Console Television-Themed Media Console

After doing a living room remodel in September of 2020, we had replaced almost all of the old furniture with the exception of the media-center sort of thing that holds the receiver, Playstation, etc. This bit of furniture also acted as storage for what remains of our physical media collection. Unfortunately, the media console that we had didn't quite fit into the space that we had for it, wasn't as nice as much of our new furniture and had a few design flaws that made it not ideal for holding electronics that get hot. This sent me down the path of trying to figure out what WOULD be an ideal size for our space and what would make for a more electronics-friendly design.

What you see here is the result of all that, plus an attempt to bring a bit of whimsy to what is usually a piece of furniture that is meant to just disappear in a room. Made of quartersawn-walnut veneer plywood (large boards), solid walnut (legs, corners, edges, drawer fronts, and most of the antenna), walnut burl veneer (behind pattern), maple (drawer boxes and patterned area), and curly maple (TV screen), this took a few months to come together. Design-wise, it is simply meant to look like a big, somewhat-cartoony, console television of yester-year, but in a way that still feels like it's of decent quality. Functionally, the three drawers on the left are pretty straight-forward, with hand-cut dovetails and undermount drawer slides. The cabinet on the right is where some of the fun stuff comes together. In order to get better cooling for electronics, I wanted a design that promoted a steady flow of convection-based air circulation. The vents cut into the floor of the cabinet are located directly under where the receiver/amplifier go and there are cut-outs on the back panel at both top and bottom. The bottom cut-out is mainly for cable management, while the top is for the warm air to escape. Similarly, the shelves in the cabinet are not solid, in order to allow for plenty of air flow. Also, I wanted the door to be able to be open and not stick way out into the room, so I used a pocket door slide in the center so that the door can open and then be pushed into the cabinet.

Other process-related notes: The 'screen' was given a bit of a dome, like an actual CRT screen, using a power planer and then cut into the four sections. The patterned area was three layers of 1/8" maple that was laser cut, and each of which had the browned edges sanded back to the lighter wood (this took ages). The corners had the inside radius cut with a monster-sized router bit and the outside radius was shaped with handplanes and sanding.

Finally, the antenna was a whimsical addition, made with some scrap walnut and shaped on an oscillating belt sander. It's just got a couple of felt pads on the bottom and can be moved/removed.

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