Kitchen Progress – Litter Box Cabinet in Closet

I’ve been trying to write this post since Monday…argh.  I wish I could blame the lack of progress on the fact that we went to visit family this past weekend, but I can’t.  I was sidetracked building a containment area for the litter box, but the best news is that I received a picture of the sink!

DIY Deeds - New Sink

While waiting on the sink, I finished installing the trim around the cabinets on top.  All the doors and drawers were removed and moved down to the garage.  I had a helper come over and take off all the knobs first, and Tuesday she spent 3 hours sanding all of them outside.  I’m so lucky to have a willing participant in my disaster zone!


My sidetrack project turned out pretty good.  I haven’t finished painting it, but I wanted to share it with you guys today.  The picture is underwhelming, but the convenience is great.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Cabinet 2

Here is a quick how-to (including some true confessions) in case you want to tackle this on your own, or better yet, have a carpenter build one for you.  (I’ve also decided that my detailed run-downs are excellent for me to go back and read when I decide to try a similar project.)

Quick reminder of the kitty entry to the pantry/closet.  A cutout I had my carpenter create a few years ago.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Entrance

I used plywood for the sides.  They are attached to each other using screws and my Kreg Jig, along with a few nails into the frame of the door.  I didn’t want to send nails into the wood floor.  Quarter-round finished the bottom portion.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Cabinet minus top

For the access door on top, I used 1×3 poplar board.  Quarter round trim, attached with my nail gun, was used to hold up the door.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Cabinet Board Description

So I have a confession…this is the 2nd door I made.  The first one.  If you look at the last picture, you can see one of the styles.  I tried to make a cope door (all the sides are rectangular), but I tried to make a mortise cut (groove to insert the plexi) in the frame with my compound miter saw (I know, I know).  They were so, so bad, I just had to start over.

The second door was a mitered door.  (Is that correct usage?)  A mitered door has trapezoidal sides that come together on the corners in a 45-degree angle.  They fit together so much better.  I found this Mortise Centering Router Base at Rockler tools, and used it instead of the compound miter saw.  I clamped the board to a sawhorse.

DIY Deeds - Clamping to make Mortise Groove

Attached the base to my plunge router attachment.

DIY Deeds - Mortise Hinge Centering Base on Router

I ran into a problem when I would get to the edge of the boards since my base was no longer stable due to the mitered ends.  Yikes!

DIY Deeds - Mortise Edge Crooked

Lesson Learned:  Route mortise joints BEFORE mitering the sides or better yet, use table saw for mortise joints!

I should have pulled out my table saw at this point, but it was behind a HUGE pile of doors and drawers waiting for the painter (that would be me) to show up.  So, I set up a stop on my compound miter saw and finished the grooves with that.

DIY Deeds - Compound Miter Saw to complete Mortise

Not the best mortises (is that a word?), but believe me…so much better than the first door I attempted to make.

DIY Deeds - Completed Mortise Grooves

The plexi-glass had to be trimmed some since the sides of the first door were made from 1×2 poplar instead of 1×3 poplar.

DIY Deeds - Plexiglass too big

Cutting plexi is not very difficult.  You use a straight edge and this scoring tool.

DIY Deeds - Plexi scoring tool

After about 5 or 6 swipes, you gently snap apart the pieces.  I place the larger piece of plexi on a board, then gently apply downward pressure on the smaller piece.

DIY Deeds - snapping Plexi

I used my Kreg Jig again to attach the mitered sides.  Notice the pocket holes are closer to the inside of the doors.

DIY Deeds - Pocket Holes in Mitered Door

Once you have the styles (official name of the left and right sides) attached to a rail (official name of the top and bottom sides), you slide in the plexi and attach the last rail.

DIY Deeds - Slide Plexi into 3 sides

Before I attached the hinges to the door, I made sure it fit in the space.  It fit like a glove…until I tried to lift it as if I was opening it.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Cabinet top hits shelf

Are you kidding me???  The next shelf up extended out 1/8 of an inch too far!  A quick trip to the saw shaved some off of that style.  I attached the hinges using the screws that came with them and called it a day.

DIY Deeds - Litter Box Cabinet Hinges on Top

Now it opens and closes easily.  I have to finish painting and find a handle for the door.

Gotta close with a pic of Demi!  Here she is on the pier this past weekend with the largest paper towel roll thingy she’s ever seen!  At least she wasn’t afraid of boats etc. on the river like Lillie was.

DIY Deeds - Demi  June 28 2014

Happy 4th of July!






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