Building the Ceiling Cabinets (Part 1)

Building the Ceiling Cabinets (Part 1)

May 22, 2015 Categories Camper Van

Today I started building the ceiling cabinet that sits above the rear doors. This cabinet will mostly be used to store bathroom items; soap, shampoo, TP, cleaning supplies, first aid kit, etc. First thing I did was add a trim piece under the shelf so I knew how tall the face of the cabinet would be.

Then I built some dividers that match the slope of the rear wall. Getting these nice and square was very important.

I started adding carpeting and cut some corner trim pieces that are actually what hold the divider in place. I’m not too fond of the trim pieces rounding off my nice, square corners, but there wasn’t much else for options. The cabinet face will end up hiding it anyway.

I was originally gonna have two tall sections and then a third section that would be wider and divided horizontally, but I changed my mind as I was building it and decided to split the wide section like the other two. I still added a small shelf to one side, but I’m gonna keep the other side the way it is. Before I placed the shelf, I measured a shaving cream and mouth wash bottle to make sure the shelf would be high enough for items like that to fit underneath.

Then I finished carpeting it and added the other trim pieces. From the angled picture below, you can tell it isn’t a very deep cabinet. The top of the cabinet┬ámeasures 3″ deep and the bottom is 8 3/8″ deep; the interior height is just under 15″.

I cut the top and bottom face boards and tacked them in place with a couple small nails so I could measure everything else. The top board was pretty easy because I only had to cut the ends at around 10┬░, but the bottom board was a little trickier because there are two separate angles in it.

Then I cut the rest of the face boards, mostly using up scrap wood. I have the entire face cut and ready, but couldn’t get a pic of it all resting in place; it kept falling down and I don’t wanna add extra nail holes to hold it in place just for a picture.

The cabinet face still needs to be glued together and I have to build the doors. I bought some dowels and a doweling jig so I can drill holes in the ends of the face boards to secure them together. I’m sure glue by itself would hold, but the dowels with glue will hold even better.

I also bought some hinges, handles, and little rubber grippy things that hold the door shut so they won’t come open while I’m driving. To give it a clean look, I’m using recessed hinges (they don’t show on the outside of the cabinet). I’ve never used them before (heck, I’ve never built a cabinet before), but I’m hoping it’ll come out alright.

Continue on to part two.

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