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How to Build BASEBOARD-103 for About $2.24/ft

victorian farmhouse baseboard moldings diyVictorian Style

Finish Carpenter Price c. $14.00/lf + $15.00/Corner or Return

As much as your home needs a solid structural foundation, it also needs a solid visual foundation inside.

This large baseboard, a simplified version of one I found in a Victorian mansion in Detroit (more on that later), will give your home the interior foundation it needs.

It’s made from two common pieces of MDF molding.  Plan to upgrade your door trim moldings if you install this baseboard.

[This post is part of my DOOR TRIM-114 series]

diy large mdf baseboard molding

Now that’s a nice baseboard!


Molding Inventory to Make this Baseboard


Baseboard Molding Profile  This is the upper most piece of this two-piece baseboard.  It’s a molding profile that is unique to the Victorian era.

More about BB-001 here >>


Panel Molding Profile  This is your standard, 5-1/4″ tall ogee baseboard molding.  I know I say this a lot, but look at how nice the ogee detail is on this molding.  Make sure you buy one with this kind of depth and resolution.

More about PM-010 here >>


How to Install This Large, Two-Piece Baseboard Molding

diy large victorian baseboard

This is the only installation picture I have of this baseboard molding.

before and after baseboard picture gallery

And that’s all there is to it.  See more of this project at DOOR TRIM-114.

If you have any questions on how to install this baseboard, feel free to ask in the comment section below or email me.

Good luck making your own historically Inspired baseboard!

Related Molding Patterns



Ask Ken: How Do I Make this Large Baseboard?

2 Responses to How to Build BASEBOARD-103 for About $2.24/ft

  1. Mike S. August 23, 2012 at 11:56 AM #

    Hi Ken:

    Thank you for this great web site. I stumbled across it when looking for information regarding crown moldings for my dining room. I am a novice, although I am familiar with a lot of power tools (maybe an advanced beginner). Now I plan on doing a lot more throughout my house.

    I have a few questions about baseboard 103.

    1) Did you purchase the top piece from Lowes?
    2) You used two small nailers (one being the existing baseboard). What is the width and thickness of the nailers?
    3) I assume one nailer can be used (rather than two)or is that a waste of product?

    Sometime could you show how you make “returns” It appears easy for a small chair rail, but maybe a bit more complicated for a large molding.

    Thanks for your help.

  2. Ken August 23, 2012 at 12:56 PM #

    Hi Mike,

    Glad you’re finding the site helpful. Don’t worry about being a novice, none of this is very difficult as long as you don’t mind learning as you go. Now, as to BASEBOARD-103.

    1. Most Lowes stock that baseboard profile. There are some really poor quality ones out there, so make sure you buy one with good resolution. Home Depot usually sells it too, but from what I’ve seen it’s of the poorest quality available. If you have a local molding retailer, or a lumber yard with a good molding department, try them first.

    2. The bottom nailer is 1/2″ thick mdf board. There was about a 1/16″ gap between the nailer and the back of the baseboard on this project, and that’s OK — just so long as your nail has something sturdy to go into. Each manufacturer has slightly different thicknesses for that baseboard, so I suggest you build a model from the moldings you are going to use and then base your nailer thickness on what space you’ll need to fill. That’s what I do.

    3. You do not need two nailers. Just so long as you have something solid to attach the bottom of the second piece to.

    4. Have you seen this post yet: How to Return a Crown Molding to the Wall. It might help. But really, returning a baseboard is no different than returning a chair rail.

    The only major difference is when you are returning one molding on top of another, like with the second piece of baseboard. It’s not unlike wrapping BASEBOARD-110 around the bottom of our wainscoting.

    And Mike, thanks for numbering your questions — that helps so much.

    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress.

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