Ed Stiles Box Joint Jig

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Project by JD13 posted 08-07-2014 04:53 PM 10018 views 6 times favorited 5 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Big shout out to Ed Stiles and his awesome box joint jig. I need organization and storage space in the little corner of my 1-car garage I call my ‘shop’. So there are a lot of drawers in my future. Figured I needed a jig and after research – Ed nailed it. His video easily convinced me his jig was what I wanted. As I’m just getting started again, this was the hardest (most complex) thing I’ve built yet. With all the cutting and hardware, it was not a weekend project for me: took me 2 weekends and some night in-between (gluing, etc.). But I wanted to get it right. It is awesome!!! However, one HUGE caveat – and Ed made this clear – you need a 1/8” kerf or 1/4” kerf. Thought I did. After screwing up a LOT of scrap thinking I was counting wrong or positioning wrong – I did some deep dive troubleshooting step-by-step. Turns out I had a 3/32” kerf blade. Try cutting fingers in multiples of 1/8” with a 1/16” threaded rod with a 3/32” blade. I dare you. If you can, you’re up there with Sir Isaac Newton in my book, ‘cause you’ll need calculus and the quadratic equation to come close.

-- JD from Elk Grove

5 comments so far

View dozer57's profile


92 posts in 2951 days

#1 posted 08-07-2014 05:01 PM

nice box joint jig. I just finished mine based on Ed’s idea(with a few variations) but I agree it was a bit of work and hair pulling. your looks good.

View Jim Jakosh's profile

Jim Jakosh

27685 posts in 4557 days

#2 posted 08-07-2014 10:15 PM

Nice jig. Can you use a 1/32 shim for a second cut to make the 1/8”. They it will be two turns!!

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

View KE4NYV's profile


138 posts in 2913 days

#3 posted 08-09-2014 02:38 AM

Very nice! I built one based on Ed’s design a month ago.

-- Jason R.

View JD13's profile


26 posts in 2843 days

#4 posted 08-17-2014 09:22 PM

Wow – beautifully done. Interesting mod where you put your tape measure on the bottom and hung a gauge down to it. Always interesting to see the different ways to skin a cat. I had a roll of tape measure tape – like masking tape with a tape measure. Each length goes up to 96” and then starts over until the roll runs out. Don’t know where I got it or why – probably just thought it was ‘fun’ looking masking tape. I just pulled some off and stuck it down with clear packing tape over top as a protector. Your mod is pretty cool. I see no clacker on yours. I really like Ed’s clacker opposite the handle. It rocks. Nice job on yours.

-- JD from Elk Grove

View KE4NYV's profile


138 posts in 2913 days

#5 posted 08-19-2014 05:17 PM

Thanks! I actually had those little gauge pointers sitting around from some piece of stationary equipment, but I’m not sure which. I wanted to do something with them, so I designed the measuring method around that. For the measuring tape, that was from an old mini retractable tape that the spring broke out of. I saved it, cut off the part I needed and then drilled a couple of mounting holes for some tiny screws. I avoided using my roll of measuring “tape” because it only has a single 0” starting point and then runs out to about 12’. I hate that as soon as you use the first part, you have pretty much rendered the rest useless, unless you just want the 1” hash marks for reference. They were expensive, too! I bought two rolls from Amazon and still haven’t used them on a project. I guess I’m waiting for the right project when I can maximize the use of a roll :o)

As for the clacker, I honestly didn’t have the parts on hand to add that, so I just use the handle pointing straight down as my index point. So far, that is working. I was right in the middle (still am) of building my shop when I built this, so I actually only cut a few test joints and have yet to make an actual project. I just bought the Freud box joint dado blade set, so I need to break that out and try the jig with it.

-- Jason R.

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