Progress of a self taught cabinet maker #4: Building better boxes

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Blog entry by RGtools posted 04-17-2011 04:13 AM 2975 reads 1 time favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 3: Mobile workstation Part 4 of Progress of a self taught cabinet maker series Part 5: Giving back »

I needed a way to practice making dovetailed drawers without the pressure of it being in a full scale piece of furniture. Having done a few practice dovetails that did not go into anything I wanted to start making things that actually provided some use.

So my goal was to make these boxes for storing seed (my wife has an impressive collection of seed she saves for the garden).

The first one made of teak was not an impressive piece, I made numerous mistakes, cut on the wrong side of the line a few times, split the wood from too tight a fit, and put the groove too low which made in impossible to have the groove fall entirely on a pin or a tail. That mistake also prevented me from using a solid wood bottom. Despite all these faults the hand scraped teak box live in my home, in the cupboard neatly storing my tea.

I went with cedar for the second box and I am really pleased with the results. Not only were my joints much cleaner but I noticed I got progressively faster, and more accurate as I went along. The bottom is solid poplar and was a real treat to bevel, why you would use a plywood bottom in a drawer and deprive yourself this treat is beyond me. I made new mistakes, but they are small enough not to worry about.

I finished the bottom with mineral oil and beeswax before gluing everything up and I finished the sides with just a few coats of mineral oil. It’s nice to see progress.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

2 comments so far

View Hayabusa's profile


173 posts in 2877 days

#1 posted 04-17-2011 04:48 PM

Wonderful usage, Jillian must be happy and proud of his cabinetmaker hehehe

View RGtools's profile


3372 posts in 2651 days

#2 posted 04-17-2011 05:21 PM

Thanks Julio. How is life on your side of the world?

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

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