Hexagonal Trinket Box with Bird's-Mouth Joinery

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Project by woodreamer posted 02-15-2016 09:35 PM 1437 views 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is my second box using Bird’s-Mouth router bits. This one is a 6 or 12 sided cutter. I got to use some left over pieces of nice wood – curly maple, black walnut, purple heart and a piece of koa for the handle. The handle was cut 3-d on the scroll saw. This is a small box, about 3 1/2 inches tall by 4 inches wide. The staves of the box are 3 (3×3) and 3 (1 1/2×4) which are the legs. Also finished with an undercoat of shellac followed by a few coats of polyrub.
Thanks for watching.

-- Bob, BC, Canada

6 comments so far

View recycle1943's profile


2508 posts in 1824 days

#1 posted 02-15-2016 10:25 PM

gheeeez that’s cute – I swear I’m going to try my birds mouth bits ( some day )

-- Dick, Malvern Ohio - my biggest fear is that when I die, my wife sells my toys for what I told her I paid for them

View Roger Gaborski's profile

Roger Gaborski

268 posts in 3950 days

#2 posted 02-16-2016 12:39 AM

Turned out very nice.

-- Roger Gaborski,

View majuvla's profile


13376 posts in 3070 days

#3 posted 02-16-2016 04:19 AM

Very interesting shape. Those bird’s mouth joinery is very efficient and good looking. Nice work on handle.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View oldnovice's profile


7330 posts in 3570 days

#4 posted 02-16-2016 06:07 AM

Your project is well built and gives me ideas for some of my scraps.
Thanks for sharing.

-- "I never met a board I didn't like!"

View woodreamer's profile


115 posts in 2895 days

#5 posted 02-16-2016 08:06 AM

Thank you oldnovice.

-- Bob, BC, Canada

View Boxguy's profile


2762 posts in 2470 days

#6 posted 02-16-2016 09:19 AM

Bob, I like your project. You have nice colors and a good design. Having the smaller pieces become legs is a nice idea. Alternating colors was a good choice. I would have rounded off some of the edges…especially on the top and bottom, and inside the rim. However, I have been rightly accused of making all my projects look like a used bar of soap.

How did you make your bird’s mouth cuts? What are the angles?

I was wondering how this technique would work if you scaled it up to a larger size? Maybe it already is (tough to tell from photos), but what if the walnut were tapered at the top or the bottom? There is a good deal of potential with your bird’s mouth design. What if the walnut were thicker stock so there was a shadow line at the joint?

It would be sort of a nightmare to build, but what if you alternated tapers to be wide at the top and then wide at the bottom then squared up the top? I guess you could tape the sides up flat and then cut the bottom groove, but it would be a challenge to do as well. I’d have to think about that one. Of course if the top were squared up you could disassemble the box and cut the bottom dado using your saw fence as a guide. But, the angles would be strange. I guess the best answer would be to tape the box together and then use some type of bearing driven router bit to cut the bottom groove. Then untape it, fit the bottom, and glue it all together…a potentially dangerous process. Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

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