Hope Chest one and only ever

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Project by FordMike posted 12-27-2009 09:56 AM 2407 views 1 time favorited 9 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Hope Chest one and only ever
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This was a Hope Chest project from #1 Removing the tree from a homesite in Sonoma, #2 Slabing the tree with an Alaskan Mill #2 Kiln drying the rough slabs #4 Resawing the rough slabs into 1 1/2” boards,#5 framing the individual panels with Fiddleback Walnut and cutting the dovetails (first-time for everything)#6 Rabbeting the panels into the legs #6 Finishing the pieces before assembly-Refinising the pieces after the Oil-Varnish clabbered #7 Assemble and fitting the Hardware.

Goal was to build a Hope Chest with the best Black Walnut available I’ve been cutting top quality furniture lumber for several years and when I first slabed this tree new it was something special. The Figure was a series of descending hearts. I built this without using any screws in the structure,only for hardware.

Lessons learned. I’m a better bowl turner than a furniture maker. My friend Glen Holsworth from Holsworth Woodworks makes this look way to easy. The end of your finger where the tablesaw bit you will eventually heal. If you never cut dovetails before think twice before attempting. Puting one dovetail to join a board is difficult, using three to join the same two boards is fiftytimes harder. Never use a finish that you’ve not used before, case in point, oil varnish should not be used over 400 grit sanding on walnut, overnight that its down to mid-twenties, the oil soakes in and leaves the varnish to turn to syrup. And lastly anything is possible if you want it bad enough

9 comments so far

View hootr's profile


183 posts in 3372 days

#1 posted 12-27-2009 11:01 AM

Beautiful work.
gives me ideas if i have enough time left on this earth

-- Ron, Missouri

View holsworthwoodworks's profile


17 posts in 3112 days

#2 posted 12-27-2009 11:15 AM

Hey Mike! It’s Jen, Glenn’s daughter. Your hope chest looks amazing! Great work and excellent craftmanship. By the way, thanks for saying such nice things about my father. Everytime I tell him what you say, he is so touched! Your a great man! Happy Holidays from myself and my husband, Jacob and of course my dad, Glenn!!


View Bob A in NJ's profile

Bob A in NJ

1232 posts in 4025 days

#3 posted 12-27-2009 12:16 PM

Looks like an very interesting and well built chest. Can you add the pictures of the front and top please?

-- Bob A in NJ

View lotus's profile


33 posts in 3437 days

#4 posted 12-27-2009 02:11 PM

Never say never. Just plant the seed for a new walnut tree and wait. That ought to be long enough to take another swing at it. Nice box.

View hunter71's profile


3186 posts in 3212 days

#5 posted 12-27-2009 02:14 PM

Sometimes the best project takes the most work. Looks great to me.

-- A childs smile is payment enough.

View Monty Queen's profile

Monty Queen

1593 posts in 3278 days

#6 posted 12-27-2009 04:27 PM

Awsome job, looks real good.

-- Monty Q, Columbia, South Carolina.

View a1Jim's profile


117119 posts in 3603 days

#7 posted 12-27-2009 07:03 PM

One of a kind chest and great wood

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View FordMike's profile


155 posts in 3497 days

#8 posted 01-03-2010 08:04 AM

Thanks for the encouraging words. I Have decided to (for her birthday) make a smaller version as a jewelry box.

View Woodbutcher3's profile


411 posts in 2913 days

#9 posted 09-06-2010 03:20 AM

At first I thought that was my shop – then I saw the box – I don’t have anything that nice in my shop – good looking project – all woodworking is learning. Even that which we’ve done a hundred times let alone once.

-- Rod ~ There's never enough time to finish a project, but there's always time to start another one.

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