My Second Handtool Only Box Project Completed!

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Project by tirebob posted 09-25-2011 08:36 PM 1908 views 1 time favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Hey All!

So I have just completed my second ever 100% handtool only box. While still far from great, it was an awesome learning experience as this one I did by myself without any guidance from fellow woodworkers. I made a ton of mistakes that I had to figure out how to correct on my own which was cool as I learn and retain more this way than just being told what to do from the get go. I had to fill a lot of spots where I chipped out pieces, ran through dadoes for the box bottom instead of stopped, drilled through one hole on the lid installing hardware, morticing the locking mechanism too deep, etc, etc, etc…

The case wood is Mahogany with the top being a piece curly maple with a mahog boarder. The bottom is just a bit of laminated pine. The finish is 5 coats of amber shellac I mixed from flakes. Every aspect of this piece I did with handtools, including drilling the screw holes! lol! Last project I realized wasn’t 100% handtool because of this small job so I wanted this one to be “pure”!

Anyhow, all comments and critiques are welcome and appreciated… I hope my postings of these first attempts, however imperfect they are, will give confidence to other newbie aspiring woodworkers to follow suit and show their successes and failures alongside mine!

6 comments so far

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

588 posts in 2491 days

#1 posted 09-25-2011 10:45 PM

That’s really nice. I love the lock.

Nothing like going at it and messing things up to teach yourself something. (Not that there’s any of that apparent.)

View StumpyNubs's profile


7592 posts in 2801 days

#2 posted 09-25-2011 11:48 PM

The only hand tool I used on my last box was a screwdriver to pry it open after I lost the latch key… And it didn’t look as nice as yours, either…

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View tirebob's profile


134 posts in 2854 days

#3 posted 09-26-2011 12:13 AM

Hahahaha! That was awesome StumpyNubs… I almost spit up coffee on my screen!

Thanks for the comments guys… I like all woodworking for sure, but I am getting something extra out of handtool work that I just can’t quite put my finger on. It just seems to soothe the soul a little more for me I think.

View RichardMu's profile


259 posts in 2931 days

#4 posted 09-26-2011 01:01 AM

Great looking box. Looks hand made, that’s what makes it special. I agree that working with hand tools is relaxing and also very gratifying.

-- You will never build it unless you try. The second one always turns out better.

View mpmitche's profile


428 posts in 2976 days

#5 posted 09-26-2011 02:14 AM

Great looking dovetails!

-- Mike, Western New York

View balidoug's profile


484 posts in 2479 days

#6 posted 09-26-2011 08:28 AM

Great piece. and by hand. cool.

-- From such crooked wood as that which man is made of, nothing straight can be fashioned. Immanuel Kant

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