Grandfather Xmas Box

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Project by ByronBlack posted 12-26-2007 08:32 PM 1846 views 3 times favorited 16 comments Add to Favorites Watch
Grandfather Xmas Box
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This is a relatively quick box I made for a xmas present for my grandad this year. I attempted a different box a few weeks ago and made quite a few mistakes on it so I needed to start another. I didn’t start this one until this weekend just gone. I was still working on it in the morning of xmas day so that I could give it to him later that day during dinner.

This picture is just before I finished the lid hence why it looks a little rough – my camera had developed a fault and I lost the final pictures.

Its made from Walnut with beech ‘splines’. The panel is made from a section of spalted maple that I had, it’s quite difficult to work due to all the crumbly area’s and checks that had developed along the black lines of the spalt, but I eventually managed (after three attempts) to get a nice solid piece.

It was made mostly using a router-table setup I have in my outfeed table. In truth it’s just a hole in the table with the router clamped to the underside. My fence is just a lump of flat timber that is clamped into position.

I used a very simple 45 degree jig to hold the box whilest I ran it over a 3mm cutter to produce the slots for the splines. The mitres were cut by passing them across a 45 chamfer bit – this worked particularly well. I normally do these kind of mitres by hand using a shooting board, but this was much more accurate and quicker albeit noiser and dustier, but speed was of the essence of this project.

The finish like all my projects was simple. A shellac sealer coat with a single coat of beeswax.

The box will be used to store his lighters, papers and tobacco.

16 comments so far

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 3842 days

#1 posted 12-26-2007 08:35 PM

the spalting really makes it stand out. The splines are also a nice detail.

View Dominic Vanacora's profile

Dominic Vanacora

508 posts in 3837 days

#2 posted 12-26-2007 08:53 PM

I also love the combination of spaulting and walnut. The beech splines also stand out and say look at me. Nice project, Great workmenship.

-- Dominic, Trinity, Florida...Lets be safe out there.

View Bill's profile


2579 posts in 4129 days

#3 posted 12-26-2007 09:02 PM

A nice looking box BB. The contrasting wood looks great. Well done.

-- Bill, Turlock California,

View coloradoclimber's profile


548 posts in 4036 days

#4 posted 12-26-2007 09:39 PM

Byron, the high contrast between the woods really highlights both. The spalted maple is exceptionally nice.

View mot's profile


4911 posts in 4004 days

#5 posted 12-26-2007 09:40 PM

I really like projects like this. The spalting really adds to the piece.

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

View Critterman's profile


599 posts in 3778 days

#6 posted 12-26-2007 10:41 PM

Nice box, the lid is great. That maple against the walnut is outstanding…well done.

-- Jim Hallada, Chesterfield, VA

View Jeff's profile


1010 posts in 4062 days

#7 posted 12-27-2007 12:24 AM

Nice arrangement of the spalted grain for the lid. The extra contrast from the keys is great too.

-- Jeff, St. Paul, MN

View TreeBones's profile


1827 posts in 3991 days

#8 posted 12-27-2007 01:39 AM

Very nice, great wood.

-- Ron, Twain Harte, Ca. Portable on site Sawmill Service

View Karson's profile


35111 posts in 4368 days

#9 posted 12-27-2007 01:42 AM

The maple looks great. The box looks great a nice job.

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

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 3842 days

#10 posted 12-27-2007 02:44 AM

Gorgeous choice of wood for the top panel, and I like the thinness of the lid.

-- Happy woodworking!

View Hawgnutz's profile


526 posts in 4044 days

#11 posted 12-27-2007 06:28 AM

Great work, Byron! Iam sure this box will become a family heirloom.

Very creative and the maple looks fantastic! Did you steam the walnut or is it all heartwood?

God Bless,

-- Saving barnwood from the scrapyards

View Krisztian's profile


89 posts in 3867 days

#12 posted 12-27-2007 06:29 AM

Great box.Well done.

-- Krisztian VA My website:

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4023 posts in 4032 days

#13 posted 12-27-2007 08:21 AM

That is a fine looking piece. I’m sure your grandfather was pleased by the gift and the work needed to create it.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over a decade.

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 3965 days

#14 posted 12-27-2007 10:13 AM

It’s almost like two lids in one! The spalting is quite different on each side and looks really good with the walnut…

-- Dorje (pronounced "door-jay"), Seattle, WA

View HandsOgold's profile


95 posts in 3972 days

#15 posted 12-28-2007 10:27 AM

Nice, and thankyou for including a “how to” in addition to a “this Is”. My only input of significance is to remind you that spalted woods are diseased and dangerous to human health. The inhaled dust can be toxic, so please wear respirator while generating dust, or now as you try to remove it from your workplace.

-- Dan

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