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Make see-through doors in 6 easy steps.

Here’s a nifty way to make frame-and-panel door frames with built-in rabbets for glass. The offset shoulders on the stiles and rails make the joinery look complicated, but it’s actually just a clever variation on ordinary tongue-and-groove joinery. If you plan to make a kitchen-full of doors, this is the way to go. It’s much faster than routing rabbets in all the assembled frames, and then squaring all the corners.

Mill stock to 3/4″ and cut the parts to width and length. Be sure to add 2″ to the length of the rails to allow for their 1″ tenons.

The stiles and rails shown here are all 2-1/4″ wide, but this method will work for stiles and rails of different widths, too. Consider increasing the mortise depths and tenon lengths for larger, heavier door frames. Include extra parts for making and adjusting your setups.

Cut grooves and mortises

1. Cut a centered groove in one edge of all the stiles and rails, using a dado set.

Install a 1/4″ wide dado set in the tablesaw and position the fence to exactly center the groove in the frame stock.


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