Arts and Entertainment

Building ‘The Other Roubo Bookstand’


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A week or two ago, I put up a short post and video about “The Other Roubo Bookstand,” a project taken from the plate 331 of André Jacob Roubo’s “l’Art du Menuisier,” scaled to hold the beautiful deluxe edition of the Roubo text on furniture. As promised, I’ve drawn up plans for the bookstand – it makes for a quick and satisfying build with some fun joinery.

A few notes on how I went about building mine (and how you might want to, as well).

  • I started by making the two square frames, which were made with bridle joints, and then used loose tenons for the other frame components. A Domino works well, but so would live tenons.
  • All of the material for the bookstand is 1/2″ thick, and all of the frame members, except for the kickstand and chiseled stop block, are 1-3/8″ wide. Starting with 5/4 stock, this would let you do some nice resawing and grain wrapping, and you can make one long piece and just crosscut the parts out of it.
  • The bridle joints are my addition – Roubo detailed using mitered joints, but I avoid miters wherever possible. Use whatever joinery you think is best suited to yours!
  • I didn’t get too specific about the hinge sizes or placement – use what you have. I used some nicer brass butt hinges that were left over from prior projects, but anything relatively substantial will do.

Here are the plans – you can download them as a full-scale PDF, or look at them below in image form. Make sure if you do build the bookstand to share a photo. I’m always excited to put plans out there and see who takes them up!

Happy working!

— Brendan Gaffney

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