Introduction

An upcycled set of windows are a great way to create the front for this TV concealment unit. Start by sourcing two divided-lite wood windows that are larger than your TV when they are set side by side. In our case, these two windows were the perfect for a 55-inch TV. We had a window handpainted for a custom look. 

Step 1

Draw Up a Plan

For the concealment box start with a plan. This project will vary according to your own TV and window sizes so it’s best to draw it out in advance for cut lists and clearances. Our TV has a depth of only 1" so the total depth of the box is going to be pretty shallow. Make sure to consider the depth of the TV, the mounting plate, and the thickness of the windows when sizing the box depth.

Step 2

Prep Glass for Decoration

Prepare the windows for refinishing by scraping old paint off the glass. We choose to send the windows to a friend for a custom art glass application featuring salvaged barn wood and recycled glass. You could also simply frost the backside of them.

Step 3

Prep Window Frame

Take a look at the perimeter of the window. Chances are old windows may not have solid sides if they were recessed for the original counterbalance. 

Cut and route a filler piece of wood as necessary and then set in a bed of construction adhesive.

Clamp and allow to dry overnight. While those are drying, start working on the frame.

Step 4

Select Lumber for Cabinet Frame

Because we wanted to use inexpensive lumber for the cabinet frame, we took common 2x6s and picked the straightest ones. To square up the edges, use a table saw to trim 1/8" off each side. 

Step 5

Cut Cabinet Frame

Cut the ends at a 45-degree angle corresponding to the plan you made previously. In general, the two side pieces should be a 1/4" taller than the windows. The longer top and bottom pieces should be 3/8" wider than the windows. This will allow clearance for the hinges and operation of the windows. 

Step 6

Create the Back Frame

Cut four 1x3s to fit on the backside of the frame, like a face frame but on the back of the unit. They will install perpendicular to the frame and allow for mounting the cabinet to the wall as well as keeping it square.

Step 7

Glue the 2x6 Frame Pieces

To assemble the frame, glue the corners of the outer frame with wood glue and loosely assemble with a strap clamp. 

Step 8

Test Fit and Mark Back Frame Pieces

Install the 1x3 frame pieces and test fit them, squaring up the outer frame box. Mark them for three pocket screws on the short sides and four pocket screws on the long side.

Step 9

Fasten the Frame Pieces

Remove the 1x pieces and drill the screw holes using a pocket hole jig.

Apply wood glue and use ratchet clamps to temporarily hold the boards in place.

Double check the whole assembly for square and use a rubber mallet to adjust any pieces as necessary.

Then install the pocket screws.

Step 10

Test Fit Windows in Frame

If your salvaged windows are not perfectly square, flip the box over and set the windows in checking your clearance around the perimeter.

If you need to adjust the frame, loosen the strap clamp and readjust as required.

When all the pieces are square, nail the corners with 1-1/2" 15-gauge finish nails and allow the glue to dry for 24 hours.

Step 11

Prep and Then Paint

Once the frame is dry, putty and sand any surface imperfections. Then prime and paint the frame.

Step 12

Make Window Stop and Cut a Grove for Lights

We wanted to make these windows feel real by giving them a back light during the day. And we also needed a piece of stop for the windows to close against. So we decided to cut a groove into the stop piece so LED could be integrated. We cut some salvaged heart pine into 3/4" square stock size but you could use almost any spare wood. 

Because the LED tape is 9mm wide, use a 3/8" router bit to cut in a 1/8" deep groove in one side of each of the four pieces.

Step 13

Add Magnet Catch to Stop Pieces

To conceal the magnet catch, mark the center line on one of the longer 3/4" pieces and then trace around the catch. Use a router and straight bit to pocket this area. When complete, the magnet catch should fit flush in the groove.

Step 14

Attach Stop Pieces to Frame

Inset the four 3/4" pieces with the groove showing and set them back the thickness of the windows. Using 1-1/2" 15-gauge. finish nails, attach the 3/4" pieces with nails in the grooves.

Step 15

Install Light Strip

To install the LED tape, start with the powered end wherever is easiest to conceal the cord behind the TV. Then continue pulling off the backing tape and pressing it firmly in the grooved wood.

Continue around the frame until you end up back where you started. A standard 16' roll should be enough for up to a 60" TV. The nice thing about LED tape is that you can cut it anywhere you see the scissor icon.

Step 16

Add Hinges to Windows

To install windows, we chose black HL hinges to give a vintage feel. You can use any flush mount type hinge that will support the weight of the window.

Because the our window sash was not flat on top face, we had to route a groove for the hinge. 

Step 17

Attach Windows to Frame

Set the windows in the frame on a table top. Then space them 1/8" apart in every direction. We found paint stirrers to be the perfect size.

Next, drill pilot holes for the hinge screws. Install one screw in the frame and one in the window for the four locations. Then double check the window operation before installing the remaining screws.

Step 18

Add Remaining Hardware

Install the magnet catch plates on the backside of the windows and a latch on the front center to hold both windows closed.

Step 19

Mount on the Wall

Before installing the frame, double check the LED operation.

To mount the frame, remove the hinge pins and windows. Then use a stud finder to locate as many studs as possible behind the frame. The mounting screws will be going through the 1x interior perimeter. If there are no studs at the short vertical sections, use metal toggle anchors here. We were able to install three 1/4" x 4" wood screws along the horizontals and two in the verticals. As these support the entire weight of the finished box, you need to make sure to take your time on this step. Finally mount the TV on the wall plate and plug everything in.