Step 6: Attach the Face-Frame Cleats

Mark Powers building the face frame of a dog crate
Photo: Laura Moss
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You'll add cleats to the stiles and bottom rail of the interior of the face frame, where the crate's side panels will be attached later on. Glue and nail the bottom cleat to the bottom rail, flush with its outer edge and even with its ends. Then glue and nail cleats to the stiles, so that the long sides are flush with the inside edge of the frame and their ends are ¾ inch from the top of the frame.
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    Tools List

    • miter saw
      Pneumatic brad nailer
    • pneumatic brad nailer
      Speed Square
    • speed square
      Screwdriver
    • Phillips screwdriver
      Jigsaw fitted with a plywood blade
    • jigsaw
      Miter saw
    • miter saw
      Drill/driver and various bits: 5/16-inch, 3/32-inch, and #6 countersink
    • drill
      24-inch bar clamps
    • bar clamps
      Tin snips or heavy-duty wire-cutters

    Shopping List

    1. 14-by-14-inch inch reproduction floor heating grate

    2. Decorative cabinet grille Get enough to cover the window cutouts on the side and back panels.

    3. Dog tray for a plastic or metal crate, sized to your dog's weight.

    4. 4-by-4-foot piece of ½-inch oak veneer plywoodfor the crate's sides, back, and top.

    5. 8 feet of 1x2 oak

    6. 6 feet of 1x3 oak

    7. 2 feet of 1x4 oak

    8. 5.2-mm Lauan plywood for the crate's floor.

    9. ¾-inch square dowels to make floor supports and cleats on the back of the face frame.

    10. 3/8-inch square dowels to hold the decorative grille in place.11. 1 5/8-inch oak crown molding and ½-inch oak glass bead molding to trim the top.

    12. Pivot hinges

    13. Latch

    14. 3-inch finish-head screws for the door and face frame.

    15. 1-inch drywall screws to assemble the box and install the decorative grille.

    16. 5/8-inch brad nails to secure all trim pieces.

    17. 1 3/8-inch brad nails to secure cleats, blocking, and crown molding.

    18. Stainable wood filler

    19. Shellac and lint-free rag