Whether simple or
elaborate in design, jewelry boxes and keepsake boxes always make
treasured gifts for family and friends. This particular box is made from
highly figured woods using some unique construction techniques, including
corners with keyed accents that give it a one-of-a-kind look.
Begin by making your wood selection. You won't need much, so you could
actually make this box from scraps you already have laying around the
shop. We made ours from quarter-sawn red oak, walnut and spalted beach,
but with the wide variety of unique, exotic woods available today through
a host of reputable suppliers, your options are virtually limitless.
Sides and Ends
Rough cut some 3/4" stock for the Sides (A)
and Ends (B)
to approximately 3-1/2" x 29", then plane your stock down to 1/2" using
Planer. Once you've attained the desired 1/2" thickness, joint one
edge, then rip and joint the opposing edge to a finished width of 3-3/16".
Next, tilt your saw
table to 45-degrees, then cut and miter the Sides (A)
and Ends (B)
to length, as per the Bill
Using your Dado
Router Package or Shopsmith
Pro Fence System Router Table with a 1/4"
Straight Router Bit , cut 1/4" wide by slightly deeper than 1/4" grooves
in these pieces that will accept the boxTop
a 1/4" wide test groove cut in a piece of scrap wood for use in checking
the fit of the Bottom (C)
and assembled Top pieces as you bring them to the required thickness
in the following step.
Top and Bottom
Rough cut two pieces of stock for the Bottom (C)
and inside Top (D)
from 3/4" stock to approximately 5" x 8-1/2". Next, resaw another piece
of (approx.) 5" x 8-1/2" stock to a 1/8" thickness, then run it through
your Planer to attain a 1/16" thickness for the Outside Top (E).
you can't find a large enough piece of "accent" wood for the Outside
you can always resaw a small piece into a series of 1/8" thick pieces.
Then arrange them into an interesting pattern and glue them together
with the aid of masking tape and rubber bands. Lay a weight of some
sort on top to keep them flat while they dry overnight. Allow to dry
for 24 hours.
Thickness plane the
to 1/4" and the Inside Top (D)
to slightly over 3/16". Leave both pieces oversized for now.
carpet tape, attach the good face of your Outside Top (E)
to a flat piece of plywood, then thin them down to the required 1/16"
thickness using your Belt
Sander or a hand plane.
Do NOT use our high
adhesion Double-Stick Tape for this task, as it will create too tight
of a bond to allow for easy removal of the thin Top piece from the plywood
after planing without breakage.
Next, laminate (glue
and clamp) the Outside Top (E)
to the Inside Top (D).
Once the glue has dried completely, cut the assembled Top (D
& E) and Bottom (C)
to their finished size of 4-1/2" x 7-1/2". Run the Top through your Thickness
Planer -- with the Inside Top (D)
up -- and plane it to the required 1/4" thickness.
Assembly of the
Finish sand all inside surfaces of the box and dry fit them together.
If everything fits properly, apply a small amount of glue to the mitered
corners of the sides (A)
and ends (B)
and clamp them together. Be sure to use only a small amount of glue and
wipe away any excess immediately with a cloth. You'll make a series of
saw cuts later to separate the Top of the Box from the Bottom.
Allow the completed
box assembly to dry thoroughly for 24 hours, then sand it lightly. It's
best to hand sand the Box at this stage to avoid removing too much stock.
Forming the Keyed
joints with a special Jig
Building and using the special Keyed Joint Jig shown here will
add strength and class to your finished Box. When the Jig
is used in conjunction with a 1/4" Dado Blade, you'll get the correct
width groove with a flat bottom. NOTE: You could also use the Shopsmith
Router Table Kit with a 1/4"
Straight Router Bit to perform this operation.
Be sure to allow
an extra 3/16" between the top and middle Keys, since this will
be removed when you cut the Box assembly apart later to form the Lid.
Thickness plane the
dark accent stock (walnut in our case) that you'll use to create the 1/4"
so they'll fit snugly in the 1/4" grooves you cut for them, above. Cut
your Keys off of your stock at a 45-degree angle, then use your
Sander to form a slight concave dish on one edge of each
Key to provide a little extra glue space.
Glue the Keys
into their slots. Once they've dried completely (12 hours or so), use
Saw or Bandsaw to carefully saw off the excess Key stock. Finally,
use your Belt Sander to sand the Keys flush with the Box surfaces.
Lid from the Box
Using your Table saw with a blade that takes an approximate 1/8" kerf
10" Carbide Tipped Combination Blade or Hollow
Ground Blade will work nicely for this job), cut off the Box Lid by
guiding the assembled Box against your Rip Fence. Set your blade's depth-of-cut
to slightly more than the thickness of your stock. See the drawing for
the exact dimensions of where to make these cuts.