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15…Let’s Build a Magazine Case

“I am an old man and have known a great many troubles, but most of them never happened.”
Mark Twain…American author and humorist (1835-1910)

This episode is part of the Let’s Build Series

Many of woodworkers receive woodworking magazine subscriptions in the mail each month and as the time goes by these magazines accumulate. These magazines are a great source for reference and also inspiration so it is nice to have them protected and organized so that we can easily access the information. Now, a woodworker can simply purchase a magazine case from the publisher or from a local discount store and be done with it. However, since we are woodworkers why not select the wood of our choice and learn how to make our own wooden magazine case?

This woodworking video shows the woodworking equipment and woodworking techniques used to build a magazine case. The main power tools employed for this process are the table saw, the jointer, open drum sander, and the band saw. The dedicated dado sled for the table saw is featured in this tutorial and is used to cross cut dadoes. This table saw fixture is used for cutting rabbets, tenons, grooves, dadoes, and half-laps and makes production work easy and accurate. The cutting of rabbets are shown in this video.

Ribboned mahogany is selected as the material for the magazine case due to the woods nicely flowing grain as well as its captivating chatoyance. Mahogany machines well, is easy to sand, and it takes a nice finish. Tried and True oil varnish is used with a wipe on application and as a result the finished woodworking project has a warm hand rubbed look.

If you are a woodworking beginner pay attention to the details as shown in the band saw and table saw set-ups as they offer greater control and also greater safety.

The Band Saw Set-up
When ripping stock on the wood band saw there is a tall resaw fence clamped in place. This fence is aligned and set in accordance to the “drift” of the band saw blade. Also, notice that a featherboard keeps the bottom of the stock snug to the fence while the push stick directs the stock through the blade. This assures that the mahogany is tight to the resaw fence and also that one’s fingers and hands are clear of the band saw blade. Take you time and allow the blade to cut at its own pace.

The Table Saw Set-up
Notice the safety accessory used to control the stock as it is pushed through the table saw blade.
A small adjustable featherboard is used in the miter gauge slot in order to keep the stock tight to the table saw fence.
A shop-made featherboard is clamped to the table saw to keep wide stock tight to the fence. In this case an auxiliary board and a clamp is positioned against the featherboard to further control the situation

The Dado Sled Set-up.
The stop block clamped to the fence guarantees that stock is cut to uniform lengths. A quality dado blade set allows for fresh, clean cuts.

Keep in mind that these woodworking basics apply to beginning woodworking projects as well advanced projects.

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  1. John says

    Nice. I intend to send a copy of the video to the woodworking club in Miami to get everyone in the woodworking mode – our first meeting is in September.

    Thanks for the continuing support of woodworking.

  2. John…

    Thanks for taking an interest and the time to share the woodworking video with the woodworking club in Miami. Your support of woodworking and of the blog is greatly appreciated. Every contribution is a win for everyone involved. Keep in touch.

  3. Diggerjacks says

    Hello Bob

    Another beautiful project

    Just one question ; did you use router for someone of your projects or only table saw with beautiful and inventive jigs ?

    Have a nice day


  4. DJ…
    Welcome. It’s great to see you here on the Blog! Thanks. It is a basic woodworking project that requires some planning and preparation for the joinery.
    To answer your question…I use both the router and the table saw (with jigs and fixtures.)

    As you can see in the woodworking video, Let’s Build a Magazine Case:
    A.) the Dado Sled was used with the table saw for the cross cut operation of the rabbets..
    B.) the sacrificial dado fence was used for ripping the rabbets.

    These joinery cuts can also be performed on a router table as well with the same efficiency. (some of my previous magazine cases were performed on the router table!)
    Since the video, Let’s Build a Dedicated Dado Sled for the Table Saw was recently released I thought it a good idea to demonstrate the effectiveness of the dado sled for this operation.

    It is to the woodworker’s advantage to know and understand various methods and techniques even if the same results can be obtained. For example: In a production workshop the settings on the table saw could be set for an operation and its best not to change the settings at the time. However, the router table could be available for the operation that you need. The smart thing to do is keep production moving forward. We may talk about this matter in terms of a hobby and yet this point is especially important when its your livelihood and your source of income is on the line. Versatility is the woodworker’s best friend.

  5. MAURO SCAPIN says


  6. Thank you. It’s a fun project.

  7. Mike Noon says

    Great video (as are all the others), Am just getting started here and am constructing the Cross Cut Sled. However, back to this video, the only questions I have are: What are the dimensions of the Magazine case, and is each case designed for say 12 issues of the magazine?

    Have a great day,
    Your new apprentice,


  8. Hi Mike,

    Welcome to the site! As you explore this woodworking blog, you will see a number of very helpful crosscut sleds used in a variety of situations. If you pay attention to accuracy in the build of the sled, it will pay huge dividends for many woodworking operations in the future.

    The finished dimensions of the Magazine Case are: 5″ wide x 12″ tall x 9-1/2″ deep. Thickness of the material is 3/8″. Yes, it will easily hold 12 issues easily and can hold up to 17 issues.

    If you feel like, let me know how your sled and magazine builds are coming along.

    Enjoy the process and build with confidence,

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