I’m finished with the building phase of this music room bookcase project. Here’s how it looks so far…
Of course, I still need baseboards and crown moulding, but I’ll add that at the same time I add baseboards and crown to the whole room.
When I left off yesterday, I had one bookcase built. If you missed that, you can see those details here.
So yesterday, I started by building the second bookcase on the right side to match the first one. Then I ran the wire for the lighting from the first bookcase to the second one. I used wire staples above the door to hold the wire in place.
Then I just drilled a 1-inch hole in the back of the top section (the section that will be covered completely) and poked the wire through.
With the wiring in place between the bookcases, I could build the middle section to cover the door hardware between the bookcases. I started by ripping down a 1 x 2 piece of lumber so that it was 7/8-inch wide, and I attached it to the side of the right bookcase so that the bottom came to the bottom of the metal door track. I attached this with wood glue and lots of 16-gauge nails.
Then I repeated that on the side of the other bookcase, but on this bookcase I also added a temporary support just underneath the vertical piece.
The temporary support piece allowed me to place my ladder on the right side, place the MDF piece on top of the temporary support, and nail it in to place (i.e., into the vertical piece) on the right side. Then I could move my ladder to the left side, nail that side into place, and remove the temporary support piece.
Here’s what it looked like with the temporary support piece removed.
The reason I ripped those vertical pieces to 7/8-inch wide is because I wanted width of the vertical piece (7/8-inch) plus the thickness of the MDF panel (5/8-inch) to equal exactly 1.5 inches. That way I could use a 1 x 2 pre-primed MDF board attached to the bottom to cover the edge of the MDF panel and the vertical pieces. Even though it’s very narrow, this 1 x 2 basically acts as the top door jamb
Then on each side, just under that top 1 x 2, I added three 1 x 2’s. I added them one at a time, and nailed each one in place separately.
You can get a better view of that here.
The whole purpose of this was to give me room to create a door casing. I didn’t have room to create side casings as wide as the casings on all of my other doors, but I thought a narrow casing was better than nothing.
Then I ripped down an MDF board to fit right on top of the three 1 x 2’s, leaving about a quarter inch of the inside 1 x 2 showing, just like on a regular door casing. I repeated that on the other side of the doorway.
And then on top, I added the same top casing that I’ve used on all of my other doors – a 1 x 6 sandwiched between two 1 x 2’s. (I’ve decided not to make changes to my door casings. That’s more work than I want to take on right now.)
And then I just needed to run one more wire from the junction box on the right bookcase to the outlet on the right wall of the bottom shelf on that same bookcase, and then add the very top and bottom rails to the right bookcase. You might notice that I also replaced the top rail on the left bookcase with a taller board. I’m still not 100% sure how I want to finish off my ceiling so I didn’t want to take a chance of having a big gap at the top of that rail.
So about the lighting…
I didn’t want to crawl through the attic, run wire to the breaker box, and install another switch somewhere on the wall in this room for those lights. So instead, I decided to pull the power for the lights from the outlet that’s on the right wall of the bottom shelf of the right bookcase. I used an extension cord, cut off the end with the receptacle and kept the end with the plug, and then ran the wire through a hole that I drilled in the top right corner of that bottom shelf, behind the bookcase, and out the top to the junction box. Then there’s another wire (the same kind of extension cord, but with both ends cut off) running from the junction box on the right to the junction box on the left. The lights will be turned on and off at the outlet, and I purchased an adapter that has a switch on it. So I won’t have to plug in and and unplug these lights. I’ll just have to flip the switch on the adapter. I also bought an adapter that has a dimmer rather than a switch, so I’ll try them both out and see which one I like better.
I love how this is turning out so far. I think the door casings give it such a finished look.
Several people wondered if there was room between the kitchen doorway and the wall for a bookcase. There was just barely enough room! 🙂 Once I get the door casings installed on the kitchen doorway, there will be three inches between the outside edge of the casing and the front of the bookcase.
And finally, here’s how it looks from inside the kitchen.
Now all of the finish work begins. That’s my least favorite part. I could build stuff all day long every day and be perfectly happy, but when it comes to all of the finish work (wood filling, sanding, caulking, priming, sanding and painting), I dread it. But it must be done! 🙂