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Craftsman Media Cabinet

Listing #2570   Listed on: 02/15/2010

Company Name: Dennis Brown Furniture and Cabinets

Contact Name:   Dennis Brown
WOODWEB Content Editor, Brett Hagstrom, Interviewed Dennis Brown in December 2009.Dennis Brown was introduced to woodworking in high school shop class. At the age of 22 he apprenticed at a small Father and Son shop that did reproduction work as well as restoration and refinishing. After completing his apprenticeship Dennis moved north to Oregon and worked as a cabinetmaker and antiques restorer. He realized that restoration work would not allow him to survive sufficiently in his rural area so he focused on cabinetmaking and slowly developed his skills and reputation. Dennis Brown Furniture and Cabinets was established in 1982 and is still running strong today.Dennis has a fair variety of tools including a 1943 unisaw, Rodgers profile edge sander, 15-inch Makita planer, 14-inch Delta bandsaw, 36-inch Atlas lathe, 32-inch radial drill press, 12-inch Rockwell radial arm saw, Davis and Wells jointer, 10-inch Dewalt miter saw, Makita compound, saw, and five shapers. He also has the ability to grind his own steel shaper knives when needed to reproduce an otherwise unavailable profile. Dennis has several hundred different sets of steel knives as well as everyday carbide cutters for stiles, rails, and raised panels.

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View with shelf in

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cord chase

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front view

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left corner

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corbel corner

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Description Continued

Dennis works primarily with hardwoods, although he will work with most types of wood. Some of the woods he has used include alder, poplar, pine, Port Orford cedar, spruce, eastern red oak, western black oak, mahogany, vertical grain fir, cherry, maple, black walnut, and jatoba. He especially likes quartersawn white oak because it machines beautifully. Dennis buys his lumber from a local hardwood supplier making sure to purchase the best grade he can in order to ensure a quality start to his projects.

Dennis stresses that communication with clients is key. Spending time with clients and listening to them allows him to know exactly what they want and expect before a job is started and makes for a much easier time developing and having a successful outcome. It also helps improve customer satisfaction. Dennis believes that his background with customer service from previous sales jobs helps tremendously when dealing with clients.

Dennis has built over one hundred kitchens locally and does all types of cabinetry, commercial or residential, but his main passion is building the best furniture he can. He especially likes to build original designs. Dennis mentions that he is “still like a kid in a candy shop” each time he goes to the hardwood supplier.

Projects are all custom orders made on commission, and for the most part Dennis designs the projects himself. He is also willing to work with clients’ plans, tweaking any areas that can be improved. He ultimately prefers to design projects himself when possible mainly because he “never designs anything he can’t build.”

Occasionally customers come and pick up their projects, but usually Dennis delivers them and handles any installations needed.

The project below is a quartersawn white oak media cabinet just completed for a client's new wide screen TV - got to love them. Blumotion slides and cord chase built into the back side of the component area. A shelf will go inside behind the glass. The top is 5/4 and about 75" and the post legs are 2" square. The elongated corbels were added to the look as desired. This was a fun piece to build. Thanks for looking.

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Viewer Comments:

Posted By: MIKE     [02/16/2010]
What hardware did you use? Hinges and slides? Nice work.

Posted By: D Brown     [02/16/2010]
Mike ,
Euro crank style hinges with the Blum undermonuts with soft close feature for the slides , 18" .
Thanks for looking

Posted By: Old Green     [02/16/2010]
Real nice piece Dennis, I like the grain match on the end panel. Almost a shame to cover that top with a wide screen TV.

Posted By: Jim     [02/16/2010]
I've got say, I love almost everything about that piece. The exception is the support pieces at each end. It seems it would have been better without them. I guess it is in the eye of the beholder. Either way its a beautiful piece of work.

Posted By: D Brown     [02/16/2010]
Hey Green ,
thank you. The panel was veneer but selected for that very grain.

Posted By: D Brown     [02/16/2010]
Jim, the corbels were an important element to the client, not so much to me. I think the piece would be cleaner without them but I needed the work. Thank you for looking.

Posted By: Bob the Wood Doctor     [02/16/2010]
I disagree whole heartedly! I think the corbels make the piece. They give the profile a flow, transform the piece from just a box with doors and drawers to a graceful piece of furniture. Nice work!

Posted By: D Brown     [02/16/2010]
thank you for your kind words. The corbels needed to shout, not just quietly blend in. I got it all out of my system on those corbels if you know what I mean.

Posted By: M Clark     [02/17/2010]

Really like the piece, especially the color and finish. Can you tell us what you used, i.e. filler, stain, etc.


Posted By: D Brown     [02/17/2010]
Merle ,
on the quartersawn white oak stock I used an Old Masters brand of cherry stain that I had mixed with some yellow to make alder look like cherry wood. I tried it and it was close to the required tone. It did bring out the rays .
I used Rudd brand of precat lacquer in a satin sheen. The flash of the camera makes this finish look way more glossy than it is. The shot of the end and top is realistic of the sheen. No filler. I shoot an airless.

Posted By: Pete Bennett     [04/16/2010]
Don't you believe 'em, take the corbels away and you may still have a nice box, but, it'll be just a pretty box, not a great piece of furniture

Posted By: D Brown     [04/16/2010]
Pete , while not for everyone they are what they are .Thank you for the kind words and for looking .
I would do them again if asked but will always try and design to fit the desires of the client .

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