How to Build a Flag Display Case 2022


This article explains how to build a flag display case that can be used to safely house and display valuable flags.


1Find out which size of flag you will be building a flag display case (fdc) for. 3x5, 4x6, 5x9 (burial).

2Measure the folded flag.

You will need the bottom (horizontal) measurement along with the two diagonal measurements. Also, get the thickness of the folded flag.

For this example we will use the 5x9 burial--

bottom msmt: 24"

diagonal msmt: 16-3/4"

thickness: 2-3/4"

3Decide on the type of wood you will be using. Hardwoods are a better choice for this project. This is for reasons of visual appeal and longevity. For this example, we will use oak.

A 1x4 piece of oak actually measures 3 1/2"in width, which is fine.

Buy an 8 foot (2.4 m) length (for beginners, in case there are mistakes).

4To cut the wood, and seeing that the flag is triangular in shape, cut the angles on a 45 degree. You can do this with a circular saw or a chop saw (miter saw). Chop saws give a much better cut.

The bottom measurement of the flag is 24", so the inside measurement of the 45 degree cuts must be at least 24". I recommend cutting the length of 1/4. (little play room for glass and flag).

You should have approx. 6 feet (1.8 m) of board left. As you know, wood has a grain pattern. What follows now will give your case more of a professional look.

5Measure off the longest portion of the angled 6' board (that's your long point of that particular angle, the other is the short point of that particular angle).

Your angled measurements are 16 3/4", short point to short point. However, you will be cutting it 3"longer than that (for mistakes), so lets just cut our side pieces 20"long. short to short.

Measure off the 6' board from long point 20". Using a speed square or framing square, make a mark and cut your piece. (set this piece aside)

The longer remaining piece should have a short point.

6Your objective now is to turn that piece around 180 degrees, and cut the short point again in order to make it a long point.

Once you do this, your two 45 degree angles at the top of the display case will fit and the grain will match. it will look continuous. (Match up all the angled pieces until you find that grain match).

When you place the bottom piece up to the angled side pieces to form the triangle, you will notice that the side pieces are too long. Just pencil mark the bottom where it hangs over the bottom piece. That now is going to be cut at a 45 degree. Make sure you cut the 45 degree angle the correct way, your end product should be a short to short angled piece. If it helps; when you are marking the piece to be cut, also mark the side of the board so you know for sure, which way the wood should be cut.

7Tack the frame together or use a strap to hold it in position.

8Measure the size of glass you will need.

We can measure the glass in two ways:

The exact size, minus 1/8th inch. (if there is going to be a wooden corner cover over the glass and attach it to the frame.) or

We can measure the glass 1/4"larger if we are going to insert it into the frame.

Buy an 8' piece of wooden corner board (for outside corners of walls) it is 3/4"long on each side of the 45 degree angle. Cut this to fit the outside of the triangular frame you just made. You can insert the glass from the back side after the glass is inserted, then you can cut and place 3 pieces of 1/4"x 1/4"moulding on the inside to hold the glass in place.

Inset glass involves using a table saw. If you have one or can use one, this is what you do.

You set your guide that's on the table saw to 1/4"from the inside of the saw blade to the guide itself.

Set the depth of the blade to 1/8th inch.

If you know at the beginning that you will be insetting the glass, then cut the entire 8' length of board at one time. It's very difficult to cut small pieces like this and have it turn out correctly.

If you have never used a table saw, ask someone that has to preform this next step.

9Take the piece or pieces and with the table saw in operation, slowly guide the piece along the guide. making sure not too force the cut. be gentle. its wise to use a forked stick to push the wood through its cutting process.

There are jigs out there that can be purchased for just this job. Call a do-it-yourself place. they can help you.

Once you have your cuts made, you are ready to nail it together.

10Use small trim nails (1 1/4) long and nail frame together, with glass inserted into the cut grooves you just made (set nails with punch and color putty when done).

This is much easier done if you have a brad gun. Also place the frame so the glass is face down, so it doesn't break if it falls out during this process.

11Take the frame and place it on some 1/4"ply (or oak paneling) and trace the outside of your frame.

12Cut this out for the backing of your display case. (stain edges with proper color. For oak, you can use minwax-colonial maple or early American.)

13You can drill about 8 pilot holes through the 1/4"ply into the wood frame. (on the back side) for screws.

14Insert your burial flag.

15Insert your screws.