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Raising the bar for bookcases

Designed for storing expensive law books, traditional lawyer's bookcases are as common in law offices today as they were 100 years ago. The style is characterized by individual stacking compartments (or cases) fronted by glass doors that protect the contents while permitting total visibility.

This feature also makes the bookcases ideal for displaying almost anything else. Now you don't have to pass the Bar exam to enjoy a lawyer's bookcase. This do-it-yourself version features the classic styling of the originals without the expense of buying an antique or even a modern reproduction.

The bookcase requires about 40 board feet of oak (other wood will work) and a sheet of oak plywood, along with dowel pins, glass and hardware. The project is built one case at a time (following the same steps each time), then sanded, stained and stacked. The glass doors lift out and slide back into the bookcase on a unique dowel-pin guide system.

The completed lawyer's bookcase measures 5 feet tall by 4 feet wide by 1 foot deep. As pictured here, the bottom case measures 16 inches tall, the top one is 12 inches tall and the two middle cases are 14 inches tall, but the combination is up to the builder.

The Lawyer's Bookcase plan, No. 700, is $9.95 and includes step-by-step instructions with photos, exploded assembly diagrams and a complete shopping list and cutting schedule.

A package of three bookcase plans, No. C118, is available for $21.95 and includes this plan and two others. A catalog with hundreds of projects is $2. Please include $3 for postage and handling (except catalog-only orders) and allow about two weeks for delivery.

To order by mail, send this article with a check or money order to U-Bild Features, c/o St. Petersburg Times, P.O. Box 2383, Van Nuys, CA 91409. To order by credit card, call toll-free 1-800-828-2453.

Visit U-Bild on the Web at u-bild.com.

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