Not Just Any Box #2: It all hinges on these..

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Blog entry by YorkshireStewart posted 01-17-2008 10:15 PM 4972 reads 59 times favorited 35 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 1: Preparing the Way Part 2 of Not Just Any Box series Part 3: towards the finish... »

I have a love affair with wooden hinges and this challenge gave me the opportunity to go one step further with them. (It started some years ago when I came across the work of the late Tim Stead – in my opinion, a genius.) Accurately drilling the hinge pin hole in such a hinge is never easy, and those I planned for this box are 9.5” long and therefore impossible to drill. The following is an attempt to show how I overcame this bit of the challenge.

The first shot shows the oak blanks that were my starting point, along with my rough sketches done by the fireside the previous evening.


I used the box-joint jig that I ‘stole’ from Lumberjock Bob#2 to make the first cuts:


Then cut out the intermediate pieces on the small bandsaw:

Eventually, this was the result:


This was the clever bit (I thought)

After many calculations and sketches, I routed, at the appropriate depth and distance from the edge, a 3mm slot to take a cast-off knitting needle (!) hinge-pin. Knitting needles, typically plastic coated metal, are available in a range of sizes in .25mm increments. I have a good supply from my wife; a keen knitter.


Some rounding off, -

..and filling of the gaps –


…resulting in –


Then, carefully trimming to my required size –


So, after an intensive day’s work / pleasure, I have, in effect, drilled two holes. I must be barmy as we say in Yorkshire!

The finished box is here


-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

35 comments so far

View TomFran's profile


2948 posts in 3082 days

#1 posted 01-17-2008 10:29 PM

Wow, Stewart, that was a great solution. As I read your introduction, I was wondering how you would “drill” those holes – but you were thinking “outside the box.” Nice!

I just hope your wife isn’t going to be looking for those knitting needles anytime soon ;^D

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View CharlieM1958's profile


16143 posts in 3306 days

#2 posted 01-17-2008 10:32 PM

You may be “balmy” Stewart, but the difference between a good woodworker and a great one is that the great one has the patience to spend a full day drilling two holes just right.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3076 days

#3 posted 01-17-2008 10:35 PM

Pretty cool, Yorkie. I like it!

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View CutNRun's profile


122 posts in 2934 days

#4 posted 01-17-2008 10:38 PM

I followed your pictures with interest. My box plans have been drawn up for some time, but our though processes are similar. I have a slightly different tack that I intend to take, but we’ll see how well it goes. I look forward to seeing the end product.

-- CutNRun - So much wood, so many trails, so little time

View davidtheboxmaker's profile


373 posts in 2893 days

#5 posted 01-17-2008 10:38 PM

Neat idea.
Repeated use must lead to improved speed – if that’s important.
I bet this is going to be a great box.

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 3334 days

#6 posted 01-17-2008 10:47 PM

Great illustration Mr. Stewart. Tom’s right it was good thinking. Just what is that you’re making there? lol mike

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View YorkshireStewart's profile


1127 posts in 2989 days

#7 posted 01-17-2008 10:50 PM

Thanks GentleJocks. All will be revealed over the next couple of days Mike.

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

View mot's profile


4911 posts in 3124 days

#8 posted 01-17-2008 10:51 PM

Thanks, Stewart, I’ve really come to look forward to your posts!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View toyguy's profile


1459 posts in 2925 days

#9 posted 01-17-2008 11:12 PM

Sir Stewart of Yorkshire, you have done it again. Good post.

-- Brian, Ontario Canada,

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 2962 days

#10 posted 01-18-2008 12:06 AM

Ah Stewart, you are the man!

View Paul's profile


657 posts in 3180 days

#11 posted 01-18-2008 12:37 AM

Ever since you posted your 2×4 entry, I’ve been waiting for “the other shoe to fall,” as they say. The first mighty “2×4” shoe came down and shook our lumberjock world – witness all the comments on your post!

I think I see the shadow of another very large “box” shoe coming down with a resounding thud to tumble whatever was left of our foundations (or at least mine).

This a wonderful, creative and challenging solution for executing a design feature!

Congratulations! Great mind power and crafting prowess!

-- Paul, Texas

View mrtrim's profile


1696 posts in 2968 days

#12 posted 01-18-2008 01:11 AM

there will be another large thud when your wife finds out what you done with her needle !! lol
thanks for posting that stewart very informative

View Russel's profile


2199 posts in 3027 days

#13 posted 01-18-2008 01:40 AM

Absolutely ingenious. Your creativity and resourcefulness are downright inspirational.

-- Working at Woodworking

View Al Navas's profile

Al Navas

305 posts in 2963 days

#14 posted 01-18-2008 02:58 AM


NOW I can make wooden hinges just like YOU, Stewart!!! Thanks for showing the way.

-- Al Navas, Country Club, MO,

View Bob Babcock's profile

Bob Babcock

1804 posts in 3174 days

#15 posted 01-18-2008 03:02 AM

Just shaking my head….amazing….

-- Bob, Carver Massachusetts, Sawdust Maker

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