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I want to create a box. I am using a lap joint for the top and bottom frame.

For the vertical sides I need help. The pictures show the two ideas I had.

But there must be a better way to attach the vertical pieces instead of being inside or outside like I have drawn them. Ideally I would like the corner of the vertical support to flush with the corner of the horizontal frame corner. I could toe-nail thr vertical into the frames, but that seems very weak to me

enter image description here enter image description here

Requirments:

1) strong - I don't want the structure to "fold" if it is leaned on 2) flush to the long and short sides because I want MDF on one side and doors on the long face to create storage. 2a) for doors I will need more vertical members to create a door opening. Basically I'm creating a built-in entertainment centre as the end result

  • Is this a box like a shipping crate, or a box like a museum display piece, or the internal structure of something that will be hidden inside furniture? Does it need to be very strong and resistant to twisting, or just light loading from the top? – Mark Feb 27 '18 at 2:16
  • Inside of a home built in. Strong because the top will support tv, etc – Marinaio Feb 27 '18 at 13:18
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Isherwood's answer is great, however, I'd question why you are using lap joints at all if that's the type of vertical you are thinking about.

It's far less work to not bother with the lap joints and just tie the sides directly into vertical posts like this: enter image description here

However if you insist on using lap joints I'd say you want every face to have to be made of it's own lap jointed rectangles, them just link the rectangles together so it looks a bit like this (imagine the top part of the frame with less overhang): lapping rectangles

  • I need to read your post in depth. For now I was using lap joint for strength and to help keep the entire structure (13' X 2') square and true - as much as my novice woodworking will take me – Marinaio Feb 27 '18 at 13:39
  • Your photos is the basics of what I am trying to build into my wall – Marinaio Feb 27 '18 at 13:40
  • Thanks I'm going with your idea.Two questions. 1) Is that a jig making those toe-nail holes? 2) What grade of 2x4? Those look awfully clean and straight. – Marinaio Feb 28 '18 at 3:15
  • I'm not sure about the lumber as I didn't build it ;-) Yes, those toe nails are definitively made by some type of jig. I've been considering something like this for cabinetry for a while, but haven't finished my plumbing projects yet homedepot.com/p/Kreg-Jig-Pocket-Hole-System-R3/202269070 – virtualxtc Feb 28 '18 at 8:32
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You haven't specified any requirements at all, so I'm guessing at what might work. I'd probably set the verticals between your top and bottom frame assemblies, flush at the outside faces, and run screws through the frames into the verticals. Two or three 3" construction screws at each joint, piloted and countersunk, would probably do.

This would also serve to bolster your lap joints.

  • Thanks. For requirements, I have many. For this question I have: 1) strong - I don't want the structure to "fold" if it is leaned on 2) flush to the long and short sides because I want MDF on one side and doors on the long face to create storage. 2a) for doors I will need more vertical members to create a door opening. Basically I'm creating a built-in entertainment centre as the end result – Marinaio Feb 27 '18 at 13:33
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You appear to be neglecting the considerable structural effect of attaching MDF to the frame, which will make the frame mostly redundant (other than the "door" side.)

Indeed, there's no particular need to make any "frame" joints if there is sheathing attached to the frame. The sheathing becomes all the "joint" and "bracing to keep it square and true" required. The frame members are simply handy bits of wood inside the corners for the MDF to be glued and screwed to.

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just for displaying in CAD, Not considering the structure strength, you can make a cut out same size as profile of your vertical stud. But if you take fastening methods into consideration, this may not give you good result.

  • Thanks, but it is for a real entertainment built-in. So typical cabinet strength will be needed – Marinaio Feb 27 '18 at 13:36

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