Project - Lever-Action Boxes #2: Milling the lumber

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Blog entry by Dekker posted 10-21-2007 12:55 PM 1062 reads 0 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Committing Myself Part 2 of Project - Lever-Action Boxes series Part 3: Carcase Assembly »

So I have started on my box project! I had originally wanted to start with a similar design as Douglas’s box (see his project), however I wanted something even easier to start back into woodworking with. So I chose this simple design, featuring a flush lid that is opened by a bit of lever action when an end is pressed down.


Of course, all good things start with a plan… Since I no longer had access to any cutlist software, and since this is a simple 6-sided box, I tried a few layouts on paper first. What I realized is that since I could resaw the 3/4” stock into 1/4” boards, I could make better use of my material. And I further noticed that since the sides of the box were so short, I could make an extra box with only a bit of extra wood, thereby reducing my waste!


For this, I needed 1/4 inch stock, and I had a choice: either plane down 3/4 stock and waste most of it, or use it as an excuse to buy another tool! So the choice was obvious, and I am now the owner of a bandsaw (see my review).

I started by jointing one face and then one end.


I then planed the other face and the other end.


I then moved to my bandsaw and split the 3/4” board into two almost perfect halves. The only trouble I had here is when I got 3/4 way through the board, the lacewood I was splitting was pinching my blade. Since my bandsaw is an anemic 3Amp saw, the blade slowed to a stop. Since I had calibrated the blade to the exact center, I just stopped the machine, pulled my board out, turned the machine back on, and fed the wood back, the other end first. Perfect cut!

I then used the planer again to smoothen the exposed rough side, and slowly worked my way down to 1/4 inch boards. I passed both boards through the planer every time I lowered the blade, to ensure both pieces were exactly the same thickness.


And that’s where I called it a day, since the baby was now asking to be fed, and she’s more important than playing with my tools… ;)

-- Dekker -

7 comments so far

View Bob N's profile

Bob N

131 posts in 3923 days

#1 posted 10-21-2007 03:20 PM

That is a spectacular piece of wood and I can’t wait to see the end result. Look forward to following your WIP on this. And yes, don’t forget to feed the baby :)

View WayneC's profile


13754 posts in 4093 days

#2 posted 10-21-2007 03:27 PM

Very nice wood. Looks like fun.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Karson's profile


35120 posts in 4397 days

#3 posted 10-21-2007 04:30 PM

Congratulations on the bandsaw.

Good start on the box.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Southern Delaware soon moving to Virginia †

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4024 posts in 4060 days

#4 posted 10-21-2007 04:49 PM

I’m looking forward to seeing the finished project. Especially with the lever action

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Sawdust2's profile


1466 posts in 4084 days

#5 posted 10-21-2007 07:03 PM

Sounds like some tension release in the lacewood (or any other wood).
Keep a small wedge handy and stick it in the kerf to separate the pieces and keep on cutting.

If no piece of wood handy a putty knife, awl or screwdriver would work.

-- No piece is cut too short. It was meant for a smaller project.

View Dekker's profile


147 posts in 3877 days

#6 posted 10-21-2007 11:54 PM

Thanks for the tip, Sawdust I was actually thinking that bandsaws could use something along the concept of a splitter, but that would defeat the “scroll”ing aspect of the saw, since it would prevent you from turning.

I’ll have to use a wedge next time.

-- Dekker -

View cajunpen's profile


14575 posts in 4062 days

#7 posted 10-22-2007 08:10 AM

Anxious to see your finished project – curious about how you will do the lever action lid.

-- Bill - "Suit yourself and let the rest be pleased."

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