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Boxland: Work Stations and Boxing Tips

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Blog series by Boxguy updated 04-26-2014 09:22 AM 12 parts 66511 reads 170 comments total

Part 1: The Glue Up Table

05-11-2012 06:28 AM by Boxguy | 8 comments »

The Glue Up Table In my shop the most important element in efficiency is organization. That means having what I need at hand when I need it. In the case of the glue up table it starts with a straight line that I can put the sides of the box against to line them up for glue-up. This is a shop made holder for the tape dispenser. It allows me to have the tape already positioned over my work and it is easily removed from the holder. Glue and brushes are essential. I keep my bru...

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Part 2: Spline Making Jig

05-12-2012 07:13 AM by Boxguy | 10 comments »

The Spline Cutting Jig I use this jig to make all my splines. Basically it is set up to use the band saw to cut triangles out of a long thin strip of wood. It is just a board with a runner for the guide slot and another board fastened at a 45 degree angle. Cutting small pieces on a table or radial saw is a disaster. Your fingers wind up in wrong places and the small pieces fly all over the shop (not good). This is a job for the band saw! If it is done well the splines will look ...

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Part 3: Cutting Spline Slots

05-18-2012 11:40 AM by Boxguy | 16 comments »

Boxguy’s Spline Slot Cutting Jig Want to add corner splines like this?,, You need a jig like this!..This hard working (and dusty) jig is used on almost every box I make, and is quick and simple to build. It has a wide plywood board for a base, a long “trough” supported by 45 degree triangles cut from a 2X6 and a handle so you can pull it back to you. (I just made the handle out of a forking branch.) The long trough lets me use this for boxes that are large or smal...

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Part 4: Separating The Top and Cutting a Hinge to Fit

05-27-2012 12:33 AM by Boxguy | 9 comments »

How do you make a hinge and fit it in a box so that it looks like this when you are done? You Could Use This!...My Hinge Station or a Hack Saw .. Just Browsing? If you want to casually breeze through this just read the dark print and look at the pictures. For more serious readers, I have included details in the fine print. Economics: Price is a major consideration if you are making boxes for sale. I simply can’t afford to put $35 or more into a set of fine brass hinges and m...

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Part 5: Mortising Piano Hinges In a Box (An Easy Method)

05-31-2012 03:07 AM by Boxguy | 16 comments »

Overview: In the last blog I detailed how to separate the top from the box and how to start with a long piano hinge then size, cut, polish, round, crimp, smooth, and paint the hinge so it will fit any size of box. In this chapter I will explain how to install a piano hinge in a box. We will go through how to mortise, fit and fasten the hinge. The essential tools are: router table, small try square, vix bit, drill and impact driver. If all goes well, it should look like this when you ar...

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Part 6: Making Great $5 Band Clamps!

09-08-2012 07:49 AM by Boxguy | 24 comments »

Overview: If you are going to make boxes there is no substitute for good band clamps. They pull all eight joint cuts together and tend to average out any cuts that are slightly off. I use two clamps on each box. They are expensive to buy, but cheap if you make your own. When in use, they look like this. These are really cranked down to pull all the joints tight. (A big thanks to Derrick who patiently helped me picture each step in this process.) Hint: To make this a quick read j...

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Part 7: Process For Setting Depth for Spline Cuts

03-11-2013 02:11 AM by Boxguy | 7 comments »

Setting up saw blades for slot cuts in box corners. Here is a quick way to set up your saw for cutting spline slots using a spline cutting jig and a dado blade. This method involves no measuring and take only a minute or two. The trick is to use brass set up bars. I keep my set close to the dado saw in my shop. Hold the largest bar on a 45 degree angle on the corner of the box. Add other bars until you get a combination that is just a little under the width of the box ...

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Part 8: Cutting the Corner 45 Degree Angles

03-11-2013 04:58 AM by Boxguy | 18 comments »

A Quick, Accurate Way To 45 Your Corners If you build boxes at all, eventually you tire of cranking your blade from 90 degrees to 45 degrees and back…I did. So I built this simple jig, and now I can cut all 8 ends of a box accurately in about 5 minutes, AND STILL LEAVE MY TABLE SAW SET AT 90 DEGREES. Assumption: I am assuming that you have already laid out the board for your sides and have cut all four sides of your box to length. Short side, long side, short side, long side...

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Part 9: Making an Attached Top Box

03-11-2013 09:12 AM by Boxguy | 14 comments »

I make two kinds of box tops. Boxes with inset tops (above) where the the top floats in a dadoed groove that runs around the sides, and attached tops where the top is glued directly onto the sides of the box. This tutorial will feature the attached top method, and a press design to help with this process. Of course you can use clamps to hold the top on until the glue sets. But I prefer this press. The press features 8 all-thread sections with a compression spring an...

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Part 10: Adding Splines To A Box

03-11-2013 07:07 PM by Boxguy | 13 comments »

Adding Splines To a Box Assumptions: I assume you have looked at the tutorial on making the splines themselves. The tutorial on cutting the splines slots with the jig there gives you a box that looks like this on the corner. The next step is to glue the splines into the slots. I should have pictured it, but I apply Tightbond’s Carpenter’s and Trim Glue to both the spline and the slot to assure there will be a good bond. This thicker glue is easier to work with, and...

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Part 11: Making Indented Finger Lifts

07-16-2013 09:19 PM by Boxguy | 13 comments »

How To Make An Indented Finger Lift In short, you use an oscillating spindle sander set on an angle to sand away the center indent, and a spacer jig set over the locking guide to sand away the two smaller indents. If you are just making one or two boxes, at the end of this tutorial I will make suggestions for how to do this same task much more simply if you don’t want to make the jig, modify the table top, or buy a locking straight edge. Thanks to Maplerock aka Jerry for c...

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Part 12: Making Tea Box Dividers Of Venetian Blinds

04-26-2014 09:22 AM by Boxguy | 22 comments »

How do you install a grid work inside a tea box so it looks like this? Here is what the lift-out grill work looks like inside the tea box. This is what the lift-out grill work looks like outside of the box. The small compartment to the left makes a chain pocket so the stop chain doesn’t get tangled with the teabags... Why use Venetian blinds for lift-out dividers? By the time you plane, sand, and finish slats to make dividers inside boxes you have a lot of time and ...

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