Door Trim and Other Time Consuming Tasks

Well, fellow renovators my monthly update is in order. Still focused on the basement woman cave – and lots have been going on. I still haven’t gotten to the really pretty stuff, but we have to pay our dues in wading through the tedious stuff. So this episode focuses on that pesky door trim that you have to address if you have any type of hole in your wall.

1 cabinet insertsFirst we make a couple of plywood cabinet inserts. These are 3/4″ UV coated cabinet stock. They will go in the bathroom – the one on the left will get a door mirror. The one on the right is open towel storage. They’ll need trim, right?

2 inserts in placeAnd this is where they go in the bathroom. Uh, oh – looks like some complicated trim gymnastics coming up.

3 pvc trimFirst we figure out the pieces for the Tall cabinet and cut to size. This is PVC trim – all of the trim in the bathroom is made from this material.

4 marking trimThen we flip it over and mark where the screws will be drilled and a mark for the inside corner.

5 Kreg tool drillThen we drill the pocket screws using my cheap Kreg drill guide. This system is great to make quick work of cabinet projects like these face frames.

6 glueing trimEach joint is coated with PVC primer and then general purpose PVC cement. Keep the cement a little ways away from the front face of the joint to keep the front looking pretty.

7 fastening trimI then use a clamp to hold the pieces against the table surface while I set the screws. I use the clamp to keep the two pieces from shifting under pressure. This assures a nice flat face.

8 sanding flushIf you have kept the glue off the face, you can sand the joint flush immediately. If you have solvent on the front, you’ll have to wait a day or two to sand, as the glue softens the PVC and it will be impossible to get a flush joint.

9 trim pieces finishedOnce the two trim assemblies are finished, it’s time to make it a little more difficult.

10 trim pieces assembledThe trim to the right is for the door and the left is the trim around the cabinet insert. I’ve joined the two together to get super smooth joints. You’ll see how this all fits together in a later post. The two pressure clamps and a strip of PVC are used to stabilize this awkward piece without breaking the joints when moving to install.

Quick way to measure trim

Since I’ve done every door, window and cabinet in this place with all new trim that I fabricated,  I’ve had plenty of practice. Here is the simplest way I’ve found to measure and cut door trim.

11 trim spacerFirst make a spacer for the reveal of the trim. This is the space between the interior jamb of the door or window and the start of the casing (the flat part that goes around the opening.) I take one side of casing and space it with my template. Then clamp the piece in place.

12 trim clampedRepeat the process on the other side. Make the casing sides the same length and let the bottom edge rest on the floor.

13 marking header trimPlace a piece of casing along the top edge and mark the outside edge. I also put reference marks to keep pieces in order.

14 trim surround finishedI drill pocket screws and assemble just like I showed you earlier.  Keep the outer edge of the side casings flush to the top casing to make sure the reveal is correct. This makes a strong, flat joint and it will fit perfectly around your door.

Pretty stuff coming up in the next post. Promise.

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