Making a Small Wooden Box #5: More Detail

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Blog entry by Don posted 08-31-2007 09:58 AM 27391 reads 3 times favorited 15 comments Add to Favorites Watch
« Part 4: It's the Small Details that Matter Part 5 of Making a Small Wooden Box series Part 6: Confessions of a Box Maker »

In the last installment, I showed some of the detail work involved in making the trays for my Jewelry Box.

Here I continue with the dividers that will create the lower level compartments. There are twelve components to the lower dividers. They are tedious to make requiring patience and care to keep everything square. My intention is to eventually glue this grid-work up and insert as one piece. The reason for this that the bottom of the tray will be lined with fabric. Therefore, it’s imperative that the dividers can be easily removed so the fabric liner can be cleaned or replaced.

Here the dividers are dry assembled and checked for squareness.

In this picture I’ve inserted them into the box (still not glued) to check for fit. In the previous episode in this group, Cajunpen Bill asked how I intended to suspend the upper shelf trays. You can see from this picture that the front and rear dividers are taller that the rest of the dividers. These serve as rails for the trays to ride on. The long compartment at the front of the box (and barely visible) is for necklaces. The other slightly larger compartment will be where the ring rolls are installed. (That detail in another episode.)

Finally, here you can see the trays and lower components in place. The handles of the tray are curved and extend into the cavity created by the lid panel, otherwise, the lid would not close.

In the picture above, you can see where I’ve contoured the front of the box to make it easy to grasp the lid.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

15 comments so far

View 's profile

593 posts in 5129 days

#1 posted 08-31-2007 10:53 AM

Don, it’s official: you are the Master Of The Box-Making. Should we call you LumberBox?

View MsDebbieP's profile


18619 posts in 5318 days

#2 posted 08-31-2007 11:46 AM

this is wonderful.
WOW.. all those divider “slots”. Very complicated. but again, you make it look easy!!

-- ~ Debbie, Canada (, Young Living Wellness )

View douginaz's profile


220 posts in 5159 days

#3 posted 08-31-2007 01:18 PM

Hi Don, Amazing work. I both admire and envy your work. Small pieces like the dividers drive me crazy. I have to know how you cut the slots. Tablesaw and dado cutter? Router?

Doug in AZ.
I just love Don’s little boxes.

-- If you need craft books - please visit our small business at

View Thos. Angle's profile

Thos. Angle

4444 posts in 5119 days

#4 posted 08-31-2007 01:45 PM

AS usual, Don, I am impressed, intrigued and educated. Thanks for the education. That’s why I’m here; to learn from the masters.

-- Thos. Angle, Jordan Valley, Oregon

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 5334 days

#5 posted 08-31-2007 02:05 PM

Quote douginaz: ”I have to know how you cut the slots. Tablesaw and dado cutter? Router?”

Doug, I use a dado blade. If you look closely at the pictures, you can see the blades just below the dado slot. I like to use the dado blade, because the width of the blades can be adjusted to the exact size required.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View TomFran's profile


2964 posts in 5151 days

#6 posted 08-31-2007 02:17 PM

Don, You are good at this! This is a great education for us in box making.

Thanks for sharing all your secrets with us. Now we’ll all be able to make these (not) ;^D

-- Tom, Surfside Beach, SC - Romans 8:28

View mot's profile


4928 posts in 5194 days

#7 posted 08-31-2007 03:09 PM

BoxJock! Thanks, Don!

-- You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation. (Plato)

View Karson's profile


35276 posts in 5558 days

#8 posted 08-31-2007 03:31 PM

Don the BoxJock on LumberJock,

Great series Don.

Nice Box. Can you give some dimensions on the dividers and the compartments

-- I've been blessed with a father who liked to tinker in wood, and a wife who lets me tinker in wood. Appomattox Virginia [email protected]

View gbvinc's profile


629 posts in 5104 days

#9 posted 08-31-2007 03:47 PM

Just read the whole series. (Hard to catch up on all the good stuff when you are new to lumberjocks!) Wonderfull information, keep them coming!

View Brad_Nailor's profile


2545 posts in 5114 days

#10 posted 08-31-2007 07:01 PM

Awesome! That box looks really nice. I love little compartments. Thanks for showing us how it’s done! You should offically be dubbed “The Box Jock”


View Bill Cowan's profile

Bill Cowan

110 posts in 5263 days

#11 posted 08-31-2007 07:17 PM

Don. this is really turning out great! I am literally dieing to get back on some boxes. The wife is about to kill me since I pushed aside her J-Chest to finish other projects.

Looking at these dividers reminds me that I always struggle here to get the dimensions spot on. Especially since I use felt on the ends that touch the sides of the box, I have to account for those. Usually on every box on some portion of the dividers I compund and error, and before I know it, I’m all of whack.

These look good and I like the curve added on the top ones.

Your friend,

-- ICN, Bill, (

View David's profile


110 posts in 4505 days

#12 posted 12-25-2010 09:16 AM

Don – how do you cut your half lap joints for the dividers? i find that on small pieces with a power tool i get tear out but with hand tools i cant get the cuts perfect. Your insight would be much appreciated. Thanks! David

-- dcutter

View Don's profile


2603 posts in 5334 days

#13 posted 12-25-2010 01:36 PM

I use a Irwin Marathon Trim/Finish Saw Blade, 12” x 72T saw blade. Make sure your blade is clean and recently sharpened. I can’t recall the species of timber used for these dividers, either Beach or Maple. If your blade is clean and sharp you shouldn’t experience tear-out.

-- CanuckDon "I just love small wooden boxes!"

View Dusty56's profile


11863 posts in 4845 days

#14 posted 02-25-2011 02:43 AM

Hi Don , for some reason , there aren’t any pictures showing on this page at this time : (

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

View fRANKIEB21's profile


5 posts in 4876 days

#15 posted 10-16-2014 12:28 AM

It’s now several years later and the pic’s still don’t appear

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