Do you frequently get together with old friends and celebrate your own cocktail hour to unwind? If so, you might want to consider building an old fashioned bar in your home. This is a great idea for anyone who is skilled at making mixed alcoholic beverages, including aspiring bartenders!
Planning Your Dream Bar
Constructing your own old fashioned bar may seem a bit challenging, to say the least. The first thing you should do is create a layout of what you foresee. That is, draw a picture of your future bar. Make sure to map out the desired dimensions, and of course, decide on where the structure will be built. It might be a good idea to walk around your house if you are unsure of the location.
Make a trip to your local home improvement store with your layout plans. Talk to an employee and explain exactly what you plan on doing. They will let you know where you can find all the materials and tools for building your bar, and probably offer you a few helpful pieces of advice that might make your job a little easier. To be on the safe side, you should probably purchase several pieces of wood in varying sizes. If you don't use all of them in the project, you can always keep them for a future do-it-yourself job.
For a project like this, you should have the following tools and materials handy: circular saw, miter saw, drill with different drill bits, pneumatic nail gun, 4x8 and one-half sheet lauan, 4x8 plywood pieces, several six- and eight-foot pine boards, panel or base cap molding, two six-foot oak boards, eight-foot oak board, 12-foot oak board, foot rail, brackets and caps, 5/8-inch brad nails, one and one-quarter inch brad nails, one and one-quarter inch screws and three-inch screw.
When you have everything you need and are back home and ready to start the construction, cut a piece of half-inch plywood, and use a miter saw to cut framing boards for your bar to a 1x3 length. Align the pieces together and at the front and sides. The 1x3 pieces should be places around the plywood as reinforcement, so you should affix them together. Make sure to drill holes into the 1x3 framing boards so that you can attach them to the front of the future bar with nails.
Next, cut lauan sheeting to appropriate size with your circular saw. Place this atop the framing boards and apply staples along the edges via half-inch staples if your pneumatic nail gun can use them. If this is not possible, attach this piece with 5/8-inch nails.
Cut several 1x4 stiles and rails out of the eight-foot pine boards with the miter saw. Place a piece at the edge of the structure and make a mark with a pencil to determine where it should be affixed. Do the same for the back edges and both sides as well. When you're ready, you can nail the stils and rails into place, using one and one-quarter-inch nails.
Apply the molding inside the panels between the stiles and rails, and cut the ends at a 45-degree angle with the miter saw. Then, nail each piece into place, affixing them with one and one-quarter-inch nails.
Cut your supports for the bar at 1x1 lengths. These should be installed one and a half inches from the middle and 24 inches from the bottom of the structure. Drill these pieces just beneath the line.
Build the walls of the bar by using eight-inch pieces of oak, making sure the slat fits perfectly against the front you created. Drill holes equally around the top, where the pieces meet, and attach three-inch screws within.
Use the circular saw to create the bar shelves to a 1x2 length. Install them with nails, keeping them flush so that they are properly aligned. Add glue to the corner stiles and affix the capping at the edges. This is to add extra security to the corners in addition to being decorative.
Attach the top of the bar by using a three-quarter-inch piece of plywood and 1x10 pieces of oak just beneath. These separate layers will give off the effect of a bar you would see in an establishment. Affix the pieces into place with screws.
For the bar molding, use a miter to create notches in two strips of plywood at a 45-degree angle. Fit these pieces to the front edge of the bar and attach them into place. Add the foot-rail brackets with a drill, and as a final, optional step, add a finish to the wood. Otherwise, pull up a barstool and fix yourself a drink!