No pics today, but there’s not much new to look at compared to last week's final fit. A big step was rabbeting the walls for the bottom to fit up into. After doing one wall, I got some very helpful feedback from Dave and Luis over on my personal website that I should do a dado instead that the rabbeted bottom would fit into. The advice came a day too late, although I did consider doing the dado on the other three walls. But alas, I don’t have a blade small enough (the smallest I have is my 1/4” chisel) to make a very narrow dado, so I ended up just going ahead with the rabbeted walls. On the plus side, the bottom is fitting in very snugly, so I may just add a couple drops of glue on the ends, as Luis suggested, and that should do it; as long as my wife doesn’t drop a wrench into the box, it should hold.
One thing that I had mentioned in the post I wrote after doing the first rabbet was that I busted both pins (since the rabbet doesn’t go all the way to the edge, it’s tricky). It was frustrating, but I glued them up and moved on. Well, wouldn’t you know that I busted at least one pin or tail on each of the remaining three walls, no matter how careful I was? I tell ya, this is the last time I work in miniature (that’s what it feels like). But you know what? It actually helped me to relax more, as I trusted the glue and tried even harder to not bust anything on the next wall. I told my wife that even if she looks hard, I don’t think she’ll see more than two places (out of seven) where I had to glue up something I broke – if she even sees those.
So now that I’ve rambled on about the dovetails and rabbets, on to the next step: the top. Here’s what I’m thinking, and please give me your feedback on whether it’s a good idea or not. The end grain looks ugly and screams to be covered up. So mitered edges, yes? But how would it look/work if I used a strip of sapwood (same wood, kempas) for a little color variation like this:
I’m thinking that the middle strip would be pretty thin, like 1/4” or less. What are your thoughts? Any other ideas? And as for size, I think that I will make the top just a touch wider than the walls, so there is just the very slightest bit of overhang. It seems appealing in a tactile kind of way. Then there’s the issue of glue-up and saw-off. It seems from the pictures I’ve seen that it’s okay to saw off the lid in between (or even on!) a tail. Is that right? Seems kind of funny to have the dovetails go zoop! up with the lid when you open it, but maybe that’s the way they do it.
So my questions for you esteemed woodies:
- Am I on target with my general box top design?
- Will the use of sapwood sandwiched between heartwood present any problems?
- Will I really cut the top off in between tails?
Thanks so much to those of you who have commented here and on Adventures in Woodworking. I’m learning a lot!