Step 1: Rip the bookcase sides

Cut sides to width with circular saw «»
Using a circular saw, rip a piece of ¾-inch birch plywood into a 12½-inch-wide strip. To ensure straight, accurate cuts, clamp a straightedge guide to the plywood.

TIP: Use another piece of 8-foot plywood as your saw guide.
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    Tools List

    • 100-foot tape measure
      Measuring tape
    • circular saw
      Circular saw and guide
    • hand clamps
      Spring clamps for holding saw guide
    • plunge router
      Plunge router fitted with 5/8-inch-diameter guide bushing, ball-bearing-piloted rabbeting router bit, and ¼-inch-diameter straight-cutting router bit
    • speed square
      Speed square
    • hammer
      Hammer
    • jigsaw
      Jigsaw for cutting arches in toekick and side pieces
    • iron
      Iron for adhering iron-on birch veneer edge banding to plywood
    • j-roller
      J-roller for adhering iron-on veneer
    • Double-sided Veneer Trimmer
      Double-sided veneer trimmer
    • utility knife
      Utility knife
    • drill
      Drill/driver fitted with 5/8-inch spade bit
    • pocket hole jig
      Pocket-hole jig for boring angled holes for pocket screws
    • miter saw
      Miter saw (or miter box with hand saw)
    • paintbrush
      Paint brush

    Shopping List

    1. 3/4-inch cabinet-grade birch veneer plywood for the case and shelves. One 4x8 sheet will make the whole bookcase

    2. 1/4-inch-thick birch veneer plywood for the backing. One half-sheet will cover the back of the bookcase.

    3. 8-foot piece of pine bed molding to trim around bookcase top.

    4. 1¼-inch pan-head pocket-hole screws

    5. 6d finish nails to attach the bed molding.

    6. 3d box nails for fastening the plywood back.

    7. 1/4-inch-thick x 3-inch-wide hardboard strip used to mark arches onto toekick and side pieces.

    8. 7/8-inch-wide heat-activated birch veneer edge banding, used to conceal edges of plywood.

    9. 1x pine, for making hole-routing template for shelf pegs.

    10. 8 metal shelf pegs

    11. 120-grit sandpaper

    12. Primer and paint,
    or stain and varnish