Now nail the nailing strip between the sides. The nailing strip should be flush to the top of the sides and 1/2″ in from the back edge of the sides. You’ll nail your back to this when the project is complete.
To complete the lower case, glue and nail the face frame to the case. When the glue is dry, cut the shape of the base on the front and sides using a jigsaw. Then clean up your cuts using sandpaper. Now it’s time to move on to the top.
Make the Top to Last
There’s some cross-grain construction in the top, so you need to be careful about how you put it together to ensure the top doesn’t self-destruct.
Begin by gluing up the boards for the top piece, cutting the top to finished size and sanding it to its final grit. Cut a 1/4″ x 1/4″ chamfer on the top edge to soften the edge. Cut your three splash pieces to size and cut the curved parts. The back splash gets a 3″ radius cut on either end. And the side splashes get a 1″ radius cut on the front edge as shown in the drawings. Finish sand all the pieces and follow the instructions under the photos.
I make the drawers using half-blind dovetails. To keep the drawers running straight, I nailed in 3/4″ x 1″ strips of wood on the upper fixed shelf and stops at the back of the case to keep the drawer fronts flush to the front of the case.
The back is made from 1/2″-thick poplar boards that I shiplap so the edges overlap. I also cut a bead on the shiplapped edges using a beading bit in my router. Fit the back pieces, being sure to leave a gap between each board; don’t nail them in place until the dry sink is finished.
Now finish sand all the parts, putty your nail holes and dye the project. I use a diluted red aniline dye, followed by three coats of lacquer. PW
Troy Sexton is a contributing editor for Popular Woodworking.