My first URN Bubinga and Maple

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Project by Blackie_ posted 08-20-2013 03:09 PM 1979 views 4 times favorited 17 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I never really gave into the importance of an URN viewing them as projects until I was requested to build one, it’s a whole different perspective as I got a first hand experience of just how important to detail and making sure it’s a fitting final resting place.

Pictured I was requested to build this URN for a couple that had lost their daughter at a young age of 23 to cancer early this year, a lot of heart, soul and passion went into building this box (URN) and it was an honor that they chose me, this was a huge challenge for me as it being my first URN along with the importance behind something of this caliber, It also includes my very first dado inlay for the cross along with a kerfed lid as all of my other lids were made by way of 45s (cope and stick) that’s the cabinet maker in me so the lid design was also a first and a learning experience. I have to give thanks to Big Al Boxguy for his help with the inlay and lid designs along with Andy and his help, I made this box in the image of his URN posted a long while back, only I made a few design changes to fit my purpose, the measurements that were given from the customer for the ash container were 9 1/2” x 5” x 7” so I added a 1/4” buffer on the width, Length and height just for this reason so it should fit inside of the insert, the insert is also removable and is the resting place for the tray to rest on so the down fall and design flaw would be if they had to remove the insert so that the container can fit then the tray would not have a place to rest, the reason for this design is because they want access to the container as they plan on spreading her ashes at various locations so I included the spoon for the purpose this was my idea to add the spoon. The spoon I made from a single 1” x 2” x 9” piece of Mahogany via the band saw and used a 1 3/8” forstner bit to drill the hole then molded it on the spindle sander. The box is made out of Bubinga, I used Maple for the corner splines, the cross, the tray along with the insert and the spoon I made from Mahogany. It was made so it would hold the container the ashes were stored in and also accessible as they want to spread her ashes and thus I made the spoon for this purpose.

The box measures 11 1/2” x 7” x 9” not including the bottom base, include 1/2” on all sides and height with base, I finished it with a single coat of tung oil, 3 coats of my own wipe poly mix 50 / 50 blend and a final wipe with paste wax.

Thanks for viewing and comments are always enjoyed.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

17 comments so far

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

21303 posts in 3251 days

#1 posted 08-20-2013 04:36 PM

That is just beautiful, Randy. That could get you $800 or more at a mortuary!!............Jim

-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

View HillbillyShooter's profile


5811 posts in 2438 days

#2 posted 08-20-2013 04:41 PM

Beautiful work—very well thought out and finely crafted. This project is a great tribute to your woodworking skills! I can think of no great honor and compliment than for the parents to commission you to do this URN.

-- John C. -- "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth." George Washington

View Andy's profile


1698 posts in 4054 days

#3 posted 08-20-2013 05:40 PM

Very classy looking Blackie, you put a lot of work in this piece and it shows.

-- If I can do it, so can you.

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3449 days

#4 posted 08-20-2013 05:42 PM

its very beautiful , very nice job, its always fun to learn new things with these boxes, and i know what you mean as it is really an honor to be asked to make these urn’s, i just made one myself a few weeks back , and will post it a bit later, thanks for the project, always enjoy seeing your work

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

View Boxguy's profile


2740 posts in 2413 days

#5 posted 08-20-2013 08:34 PM

Blackie, nice work. Great finish. This is a beautiful urn. I see dividing the top into thirds worked. I would not have included runners for the tray on the ends. With the Bubinga behind, some circular cut outs in the maple rails might be interesting if you do something like this again. I know this project took quite a bit of thought and design strategy on your part. It looks like a great success. Thanks for the special mention. Keep boxing and keep posting.

-- Big Al in IN

View Woodwrecker's profile


4191 posts in 3721 days

#6 posted 08-20-2013 08:41 PM

You honor that young soul with your beautiful piece.
Good job my friend.

View freddyaudiophile's profile


58 posts in 2196 days

#7 posted 08-20-2013 09:48 PM

Absolutely fantastic work. It is very impressive to say the least…

-- freddyaudiophile, Fredericton, NB, Canada

View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 2658 days

#8 posted 08-20-2013 11:24 PM

Jim Thanks I had no idea what the outcome was going to be upon completion, I’m a far cry from that amount and really had no idea, thanks again for that insight.

John thank you so much for your kind words, means a lot.

Andy Thanks to your design for aiding me in my build decision.

Grizz Thanks and like wise you are one of the elites here on LJ I too enjoy seeing your work.

Big Al Thanks, I really didn’t have a forward view of the outcome just kind of winged my way through it, I had no idea what the outcome was going to be and now I know, I also know what all is involved in making one, a three week project it was.

Eric Thanks for your kind words as well.

Freddy Thanks to you too, I believe I can rest now knowing what my limits are what I can and can’t do.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View DocSavage45's profile


8699 posts in 2988 days

#9 posted 08-20-2013 11:56 PM


Congratulations! You figured it out! Nice work. Especially important to the family.

Your journey is one foot in front of the other. :)

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View aussiedave's profile


3114 posts in 1970 days

#10 posted 08-21-2013 12:21 AM

Excellent job Blackie… and a beautiful final resting place for a loved one…superb looking box.

-- Dave.......If at first you don’t succeed redefine success....

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2836 days

#11 posted 08-21-2013 12:26 AM

Nice job Randy.
My heart goes out to the family of that young lady taken way before her time.

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

View littlecope's profile


3071 posts in 3648 days

#12 posted 08-21-2013 01:49 AM

My sincere Condolences to the Young Woman’s Family…
But Congratulations go to you Randy on a Great Job…
They entrusted you with quite a responsibility
and as serious a request as it gets…
and you delivered!
You done good my Friend…

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View Chris Cook's profile

Chris Cook

326 posts in 2427 days

#13 posted 08-21-2013 02:11 AM

What a marvelous job! I love bubinga and it turned out great!

-- Chris, "all we are is sawdust in the dust collector""

View hoss12992's profile


4068 posts in 2039 days

#14 posted 08-21-2013 04:55 AM

Great job. Sorry for the family’s loss

-- The Old Rednek Workshop

View djmcl's profile


3 posts in 1886 days

#15 posted 08-21-2013 07:56 AM

I bet people are dying to get urns like that. Well done!

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