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Building a Ditty Box--first project for my nephew

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Blog series by CharlesA updated 07-24-2014 12:04 AM 5 parts 10349 reads 9 comments total

Part 1: Entry One--Learning Woodworking Skills

07-18-2014 08:13 PM by CharlesA | 1 comment »

My high school age great nephew is staying with us for a week to learn some woodworking skills. I gave hime a list of possible projects and we ended up with this ditty box:We bought the plans from the website, partially so they could be part of the educational process. We began with a tour of the shop and a the standard safety talk. He’s taking things quite seriously. We’re going to make the box out of curly maple and cherry. We start out learning some of the basics of han...

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Part 2: Entry Two: Adding some power tools to the mix, getting the first boards finished

07-18-2014 08:25 PM by CharlesA | 4 comments »

He really adapted well to the shop. He shows respect, but not fear for the spinning blades. He’s now ripped and cross-cutted a number of boards. After hand planing, using the thickness planer, and cutting the boards to size, we had the basic curly maple box pieces made After introducing hand tools on maple, he became a big fan of cherry. We had a long board that was bowed. He got a big dose of the fore plane to flatten that bow. It actually worked! Although he is doing the ...

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Part 3: Mortising the old fashioned way and a first panel glue-up

07-19-2014 06:43 PM by CharlesA | 1 comment »

We’ve continue on in the project. After crosscutting his first board by hand—getting him comfortable with hand sawing—He did a some rough crosscuts on the miter saw and some finer ones with the crosscut sled on the table saw. Here is his first cut on the miter saw. His commitment to doing the cuts safely is really comforting. The box has a small divided shelf held in place by mortises in the box. We’re doing them the old-fashioned way so he can learn to use ch...

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Part 4: Learning some more new skills, completing the main box

07-21-2014 12:40 PM by CharlesA | 2 comments »

I haven’t been taking as many pictures the last bit, but we’ve made a lot of progress. We we neared the completion of the main box, we needed to make some bevels on the bottom trim. Rather than resort to the router, we went for the more hand finished look, making the bevels with a plane.They came out really well, and after assembly, he also beveled the corners as you’ll see below. It all turned out very nice. Next came the glue up of the bottom trim pieces and the inst...

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Part 5: Triumphal Finish, A Long Entry

07-24-2014 12:04 AM by CharlesA | 1 comment »

My nephew didn’t want any more pics to go up until he had a chance to show it to his mother and grandmother (my sister), so I haven’t posted any update. However, since today was return to home day, all may be revealed. After finishing the main box, he cut and glued four cleats to the underside of the top. He clamped up the front and back cleats first, and then snuck up on the length of side cleats. They fit perfectly. I guess I didn’t take any pictures of him cuttin...

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