How to Build Cabinets Out of Plywood


Plywood cabinets are often used in wood shops, garages and other work areas where functionality far exceeds the need for a pleasing decor. Plywood is durable and works very well for cabinets used to hold tools, paint buckets or other miscellaneous supplies. Building cabinets at home versus buying them will save the builder money, while allowing him or her to customize their cabinets for their work area. In just a few hours, plywood cabinets can be built, installed in the garage or wood shop, and provide storage and organization to one's tools.

Things You'll Need

  • Tape measure 2 Plywood, 3/4-inch, 24-inch-by-24-inch 4 Pine boards, 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-24-inch 4 Pine boards, 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-22-inch Screw gun 2 Plywood, 3/4-inch, 24-inch-by-30-inch Plywood, 3/4-inch, 25 1/2-inch-by-30-inch 2 Plywood sheets, 3/4-inch, 12-inch-by-30-inch 2 Pine boards, 1-inch-by-1-inch-by-28-inch 4 Hinges, 3-inch, with screws Stud finder Level 30 Wood screws, 2-inch 6 Wood screws, 4-inch
  • Lay one of your 24-inch-by-24-inch sheets flat. Screw a 24-inch board to the 24-inch sheet with your 2-inch screws. Use the 2-inch screws for all screwing applications until you attach the unit to the wall. The board should be flush with the edge of the plywood. Screw one more 24-inch board on the opposite side. The boards should be parallel, and 23 inches apart. Screw a 23-inch board along each edge. The 23-inch boards should be perpendicular to the 24-inch boards, and should be 23 inches apart. Repeat this process with your last 24-inch-by-24-inch sheet of plywood and your last two 24-inch and 23-inch boards. These two pieces are the top and bottom to your cabinet.

  • Lay one of the 24-inch sheets with the pine boards that are screwed to it on your workspace with the plywood on top, and the pine boards on the bottom. This will be the bottom of your cabinet. Position your 24-inch-by-30-inch sheet so it is standing on its 24-inch edge and so it is against the 24-inch edge of the plywood that is lying flat. Screw the 24-inch-by-30-inch plywood to the pine board on the 24-inch-by-24-inch sheet of plywood.

  • Position the last 24-inch-by-24-inch piece of plywood so it is parallel with the first sheet, so the pine boards are facing toward the bottom of the cabinet, and so the top 24-inch edge of the 24-inch-by-30-inch sheet of plywood is flush with the 24-inch-by-24-inch sheet of plywood. Screw the 24-inch-by-30-inch sheet of plywood to the pine board on the second 24-inch-by-24-inch plywood. Screw your last 24-inch-by-30-inch sheet of plywood on the opposite side of the 24-inch-by-24-inch sheets, in the same manner you screwed the first. This is your cabinet frame and the 30-inch sides will be vertical, and the 24-inch-by-24-inch sides are the top and bottom of the cabinet.

  • Screw the 25 1/2-inch sheet of plywood to the cabinet frame. It should be flush with the top plywood sheet and the two sides of the cabinet, as well as flush with the pine boards at the bottom of the cabinet. This is the back of your cabinet.

  • Screw your 28-inch pine boards to the 24-inch-by-30-inch sheets of plywood. The boards should be on the front of the cabinet, flush with the plywood edge, and one board on each side of the cabinet.

  • Screw your first hinge half to the left 28-inch pine board on the front of your cabinet, 2-inches down from the top. The hinge portion should be on the outside edge of the plywood, and should be able to open 270-degrees. Screw another hinge half two inches above the bottom of the 28-inch board. Repeat this process on the opposite side with your last two hinges.

  • Screw the other hinge halves to the 12 3/4-inch plywood pieces. These plywood pieces should be flush with the perimeter of the cabinet when closed.

  • Mount your cabinet to a wall in the desired location by using your stud finder to locate studs in the wall. Use your level to make sure your cabinet will be level. Screw your cabinet into the studs using your 4-inch screws; screw directly through the back plywood sheet.

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  • Photo Credit Unfinished Plywood Background image by Gary Chorpenning from
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