First Box #8: Sanded, tinted & shellac'd

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Blog entry by Bret posted 12-20-2009 12:46 AM 5184 reads 1 time favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 7: Glued up, back to the table saw Part 8 of First Box series no next part

Today I wandered out the the shop to continue work on this box. I sanded the whole thing to 320, using sandpaper glued to a jointed block to get the corneres and flat surfaces and so I wouldn’t round over my chamfer. I then cut recesses into the box body using a 1/2” chisel and the same sandpaper block. So far so good.


Then, thinking I was ready (have you caught the step I missed?), I mixed up some tinted shellac using a technique from The Wood Whisperer. I then applied this inside and out using a paper towel. While it was a bit rough to handle near the end, it went pretty well up until I knocked over my dixie cup of shellac and had to finish the piece by soaking the shellac up from my workbench top and applying it. I think it’s turned out pretty well, though.


And the top, which I used the same tinted shellac on since I figured the light tint wouldn’t really affect this darker walnut.


If you zoom in, you’ll see that not every key fit perfectly. Glue pushed a few a bit out and I caused some problems when chiseling out the key slots by rounding off some of the edges. I know there are things I could have done to fix them but I’m under time pressure and will simply call them all “signatures”. I think my wife won’t hold them against me.

Tomorrow I’ll sand the whole thing with 400 to pop the grain and then (oh, look what I forgot to do!) cut the corresponding hinge recesses in the top. Silly me. Then, flocking the interior and finishing the piece with several coats of seal-a-cell and/or wiping varnish. Then the trays, though they may have to wait until after Christmas.

-- Woodworking is easy as 3.14159265358979323846264338327950288419716939937510...

5 comments so far

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 5216 days

#1 posted 12-20-2009 02:19 AM

Look’n good.

Those keys expand with the glue and want to pop out. Next time maybe stagger the length of the keys with deep ones on the top, middle, and bottom and then with shallower keys in between. They eye always tries to follow a straight line, so we try to fool it.

The tinted shellac looks fantastic,

-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 5156 days

#2 posted 12-20-2009 03:07 AM

Bret, the box looks pretty good to me. The finished box is going to be nice to see.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 4764 days

#3 posted 12-20-2009 06:57 PM

Fantastic box. Love that walnut lid. Looking forward to seeing the finished project.


-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View Dusty56's profile


11868 posts in 5022 days

#4 posted 12-20-2009 07:47 PM

Impressive so far …keep up the great work !

-- I'm absolutely positive that I couldn't be more uncertain!

View bigike's profile


4059 posts in 4622 days

#5 posted 12-20-2009 08:24 PM

sweeet looken box i knew it would come out great.

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://[email protected]

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