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Birch boxes - from firewood logs

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Project by RS Woodworks posted 08-13-2012 02:23 AM 2418 views 17 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made these boxes as a recent tribute to the passing of my wife’s grandfather. The three boxes were each given to his kids, my wife’s father, aunt, and uncle. I wanted to create something special for each of them to help remember him by. They were gifted to them yesterday on a special day to remember Grandpa, and they were very well received.

The wood was milled from two of a stack of short logs that were cut from an old birch tree on the uncle’s property. Grandpa had the wood stacked at his place intending to use it as camp fire wood. When I saw the birch, I knew that it had some potential, and reluctantly picked an appropriate time after his passing to inquire about it. I immediately knew that one of the logs had some spalting in it, but I didn’t know how much or if it was still good wood until I began to cut it up. I also milled one other log into boards. From the two logs I created these three boxes. I used Peruvian walnut (aka Nogal) for accents on two of the boxes and Purpleheart as an accent on the box for auntie. While the designs are fairly straight forward the wood, especially the spalted birch I chose for the tops, is spectacular. A good soaking of Danish oil and a buffing with paste wax gives these boxes their natural looking and satin feeling finish.

I’m very happy with how these boxes turned out and the recipients were greatful. I hope that they will help serve as a memory for my wifes grandfather for many years.

Ryan

-- I restore the finest vintage tools! If you need a nice plane, saw, marking tool or brace, please let me know!





17 comments so far

View Gary's profile

Gary

7250 posts in 2089 days


#1 posted 08-13-2012 02:31 AM

Ryan, those boxes are fantastic. I’m sure they all appreciated what you did for them That wood is just beautiful. Wish I could find that kind of stuff.

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View Dusty56's profile

Dusty56

11659 posts in 2344 days


#2 posted 08-13-2012 02:50 AM

I had to put these into my favorites : ) Very nicely made and finished.

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View Woodenwizard's profile

Woodenwizard

1074 posts in 1711 days


#3 posted 08-13-2012 03:18 AM

Great boxes and a great story. Thanks for sharing.

-- John, Colorado's (Wooden Wizard)

View robert triplett's profile

robert triplett

1481 posts in 1761 days


#4 posted 08-13-2012 04:19 AM

Very nice work and beautiful wood. I do like all of the details on the first box the best, but the others are nice. You did a great job centering the figure on box lid # 2. Each box is different and that would be special to the people who received them.

-- Robert, so much inspiration here, and so little time!

View Dustmite97's profile

Dustmite97

430 posts in 1877 days


#5 posted 08-13-2012 04:19 AM

These are great boxes. Fantastic use of logs.

View Arlin Eastman's profile

Arlin Eastman

2064 posts in 1218 days


#6 posted 08-13-2012 04:21 AM

Wow you did a fantasic job and the woods are great together.

Arlin

-- It is always the right time, to do the right thing.

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

14210 posts in 995 days


#7 posted 08-13-2012 06:47 AM

Very Beautiful

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Spoontaneous's profile

Spoontaneous

1318 posts in 1986 days


#8 posted 08-13-2012 01:09 PM

Beautiful boxes… beautiful commemorative.

-- I just got done cutting three boards and all four of them were too short. (true story)

View grizzman's profile

grizzman

7014 posts in 1960 days


#9 posted 08-13-2012 04:32 PM

i find that the most beautiful boxes are done with simple design and then let the wood speak, let it be the star, and you did that, i know they will love these boxes for the rest of there lives, and will become family heirlooms, they deserve that spot in your families history, very well done, and where the wood came from is spot on, how can a memory like that ever die.grizz

-- GRIZZMAN ...[''''']

View RS Woodworks's profile

RS Woodworks

464 posts in 1908 days


#10 posted 08-13-2012 07:29 PM

Thanks very much for the kind comments everyone.
Robert, the lid for the second box (solid nogal corners) is actually a cut off from the lid of the third box (nogal corner keys). I didn’t take a photo showing it, but the grain actually lines up if the boxes are held together.

-- I restore the finest vintage tools! If you need a nice plane, saw, marking tool or brace, please let me know!

View helluvawreck's profile

helluvawreck

15808 posts in 1523 days


#11 posted 08-13-2012 07:36 PM

These are very nice; I’m sorry about your loss.

helluvawreck
https://woodworkingexpo.wordpress.com

-- If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music which he hears, however measured or far away. Henry David Thoreau

View Doe's profile

Doe

980 posts in 1487 days


#12 posted 08-13-2012 10:14 PM

Beautifully done and amazing wood. They’re a wonderful tribute to your wife’s grandfather and you’re so lucky to find it in his wood pile.

-- Mother Nature talks, I try to listen

View jaykaypur's profile

jaykaypur

3352 posts in 1065 days


#13 posted 08-13-2012 11:13 PM

Beautiful work and the tops you designed are great! Very very nice work.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View TexasPenworks's profile

TexasPenworks

36 posts in 1012 days


#14 posted 08-14-2012 12:17 AM

Wow, Beautiful!

-- Kyle, http://www.texaspenworks.com

View gfadvm's profile

gfadvm

10888 posts in 1347 days


#15 posted 08-14-2012 12:49 AM

You did a super job creating these keepsake boxes with family history. All are beautiful but the one with the purpleheart handle is extra special.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

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