Above-cabinet shelving: make every inch count with an easy-to-clean upper-cabinet shelf.
This project only requires basic carpentry tools and skills. Even the miter joints can be cut with a simple handsaw miter box. We used an 18-gauge finish nailer to make the job go faster, but you can just as easily predrill and hand-nail. And don't worry about trying to match your cabinet's finish or wood type. The shelf will look great if you paint it to match another accent color in the room. We added shelves to about 8 ft. of upper cabinets for only about $40.
Get what you need at the lumberyard
The best material for the main shelf is 3/4-in. plywood (Photo 4). Get a finished grade that is smooth and easy to sand. The cleats under the shelf (Photo 2) are fillers to elevate the shelf just enough so the crown molding fits under the shelf and yet comfortably clears the doors below. We had about 1 in. of space above the doors, so we needed cleats that were 1-1/4 in. high. If you don't have access to a table saw, you can carefully cut them with your circular saw and an edge guide.
Besides the 2-1/4-in. crown molding, you'll need trim to cover the edge of the plywood (Photo 6) for a finished look. You can use "screen" molding or "parting stop" or just rip a strip from a wider board to 1/4 in. or thicker.
Just follow the photos for details about sizing and fitting the pieces.
Paint your molding to match
Finish up by filling your nail holes and sanding the wood with 150-grit sand-paper. Prime the wood and then select a satin or gloss paint finish that'll be easy to wipe clean. Because it's difficult to get an exact cabinet color match for natural wood cabinets, simply pick a color that will accent your kitchen countertops or cabinets.
[FIGURE A OMITTED]
1 Measure the tops of your cabinets to determine your materials list. Also check the distance above the cabinet doors to determine the support cleat height for the shelf.
2 Nail cleats to the tops of the cabinets to elevate the shelf. Leave 3/4 in. of space on each side for the side cleats. The side cleats will overhang on the cabinet side.
3 Fit the side cleats so there's a consistent overhang on the edge. We had to notch the cleat to fit behind the window molding.
4 Measure and cut the top from 3/4-in. plywood, overhanging 1-1/2 in. on the front and each side.
5 Nail the top to the cleats with 2-in. finish nails. Make sure the overhang is even on each side.
6 Glue and nail the 3/4-in.-wide edge molding to the exposed plywood edges. Miter the corners for a more finished appearance.
7 Position your molding upside down in the miter box to support both the top and the bottom of the molding. Check the direction of the angle twice before you cut.
8 Nail the crown molding to the face of the cabinet and up into the shelf at an angle. The molding will completely cover the cuts.
9 Fit the side pieces of crown molding and slip a 3/16-in.-thick filler strip under the front edge to hide the gap created by the face frame overhang.
Art Direction * MARCIA WRIGHT ROEPKE
Photography * BILL ZUEHLKE
Illustration, FRANK ROHRBACH III
|Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback|
|Publication:||The Family Handyman|
|Date:||Oct 1, 2005|
|Previous Article:||Undersink storage: make every inch count! Build these handy roll-out trays in a weekend.|
|Next Article:||10 space-saving tips for your small kitchen: just because your kitchen is small doesn't mean you have to put up with limited storage and countertop...|