1962 Woodshop Project Recycled

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Project by Pimzedd posted 789 days ago 3084 views 13 times favorited 14 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I took Woodshop back in 1962. I made a coffee table and end table for my parents which they used for many years. While getting the house ready for sale in 1998, I discovered the tables. I kept them thinking that someday I would do something with them. That time has come.

That woodshop class led me to me lifelong career. I taught “shop” for 34 years and was an administrator over Trade and Industrial programs for 6 years. That 9th grade class and the teacher, who is still a friend, led me down that path. Who says shop classes are a waste of time!

A close friend and fellow administrator was retiring recently. I knew she would appreciate something hand made and with a connection that led to our working together. I needed a project and a look through my LJ Favorites (currently over 500) provided the idea of a ribbon box. The plan can be found at Steve Good's site. Thanks Steve.

The table was made from Birch and finished with a tinted lacquer. After cutting two pieces to size, 3.5×5 inches, I removed the old finish with a scraper. I resawed the 1/8 in. thick top and bottom on a table saw and scraped them smooth. Using Steve’s method, I cut out the body of the top and bottom on a scroll saw that was given to me recently (a little clean up and adjustment and it worked great, free working equipment is good). A little scraping and the top and bottom were ready for glue.

The ribbon was made from some Lacewood that was given to me by a fellow Lumberjock, MikeOfAllTrades. Mike makes some great knives and keeps a number of pieces of exotic wood on hand. Thanks Mike.

Following gluing with Titebond III, the box was ready for finish. I sprayed on two coats of Zinsser’s Bulls Eye clear shellac. Then two coats of H. Behlen’s top coat lacquer. Both from rattle cans. Both worked great.

Gave the box to my friend at her retirement party. She loved it. Then I had to go get it back from her later, I realized that I had not taken any photos and I wanted to post them here.

I would only make one change, I forgot to round over the ribbons where they go over the top and down the sides. I’ll remember for the next box. I am making one for my daughter who is getting married. More on that latter.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

14 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile


112014 posts in 2208 days

#1 posted 789 days ago

super looking box Bill ,great job.

-- Custom furniture

View splogging's profile


11 posts in 790 days

#2 posted 789 days ago

Very nice looking box. I enjoy making boxes myself, and the ribbon really makes it outstanding.

-- Mike

View meaded's profile


281 posts in 2338 days

#3 posted 789 days ago

Great box great story I have just retired from 32 years of teaching shop. Now it is my turn to butcher good wood.

View Woodbridge's profile


2663 posts in 1049 days

#4 posted 789 days ago

That is a beautiful looking box and I’m sure a wonderful and much appreciated gift.

-- Peter, Woodbridge, Ontario

View lew's profile


10002 posts in 2386 days

#5 posted 789 days ago

From one retired shop teacher to another- Nice Job!

-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View Boxguy's profile


1445 posts in 899 days

#6 posted 789 days ago


I love this box. Great job and a great look. I have been contemplating something like it. If you don’t mind saying, how did you make the lacewood bow? Is it steamed and bent or cut out or just bent wet and then glued? I’m guessing you cut it on the scroll saw. It turned out beautifully.

-- Big Al in IN

View Pimzedd's profile


442 posts in 2435 days

#7 posted 789 days ago

Thanks for all the comments.

Thanks to all for the nice comments.

meaded – It’s great to hear from another shop teacher. I’ve been retired for almost 2 years and am just now getting to make some nice sawdust. I will be posting three other projects in the near future.

lew – always good to hear from you. I missed going to SkillsUSA Nationals (VICA) this past weekend. Had to play Father-of-the-Bride. That makes two years in a row that I have missed. I am still on the National Education Team.

Boxguy – Yes the bow is just three ovals cut out of 3/4 in. lacewood with a scroll saw. I put a small dowel on the lathe wrapped with sandpaper to sand the inside. The outside was sanded to shape on the disc sander. Finally the ovals were tapered on the disc sander. I had a little blush in the lacquer that I was not happy about but I did not have enough time to sand it out and respray before I gave it away.

-- Bill - Mesquite, TX --- "Everything with a power cord eventually winds up in the trash.” John Sarge , timber framer and blacksmith instructor at Tillers International school

View James Alberding's profile

James Alberding

74 posts in 827 days

#8 posted 789 days ago

This box looks so cool!

I loved my shop class back in the day, I wish I could have taken shop class the whole day in school :)

-- measure once, cut twice...

View RCT's profile


83 posts in 2382 days

#9 posted 789 days ago

I can almost see your colleague face go from a polite grin at opening your present and watching it Bloom to a full blown joyful smile when told of the coffee table that was used. What a great story I loved it.

-- "Ya but what does he know anyhow?"

View MikeOfAllTrades's profile


9 posts in 1211 days

#10 posted 789 days ago

Those pictures look great but it looks so much better in person. Great work Bill.

-- "Those you cannot teach to fly, teach to fall faster." — Friedrich Nietzsche

View Dustmite97's profile


430 posts in 1851 days

#11 posted 788 days ago

Now that’s a great box!

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


14722 posts in 2307 days

#12 posted 788 days ago

Awesome box!

-- "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View vipond33's profile


1405 posts in 1129 days

#13 posted 788 days ago

Top notch work and a lovely story.
Shop teachers led me down the path that I enjoy today. Thanks for the post.

-- gene@toronto.ontario.canada : dovetail free since '53, critiques always welcome.

View Underdog's profile


518 posts in 667 days

#14 posted 563 days ago

Very nice box and a great story. Thanks for sharing. And for the link. I’ve been wanting to see the plans for that bow…

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