glass Displaycase 
Shot Glass
Display Case
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Bink's Horse Stable
Bink's Lil Wheelbarrow

This is a rough idea of what I want to make. But of course I've already added the idea to cut a heart shape in the rail above the shelf. So next I need to slap on some more to that bottom rail before I go any further. 
I chose Poplar for my mirror since it will be painted. Sizing the parts for this lil project is the first order of business. A lot depends on the size of the mirror you find. I bought my mirror at Michael's, that's a crafty type of store, similar to A.C.Moore. My mirror measures 19-3/4" tall by 11-7/8" wide. You may have to alter the plans height and width to fit your mirror, or have a mirror cut to this size. 
Planning for the cut-out heart was a bit tricky. Remember we need a groove all the way around the back for the mirror to sit in, plus extra for the heart area. Then of course, my mirror has a beveled edge which I wanted to hide completely.  
The pattern above shows the pattern I made for the heart. I left 7/16" above the heart and a 1/2" below for a total of 3-7/8". This area will have to be cleared out a bit for the mirror to sit into. When you copy this pattern, be sure to size it properly, that's why I left a rule there, so you can get the proper scale.
To remove this stock, I thought of using my table saw with the blade on edge, but I believe that is just way too dangerous. Besides I'll be needing my fingers tomorrow. So instead I'll using my router table and a 3/8" straight cutting bit. 

In this pic I'm using the mirror and a straight edge to set the height of my bit. Then I'll add an extra 1/16" to the depth.

Now it's just a simple process of setting the fence and removing the stock, a little at a time. Reset the fence for each pass, be sure not to go too far. Also make sure you keep the work piece flat on the table, the more you remove, the greater the chance it will rock and cut too deep. When your getting close to that 3-7/8" mark, stop and get your rule....
....and measure 3-7/8" from the fence to the far side of the bit. 
This pic shows the last pass thru the router table. After this you can clean up the back side with a bit of sandpaper on a block of wood, you don't want to round off the edges. 

So now we have the bottom rail ready for the mirror to be set into, we still need to do the same for the top rail and the two styles. More on that later, right now lets finish that bottom rail and cut out the heart.

Straight Router Bit 
Straight Router Bit
I'm working on the back of the work piece now, laying out the location of the heart, centered on the stock.
Now it's a simple mater of drilling a starter hole for your scroll saw blade....
....and cuttin out the heart. 
Irwin® 29-Pc. Drill Bit Set and FREE Multi-Tool 
Irwin® 29-Pc. Drill Bit Set and FREE Multi-Tool
Delta SS350LS 16'' Variable Speed Scroll Saw 
Delta SS350LS 16'' Variable Speed Scroll Saw
If your as good as I am at the scroll saw, then you'll have lots of sanding to do! My drum sander does a nice job of smoothing out the top of the heart, but not the lower pointy part.
So now you can turn your scroll saw into a high powered detail sander! This lil gizmo hooks up just like a typical blade, and gets into some really tight quarters, like the bottom of the heart. 
This was the first time I'd tried this little sander, I was surprised it did such a good job cleaning up that tight area. I was very impressed! 
Scroll Saw Sanding File
Scroll Saw Sanding File

15 Piece Drum Sander Kit and Replacement Sleeves
15 Piece Drum Sander Kit and Replacement Sleeves

Now it's time for assembly! I used biscuits in the area where it's recessed, and pocket hole screws near the bottom. I like to use the pocket screws because it holds the assemble tight till the glue dries. 

I also felt I needed a mechanical fastener in the recessed area, to keep the surfaces flush.

To make the pocket screws holes, I use my Kreg jig. I'm drilling 2 holes in the upper rail in the picture to the left.  
More on how to use the Kreg pocket hole maker here.
Then cut the slots for the biscuit. Be sure to adjust your machine to cut the slot in the center of the stock. Since the backside has been recessed to accept the mirror, there is just a little over 1/2", so center your machine accordingly. 
Pictured is the Porter Cable 557 Biscuit Joiner
Kreg Jig K4 Pocket Hole System with $.99 Portable Drill Guide! ($19.99 Value!)
Kreg Jig K4 Pocket Hole System with $.99 Portable Drill Guide! ($19.99 Value!)

Porter-Cable Deluxe Biscuit Joiner, Model No. 557 
Porter-Cable Deluxe Biscuit Joiner, Model No. 557
Glue Bottle Kit 
Glue Bottle Kit
Disposable Glue Brushes 
Disposable Glue Brushes


Ok this gets a little tricky. Because the large rail with the heart hole is recessed so far, the side styles also need to be recessed for the mirror just as far. Problem is, how do you do that. Simple, route that part on the router table! 
The pic at right shows the routed out area. I added a black line to help it stand out.
Here is a pic of one of the styles after it's been thru the router table. The round bit leave the corner round, you can square it off with a chisel or one of these lil gizmos. Chops out the corner easily! 

Corner Mortise Chisel

Ok now for the assembly. Start at the bottom rail. Glue up the styles and bottom rails, glue in the biscuits, and run in the pocket hole screws.  

To learn more about pocket hole joinery, go to this page.

Corner Mortising Chisel 
Corner Mortising Chisel
Kreg Face Clamp 
Kreg Face Clamp
6" Square Drive Power Bits
Before securing the top rail, make sure the bottom rail is square to the styles, then check the diagonals. They should be equal.
Then secure the top in the same way.
Next trim the rails to their final dimension. Radial arm saw works fine for this or use your table saw. 
See if your Craftsmen radial arm saw is covered by this recall. If it is, you'll receive a new guard and table, for free!!!  
Click here to find out.
Now that we're done with the frame, lets get started on the shelf and crown molding trim. First cut the pieces to size according to the plans. Now chuck a Double Roman Ogee Bit in your router table, and make the bearing even with your fence, like the picture at left. 
With a bit like this, I don't like removing all the stock in one pass. Lower the bit so a little over 1/3 of the cutting bit is exposed above the table.  
Now using a miter gauge set at 90 degrees, rout the cross grain of the shelf using a scrap to back up the work piece. This will prevent chip out. Now rout one of the long sides.  

Now do the same to the crown trim piece.

Now raise the bit so a little over 2/3s of the bit is above the table and repeat the what you just did. Doing this is easier on the bit and prevents burning and chattering bits. 
INCRA Precision Marking Rules 
INCRA Precision Marking Rules
Amana Double Roman Ogee Bit 
Amana Double Roman Ogee Bit
xxxmiter sledxxx
Finally raise the bit to the desired cutting depth and rout everything one more time. Don't forget your scrap pieces to prevent chip out.  

You should have some smart lookin trim pieces!

Now we need to make the keyhole slots. These will let us hang the mirror tight to the wall. Use a straight edge on your router or add one to your router table to center the bit in the style and to control it's length. Be sure to stop the two slots evenly, so the mirror will hang straight!. 

To learn more about cutting keyholes, click here.

This fancy little bit is called a Horizontal Crown Molding Bit and it will create a small dished out area in the shelf, good for holding rings or earrings. This is a large bit, 1-3/4" in diameter, so we'll be chucking this in our router table.


Like when we made the crown molding detail earlier, we'll be doing the same thing here, removing stock for the dish a little at a time. This also lets us see how the dish is turning out. Not deep enough? Just remove a little more. To start with, set the bit 1/8" above the table. 

Pictured at left is the bit being lowered in the router table with my "Router Raizer". This tool lets me adjust bit height from above the table, and without removing the router from the table. 

Click here to see a typical installation in the 
Porter Cable 7539 3hp router
This is the setup for making the dish. The fence is set so the center of the bit falls in the center of our shelf. The feather board holds the shelf tight to the fence. The stops on the fence control the starting point and finish point. Remember, we're only going to remove about 1/8" at a time.
With your router off, place the work piece between the fence and the feather board, but don't push it against the table. Slide the stock against the right stop block and push down on the left side of the stock till it touches, but don't let the bit touch the stock. 

Now start the router and keeping the stock against the right stop block, push the stock down onto the bit, and begin moving the stock to the left till it touches the left stop block. When it does, lift up on the right hand side of the stock to pull it off the bit. Shut off your router and wait for the bit to stop.  


Remove the shelf and flip it over....pretty neet, eh?  If you want it deeper, raise the bit and do it all again.
Now this is the first time i've done something like this, and i was pleased with the results. If I can do it, so can you!
That's me securing the crown molding to the frame. No magic here, just center the piece and hold it flush to the back.
The shelf is simply glued & screwed to the frame. I set up a stop clamped to the bottom, to keep the shelf in place while I predrilled the holes and secured the shelf. 

I should mention that before I attached the crown and shelf, I laid out the hole locations for the shaker pegs.  

After the woodwork's completed, I gave it a final sanding, primed everything (even the back) then gave them 3 coats of a white satin enamel. 
You can get your Free plans here!

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