Paneling on Long Walls

Posted by John on May 21st, 2012

Another weekend gone and more progress on our raised panel wainscoting project to tell you about.  Last week we finished up the window wall… and by finished up, I mean just the framing.  The MDF inserts and the bolection molding will come at a later point.  First I want to get the entire poplar frame onto the wall.  This weekend I had enough time to finally tackle the long wall in the dining room.  While I still have a few more panel sections to go, I think these two were the most challenging I’m going to have to deal with, at least as far as the framing goes.

To refresh your memory, the long wall is the wall with the mirror and the new outlet we added.

Because of its 15′ length and the fact that it’s sandwiched between two walls, building and installing this piece was a little tricky to say the least.

Luckily, I was able to get good use out of our new workbench and the kreg clamp we added to it.  Talk about a time saver.  Even with the table, I still had to add a support stand to hold up the long boards as they hung off the table… maybe I should’ve built a longer workbench!

Due to the layout of our basement stairs, I couldn’t bring up the entire section in one shot, so I had to design it to be assembled in the dining room right before I nail it to the wall.  I built, glued and screwed everything but two joints, one on the top and one on the bottom.  That way I didn’t need to rebuild everything upstairs, just make a couple connections.

Since I don’t have another quality kreg clamp outside the workbench, I just used a regular c-clamp and a couple blocks of 1x wood to squeeze the last two joints together while they got joinged by pocket screws.

Here’s a view of the back of the panel so you can see some of the joints…

Most of the joints look like this one…

Except for that big one on the bottom. I went a little overboard trying to make sure it didn’t come apart on me!!  Lots of holes!!

I finally got around to actually gluing and nailing the entire assembly to the wall later that night, thus the lighting change. I used the same 1/2″ shims to lift it off the floors and level it.

From the front, you can see where I seamed up the top and bottom boards…

The end joints don’t look too bad. Any small gaps can be caulked before I paint it.  The remaining panel sections all are adjoining an open doorway and the strategy for those will be a little different in terms of the gap.  I show that technique when I get around to building those sections (gonna be a couple weeks :-/ ).  The entire paneling will also get a ledge cap, which will hide that top gap in the corner and along the walls..

Here’s a side shot down the wall…

So far so good!! Anyone else ready for a summer vacation!?

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  • It looks great! I'm very jealous of all your wainscoting – we did a wall and I wish we could do more but we don't have that many big wall surfaces / stretches.
    And boy am I ready for summer, although I don't think I'll that much vacation since I have a conference in June and another one right after the wedding…. I have to prepare for those! Luckily we'll be able to take a long honeymoon in September 🙂

    • John_OHFScratch

      Thanks Ainhoa! I\’ve always wanted to add wainscoting to our first house but we never had walls straight enough for it! Your summer plans sound exciting!

  • Looking good! I'm always ready for a summer vacation. I should have been a school teacher. Bad life decision.

    • John_OHFScratch

      Haha. Nah, pharmacists are where it\’s at!

    • Kristen

      I second that. I should've been a teacher. #fail

      PS – it's looking really good so far! I can't wait to see the next step 🙂

      • John_OHFScratch

        That\’s funny! I think everyone wants to be a teacher in June, just not September.

        Thanks for the encouragement!

  • That's a long wall which = more work! But I gotta say, I'm a huge fan of poplar and I think your wanescoting is going to look awesome 🙂


    • John_OHFScratch

      Thanks Lisha!! I sure hope so!

  • Yep…totally shoulda been a teacher, lol 😉
    The trim is coming along nicely! Well done!

    • John_OHFScratch

      Thanks Kelly!!

  • casadechristine

    Walls look great! And I agree- at this time of the year- being a teacher really does seem like a good idea!!

    • John_OHFScratch

      Thanks Christine! The summer always goes to quick as a student, I can\’t imagine how fast it goes as a teacher.

  • It’s looking awesome! It looks super heavy! I can’t remember…did you plan the new outlet based on your paneling or what would work best for the table?

    • John_OHFScratch

      Thanks Whitney! It\’s actually pretty light, just awkward to carry. The outlet location was based on both the buffet and the paneling layout.