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Walnut Wall Unit

I made this for a customer who’s main concern was to display his Geodes.
It’s all Walnut plywood with hardwood on all the edges. The finish is stained with a pre-cat lacquer finish. The color is fantastic in person. I was really pleased with this color on top of the walnut, it almost made it look like it was rosewood.
I put in Low voltage lighting. The last pic shows the 3 motion sensors for turning on/off and dimming the lighting with just a flash of the hand. I also installed GRB LED strip lighting inset into the top and side shelves that use a remote to change the color output of the strips. (Mainly for mood lighting)
The Floating top shelf is supported by 3/4" black pipe screwed into floor flanges and mounted through the back with the bar going into the hollow of the shelf. The little side shelves are also supported this way.

Thanks for looking and any comments or critique are welcome.

Bonus Pic: Here I am playing with the RGB strip lighting during the install.

This is a beautiful unit.
My dad has one he made very similar. Yours looks better with the raised panel.
I think this is the right place to display the geodes. Those guys are really expensive.

I thought those dots on the right were switches, I guess I was not far off.

Great work

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA


You mentioned you used Pre-cat lacquer and from the description tinted (maybe).
My question is can pre-cat lacquer be tinted like latex to match a color?

I have seen several projects were they mentioned pre-cat lacquer and I am dying to try it. I also read that it need to be sprayed and cannot be brushed.

-- Abbas, Castro Valley, CA


Outstanding! We’re not certain what we like best . . . the cabinet or the geode collection . . . or the step ladder! LOL

The cabinet really showcases the collection and the lighting puts it over the top!


-- “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purchase a little temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.” Benjamin Franklin

That is awesome and so well done! I love the lighting, and the floating shelves, and that finish looks perfect. Wow!

Great looking project! I really like it and thank you for openly sharing the “plywood” aspect of this project. IMO, often that aspect seems like folks try to hide/deny it, yet to me we should celebrate it and incorporate it more often in our WW than we do. Thanks for sharing.

-- HorizontalMike

Thanks Everybody,
lanwater, you can tint the pre-cat, it has all the same characteristics of regular lacquer.
I’m not sure if they make a brushing grade pre-cat, I always spray. I’m sure if they did and you tinted it you would have a hard time getting an even color. I didn’t explain myself very well, I stained the unit first (believe it or not) using Minwax Gunstock stain then lacquered over it.

Thanks L/W, My first time using this type of lighting. Very impressed at the ease. I used the LOOX brand LED’s from Hafele, everything is plug and play. LED’s have a 8’ lead with a plug on the end, just plug into the transformer which has room for 6 plugs. Then just select the style switch that comes with an 8’ lead that also just plugs into the transformer and done.

Thanks David, I was worried about the strength of the floating shelf, those geodes are heavy.
The black pipe solution worked great, got the idea from my bar clamps.

Thanks Mike, I’m not embarrassed to use plywood, now if it was an mdf core I might have hid that fact. lol I try to use a plywood core whenever possible. I also demand a domestic plywood over any import plywood. It’s worth the extra cost and is an added benefit to OUR economy as well.
Import products will double your work and lower the quality, Buy American!

Quite a feat of engineering to make shelves like that that won’t sag, bend or start leaning down. Great job.

-- Doing the best I can with what I've got

Wow that’s a great build.

-- woodworking classes, custom furniture maker