One of my first boxes

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Project by CharlieM1958 posted 10-05-2007 07:17 PM 1830 views 2 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made this from red oak a couple of years ago. It was my first project with the Porter-Cable dovetail jig, and also my first attempt at using inlay banding. I learned a thing or two about trying to rout a very shallow channel in stock that isn’t completely flat. LOL!

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

15 comments so far

View snowdog's profile


1166 posts in 4186 days

#1 posted 10-05-2007 08:23 PM

Nice first attempt. I hope my first attempt comes out half as well.

-- "so much to learn and so little time"..

View Karson's profile


35149 posts in 4604 days

#2 posted 10-05-2007 08:34 PM

Very nice box Charlie. A very good first attempt.

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia †

View Fingersleft's profile


71 posts in 4100 days

#3 posted 10-05-2007 08:38 PM

Hi Charlie -

This is a real nice box, first attempt or not. A couple of tips based upon what you said.

1. Edge routing a channel in thin bowed stock can be done if you take the bow out. On small pieces, clamp the thin stick between two thick pieces to straighten it. Then cut your channel. When you glue and clamp the bowed piece it should set up straight. Routing “on the flat” can be accomplished in similar fashion if you cut your blank about 1” oversized and glue the 1” boarder to a flat piece of scrap. After you cut your channel, simply cut the glued-up border off with your table saw.

2. If this is the first time you used the PC jig, I’m sure you carefully went through the manual step by step. However, its going to take a few uses to really understand it’s geometry and adjustments. And a few more uses before it really becomes intuitive. My first jig was a PC. And I bought it thinking I would learn from it before I invested in a higher priced variable spacing jig. Then after about 6 months of working with the PC, and after really understanding what the jig was doing, and the geometry involved, the lightbulb went on! You CAN cut variable sized and spaced dovetails and fingerjoints with the stock PC, even though it’s not designed to do it. And you can also cut board lengths in excess of the width of the jig”. I never found the need to buy a more expensive jig.

If you like, I can put together a long winded e-mail explaining the procedure. But a telephone call would work much better. I can give you my contact information, if you like. Same offer for any other PC jig owners out there.

-- Bob

View CharlieM1958's profile


16281 posts in 4422 days

#4 posted 10-05-2007 08:57 PM

Bob, thanks a lot for the tips and the lesson offer. I might take you up on it when the time comes. If you tell me too much now, I’ll forget by the time the project comes along. :-) I have figured out a lot about the jig since I built this box a couple of years ago. Like you, I haven’t felt a need to buy one of the more expensive adjustable jigs. I remember how pleased I was with myself when I finally got to the point where I could lay out the four sides of a box and intuitively know how to put them in the jig without scratching my head for a while!

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

View TomFran's profile


2959 posts in 4198 days

#5 posted 10-05-2007 10:34 PM

Nice work, Charlie!

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 4166 days

#6 posted 10-05-2007 11:12 PM

That’s pretty nice for a first attempt, Charlie. No wonder they look so good now.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Roger Strautman's profile

Roger Strautman

656 posts in 4338 days

#7 posted 10-05-2007 11:28 PM

Charlie, that’s a box to be proud of. It has a vey nice look to it. Well done!!!!

-- " All Things At First Appear Difficult"

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 4381 days

#8 posted 10-06-2007 02:00 AM

Charlie, I know that you already know I just love small wooden boxes – first attempt – WOW – you will never see my first attempt – I used it to warm my house by way of the fireplace. LOL

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View Dale Robinson's profile

Dale Robinson

33 posts in 4117 days

#9 posted 10-06-2007 02:18 AM

Great first effort. I’m on my fourth effort. The first three or in tyhe burn pile.

-- Dale, southeast Misouri

View CharlieM1958's profile


16281 posts in 4422 days

#10 posted 10-06-2007 02:33 AM

Thanks, Everybody!

You will notice the title is ”One of my first boxes.” There are a few others gathering dust or storing nails in my garage. You will never see those.

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

View mot's profile


4922 posts in 4240 days

#11 posted 10-06-2007 03:58 PM

Charlie, I really like this box. I think the hardware accents. I really like it.

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View TomK 's profile


504 posts in 4078 days

#12 posted 05-15-2008 05:07 AM

Charlie, this came up in rotation, and it is a beautiful box! If you don’t mind, I might try to do a rough copy of it to store chess pieces.

-- If you think healthcare is expensive now, wait until it's free! PJ O'Rourke

View SteveKorz's profile


2139 posts in 3918 days

#13 posted 05-16-2008 07:47 AM

That’s a great lookin’ box Charlie!...

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

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27250 posts in 4026 days

#14 posted 05-16-2008 11:51 AM

Hi Charlie,

This was archived long before I came on board but I am glad it came up on my list. This is a nice box and the inlay adds a lot of visual interest to it.

Thanks for the inspiration.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Dusty56's profile


11822 posts in 3892 days

#15 posted 07-31-2008 06:04 PM

very nice box..the inlays add a lot to it : ) I’m still waiting to use my dovetail jig that I purchased too many years ago now : ( ...Someday soon , I

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

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