Lacking a band saw, I had to turn to my table saw to cut the lid free once the box was glued up. I used a combination of masking tape and a Bessey band clamp to hold the box together while the glue dried overnight.
Using a full-kerf blade (since it was already installed for cutting the key slots and since a thin-kerf blade would only have saved me 1/32” of wood) I cut the lid free from the box and was surprised by how well it worked. Apart from the burn marks that I’ll have to sand out, the cut lined up really well.
What really made this work wonderfully was a tip from Doug Stowe’s boxmaking book—instead of setting the blade to cut all the way through the sides, I cut just a hair’s breadth short. This kept the cut sides lined up until all four were cut, then I used a utility knife to slice the top away. A chisel cleaned up both sides and sanding will catch anything the chisel missed.
I made a story stick using the key miter jig to see if I liked where I placed the slots and once I was happy, turned to making the key slots themselves. My tablesaw lacks a miter slot so I basically held the jig in place against the fence on the sliding table part of my saw and prayed hard that it wouldn’t flex. Good thing I did this work on a Sunday because the results were better than I’d have hoped.
Unfortunately, my table saw blade has alternating teeth and so I have to flatten the key slots. I’m not sure how to do this apart from gluing some sandpaper to a 1/8” piece of wood and sanding them down by hand carefully. I don’t have a file that thin. Any good suggestions?
I’ve also got all the walnut keys cut and ready for installation. Some fit tight enough that they might not need glue; others aren’t quite so snug. It’s about 50/50 between the two pieces of walnut I used. Once I can figure out the slots, I’ll glue in the keys, sand the box so it sits flat (it rocks just a tiny bit right now) and sand the mating edges of the top and lid before cutting the hinge recesses in top and box.
Thanks for all the comments, suggestions, and support!
-- Woodworking is easy as 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510...