Bible Box Wedding Present

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Project by Mike Gilbert posted 08-31-2012 03:29 AM 2639 views 4 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I made this box for a wedding present for a good friend. Faith is a big part of both his and his fiancée’s lives so I when I saw this bible box in an old popular woodworking issue I decided it would make the perfect gift. This was my first time using dovetails (With a jig, still a rookie). It was also my first inlay and my first turning (the feet). The box is made from a single walnut board, the inlay is a combination of maple and padauk. The box measured about 14×22 x 6 not counting the legs. I finished it with shellac on the interior and general finishes Arm-R-seal varnish on the exterior. The hardware is all brass and the half mortise lock was also my first time installing a lock. I took the pictures myself after reading a fine woodworking article on taking better pictures of your work by buying a tripod and white background.

8 comments so far

View Ian Hawthorne's profile

Ian Hawthorne

297 posts in 2887 days

#1 posted 08-31-2012 05:58 AM

Very nice Mike – lovely piece of walnut!

-- Worlds Best Box Hardware!

View Boxguy's profile


2779 posts in 2506 days

#2 posted 08-31-2012 08:48 AM

Mike, welcome to Lumber Jocks. Looks like you have a number of firsts on this project. I hope you will post other work when you can.

First let me deal with what I liked. I liked the photos. The lighting, angles, and background are a big improvement over some quick phone shots of the work sitting on a table saw in the shop. Photography like this does take some investment and more time…thanks for doing that for us.

There is real craftsmanship and design in your work. The bottom molding that echoes the same profile as the top and is a good design element. The edges on the turned feet look crisp and clean. It is hard to get four that match. The inlay is a real eye grabber. It adds a lot to this box. Did you make the inlay or buy it? I especially like how well the corners of the inlay came out. That is not easy. the angles look to match exactly and it flows completely around the piece. Really nice work on that part.

Your wood selection shows that you have a real eye for grain and pattern. The walnut board you chose is beautiful material. And the finish looks like you did a super job there. It shows off the grain well.

I have just three minor quibbles. The feet seem a little high and detract somewhat from the look. I would have made the top thicker and would have included some of the sides with it to prevent warping of a thin board. Link The top seems to tip backward a bit too much. But you can get by with this in this case since you have a light top and a wide bottom.

In general, Mike, your care in photography helps viewers see your work well and is much appreciated. This is a wonderful piece of craftsmanship that you have put a great deal of thought and effort into. It has several nice details in the design. This box is an eye-catching and thoughtful gift that I am sure will be well received. It would be a shame not to put all that you learned on this project to good use on another box. Thanks for sharing your work with all of us in Lumber Land. Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

View Chris McDowell's profile

Chris McDowell

644 posts in 2391 days

#3 posted 08-31-2012 09:53 AM

The box looks great. You did a great job even on the things that were firsts for you. I would not have known they were firsts had you not mentioned it. The arm-r-seal finish looks excellent.

-- Chris, , FACEBOOK: , Proverbs 16:9

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3105 days

#4 posted 08-31-2012 10:45 AM

Mike, that’s a very nice box and I’m sure that they will cherish it.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View Mike Gilbert's profile

Mike Gilbert

31 posts in 2340 days

#5 posted 09-01-2012 01:12 PM

Thanks for the feedback guys. This was obviously my first project post here but I definitely plan to put up the rest of them too.
@ Big AL
I did make the inlay myself. I glued strips of the two woods together at a 45 degree angle and then sliced thin pieces off on my bandsaw. I appreciate the suggestions too. I checked out your link and I see what you are talking about. I have not considered wraping the lid with the sides but I think that really could have helped this project. After I finished the lid was definitely my biggest concern because of its size and I was worried it might warp over time. I finished this box about a year ago and the last time I was at my friends it still looked good so that helped relieve some stress. I think on my next box with a large lid I will definitely take a look at incorporating the sides into the lid. Here are a few pics of the inlay construction.

View Greg3G's profile


815 posts in 4324 days

#6 posted 09-06-2012 02:12 AM

Beautiful box. You did a wonderful job. Excellent execution on the banding and the wood selection.

-- Greg - Charles Town, WV

View bigike's profile


4055 posts in 3527 days

#7 posted 10-03-2012 12:44 AM

Great box and inlay

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop,

View Surfside's profile


3389 posts in 2412 days

#8 posted 11-18-2013 09:46 PM

That box is amazing. The finish, design and wood are nice. It’s the best gift! Well done.

-- "someone has to be wounded for others to be saved, someone has to sacrifice for others to feel happiness, someone has to die so others could live"

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