It fastens and holds the ends together at the
It separates and supports drawers.
It is used vertically as divisions when solid
partitions are not required.
Skeleton frames are assembled before being
installed in the case. Dowels, biscuit joint, or
mortise-and-tenon joints are recommended joints used
to make a skeleton frame.
ENDS. The case ends are made of solid
edge-glued lumber or plywood. They may also be
paneled frame with stiles and rails and plywood or
hardboard panels. Paneled ends are made similar to
paneled doors using either doweled or mortise-
The back edge is usually rabbeted to receive the
cabinet back. If the case is to be fitted to the wall, the
rabbet is cut deep to recess the back and allow the
projecting material to be scribed to the wall.
The front edge is joined to the face frame with a
butt, rabbeted, or mitered joint. If a butt joint is used,
the front stile of the case end is made narrower than the
back stile because of the thickness of the face frame.
Case ends may also be dadoed to receive the top,
bottom, fixed shelves, skeleton frame, and dust panels
of the case.
LEGS. Sometimes the stiles of the case ends
extend below the bottom and act as legs. The front stiles
of the ends also act as a stile for the front frame. In this
type of construction, it is usual for the skeleton frame to
be notched around the leg. It then extends to the front
and becomes the face frame and dividing rails for the
PARTITIONS AND SLEEPERS. Partitions are
vertical members dividing the interior of the case into sec-
tions. They tie the top and the bottom of the case together
and are usually dadoed into the top and bottom. The
skeleton frame, dust panels, and shelves are cut in be-
tween the partitions and are usually dadoed into the parti-
tions. Partitions are also known as divisions or standards.
Sleepers extend from the bottom of the case to the
floor and are located directly under the partitions. They
provide support of the case to the floor and keep the
bottom from sagging.
SHELVES. Shelves must be strong enough to
support the weight placed on them. They must also be
wide enough and correctly spaced for their intended
purpose. Shelves may be made of solid wood, plywood,
particle board, or glass.
Bookcase shelves should be from 8 to 10 inches
wide and spaced 10 to 14 inches apart. The length of a
3/4-inch-thick shelf should be no more than 36 to 42
inches without intermediate supports. Supports should
be spaced close enough to keep shelves from sagging
under the weight placed upon them.
One way of increasing the strength of a shelf is by
installing strongbacks. A strongback is a strip of wood
screwed on the edge to the underside of the shelf. It is
placed either on or near the front or back edge of the
shelf or both edges of the shelf.
Fixed shelves are usually dadoed in or supported on
wood cleats (fig. 5-6). A cleat is a small strip of wood
Figure 5-6.Fixed shelf construction.