Drawers for the Miter Saw Stand
Since I am in between projects and I still had some scrap wood and hardware from leftover projects I figured I would put around the garage this weekend and spend some more time on my shop fixtures and cabinets.
I had a big open space below the miter saw stand that I threw together in one of my previous posts and I wasn’t sure what to do with it until now. I decided on two side by side drawers with an open space below that will house an old plastic recycling bin that I will use for small pieces of scrap and cut-offs. First off this project is not meant to be pretty, more like a practical, Frankenstein of functionality. That being said I had to set about installing a basic framework that could support the sliding rails for the drawers. Since this hasn’t been planned ahead of time, and the miter saw is currently in use I am field modifying this cabinet which is a little bit of a pain, working on the ground.
The first step was to cut a piece of 2x blocking that I had screwed a 1/2” plywood divider two. The 2x blocking is then screwed to the underside of the counter top.
As you can see below this divider, provides two equal sections for my new drawers and will provide supports for the drawer rails. I am going with 7” high drawers which will give me a 6” deep drawer on the inside after I put in a 1/2” thick plywood bottom. That means the height of my divider that I am using is 7-3/4” high. This will hope fully give me a 1/4” clearance from the bottom of the drawer and 1/2” clearance from the top of the drawer.
The next step was to attached a stretcher piece or plywood rail at the front and back of the drawer openings. These rails are about 3” wide pieces of plywood will laterally support the middle divider. They will also provide a reference point for installation of the drawer slides.
The rear rail can be seen well in the photo below.
With the openings complete I could not take some final measurements and get to work on the drawers. I have some full extension heavy duty 16” drawer slides that I was going to use for a project that never materialized, so I figured I would put them to use here. The slides tell you what width to make your drawer based on the opening you are working with. For example my slides call for a drawer width that is 1-1/16” less that the drawer opening. I have 13-1/4” wide openings so my drawers will be 12-3/16” wide. The length of the slide is 16” but I am going to make the drawers slightly longer, because I have room in the cabinet, so my drawers will be 18” long. With all of the sizes determined and the 1/2” plywood I will be using ripped to 7” wide and cut to length I switched out my standard saw blade for my dado set.
I will be rabbeting the drawer sides and either gluing and nailing or gluing and screwing the sides to the fronts. I will be cutting a 1/4” deep by 1/2” wide rabbet in the sides. I ran a few test pieces to get the depth and the with set perfectly before running the drawer sides through.
With all the rabbets run, it was now time to reset the saw to run a dado for the drawer bottoms. I wanted heavier duty drawers so I decided to use 1/2” plywood for the drawer bottoms. This also saves me having to reset the dado stack for a different thickness drawer bottom. I kept the depth of the dado at 1/4” and simply adjusted the fence so that the dado would be about 1/2” from the bottom of the drawer sides. Because I am using slightly weathered scrap plywood I noticed the plywood was a little bigger than the dado I cut. To get the plywood bottoms to fit, I simply adjusted the fence a smidge until I could easily slip a piece of plywood into the dado with no issues.
After repeating the process for all eight drawer pieces I did a little mock-up to see how close I came to my drawer width of 12-3/16” and I was right on. Now o decide on screws or brads to join the drawer sides to the fronts and backs…