Leaf Box

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Project by Blake posted 04-02-2008 06:10 AM 6053 views 71 times favorited 52 comments Add to Favorites Watch

———————————————————————————————————————————————————- FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE VISIT MY WEBSITE:

This box is the result of some successful experimenting with my new Ridgid Oscillating Spindle Sander. I have really wanted to incorporate more curves into my work for a more natural feel, and the Ridgid is such a cool machine for doing that. I love how you can use it to slowly “nibble” away at a line until the curves are perfectly smooth.

I started by laminating two pieces of 3/4” curly maple together. Then I used a forstner bit, scroll saw, and Ridgid O.S.S to cut out and shape the inside (I didn’t want the entry cut of a bandsawn box).

Then I cut the bottom off, added the thin walnut “floor” and glued the bottom back on. Next I rough cut the outside shape with the bandsaw and finished shaping the curves on the Ridgid O.S.S.

The edges of the walnut “floor” show up as a thin line around the outside of the box near the bottom.

To make the lid I used Zebra wood and oriented the grain of the two halves to resemble leaf veins. I cut the curve on the bandsaw and refined it on the Ridgid O.S.S. until they fit together perfectly. Then I glued them together with epoxy (which adheres well to endgrain and fills the small gaps) with a thin strip of maple cold-bent between them.

I shaped another piece of maple for the underside “insert” to keep the lid snugly in place. This maple lid insert (seen in the last photo) also strengthens the lid since it is under stress from the maple strip.

I rough cut the lid to shape on the bandsaw. Then, with the lid on the box and the box upside-down, I smoothed the edges of the lid on the Ridgid O.S.S. until it was a perfect match to the box sides.

It is about 8” long, 3” across and 2” tall. Oiled with boiled linseed oil. It is very light and has a delicate feel.

This box was so much fun to make. It represents the first time for a long time that I did something in the shop just for fun, and just for me (the kitchen cabinets are finally done!)

-- Happy woodworking!

52 comments so far

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

3992 posts in 3103 days

#1 posted 04-02-2008 06:15 AM

That’s one handsome little box. Great work, Blake.

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

View Jeff's profile


1011 posts in 3133 days

#2 posted 04-02-2008 06:32 AM

Sweet box Blake. Very clever use of the Zebra wood for the lid.

-- Jeff, St. Paul, MN

View USCJeff's profile


1058 posts in 3108 days

#3 posted 04-02-2008 06:33 AM

Love it. I’ve eyeballed the Rigid ever since my Brother in Law got one. He swears by it and Rigid has a great warranty. So many tools . . .

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View Damian Penney's profile

Damian Penney

1140 posts in 3031 days

#4 posted 04-02-2008 06:38 AM

That’s really nice Blake, great contrasts.

-- I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it. - Pablo Picasso

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 3028 days

#5 posted 04-02-2008 07:21 AM

That is a fantastic box Blake. I’m jealous.

I just picked up one of those Rigid OSS’s last week. I like it so far.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Dorje's profile


1763 posts in 3036 days

#6 posted 04-02-2008 07:27 AM

What a gorgeous box! Great choices in wood…

I had the urge to run out and get one of those sanders this last weekend, but was able to restrain myself.

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

View Grumpy's profile


20617 posts in 2891 days

#7 posted 04-02-2008 08:39 AM

Thats a beautiful job Blake. Very clever use of machinery & tools & great design.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View Douglas Krueger's profile

Douglas Krueger

396 posts in 2763 days

#8 posted 04-02-2008 09:56 AM

Beautiful woods and thinking ‘outside the box’, the idea of natural curves has always appealed to me as well, now if I can only find a Ridgid OSS in Asia.

-- I can so I wood but why are my learning curves always circles

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2862 days

#9 posted 04-02-2008 10:31 AM


This is a beautiful box. Your choice of woods is excellent and thanks for the description of the process. I really appreciate seeing that in a post. It takes a little more effort but it gives a clearer view of the construction process.

Thanks for the post.

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

View Colin's profile


245 posts in 2960 days

#10 posted 04-02-2008 10:56 AM

Very nice Blake, I like the way the grain flows from the centre curve like a real leaf. excellent work.

-- Colin, Aberdeenshire, Scotland. "Every craftsman was once an amateur"

View MsDebbieP's profile


18615 posts in 3200 days

#11 posted 04-02-2008 12:29 PM

well thought out box and gorgeous results.
Love the lines (curves) the design of the lid, the extra “wow” on the bottom..
awesome job.

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (

View rikkor's profile


11295 posts in 2914 days

#12 posted 04-02-2008 01:02 PM

Blake, that is an absolute beauty. Nice work. Now I have tool envy again.

View dlcarver's profile


270 posts in 2770 days

#13 posted 04-02-2008 01:02 PM

Fantastic job Blake. I guessed the Zebra wood before I read the write up. I love it…. and I love boxes. Funny how design works….. here , your design matches the machine. A lot of times my design matches my scrap wood….... just so I can use it up and not waste it. Thanks for posting !
PS. What does one of these babies run $$$$$ ? There is times I could use one myself.

-- Dave Leitem,Butler,Pa.,

View shiney5757's profile


111 posts in 2811 days

#14 posted 04-02-2008 01:26 PM

Nice shape good use of the wood,also you must be a dab hand @ the photography, very clear pics.
thanks for the story too.

-- I cut it twice & it was still too short

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4440 posts in 3002 days

#15 posted 04-02-2008 01:57 PM

I am absolutely impressed, Blake. The design should be award winning. Excellent story to go with it. Ya done good, Bud.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

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