Knotty box, with a couple secrets

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Project by scottb posted 2038 days ago 6947 views 3 times favorited 12 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This box is made with a couple types of pine. I found the darker – what I’m guessing is fir, in that it’s similar to the wood I used in my take on the Thorsen table – in the basement.

The lighter wood, used on the lower portion of the lid, I snagged out of a stack of balusters at the BORG. Was labeled Hemlock (despite being thrown in with the Red oak ones… so lets go with that.) I knew when I saw those twisty knots in the wavy grain, (quartersawn on all 4 faces!) that it would redefine my project in progress.

This box is approx 8” x 5” x 5”, sanded smooth and finished with Howard’s Feed N’ Wax.

I cut two grooves in the fir, about 1/2 inch apart to fit in a bottom, as well as a permanent false bottom. three sides of the box are glued together, the 4th side is only held in with brass pins. I also glued in brass pins on the glued side for the sake of the illusion. I thought I’d also have to use magnets to keep the side nice and snug, but between the friction fit of four 1/8th inch brass dowels, and the snug fit of the bottoms (1/4” ply) there isn’t the need.

The secret compartment in the bottom would hold a secret stash of several bills, small notebook or somesuch.

I also snuck a secret compartment into the lid. The base of the lid is a mitred frame made from 2×2 stock, with a 1/4 ply bottom to the secret compartment, and the lid of the lid (as it were) is more of the same fir (two pieces glued up into a panel, with a thin band of the hemlock down the middle), attached with a friction pin (which also works as a hinge) and magnets to register it back in place.

Luckily I only needed two sets of 1/2” magnets, they are strong enough to snap the lid back into place, and you can even lift the lid off the box by the upper lid and it will pick up the entire lid assembly as one unit. The top compartment is much easier to open and close then the lower one, and is therefore more likely to be discovered… yet who would suspect such a small box to have a second secret to it? The one helps to hide the other, don’t you think?.

Oh, and aren’t these knots awesome?

-- I am always doing what I cannot do yet, in order to learn how to do it. - Van Gogh -- --

12 comments so far

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4435 posts in 2597 days

#1 posted 2037 days ago

Well, that was fun, wasn’t it?

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View griff's profile


1206 posts in 2397 days

#2 posted 2037 days ago

Great idea. looks great good job

-- Mike, Bruce Mississippi = Jack of many trades master of none

View CharlieM1958's profile


15691 posts in 2853 days

#3 posted 2037 days ago

Very creative, Scott.

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

View SteveKorz's profile


2131 posts in 2349 days

#4 posted 2037 days ago

That is exceptionally cool… I love those knots. Very creative.

-- As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. (Proverbs 27:17) †

View Danette Smith's profile

Danette Smith

155 posts in 2914 days

#5 posted 2037 days ago

Wonderful box! I like the secret compartment.

Good luck in the contest…Danette

-- Dangee's Pyrography by Artist Danette Smith -

View BarryW's profile


1015 posts in 2541 days

#6 posted 2037 days ago

Scott…these postings are astonishing…remarkable…

-- /\/\/\ BarryW /\/\/\ Stay so busy you don't have time to die.

View lew's profile


10006 posts in 2390 days

#7 posted 2037 days ago

Beautiful Job!

The knots really add to the beauty!

Good Luck in the contest.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Dan'um Style's profile

Dan'um Style

12931 posts in 2617 days

#8 posted 2037 days ago

well done … good luck in the contest

-- keeping myself entertained ... Humor and fun lubricate the brain

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


14727 posts in 2310 days

#9 posted 2028 days ago

Nice Box, great idea on the compartment.

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Andy's profile


1535 posts in 2543 days

#10 posted 1677 days ago

Sorry I missed this Scott.
I like your secret panel and those knots are beautiful, not very common either. You took some wood considered trash by most people and made something very nice.
Well done!

-- If I can do it, so can you.

View a1Jim's profile


112020 posts in 2212 days

#11 posted 1677 days ago

Shhhh it’s a secret!!! well done Scott

-- Custom furniture

View WistysWoodWorkingWonders's profile


11908 posts in 1791 days

#12 posted 1650 days ago

nice work on this box Scott, looks great…

-- New Project = New Tool... it's just the way it is, don't fight it... :)

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