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Project by Brad posted 604 days ago 1516 views 6 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Fellow LJ Woodwrecker’s Palm Box projects gave me just the inspiration I needed to get my creative energies flowing.

Click for details

It turned out to be a woodworking perfect storm, allowing me to:

1. Get experience mixing and matching different/expensive wood species with a minimal investment in materials and time,

2. Practice new box-making techniques like using pins for hinges, butt joints reinforced with dowels and brass rods, and laminations. And best of all…

3. Creating Christmas gifts that family and friends will enjoy over the years.

For matching wood species, I turned to Garret Hack’s Fine Woodworking’s article The Right Way to Use Contrast. It was a lot of fun to try many of the combinations Hack suggests.

David Freedman’s Box-Making Basics provided me with details on how to do the pin hinges. Given that I used butt joints to affix the sides, I reinforced them with either oak dowels or the same 1/8” brass rod I used for the hinges. On the butternut/walnut box #4 below, I shaved off too much while shooting the sides of the lid, so I laminated some butternut to the walnut lid to get a perfect fit.

Finally, I chose the best scraps I had: ones that showed figured grain and beautiful colors. I used ¼” plywood for all the bottoms.

Here’s the basic design:

Here’s the lineup:

Box #1: I built this one for Mom. The front/back is of alder which stained quite well (tung oil), the sides are walnut and the lid is mahogany. I shipped it before taking any measurements. She told me she’s going to use it to hold recipe cards.

Box #2: This one is for a buddy. (8 1/8” L x 4 3/8” W x 2 7/8” H) He and I like to share a cigar now and then, and even though this is not a humidor, I’ll throw in a couple cigars before dropping it by his house. The lid is made from reclaimed oak 2×4s I got from a loading dock in Fort Collins, CO. Note the nail holes. The sides are walnut and the front/back is alder. The front/back are alder and the sides are walnut. Also finished with tung oil.

Box #3: This one’s for my lady. (8” L x 4 3/8” W x 3 ¼” H)Having gotten the design down and practiced drilling holes for the hinge rods, I stepped up to cherry and maple. I used the most figured of each I could find though the spalted maple lid makes a nice contrast with the cherry. I finished this one with three coats of tung oil followed by three coats of paste wax.

Box #4: This ones’…for me. (10 1/8” L x 4 7/8” W x 3 ¼” H) I took an instant liking to working the butternut and the contrast with the walnut is very elegant in my view. I decided to keep this one myself, assigning it to duty on my work desk to house the ink bottles for my fountain pens. I used brass rods to reinforce the butt joints gluing them in with 5 minute epoxy. I finished this one using Danish oil.

Candle Holders # 5 & #6: For my lady. The laminated sides are actually cut-offs from the mahogany/alder prototype I built to guide my build of a walnut/spalted maple wedding box for a buddy. I disassembled the glued up box by cutting off the boards at the joints. And rather than toss the joints, I used them in the building of the candle holder. I also used brass rods to reinforce the joint of the top piece to the base. Danish-oil finish.

Here’s another one—walnut with butternut borders.

When I cut out the hole for the candle holder, it left a nice lip on the disk, which, rather than throwing out, I decided to make into a tree ornament.

Pen/Pencil Holder #7: My engineer Dad loves this type of stuff. He has fistfuls of pens and pencils so this one will get filled quickly. I don’t have any pictures of the one I completed for my Dad, but here’s a picture of one a fellow LJ did. I used a tung-oil finish.

And that’s a wrap for my Christmas 2012 builds.

-- "People's lives are their own rewards or punishments."





8 comments so far

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112011 posts in 2204 days


#1 posted 604 days ago

Boy have you been busy they all look great.

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View Brit's profile (online now)

Brit

5120 posts in 1470 days


#2 posted 604 days ago

I’m impressed Brad. What nice gifts to give to family and friends. They will be treasured I’m sure. Well done!

-- Andy -- Old Chinese proverb say: If you think something can't be done, don't interrupt man who is doing it.

View patron's profile

patron

13003 posts in 1968 days


#3 posted 604 days ago

very nice work brad

simple is elegant

well done

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View Don W's profile

Don W

14845 posts in 1195 days


#4 posted 604 days ago

Well written Brad. The projects look great to.

nicely done all the way around.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View jeffswildwood's profile

jeffswildwood

409 posts in 604 days


#5 posted 604 days ago

Brad, I really like these. Simple, beautiful, and well made. With a large family all I can say is “now why didn’t I think of this”. Excellent work, just beautiful!!

View Brad's profile

Brad

838 posts in 1367 days


#6 posted 603 days ago

Thank you gentlemen. I hope your Christmas was relaxing and festive.

Don, you’ve been busy yourself crafting some cool things for your lady. Nice projects!

-- "People's lives are their own rewards or punishments."

View Michael Wilson's profile

Michael Wilson

587 posts in 1118 days


#7 posted 603 days ago

Those are gorgeous. Thanks for the details. More project posts should be like this.

View Dave's profile

Dave

11150 posts in 1467 days


#8 posted 602 days ago

Brad that is a lot of very nice boxes. Well done and a lot of good pics to.
The spalted one is my favorite.

-- Superdav "No matter where you go - there you are." http://chiselandforge.com

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