Cut List for the Solar Wax Melter

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Build a solar wax melter by first breaking it down into its individual components — these tables show you how and provide instructions on how to cut those components. The top assembly requires a dado cut.

Lumber in a store is identified by its nominal size, which is its rough dimension before it's trimmed and sanded to its finished size at the lumber mill. The actual finished dimensions are always slightly different from the nominal dimensions. For example, what a lumberyard calls 1 inch x 3 inch lumber is in fact 3/4 inch x 2-1/2 inch.

The Material column in the following table lists nominal dimensions and the Dimensions column lists the actual, final measurements.

Floor Assembly
Quantity Material Dimensions Notes
3 1" x 3" knotty pine 6-1/2" x 1" x ¾" These are the retaining cleats that hold the aluminum pans in position.
1 3/4" exterior plywood 18-1/2" x 15" x 3/4" This is the upper floor.
1 3/4" exterior plywood 15" x 9-1/2" x 3/4" This is the front panel.
1 3/4" exterior plywood 15" x 9-1/4" x 3/4" This is the lower floor.
1 3/4" exterior plywood 15" x 6-3/4" x 3/4" This is the rear panel.
1 3/4" exterior plywood 15" x 2-1/2" x ¾" This is the riser.
[Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design]
Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design

Inclined Side Panels
Quantity Material Dimensions Notes
2 3/4" exterior plywood 27" x 17-1/2" x 10-1/4" x ¾" These are the inclined side panels.
To create an incline of approximately 15 degrees, the front edge of the panel is 10-1/4" high and the rear edge is 17-1/2" high.
[Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design]
Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design

[Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design]
Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design

Glazed Top Assembly
Quantity Material Dimensions Notes
2 1" x 3" knotty pine 27-1/2" x 2-1/2" x 3/4" These are the long rails of the frame.
Dado a 5/16" wide by 3/8" deep groove along the entire length of what will be the inside of each rail.
Position the bottom edge of the dado 1-1/2" from what will be the bottom edge of the rail.
2 1" x 3" knotty pine 18-1/2" x 2-1/2" x ¾" These are the short rails of the frame.
Dado a 5/16" wide by 3/8" deep groove along the entire length of what will be the inside of each rail.
Position the bottom edge of the dado 1-1/2" from what will be the bottom edge of the rail.
1 Polycarbonate dual-wall 6mm greenhouse panel 28-1/8" x 17-5/8" x ¼" (6mm) This is the window. Cut it to size using your table saw and a general purpose blade.
[Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design]
Credit: Illustration by Felix Freudzon, Freudzon Design


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