(In the) Court of the Crimson King #1: Initial concept, drawings and how am I going to do this one!

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Blog entry by BritBoxmaker posted 09-27-2012 03:51 PM 2344 reads 4 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch
no previous part Part 1 of (In the) Court of the Crimson King series Part 2: Lets get this party started »

As I said in the project post….

In 1969 a group call King Crimson recorded an album called Court of the Crimson King. This box is named after the title track. As well as the King himself there are several other characters in the song including; the Purple Piper, the Yellow Jester and the Black Queen. I have been struggling for many years to design a box which features all of these.

Michelletwo came up with the inspiration in her Color project post. The slots in this form are ideal to place the colours mentioned above, behind. After a few hours fiddling around in TurboCAD I came up with a 3D model giving views like this.

Isometric view

View from side.

Some decisions were easy. Padauk for the main body. Purpleheart, Pau Amarello and something Black for the three other colours. Box type and construction method, Shell and EZ mitre. Then things started to get tricky.

Initially I’d thought of two layers or shells. 3mm thick Padauk for the outside shell and the same thickness pieces of the other woods for the inside shell. Having two shells made from lots of separate pieces, some not immediately connected on all edges to others was going to be inherently weak.

Whilst deciding whether I had enough Ebony to make it this way it occurred to me that I had some black dyed Birch veneer left over from other projects. If I made it three layer instead of two I could use veneer for the two other colours. purple and yellow. These could be attached to a contiguous Sycamore inner layer. Giving the required strength to the design. In order of layers it would go like this

Layer 1, 2.5mm skin of Sycamore

Layer 2, with 0.5mm veneer added

Layer 3, 3mm Padauk added

Fine so far. As it was going to be an EZ Mitre box I could veneer straight on to the base, Sycamore layer. At first I thought thats where I would mitre it, giving me a shell like the second picture. I’d then make up a separate Padauk shell and machine the slots into it. Then glue the two together.

It didn’t take long thinking this one over to come up with two shortcomings of this approach.

1. The two shells might not fit together very tightly.
2. Horrendous mental images of pieces flying everywhere as I table sawed through the Padauk shell.

I was going to have to layer the Padauk on the veneer layer and mitre the whole board.

Hold on though. The central slots were easy as they were vertical throughout their whole length but the ones either side were vertical on the top but angled at 60° on the sides. I had trouble reconciling this in my mind but it had to be so. Reorganising the TurboCAD model into a single sheet showed me it must be so.

So, happy that I’d seen it in 3D (but still inwardly struggling with it) this was how it would be.

Stay tuned for part two when I finally get to make some sawdust.

Be seeing you.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

7 comments so far

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4168 posts in 3220 days

#1 posted 09-27-2012 07:44 PM

Martyn, I cant believe that

it was that far back :)

It sounds a wonderful “wee” challenge that you

have set yorself

I wait with baited breath


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View Philip's profile


1277 posts in 2903 days

#2 posted 09-27-2012 08:51 PM

You sir, are a box genius. Looking forward to it.

-- I never finish anyth

View BertFlores58's profile


1698 posts in 3286 days

#3 posted 09-27-2012 10:44 PM

Amazing new technique of layering. Sandwitching boards before construction, my experience previously, yields to uneven depth cut after sanding. Now, I know the secret to improve this shortcoming. Thanks again for sharing a new adventure in boxmaking.

-- Bert

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


18545 posts in 4040 days

#4 posted 09-27-2012 11:53 PM

It makes my head spin trying to imagine how this could be done! ;-) Awesome work you produce!

-- Bob in WW ~ "some old things are lovely, warm still with life ... of the forgotten men who made them." - D.H. Lawrence

View Gregn's profile


1642 posts in 3347 days

#5 posted 09-28-2012 03:08 AM

That was one of my favorite albums as a teenager. I like how you used the song for the inspiration of this project and have tied the song into the box. Look forward to the finished project.

-- I don't make mistakes, I have great learning lessons, Greg

View LittlePaw's profile


1571 posts in 3442 days

#6 posted 09-28-2012 06:18 AM

I can hardly wait to see the finished box, Martyn!

-- LittlePAW - The sweetest sound in my shop, next to Mozart, is what a hand plane makes slicing a ribbon.

View BritBoxmaker's profile


4611 posts in 3400 days

#7 posted 09-28-2012 11:12 AM

Forgot to mention that this is a post construction blog. the completed project is viewable here.

-- Martyn -- Boxologist, Pattern Juggler and Candyman of the visually challenging.

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