This cooling rack uses dovetail slat-and-groove
construction for both strength and beauty. It’s a
great low-cost, clever project, with a construction
that’s ideal for making multiples. Our illustrations
show stock sized to yield five cooling racks.
Cooling Rack Step-by-Step Instructions
1. Select stock from which to make the cooling rack. The rack in the photograph is
made from oak.
2. Cut the center dovetail groove (see Figure 1).
3. Place a 7/8" wide spacer strip between the stock and the router table fence to cut
the two grooves adjacent to the center grooves (see Figure 2).
4. Add one more 7/8" spacer between the workpiece and the fence for each subse-
quent pair of grooves that you cut.
5. Set the table saw fence just a hair over 9/16" from the blade.
6. Use the table saw to rip off the feet (see Figure 3).
7. Sand the feet to just a little over 1/2" wide.
8. Set up the table saw with the blade angled to equal the angle of the dovetail bit
that you used to establish the slat grooves in the feet.
9. Locate the fence 1/2" away from the blade.
10. Test your fence and blade setting on some scrap first to make certain the slats fit
snugly within the dovetail grooves. NOTE: The fence setting should allow for a
little finish sanding to remove any blade marks from the slats.
11. Cut the 1/2" wide slats (see Figure 4).
12. Make each consecutive slat cut by flipping the board end-over-end, as shown in
13. Drill for the 1/8" diameter dowel pins that anchor the slats to the feet (see Figure
14. Glue the pins into place.
15. Sand the ends of the dowel pins flush.
16. Apply a nontoxic natural oil finish to complete the project.
These plans were originally published in Volume 15, Issue 5 of The Woodworker’s Jour-
nal (Sept./Oct. 1991, pages 58-59).