Simple Box Making - Issues cutting off the lid

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Forum topic by Brian Anderson - UBWoodman posted 12-11-2014 07:56 PM 1320 views 0 times favorited 8 replies Add to Favorites Watch
View Brian Anderson - UBWoodman's profile

Brian Anderson - UBWoodman

60 posts in 2979 days

12-11-2014 07:56 PM

Hello all…

I am making some small simple boxes with box joints. When it comes to sawing the lid off I have a few issues. I am using a combo blade approx 1/8” and I have tried it making two parallel side cut first then the ends and I have tried it one side followed by another all around the box. My fence is locked down but both times the cuts were slightly different forcing me to try and even it on the belt sander to get the lid to fit flush, this is never perfect. Is there some trick to this I dont know or do I need a thinner kerf or different type of blade?

Thanks for the help



8 replies so far

View rantingrich's profile


372 posts in 1372 days

#1 posted 12-11-2014 08:00 PM

If you are simply cutting a BOX top off for a lid, I assume a straight cut, why are you not using the deepest (Widest) Bands saw blade you can?

You should, as well as everyone else, watch this bandsaw clinic video…..

-- Rich

View Bill White's profile

Bill White

4949 posts in 3987 days

#2 posted 12-11-2014 08:06 PM

I don’t cut completely through when cutting off the tops. Just almost, then finish with a fine tooth Japanese pull saw. Some folks will cut and then place a thin piece as thick as the kerf taped on to the box for the final cut.
I just find that the hand sawing doesn’t create the problem of a potential disaster.


View ShaneA's profile


6956 posts in 2625 days

#3 posted 12-11-2014 08:12 PM

You may want to check the fence alignment on your table saw. If you get it dialed in, you should end up pretty darn near parallel all the way around. A block, plane if you have one can help you clean up any irregularities.

I also just cut slightly short of all the way through and finish with a box knife.

View Brian Anderson - UBWoodman's profile

Brian Anderson - UBWoodman

60 posts in 2979 days

#4 posted 12-11-2014 08:29 PM

@Rich—Thanks for link – thats good information, I should have stated I am using a table saw.

Thanks Bill and Shane, I completely forgot about that trick, I do think its more an issue of the box flexing the more cuts I make. I have seen video of someone sawing most of the way through and then finish by hand..wish I had remembered that but I have several more to try it on. Thats going to be a big help.


View jmartel's profile


7956 posts in 2176 days

#5 posted 12-11-2014 09:06 PM

Brian, make a few wedges that you can stick in the kerfs after you finish a side. That will keep the lid from flopping around and messing up your cut.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View RRBOU's profile


176 posts in 2319 days

#6 posted 12-11-2014 11:13 PM

If your box is not at 90° in all directions and your blade aligned at 90° to the table you will never get a perfect cut. It is best to just cut slightly less than the thickness and then finish the cut with a razor knife or a very fine saw, or just deal with flushing the cuts down with sand paper. The bigger your box the more the error will be pronounced if everything is not at 90°

-- If guns cause crime all of mine are defective Randy

View Brian Anderson - UBWoodman's profile

Brian Anderson - UBWoodman

60 posts in 2979 days

#7 posted 12-17-2014 02:56 PM

Thanks everyone for the advice, I cut most of the way through and used shims before making the last cut, came out perfect.



View waho6o9's profile


8207 posts in 2603 days

#8 posted 12-17-2014 03:03 PM

Nice save!

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