|Project by stanley_clifton||posted 07-11-2010 05:10 PM||5340 views||4 times favorited||8 comments|
This box is designed for our family’s use, as opposed to anything that might be a gift or possible future sale. It’s had to be rather more ‘designed’ than my stuff usually is, in order to make sure that paper, bottles of ink etc will actually fit in. The fact that it’s only me and my wife who will be examining it has made me more relaxed during its construction, I must say. This box should accommodate and rationalise a lot of the stationery stuff that we have accumulated; we may even be able to find what we want when we want it.
The carcase is oak, dovetailed together with a moulded walnut plinth fitted with mitre joints. Dividers and the lift-out tray are in sycamore. Two different walnut types have been used, basically because I didn’t have enough of one type. In addition, the piece used for the plinth was worm-eaten in one section: this proved impossible to cut out, I have therefore left it in for ‘character’. Reinforcing pins have been used on the mouldings and edgings, particularly where they are fitted to end grain.
Hand tools were used for the vast bulk of tasks, apart from the trusty band saw of course, although I did relent and use the router to cut the plinth mouldings and the shaping on the entirely decorative walnut block attached to the lid.
The finish is three coats of Danish oil, rubbed down between coats, with the final one applied with a nylon pan scourer.
Issues with this box include non-matching ironmongery and the joint tails ending up bigger than the pins, leaving really too much end-grain showing to the front. On the ironmongery, those hinges are difficult to get in Blighty,, never mind in ‘antique’, so they are in inappropriate ‘bright brass’. On the tails, I think that this was something to do with the need to compensate for the bottom edge sitting in the plinth rebate and for the plywood base rebate to emerge from end-grain so that it could be plugged; I still have not worked out how to do a stopped rebate with a 050 multi-plane. The mitre joints needed a little plugging, but this seems to have gone quite well and the plugging is not obvious until up close; I am determined to make myself a mitre shooting board this week, which should solve this problem.
Overall I am very pleased with the way this piece has turned out. Despite the issues raised, these are the best dovetails that I’ve done and fit very tightly. It’s also the first time that I’ve fitted a lock and this has worked quite well. I may standardise on oak and walnut for boxes as this combination does seem to work particularly well.
-- Stanley generally struggling