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Birthday Boxes for Dad, Mom & Brother

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Project by cmmyakman posted 08-16-2018 08:24 PM 1209 views 2 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Mom’s Lift Top Box
Pretty much took the design of Doug Stowe’s A Simple Lift-Lid Box in his book, ”Basic Box Making” 2007. BTW – make sure you get the DVD as I think it is very helpful to beginners.

Book: https://www.amazon.com/Basic-Box-Making-Doug-Stowe/dp/1561588520
DVD: https://www.amazon.com/Basic-Box-Making-Doug-Stowe/dp/1561588903/

I had made a few of the lift box lids as shown on the front cover of the book over the past couple of years and I wanted to change the dimensions a bit, so I doubled the length to go from a square to a rectangle. I also decided to add a maple handle to the walnut top and wedge the tenon into place. Unfortunately, while I was “whaling away” on seating the handle I, broke the top. Lesson learned, properly support the piece before whacking it. I glued the top back together, so the split is barely noticeable. Maple sides and walnut top and splines were used.

Brother’s & Dad’s Pencil Box
There is a video available online by Christian Becksvoort, where he shows how to make a chisel box.
https://go.platformpurple.com/shop/5062?e=learning
The cost for the video is $30, which seems to a cheapskate like me to be a little steep, but I think I got my $30 out of it.

I decided to use some of the same techniques that Becksvoort used in his chisel box for the top and bottom of my pencil box. But while Becksvoort did his corners with hand cut dovetails, I decided to use my Incra iBox jig for the first time (it had been embarrassingly gathering dust for 6 years). I was pretty happy with the iBox jig experience and plan to use it again in the future.

The strip along the middle of the pencil boxes and the top are made of padauk. My bother’s box is tiger maple and my Dad’s box is… well first I thought it was quarter sawn tiger maple and then I thought rift sawn tiger maple. Perhaps someone can tell me what it is (see the 3rd figure).

What caused me the most problems was with the finger recess on the top of the box so you can easily pull it open. Becksvoort did an amazing job with a carving chisel for his top pull. For me, the padauk is really a very hard wood and I pretty much destroyed a cheap Chinese made chisel using Becksvoort’s technique. My father gave me a bit of grief for the finger pull on my brother’s box (he didn’t know he was getting one as well). So I resorted to a number of different tools in my Foredom rotary tool and you can see from the pics at the link at the bottom which ones seemed to work.

I tried to follow Boxguy’s method of finishing my father’s box and I think it turned out pretty well; 2 coats of tung oil, 2 costs of wipe on poly and then followed up with Renaissance wax. Refer to: http://lumberjocks.com/projects/74844 for more details.

More pics of the boxes and build process can be found here: https://photos.app.goo.gl/cDsEdDePpJ6p2BJc6

-- You can't fail if you don't give up.





16 comments so far

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

1565 posts in 746 days


#1 posted 08-16-2018 09:25 PM

On the one pic asking type of cut, it looks like QS Sycamore to me.

Nice boxes, thanks for posting.

-- Think safe, be safe

View Peteybadboy's profile

Peteybadboy

496 posts in 2121 days


#2 posted 08-16-2018 09:51 PM

Nice boxes! Thanks for posting.

-- Petey

View cmmyakman's profile

cmmyakman

204 posts in 2828 days


#3 posted 08-16-2018 09:51 PM



On the one pic asking type of cut, it looks like QS Sycamore to me.

Nice boxes, thanks for posting.

- therealSteveN

I thought it was maple, but maybe it is sycamore. But you thinking quarter sawn, that’s in particular what I was wondering – many thanks theRealSteveN.

-- You can't fail if you don't give up.

View ralbuck's profile

ralbuck

5254 posts in 2438 days


#4 posted 08-16-2018 09:56 PM

All very nice!

-- Wood rescue is good for the environment and me! just rjR

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

1565 posts in 746 days


#5 posted 08-17-2018 06:20 AM

I haven’t seen Maple do that, at least not yet. I have seen tons of QS Sycamore that does look just like that though.

Here is a page with Sycamore pics, see what you think. The wilder pics are usually near the bottom of the page.

Plain, or Flatsawn Sycamore is drab as can be, but QS all those little rays pop into view. In smaller amounts like you used here, it really livens up a piece.

Here there is a lot of it along almost every creek, river or waterway. Big strong looking Ghosts which are pale white, to dappled with white and brown. If you got your wood locally there are probably some in your area too. Typically it isn’t a wood that you see shipped around the country too much. This is what you are looking for.

A lot of time there isn’t very much lumber yield from them as they do grow right on the banks of a waterway so often, and they have very poor water resistance, so they tend to rot and leave a hollow tube, then a strong wind gets them, and down they go. Funny is they are very near water, yet offer no rot resistance to speak of, but they will hardly burn, almost fireproof, at least at lower temp fires.

-- Think safe, be safe

View cmmyakman's profile

cmmyakman

204 posts in 2828 days


#6 posted 08-17-2018 01:11 PM



I haven t seen Maple do that, at least not yet. I have seen tons of QS Sycamore that does look just like that though.

Here is a page with Sycamore pics, see what you think. The wilder pics are usually near the bottom of the page.

Plain, or Flatsawn Sycamore is drab as can be, but QS all those little rays pop into view. In smaller amounts like you used here, it really livens up a piece.

Here there is a lot of it along almost every creek, river or waterway. Big strong looking Ghosts which are pale white, to dappled with white and brown. If you got your wood locally there are probably some in your area too. Typically it isn t a wood that you see shipped around the country too much. This is what you are looking for.

A lot of time there isn t very much lumber yield from them as they do grow right on the banks of a waterway so often, and they have very poor water resistance, so they tend to rot and leave a hollow tube, then a strong wind gets them, and down they go. Funny is they are very near water, yet offer no rot resistance to speak of, but they will hardly burn, almost fireproof, at least at lower temp fires.

- therealSteveN


-- You can't fail if you don't give up.

View cmmyakman's profile

cmmyakman

204 posts in 2828 days


#7 posted 08-17-2018 01:14 PM

Wow – that’s an amazing website – very useful. http://hobbithouseinc.com/personal/woodpics/

I think I have to agree with you that it’s probably quarter sawn sycamore.

Thank you therealSteveN!

-- You can't fail if you don't give up.

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

1565 posts in 746 days


#8 posted 08-17-2018 11:09 PM

The only other comes from across the pond. It is called Plane, either London, or European. The write ups I have seen some claim there is no species likeness, but most say they are all in the same family. Get this it is said to be a hybrid of Sycamore, and Platanus orientalis (oriental planetree) which many call the old world Sycamore. Just goes round and round.

-- Think safe, be safe

View therealSteveN's profile

therealSteveN

1565 posts in 746 days


#9 posted 08-17-2018 11:12 PM

Another site you may like, has a lot more using the wood info is The Wood Database At the top if you pick “wood finder” it takes you to an alphabetical listing showing species, how well it works, Janka hardness, attributes about using outdoors or in a wet situation, and a bunch of other info. Hobbit House is a little info and all about pretty pics, Wood Databse is the nutz and bolts.

-- Think safe, be safe

View cmmyakman's profile

cmmyakman

204 posts in 2828 days


#10 posted 08-18-2018 12:19 AM



Another site you may like, has a lot more using the wood info is The Wood Database At the top if you pick “wood finder” it takes you to an alphabetical listing showing species, how well it works, Janka hardness, attributes about using outdoors or in a wet situation, and a bunch of other info. Hobbit House is a little info and all about pretty pics, Wood Databse is the nutz and bolts.

- therealSteveN

Very cool – I bookmarked it for future reference – lots of valuable information – thank you!

-- You can't fail if you don't give up.

View majuvla's profile

majuvla

13211 posts in 3039 days


#11 posted 08-18-2018 01:13 PM

So beautiful box! I like contrasting woods and fingerjoints.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Boxguy's profile

Boxguy

2748 posts in 2439 days


#12 posted 08-18-2018 07:44 PM

Christopher, thanks twice. Once for the shoutout. Thanks for including a link to my posting on finishing boxes. A second thanks for sending me a heads-up about the link.

Now about your boxes…They look great. Doug Stowe would be proud of you. I like yours better than his since your elongated boxes seem to have nicer proportions. The finish looks great, so it looks like you certainly have that part down too. The book 400 Wooden Boxes is a good source of ideas for boxes. It is just pictures…not plans.

I enjoyed reading your post and the photos are nicely done as well. Good work. Time to move on to hinged lids. I have some blogs about hinges as well. Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

View cmmyakman's profile

cmmyakman

204 posts in 2828 days


#13 posted 08-19-2018 01:26 AM

Dear Big Al:

Thank you for the post. I didn’t know you had made a blog. Wow – that’s a lot of great information, it will take me a while to digest it all.

I just did a drawer repair for my parent’s. I followed your finishing technique again. Your technique works better for me than anything I’ve done in the past, but it still doesn’t look as beautiful as yours does when I am done. I think it is a matter of practice and perfecting the technique. I will say this, the end result of your technique feels good to hands.

I just ordered the book, 400 Wooden Boxes, many thanks for the tip and the link.

Ha, you wrote, ”Time to move on to hinged lids.” You clearly were at some point in the past where I am now. Hinged lids appear to be quite a big obstacle to overcome. But yes, I guess you are right, it’s getting close to the time to try to surmount that task. I’ve acquired a bunch of hinges over the years, I just haven’t used them yet. :-)

Take care,
Christopher

-- You can't fail if you don't give up.

View Boxguy's profile

Boxguy

2748 posts in 2439 days


#14 posted 08-19-2018 06:05 AM

Christopher, if you choose “box” when you put up your post, it will appear where more people can see it. The “blogs” and “hinges” links will help you with the hinge process. I like cutting down continuous (piano) hinges. They are sturdy and easy to line up. With a box 5/8 thick and an 1 1/8 inch hinge from Rockler, it is an easy set up. You just have to get the ends and depth right. 400 Boxes is great for stirring your imagination. Have fun! Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

View Luis M's profile

Luis M

77 posts in 2802 days


#15 posted 08-20-2018 12:14 PM

Christopher,

Those are some good looking boxes. I think therealSteveN is right. Your dad’s box sides are definetly QS sycamore. The seat on the bench I built a while back was sycamore and that box side looks just like that.

-- Luis

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