An entertainment center is a great way to organize your home’s audio and visual equipment. But finding the perfect unit to fit all of your needs can be difficult. Luckily, building your own entertainment center is easier and more affordable than you think. Follow these seven steps to build the home entertainment center you have always wanted.
Step 1 - Design
The entertainment center should be designed to fit inside a specific space. Take measurements wherever you plan on installing the unit and design your build around the given space. You should also factor in all of the equipment the center will hold, such as the television, speakers, gaming systems, and other accessories. Measure all of these devices to make sure they will fit with your design.
Step 2 - Measure and Cut
Once the design is done, you can start cutting the plywood to the correct dimensions. Follow your plan for each piece, double checking the measurements before you cut. If you do not have access to a good power saw, you can always have the pieces of plywood cut down at your local big box store.
Step 3 - Drill Shelf Holes
Adjustable shelves are a nice feature for a home entertainment center. To make adjustable shelves, place a piece of pegboard over the desired shelf and clamp it into place. The holes in the pegboard will serve as a template on which to drill the new ones. Repeat the same process on both sides of the shelf.
Step 4 - Pre-Drill Holes
Before assembling the unit, dry fit everything together and make sure it all fits. Then countersink holes for attaching the panels together. The countersunk holes should be deep enough to cover the top of the screws. Each hole should be about 3/8 inch away from the edge of the board and around 10 inches apart.
Step 5 - Assemble the Frame
With all of the holes pre-drilled, start assembling the frame of the entertainment center. You can add a bead of wood glue to each side if you want extra support. Just keep in mind that you will not be able to disassemble the unit once the glue dries. With the frame screwed together, attach the sides and shelves, then the top.
Step 6 - Stain
Once everything is assembled, it is time to stain the wood. Using a rag, apply the stain in even coats, moving in the direction of the grain in the wood. Follow the instructions on the stain for adequate drying times and second coats.
Step 7 - Install Molding
The molding should be installed on the front of the plywood and is used for aesthetic purposes. It also strengthens the vertical pieces and increases their load capacity. Attach the molding using finishing screws, which you can later hide with some wood filler. Once the molding is in place, stain it to match the rest of the entertainment center and allow it to dry before use.