We had a wonderful opportunity to work with a customer to turn an old cupboard into a modern cigar humidor. The Cupboard has strong sentimental value to the family as it was the first piece of furniture the wife’s parents bought as newlyweds. As you can see from the pictures it’s not in great shape. The casework, doors, drawers and glazing will all have to be broken down, joints cleared of old hide glue and reassembled. Some parts and assemblies will have to be replaced and some, like shelves and the humidor box, will have to be made.

Example of rail and stile joints separating. This was a problem throughout the piece leaving it wobbly and crooked.

Water and insect damage to rear stiles and panels.

Water and mechanical damage to top, also glue separation at joints.

First stage of disassembly.

Back removed revealing rot and insect damage to rear rails, stiles and panels.

Back disassembled on our bench for assessment. Assessment? Replace the unit.

As you can see Neenee the shop Meownager is hard at work.

Old rear stiles and their ‘new’ blanks from old barnwood.

New rear stiles after milling.

Side assembly blown apart for cleaning, repair and reassembly with modern adhesive. All parts are marked, mapped and photographed so they go back together in the same order and orientation.

Casework dry assembled to test fit and joint before glue-up. The new back assembly was made with old pine for the rails and Spanish Cedar plywood panels.

Solid Spanish Cedar 4/4 lumber glued up for the humidor case.

Spanish Cedar humidor case glued and clamped; rear panel is Spanish Cedar plywood.

Humidor case dry fit with doors to test fit.

There were no serviceable shelves in the cupboard so we made some. This is the raw material.

Shelf edge boards milled and stained to match casework.

Shelf glued up.

Shelf notched to fit and waxed.

The two drawers need to be knocked apart and re-glued – the right-hand drawer needs to be modified to accept the riser pipe from the humidifier that will reside at the bottom of the case.

Finished odd drawer.

Drawers from beneath to show humidifier riser pipe.

New shelves, humidifier, control unit and wiring.

The control unit was in an odd plastic case that didn’t fit anywhere so we made a box for it. We tried to give the control unit a cigar box feel.

Drawers needed slides!

New drawer pulls – the old ones were huge glass affairs that the customers didn’t like.


Yes – Yes Neenee it was an exhausting job…...

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