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Cherry File Cabinet #4: Box Joints - 2nd Attempt

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Blog entry by JimYoung posted 01-01-2015 03:52 PM 1597 reads 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Box Joints (or how not to make a plywood box) Part 4 of Cherry File Cabinet series Part 5: Finished »

Thanks for the comments and suggestions on my last post. I don’t have a dado blade yet, but after a quick search I found a box joint jig for a single blade table saw. It is basically a drill bit that is the same size as the kerf of the saw blade stuck into a piece of wood. I did a test cut in some plywood and found a drill bit that just fit. I then drilled an undersize hole in some scrap wood and pressed the bit into place. The only restriction here is that the bit be closer to the edge of the board than the depth of the notches. The jig is then clamped to my sled or a miter bar.

You set it up the same as a regular box joint jig and you just need to make a few passes with the saw to hog out each notch.

My blade does not leave a flat bottom notch, so some clean up was needed with a rasp. All in all, this went a lot smoother than the router jig. A lot less dust and chips and I didn’t burn up a $40 bit. Since there are so many notches, for the glue up I partially assembled each joint where I could still get a brush in to apply the glue. Then I used a band clamp and cauls to pull it together.

With both drawers done, I added the drawer supports to the cabinet. These fit in notches in the legs that I had chiseled out prior to assembly. Once the glue set up, I marked and drilled pilot holes for the drawer slides. These I ordered from OVIS and they have a soft close hydraulic feature.

After that , the mating part of the slides were screwed to the drawer boxes.

The next nerve wracking procedure was to cut the drawer fronts from the blank I have glued up a few weeks ago. I wanted the grain to line up from the top to bottom drawer. Here’s where measure twice and cut once was key. I used some scrape 1/16” plywood (model airplane parts) as spacers for the fronts. My patience here paid off and everything lined up nicely. While the table saw was setup, I trimmed the top to size.

I used six #10 screws to hold each front on. I drilled all of the holes and inserted the screw with ~1/8” sticking out. Then with the drawer fronts properly spaced, a tap with a mallet marked each screw location. With a depth stop on the drill bit (important), I pre-drilled the holes in the drawer fronts. I settled on some nickel drawer pulls that similar in style to others I’ve seen on antique file cabinets. Any I think they work pretty well.

I have a few touch ups to do, and then a final sanding in preparation for finishing.

-- -Jim, "Society is well governed when its people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law." -- Solon



6 comments so far

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1667 posts in 2087 days


#1 posted 01-01-2015 07:12 PM

Are you planning on any type of profile on the edge of the top? I am not sure what it is, but the top does not flow with the rest of the piece. Very nice job on the draws/fronts.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View JimYoung's profile

JimYoung

227 posts in 1050 days


#2 posted 01-01-2015 08:10 PM

Hi Jack,
I was just planning on chamfering the edges of the top. I’m open for suggestions if you have any ideas. I was thinking of a dark wood inlay on the top, but a printer will be sitting on it so I don’t know if it is worth the effort. Thanks,

-- -Jim, "Society is well governed when its people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law." -- Solon

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1667 posts in 2087 days


#3 posted 01-01-2015 08:26 PM

Hi Jim
I think a simple chamber would certainly help. I would not do too much of a profile. The clean lines of your cabinet would not support more. I can visualise the chamfer; is the size of the top a necessity? Maybe the chamfer will diminish the ‘oversize look’ of the top or perhaps it is the angle of the the camera. I really love your cabinet and rarely comment on work done by LJ ers but I was drawn to your cabinet.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View jumbojack's profile

jumbojack

1667 posts in 2087 days


#4 posted 01-01-2015 08:29 PM

Given it going to support a printer the inlay would be lost to all but you. By the way the inset drawers are genious.

-- Made in America, with American made tools....Shopsmith

View JimYoung's profile

JimYoung

227 posts in 1050 days


#5 posted 01-01-2015 08:40 PM

Hi Jack,
The overhang of the top is an inch on all sides. It may be the photo angle that is through you off. It is more than big enough for the printer, so I could trim it down some more. But I have a 1” overhang on the other side tables I’ve done and they look fine to me. For the chamfer, I’m think 1/8” or less, just to break the edge.
Thanks for the compliments,

-- -Jim, "Society is well governed when its people obey the magistrates, and the magistrates obey the law." -- Solon

View pintodeluxe's profile

pintodeluxe

4854 posts in 2276 days


#6 posted 01-01-2015 08:48 PM

Amazing job to get those box joints done without a dado set. They came out great.
Nice work!

-- Willie, Washington "If You Choose Not To Decide, You Still Have Made a Choice" - Rush

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