How to build interior wood shutters


Old 11-10-05, 06:13 PM
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How to build interior wood shutters

Does anyone know of any web site or book that describes how to build interior wood shutters. I have searched and searched, and only come up with information on how to install shutters - I would like to actually make them.

Many thanks.
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Old 11-14-05, 12:13 PM
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Shutters = tedious. You need the right jig and a lot of patience.

New Yankee Workshop did a show on plantation shutters earlier this year. I don't think plans or the video is available yet, but there was a webcam on the show, iirc.

Some plans (never seen them, but found them):
Old 05-31-08, 11:13 AM
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Smile Stevie wonder

I noticed there has been a reply W/web site for plans left to you, BUT if you want to try, Without buying plans or louvers! So do I.
By trade I have been a carpenter for more than 20 years starting as a cabinet maker to framing house's and owning a custom door shop for years.
I dont know your skill level or what tools you have to work with but you will need a few items to get started. In the reply given to you a jig is essential and patience is a virtue!
Specially if your project is "stain grade" if your project is a "paint grade" sloppy? can be more forgiving if I may say so.
First you will need at least! for the average joe/jane home owner,
1- a pencile
2- tape measure reading at least 1/16th's 1/32 or 1/64th at best.
3- a square- simple speed square or framing square
4- a V.S. Drill
5- miter box "electric preferably" and be sure it cuts square this is the first and most importaint rule you need to know because when your placing your style and rails together for glue joint everything stays flat!!!
6- a table saw " be sure this is cutting square also or @90 degrees
7- a plainer hand or floor mount although this may not be necessary you can build without it!
8- jointer, same as #7 you can build without it! although it's nice to have these items "Don't be intimidated".
9-a belt sander, and orbital sander W/36grit-220 paper
10- bar clamps, or pipe clamps
11- Wood Glue "weldwood" or type 2 for wet or moist applications/conditions, bathrooms/over kitchen sinks ect.
12- a router for detail and hinging but not nessesary!
13- a sharp chisel - hinging
14- a hammer
15- eye protection
16- 1-2" wood screws " Drywall screws work well
17- wood shims
18- compressor if you have one
19- a pin gun / small nail gun
20- 3/8 wood dowel rod
21- small 1/4" staples for ajusting bar on louver
Be sure to be very carefull around tools W/cutting blades
and cutter heads

The second you forget! You may never see again!!!!

Let's get started
First I need to discribe to you a few things you may or may not know about a typical door assembly as with any door like the front door of your house to your bathroom door to a cabinet door "although, cabinet doors have 1 face and it's flat on the back side, Where as big doors are detailed on both sides. Anyway

1-Sides are known as styles
2- Top's, Middles,& Bottoms, are known as rails.
our panels on this project are louvers and will be cut accordingly "Will get to this after a bit"
You want to start with measuring your opening, Hight-Width and cross diaganal X so you will know what square is as you may need to make a jamb for these "I will" because of off set sills and depth of window
I will be useing 4/4 stock or 1" thick material
once you have your hight established cut your jamb leg a little long 1/4" "You can always trim more off for the perfict fit, once you have your legs cut to fit, rabbit cut half way through and 1" down from the top to allow the top leg/Header" to rest in the leg, make sure the top and the leg is even! Do this for both sides, once the legs and your top jamb "header" fits together evenly temporarily place them "Will fasten them together later" or if you feel comfortable with what your doing secure them together now and set them in place. TEMP.
Now measure from the sill to the header less 1/4" for room to swing door that will be your/my style leg length.
also measure the width less 1/4 this will allow doors to open/close without binding.
Take your styles lay them flat side by side evenly "mine are 1"x2"x5' long
from the top measure 2" down from the bottom measure 2" up
when you seperate your styles you will place the rails between your styles making sure you are square once your flate and square, Make a mark lightly @center of the rail at the style this will give you a point to drill for doweling styles & rails together later. Now once you have what looks like a door laying there you will want to cut or make your louvers
I'm going to cut my stock to width first 1" wider than opening of inside demention of door frame. Using miter box. Then on the table saw cut 2 1/2" wide, and then rip it again on table saw on edge just under 1/2" so I will have 2 equal peices of wood when done, You will need to do this several times so you have enough louvers to make as many doos as needed
once your done run them all through the thickness plainer only cutting rough side so there not to thin "If you dont have a plainer use your belt sander to smooth them out Now you have like (3/8x2 1/2x16") or??? length
then stack them together 5 or so at a time clamping them together I'm going to run them on the table saw with the blade up slightly only removeing 1/2" on each side "left/right"
then flip clamp and cut so I have a like a 3/8" tit about center of the louver I just made COOL,
go back to your door now and place louvers on top of the frame spread them down to cover and lightly mark on the style where tit's are they should all be roughly the same distance apart once you have established here they go drill holes 7/16" all the way through the style keep your drill straight up and down "THIS IS IMPORTAINT" "YA you need another style now but no big deal" Now you have your template
Now thats done and you have your styles together. Hold your new template on the edge of your style drilling a little deeper than the tit on louver, "HINT" "You can take a small chunck of wood drill through it to use as a stop so it will only allow you to drill so deep into your style"
Now that both styles are drilled, Drill a 3/8 hole through styles at top rail and bottom rail to secure them in place with dowell rod.
Lay the ??Left style flat silde louvers in place take right side style do the same take your rails place them glue them and dowl them clamp them measure them in X measurement to be sure they are square and leave em alone till dried sand smooth hinge together hinge to your jamb legs and WALLA.
once it looks nice unhinge remove jamb from opening stain or paint and reassemble. This should only take a few hours then it gets easy from there on out, or you can pay to have them custom built???
I'm going to try this, it's fun and when I'm done, I can say I DID IT! When applying your adjusting rod W/Staples remember to keep center and W/ Staple on bottom edge of louver and keep loose you can always tighten them later. I hope this help out

have fun and be careful

S.K. onovette
Old 05-31-08, 11:23 AM
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Good post, but the original was nearly 3 years old, so hopefully they got them built by now. Welcome to the forums!!
Old 03-07-10, 04:24 PM
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Plantation shutters

I am also interested in these. My problem has been a consistent method of producing the adjustable blades. I want something 3/4 in. Thick, 4 1/2 in. Wide with an eliptical profile (like the manufactured ones). Recently, i found a shutter blade router set on amazon for just over $60. I am going to try this but first need to buy a decent router and table - the benchtop setup i have now will not cut it.

As an aside, does anyone know where one might find a supplier of shutter blades? This might be a good option. The only one i have found is in china; the rest want to sell kits. Richard
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