So ... how DO I do this???

  • Advertise with us

« back to Woodworking Skill Share forum

Forum topic by NBeener posted 10-12-2009 02:21 AM 1180 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3170 days

10-12-2009 02:21 AM

The lid to my wife’s sewing box broke. Conveniently, it’s made of wood (!). Figured I’d try to bang one out today.

Had a $0.51 piece of cull (2×6) from the Depot.

The original top frame is 1/2” thick, so I surfaced the cull piece so it was good and square/smooth, did a re-saw on my TS to get about a 5/8” thick piece from which to cut my pieces.

I traced the pieces onto the 5/8” board,
Cut them close with my jigsaw,
Using rasps, and then files, shaped them as best as I could to the originals,
Using my TS, cut mortises and tenons (for lack of a better term) into the pieces (still got some squaring up to do, there….),....

But then … I tried to create the rabbet in the pieces so that the box’s original padded top could be flush-mounted, as before.

That was a mess.

One piece (one of the long ones) came out rough … but workable. I used a 1/4” kerf router bit and did it freehand (prolly’ a big mistake).

When I tried the short pieces, though, I just ripped them apart.

What IS the best way to do this? Is this where I’m supposed to build some sort of router jig to get the shape right?? Should I true up the four pieces, square them up properly glue them up, clamp them, and THEN try to router the rabbets in the built frame??

And … since all of my pieces look like a drunk guy did them … how WOULD YOU do this (if you dared), from the start??

I don’t have a router table (yet) or a shaper or a spindle sander or a band saw or a scroll saw or ….

Trying the picture thing again…. There’s three pictures. Kindly click through to the album for a bit more info….

Sewing Box

I quit for the day, but … will get back at it again in a day or so….


-- -- Neil

7 replies so far

View grizzman's profile


7836 posts in 3300 days

#1 posted 10-12-2009 03:41 AM

well i see the piecies are curved…i was going to suggest useing a dato blade to cut your rabbits…but i think the trick is first having a very sharp router bit..and the other is the rate of feed…if you try and go to fast it can eat it up…if your doing it free hand it is also a way to get a rough finish…if you have a router table and get the right rate of feed, then you will have a smooth cut..i now see you dont have a router table..that is part of the problem..if they were not curved i would say do it on the table saw…but they are and so a router table is the best way to do it…otherwise your going to be stuck with a rough piece and will have to clean them up…i dont know if this helps…...

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

View panther's profile


59 posts in 3239 days

#2 posted 10-12-2009 04:04 AM

glue them together then a rabbiting bit with a bearing and rout slow

-- you must live for something or die for nothing (rambo)

View John in SD's profile

John in SD

140 posts in 3809 days

#3 posted 10-12-2009 04:50 AM

Lots of good comment here….but since you dont have a router table and most probably not a good supply of various bits and since you can resaw to some degree on the table saw…maybe you could resaw your material to half the thickness that you need and make two frames …one 3/8 inch wider than the other in each direction….then when glued together they would be what you are after…...with the 3/8 inch rabbet….....maybe?

-- Life used to be soooo much simpler!!!!

View davidpettinger's profile


661 posts in 3197 days

#4 posted 10-12-2009 04:59 AM

Try this? Take a piece of sanded one side plywood and apply double faced tape to the backside of the pieces then press them in place on the plywood. Now youve stablized the pieces. Next, take another piece of plywood larger than the other. Cut an opening init lager than the frame you want to rout. Leve room to fit the bit on the out side of the frame if you need to rout that. This gives your router base more stability. You may need some small pieces of double faced tape under the second sheet of ply, but you need it flush with the piece you want to work. Now go head and rout your work. This should work. By not gluing your pieces first, you will be able to gently pry them up with a putty knife, then glue them together after.

-- Methods are many,Principles are few.Methods change often,Principles never do.

View a1Jim's profile (online now)


117090 posts in 3574 days

#5 posted 10-12-2009 04:59 AM

you can make a quick router table with a piece of ply or an old door and then rabbit it out.

-- wood crafting & woodworking classes

View rickf16's profile


390 posts in 3578 days

#6 posted 10-12-2009 05:50 AM

Here’s what I would do:

Glue the original back and make a template from card stock paper. Transfer that to a piece of 1/2 MDF and cut it out with your jig saw, inside and out. Cut it strong, then sand to the line. Now you have a solid template. Double face tape your template to your work piece. DaveR has good advice, use a rabbiting bit that has different size bearings. Start from the largest bearing and go down in size until you reach the rabbit depth you need. Try each pass on scrap first, then the real thing. Don’t forget to set the bit height also. You can use a flush trim bit for the outside of the work piece. You said your work piece was 5/8 thick, that may cause a problem as the bearing on the router bit may rub your work bench. You will probably have to raise the work piece off of the bench. Double face tape it to a smaller surface or clamp it so that the area you are working on hangs over the edge of your work bench.

Got any questions you can PM me

Just my 2 cents

-- Rick

View NBeener's profile


4816 posts in 3170 days

#7 posted 10-12-2009 10:12 PM

Great suggestions. Creative suggestions. Many thanks!

And the answer is … today … I popped for a $70 router table by Craftsman.

I think it will be good enough. From the little reading I did about them, it really does seem like the best way to do this project, and the best way to do many other things I’m looking at doing down the road.

As always, you guys are great. When I get this one knocked out, I’ll put up a pic or two.


-- -- Neil

Have your say...

You must be signed in to reply.

DISCLAIMER: Any posts on LJ are posted by individuals acting in their own right and do not necessarily reflect the views of LJ. LJ will not be held liable for the actions of any user.

Latest Projects | Latest Blog Entries | Latest Forum Topics