Unorthodox Bandsaw Box #1: Box making steps

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Blog entry by Jim Jakosh posted 12-11-2011 09:42 PM 10324 reads 38 times favorited 28 comments Add to Favorites Watch
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My wife asked me when I was going to make her a box to keep our business cards in when we travel. I had made a few boxes but never one upon request- especially from her. So I wanted this to be special. I went about making a bandsaw box in an unconventional way and I was having a problem with the hinge design. One night I had a dream of how to do it and wrote it down right away in the morning. Here are the steps I used to make the box using mainly the bandsaw and the scroll saw for one tough part.

I forgot to mention one thing. If you can’t see the complete picture- right mouse on it and click view image.

I had these two very figured pieces of spalted beech on my bench and had planned to make bandsaw boxes one day. Here is what I started with:

I cut it to make an interior of 2 1/4×2 1/4×3 5/8 with 5/8” on top, front and both sides and 1/4” bottom and 5/16” back.
Then I cut off the top and bottom:

Then I cut out the inside by making straight cuts to remove the back and mitered cuts to remove the front.This was so there was no seam showing on the front when I put it back together. I saved the inside block for another project:

I drilled the back for the hinge pins before I cut it apart:

Then I had to use the scroll saw to create the hidden integral hinge:

The scroll saw was the thinnest blade I had but it did leave a space that I had to shim with some .017” washers to remove any side play for the lid.I punched out two of them using some aluminum flashing materila and cut two 1/8” steel pins for the hinges:

With a little sanding for clearance, the hinge works:

the back, front and sides were then glued together with a block to hold the back parts straight. I sanded the inside of these parts except in the area where I cut them apart. They mated great there.

The top and bottom were glued on and I did a final cut on the jointer and miter saw to make sure the assembly was square.

I don’t have any more pictures of the next operations, but I next cut the top loose along the hinge line all the way around and began shaping the block by cutting a radius on the top, then the front and then the sides and I blended all the surface together on the belt sander and orbital sander.
I had this rectangular block left from the center and it was so pretty, I made an obelisk out of it and will post a short blog on how I do them next.


-- Jim Jakosh.....Practical Wood Products...........Learn something new every day!! Variety is the Spice of Life!!

28 comments so far

View SPalm's profile


5338 posts in 5225 days

#1 posted 12-11-2011 10:28 PM

Very very nice job.
Wonderful wood too.


-- -- I'm no rocket surgeon

View degoose's profile


7286 posts in 4698 days

#2 posted 12-11-2011 10:32 PM

Sneaky… this will have to wait till I have a scrollsaw…

-- Be safe.

View omextreme's profile


49 posts in 3720 days

#3 posted 12-11-2011 10:50 PM

As soon as I can unpack the new bandsaw I will have to try this!

View rance's profile


4281 posts in 4503 days

#4 posted 12-11-2011 11:59 PM

Yeah, never waste any wood. Especially any Rotten wood that looks like THAT! That is one very very nice box there Jim. The technique almost reminds me of an Andy box. Thanks for sharing.

Edit: Oh, you say you “cut the top loose along the hinge line all the way around”. With what saw? I’m guessing a very thin Japanese pull saw.

-- Backer boards, stop blocks, build oversized, and never buy a hand plane--

View RussInMichigan's profile


600 posts in 4123 days

#5 posted 12-12-2011 01:29 AM

Good job, Jim.

View robert triplett's profile

robert triplett

1566 posts in 4448 days

#6 posted 12-12-2011 02:19 AM

Nicely done Jim. You have reminded me that I bought a slab of
spalted maple in Oregon this summer. That would be a good use for a bit of it. Thanks for the details of your build.

-- Robert, so much inspiration here, and now time to work!!!

View Grumpy's profile


26812 posts in 5194 days

#7 posted 12-12-2011 02:30 AM

Well done Jim. Thanks for showing.

-- Grumpy - "Always look on the bright side of life"- Monty Python

View SASmith               's profile


1850 posts in 4330 days

#8 posted 12-12-2011 02:57 AM

Unique process.
Love the end result.
Thanks for sharing the way.

-- Scott Smith, Southern Illinois

View DamnYankee's profile


3320 posts in 3905 days

#9 posted 12-12-2011 03:05 AM

Very cool looking box!

-- Shameless - Winner of two Stumpy Nubs Awards

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 4033 days

#10 posted 12-12-2011 04:42 AM

I love the way you hinged it. I’m going to steal this idea. I think this hinge will work great for a bigger box and it looks like it will stop just past vertical?

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View sedcokid's profile


2738 posts in 4941 days

#11 posted 12-12-2011 04:57 AM

nicely done Jim!!

Thanks for sharing

-- Chuck Emery, Michigan,

View bobasaurus's profile


3743 posts in 4527 days

#12 posted 12-12-2011 05:53 AM

You must be a wizard, with your box making powers. I want to try this now. Are the miters also cut on the band saw? Also, did you use the band saw to cut free the top after the glueup, or some thinner-kerf scroll saw, etc?

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

View Bob Collins's profile

Bob Collins

2847 posts in 5027 days

#13 posted 12-12-2011 01:13 PM

Great JIm, easy to follow and a must do project for next year.

-- RIP Bob C, Australia. Your best teacher is your last mistake.

View Sodabowski's profile


2402 posts in 4176 days

#14 posted 12-13-2011 01:04 AM

From now on, we will all refer to that style of integral hinge as a ”Jim hinge”.
Really good idea and a perfectly well planned box.

Thanks so much for sharing the process! :)

-- Thomas - there are no problems, there are only solutions.

View Roger's profile


21055 posts in 4147 days

#15 posted 12-13-2011 01:53 AM

sweet! nice tutorial Jim

-- Roger from KY. Work/Play/Travel Safe. Keep your dust collector fed. [email protected]

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