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The Classic Roll Top Desk
Eight side drawers and a generous sized lap drawer give you plenty of storage for all your important office supplies.

Phase 1

To build this project, you'll need two sheets of 3/4" oak veneer plywood. When buying the plywood, try to select two sheets with a similar grain pattern. For the drawers and other interior parts, you'll need some poplar or pine. Remember, if you select blemished or damaged materials when you're beginning, you'll probably wind up with discouraging results in the end. Choose your materials carefully. If you go to a lumber retailer who refuses to let you choose your pieces, walk out and go to a different lumber retailer who will.

Start by laying out the sides (B) and pull-out drawboards (P) on a piece of your 3/4" plywood. Make sure the grain direction follows the longest dimension of the parts. Start by cutting the plywood into manageable sized pieces, then trim them to their finished size. Shopsmith's Crosscut Sliding Table will help you crosscut larger sized pieces with improved accuracy

4: CUT THE DADOES & RABBETS in the sides (B), using your Dado Attachment or Router Package. Note that all dadoes are to be cut to 1/4" deep. Since you'll be performing the same operation on a total of four pieces, keep your MARK V at the same setting until you finish the identical cuts on the remaining three.

5: MAKE THE DUST PANELS Again, use production techniques to make all of the parts of these panels at once. First, rip parts D, E, F, G, H & J to the same width. Note that the edges of the (8) front frame pieces (D) will be exposed and therefore, should be made from the same wood as the exterior of the desk.

Next, cut the frame pieces to final length, then form a 1/4" wide by 1/4" deep groove in one edge of each piece. You'll need to take two of the front frame pieces (D) and form a groove on the top back side (see drawing detail "A").

Form 1/4" by 1/4" long stub tenons on the ends of the frame sides (F, G, H). Cut the 3/4" wide by 1/4" deep notches in the corners of the front frame pieces (D) to accept the pedestal facing strips (T).

Next, cut the plywood dust panels (U, V, W) to size and glue up the dust panel assemblies. Use yellow woodworker's glue, being careful not to get any glue on the plywood panels, since they should “float” loosely in the frame pieces. When clamping the pieces, make sure they remain square and flat. Set the center panel aside.


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