My box has a secret

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Project by Mike posted 09-06-2015 09:07 PM 1347 views 2 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I’ve always loved boxes with a secret trick to opening them. This box uses pins, dovetails and rare earth magnets to keep it tightly closed as well as some misleading tricks to keep the opener off balance.

After I finished it I showed it to people and challenged them to try to open it. No one has gotten it without some tips and coaching.

It’s pretty simple once you slide the dovetail, held tightly in place with a pair of magnets, this moves a pin out of the way then you can open what appears to be the back of the box which is also held in place with pins and magnets.

The box is made from cherry and maple, the draw from birch plywood, all of which came from the scrap bin. I got tired of just making cutting boards. It’s finished with varnish.

2 comments so far

View greg48's profile


610 posts in 2955 days

#1 posted 09-07-2015 10:01 PM

Mike, nice misdirection with the drawer pull. I assume that the top is held in place by magnets in the endgrain of the lid???

-- Greg, No. Cal. - "Gaudete in Domino Semper"

View Mike's profile


66 posts in 2093 days

#2 posted 09-08-2015 02:13 AM

Thanks for looking greg48, the only thing that opens is the “back of the box”. If you look at the last picture you can see the peg in the bottom corner and a rare earth magnet in the middle which is the same as the other side of the draw. When the draw is closed and the dovetail is slid back down into place it locks the draw tight. The other sides are all glued together.

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