Project - Chunky Boxes #3: Milling the Lumber part 2

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Blog entry by Dekker posted 11-02-2007 08:32 PM 1205 reads 0 times favorited 0 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Tuning Tools Part 3 of Project - Chunky Boxes series no next part

At the end of my last blog entry for this project, I had my pieces rough milled. Well, since then I have given the sides of the boxes its 30’ miter, and used my recently-tuned miter saw to cut the sides with nice clean miters. Once that was done, I needed to put the finger-hole for removing the lid onto the “front” of the box. To do this, I needed a 3/4” forstner bit, which has a nice flat bottom. To get the curve I needed, I needed to place the center of the bit 3/32” off the edge, at the exact center. I accomplished this by marking the exact center of my front piece, then clamping my front piece next to a sacrificial board (actually, my current push-stick). I then used my square to draw a line onto the edge of my sacrificial piece, and I marked the 3/32” mark using the push-pin marker. It has the benefit of being far more accurate than a thick pencil tip, and it also gives my drill a pilot hole for its center piont!

There you have it. My boxes are dry-assembled.

Of course, all boxes need some glue, and again I neglected my inner wisdom and went for my clamps. When will I learn to use the masking tape??

While the sides of the box were being glued, I started on the tops for the boxes. For this, I decided to use some bird’s eye maple. Since the board I wanted to use was only skip-dressed (very rough), I needed to do some heavy planing and jointing. I only needed about 6” of the wood, but I cut off 12” or so because
  • I knew it would be a pain to joint and plane shorter pieces
  • I knew I’d eventually need small pieces in the future

So after slicing off 12”, then squaring my 12×6” block, I split it in two with the tablesaw (to give me 2-1/2 wide pieces), and split one of those pieces on the bandsaw so each was just over 3/8” thick. I re-planed the exposed sides, then cut from that my two box tops. I cut them just slightly oversized, since I wanted to trim them to a tolerance of about 1/32 or so, but I couldn’t actually drop in my blanks until the clamps came off.

So that is where I left this project for now. Maybe one more day for fabrication (sanding the tops, sanding the boxes), then a few layers of oil or an oil varnish. Want to get that bird’s-eye to sparkle!

-- Dekker -

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