These Rolling Kitchen Cabinet Plans are a Simple Woodworking Design.
DIFFICULTY RATING: Beginner
These free, rolling kitchen cabinet plans were designed for the beginner woodworker who needs the versatility of a cabinet on wheels. This cabinet is ideal for someone who needs room in their home to maneuver items without needing to lift them. I use this cart in the dining room and kitchen area for the microwave, silverware case, and cookbooks. When I have a large gathering of family, I simply roll the cabinet to a room not in use.
A link to the pdf
of these free wood working plans
is at the bottom of this page.
WOODWORKING TOOLS NEEDED:
To make these free, rolling kitchen cabinet plans, you will need the following woodworking hand tools:
- tape measure;
- speed square;
- woodworking clamps;
- Kreg pocket hole jig;
- an iron (yes - a regular, old household iron);
- a hammer; and
- a utility knife.
The woodworking power tools needed are:
a circular saw, a jig saw, a drill and a sander.
The materials needed for these free, rolling kitchen cabinet plans, depends on your budget. The least expensive way is to buy a 4x8 sheet of 3/4" thick, finished sanded plywood. You could use pine panels or hardwood plywood, but the cost would be much higher.
You will need:
1 - 3/4" thick, 4x8 sheet of finished, sanded plywood.
You will also need:
- 2'X 4', 1/4" thick finished plywood sheet for the back;
- 3/4" wood veneer to cover the plywood edges (I used birch);
- one 1x2, 8' long for the cleats along the back, to make nailers, and to strengthen sides;
- one 2x4, 8' long to make the base for the wheels;
- 44 -
1 1/4" coarse thread, Kreg joint pocket screws;
- 3/4" nails to attach the back;
- 1" nails to attach the cleats;
- 4 caster wheels;
- 4 - 2 1/2" hinges; and
- 2 door pulls of your choice.
The wheels must be able to hold the weight of the cabinet, as well as the weight of the items you intend to put in or on these rolling kitchen cabinet plans. I used wheels salvaged from a computer desk.
WOODWORKING PROJECT COSTS:
The total cost of these rolling kitchen cabinet plans is determined by the materials used. If you use pine plywood, the cost would be under $50.00.
USE OF PLYWOOD CUTTING JIG:
Some of the first photos for these rolling kitchen cabinet plans show the set-up of a plywood cutting jig, and use of the circular saw cutting jig.
To make accurate circular saw cuts, I used a straight piece of plywood. Use the factory edge because that is more likely to be square. Even with a factory edge, you want to double-check that the edge is square.
I clamped that straight edge to each end of the plywood. I double-checked that each end was the right distance from the line, so that my circular saw could follow the straight edge. Cutting your plywood like this will make a HUGE improvement in your woodworking projects.
To learn more about the plywood cutting jig, click here.
CUTTING YOUR WOODWORKING PROJECT:
Before you cut your plywood pieces, you want to think through what direction the grain is going to go. We cut it so the grain went the long way of each piece.
Cut the following pieces out of the 3/4" thick plywood:
- 1 top - 24 1/2" by 14 1/8";
- 2 sides - 21 3/4" by 13 1/4";
- 1 bottom - 22 1/2" by 13";
- 1 shelf - 22 1/2" by 12 1/4"; and
- 2 doors - 21 11/16" by 11 15/16".
Cut the back from the 1/4" thick plywood:
1 back - 22 1/2" by 21 3/4".
The back will be attached with 3/4" nails.
You will also need to cut the following from the 2x4:
2 - 21 1/2" long pieces, and
2 - 8 1/2" long pieces.
Then, cut the following from the 1x2 for the cleats:
- 1 - horizontal piece 22 1/2" long;
- 1- horizontal piece 19 1/2" long: and
- 2 - lvertical pieces 19 1/2" long.
The cleats will be attached with 1" nails.
DRILLING THE POCKET HOLES:
Once your pieces for these rolling kitchen cabinet plans are cut, you are almost ready to drill your pocket holes. Before you do, though, examine each piece to see which side is better. Place a light, pencil X on the poorer side. You will drill your pocket holes into the poorer side. You will want the X facing you when you clamp each piece into your pocket screw jig.
Drill your pocket holes at least one inch from the edge.
Now you are ready to do the next step in these rolling kitchen cabinet plans:
- Drill 4 pocket holes on the short edges of your bottom piece;
- Drill 4 pocket holes on the short edges of the underside of your shelf;
- Drill 4 pocket holes on the top short edge of each of your side pieces;
- Drill 2 pocket holes on both short edges of the 2 8 1/2" pieces of your 2x4 base;
- Drill 2 pocket holes on the top edge, towards the center, of the 2 8 1/2" pieces of your 2x4 base; and
- Drill 4 pocket holes towards the center the top edge of each of the 21 1/2" pieces of your 2x4 base;
Even though you are drilling into a 2x4, the pocket hole depth will stay at 3/4". The reason for this is that the material being joined determines the pocket hole depth. In this case the material is 3/4" plywood.
- Drill 4 pocket holes on the long sides of your two 21 1/2" 2x4 pieces;
- Drill 2 pocket holes on each end of your two 11 1/2" 2x4 pieces; and
- Drill 2 pocket holes on the long side of your two 11 1/2" 2x4 pieces.
The top, back and doors will not have pocket holes.
ASSEMBLING YOUR ROLLING KITCHEN CABINET PLAN:
Your first step is to clamp one of your side pieces to a flat surface. Align the bottom piece with the end of the side piece that doesn't have pocket holes. Clamp the bottom in place; double-check that it is square; and then drive the pocket screws.
Lay the other side piece flat. Align the bottom piece, which now has 1 side piece joined to it, along the short end of the side piece that doesn't have pocket holes. Again, clamp the bottom in place; double-check that it is square; and drive the Kreg joint pocket screws.
When you flip your 3 pieces over, they should look like the photo at the beginning of the drilling section.
When we made our rolling kitchen cabinet plans, we attached the shelf next. That made it very cramped to join the top. So we recommend that you connect the top next.
Lay the top on a flat surface. Align your 2 sides so that they are flush with the back of the top. Your sides will be blank" inset from each side of the top piece.
Clamp your pieces in place; double-check for square; and drive your Kreg joint pocket screw.
To attach the shelf, lay your cabinet box on one side on a flat surface. Create a spacing jig - just a scrap of wood that is up to 12 inches wide and blank" high. Clamp your spacing jig to the inside of one side, so that is lined up at the bottom. Align your shelf so that it is flush with front, and butted to the exposed end of the spacing jig. There will be a 1" gap at the back of the shelf. Clamp your shelf in place; double-check for square; and drive your pocket hole screws from your shelf into the side piece.
Move your spacing jig to the other side piece, and repeat the process. By using the spacing jig, you can be certain that your shelf will be the same height on both sides,
To learn more about the many uses for spacing jigs, click here.
Now that the cabinet box is complete, you can assemble the base. Clamp a 21 1/2"" long piece to a flat surface. Align one of the base pieces along the edge, as in the following photo. Make sure that the pocket holes that will join the base to the cabinet box are lined up on the same side. Clamp in place; double-check for square; and drive the Kreg joint pocket screw.
Repeat that step on the other side of 21 1/2" piece.
Then lay the other 21 1/2" piece on the flat surface. Align the 3 connected pieces with this piece. Clamp in place; double-check for square; and drive the pocket hole screws.
Make the entire base before joining it to the cabinet box.
To attach the base to your cabinet box, lay the top of your box on a flat surface. Align the base so that it is evenly spaced from each side of the box bottom. Clamp in place; double-check for square; and drive each Kreg joint pocket screw.
Now that you have the base attached, you just have a few more steps until your rolling kitchen cabinet plans completed.
ATTACHING THE CLEATS TO SUPPORT THE BACK:
To attach the back securely, you need to make a "frame" inside the back of your cabinet to nail the back to. This "frame" is made out of the 1x2 cleats you cut earlier. The cleats go up both sides, across the top, and across the shelf at the back of the cabinet.
APPLY VENEER TO THE PLYWOOD EDGES:
Because we made this cabinet out of plywood, we needed to finish the exposed edges of the plywood. We chose to use 3/4" white birch for this project. The veneer will take stain and can be lightly sanded after the adhesive dries.
Align the strip of veneer along the edge of the plywood, and run the iron along the strip to activate the adhesive on the down side of the veneer. Use a flat edge, such a piece of scrap wood, to follow the iron to help adhesion. The veneer will be HOT!, so don't touch it with your hands.
The veneer needs to cover all the front edges of your cabinet box, including the shelf; around the entire top of the cabinet; and, all four edges of both doors.
Once the veneer is firmly in place you can use the hand held blade especially designed to trim the veneer edges. If you do not have a veneer trimmer, you can also use a utility knife or a light sander to remove any overhang.
The next step is to nail the 1/4" plywood backing in place. The back should fit snug to the cabinet sides, and should not protrude behind the side profile. If you do end up with some cracks, you can fill them with wood filler.
Once we applied the finish to the cabinet box, it was pretty enough to use just as it was. But because the rolling kitchen cabinet plans called for a closed cabinet on wheels, so we kept going and added the doors.
Lay the cabinet on it's back to attach the hinges and the doors. This is where careful measurements are important. The door must be absolutely straight with the cabinet box.
Installing the doors correctly is much easier if you have another set of hands to hold the door in place.
Once you have measured where the hinges go on the cabinet, hold them in place with double-stick tape. Then lay the door on the cabinet to double-check your measurements for attaching the hinge to the door.
You now can install the wheels on each corner of the base.
Your rolling, kitchen cabinet is now complete, except for adding the door pulls of your choice.
Click on the photo to go to the pdf,
created in Google SketchUp,
for these free, rolling cabinet plans.