Shop Notes #3: "No End In Sight" The documentary.

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Blog entry by vipond33 posted 09-22-2013 02:44 AM 3466 reads 32 times favorited 20 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 2: Side by side finishes. Part 3 of Shop Notes series no next part

This is a trick that many, if not most of you, already know.

But it’s a good one and bears repeating. Quite recently I read this: “but I am still working on trying to make a box with no start and no finish and thus far have only been able to wrap my boxes on three sides”. (noted on KK’s fine project).

The process has been around for a long time, but I remember independently figuring this one out a while ago and thinking what a smile it would bring to the average guy that loves the very look of wood. So it’s “Never an old joke, just a new audience”, and here goes.

Start with a piece of wood twice your side thickness’s x the length of your long side and short side combined x the height you want. Draw a center line and mark the sides and angles as shown. Put some clear identifying marks on it too, otherwise it may be very confusing at glue up time. You might even accidentally reverse it for height, right when things are (half end grain) so quickly drying.

The technique is simple, even though what you are doing is making a box inside out.

Rip the board, dress the faces lightly and free up the lengths. Make your miters with the least amount of waste, do your other stuff (hinges, bottom, etc.) and then assemble.

Bear in mind a few things.

What you’ll end up with is a four cornered mirror match, not a waterfall (which is quite impossible), but still a very pleasing effect. The box strobes around the corners.

Flat sawn is the best top surface if you can manage it. There will be less “jump” at the corners because the edge grain will not show very much deviation through machining.

The limit to your box or frame height is the capacity of your re-saw. If it’s a band-saw cut you’ve got to be very straight. Any material machined away on those inside faces will lessen the effect.

This can easily be done with veneer as well if you have four consecutive flitches.


-- gene@toronto.ontario.canada : dovetail free since '53, critiques always welcome.

20 comments so far

View eddie's profile


8565 posts in 2850 days

#1 posted 09-22-2013 03:16 AM

thanks Gene ,got to give this a try

-- Jesus Is Alright with me

View siavosh's profile


674 posts in 2107 days

#2 posted 09-22-2013 03:29 AM

This is great, thanks for posting. It’s going on my to-make list.

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

View PASs's profile


595 posts in 3335 days

#3 posted 09-22-2013 03:48 AM

Favorite !

-- Pete, "It isn't broken, you just aren't using it right."

View Birks's profile


109 posts in 2465 days

#4 posted 09-22-2013 05:32 AM

OOh thank you!

View mbfunke's profile


76 posts in 2895 days

#5 posted 09-22-2013 05:41 AM

Much appreciated! Really.

-- Mike Funke

View BTimmons's profile


2303 posts in 2721 days

#6 posted 09-22-2013 06:13 AM

That’s a brilliant trick. Going in the favorites.

-- Brian Timmons -

View jaykaypur's profile


4017 posts in 2644 days

#7 posted 09-22-2013 11:08 AM

This looks like a great little tip/trick to use…and to pass on. Thanks.

-- Use it up, Wear it out --------------- Make it do, Or do without!

View ken_c's profile


325 posts in 3398 days

#8 posted 09-22-2013 11:09 AM

thanks for this tip.

View gbear's profile


517 posts in 4335 days

#9 posted 09-22-2013 12:56 PM

Very nice tip…thanks Gene.

-- gbear, Carmichael, CA

View rrdesigns's profile


532 posts in 3422 days

#10 posted 09-22-2013 01:50 PM

Why didn’t I think of that! Glad you did. Thanks.

-- Beth, Oklahoma, Rambling Road Designs

View balidoug's profile


495 posts in 2715 days

#11 posted 09-22-2013 01:51 PM

great tip, Gene, thanks.

-- From such crooked wood as that which man is made of, nothing straight can be fashioned. Immanuel Kant

View DocSavage45's profile


8732 posts in 3079 days

#12 posted 09-22-2013 03:57 PM

You da man!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View shipwright's profile


8185 posts in 3034 days

#13 posted 09-22-2013 08:28 PM

A good tip is always a good tip old or new Gene and this is a great one.
You know grain matching is a personal favorite game of mine.
Thanks for posting another insightful shop note.

-- Paul M ..............the early bird may get the worm but it’s the second mouse that gets the cheese!

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 3223 days

#14 posted 09-22-2013 09:38 PM

Thanks for the tip.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 2926 days

#15 posted 09-23-2013 01:02 AM

Gene, Great tutorial! Now everyone can make perfect boxes – NOT!

That is an amazing box! What is that wood?

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

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