Boxguy Develops A Six-Pack

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Project by Boxguy posted 05-29-2015 04:09 AM 4251 views 29 times favorited 26 comments Add to Favorites Watch Two minute spline making and installing video.

Thanks for looking at this project. Any comments and suggestions are appreciated and welcome. I will reply to all of you Lumberlanders out there who take time to “have your say” in the next 24 hours, so check back for feedback.

If you would like to see how to make and install corner splines, Ken and I made a short spline video that you can watch. There is a tutorial index of some of my previous postings at the end of this posting, that will show you how to build the jigs and learn the techniques for building boxes and totes like these.

Story: In the hot summer weather I go through one or two bottles of this sports drink each day. Buying them in bulk at the local food mart is a bore. You load them into your cart, then put them on the conveyor, then they are put in flimsy plastic bags, loaded in the back of my truck, then from the plastic bags onto shelves from the shelves to the refrigerator, then to the glass then to the recycle bin. Way too much work! Several lumberjocks have been posting totes for beer bottles and growlers. So I thought I’d make a six-pack carrier for my favorite “brew.” Now I load my carrier up at the store, back to the truck, carry it in the house, and set it on the kitchen counter.

Pictured is a Black Walnut tote (L=12, W=8 1/2, H=12) with White oak corner splines and 1/2 inch white oak veneer as a center board. The basic design is patterned after a saw blade organizer that I posted a couple of years ago. This is the write-up on the saw blade organizer. The blade organizer posting will serve as a guide to making a drink tote like you see here.

Mechanics: The strength of this is down the center. The plywood is fit and glued into a groove in each end and also serves as part of the handle. The bottom also floats in a groove in the four sides.

Notice that I kept it simple and did not add any dividers for the bottles. Let me confess here that I know it is not a good idea to join grains that run in two directions. So this tote will not last for the ages, but I just couldn’t pass up the look of the grain on the ends.

While I was at it, I made a couple of more box-like items for around the house.

I’ll write them up as I get time. Keep boxing and keep posting!

.Tutorials: For methods used to make boxes like the one pictured just click on the blue links below. They are arranged by topic.

Making a jig to cut spline slots:
Jig for 45ing corners:
Making splines with a simple jig:
Finishing tips:
$5 band clamps:
Combining Wood Colors:
Sizing Tea Boxes and Dividers From Venetian Blinds
Making Kleenex boxes:
Making music boxes
Routers and Rounding edges
Why round box corners?
Organizing a glue-up table:
Adding splines to a box:
Measuring for spline slot cuts:
Installing an attached top: like that pictured above.
Cutting off the box top and sizing piano hinges
Adding finger indents:
More about finger indents.
Mortising and installing hinges:
Tips on making sliding trays: for inside boxes:
Swapping Wood By Mail:
Making a serving tray with angled sides.
Making household boxes:
Roy Underhill's tool tote.
Teaching Boxmaking

-- Big Al in IN

26 comments so far

View DocSavage45's profile


9071 posts in 4305 days

#1 posted 05-29-2015 04:24 AM

Hey Al,

Good to see you posting! This one should be popular. LOL!

-- Cau Haus Designs, Thomas J. Tieffenbacher

View maplerock's profile


529 posts in 3262 days

#2 posted 05-29-2015 05:26 AM

Wow! That’s pretty Alan… and useful too. The woods look great and the finish is sweet. Par for your course!

-- Jerry... making sawdust in the Knobs of Southern Indiana

View jim65's profile


1021 posts in 3395 days

#3 posted 05-29-2015 05:48 AM

great boxes, love the handle on the six pack case, the extra thickness make it look nice! great design! Thanks for posting!

-- Jim, Marostica Italy

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


24657 posts in 5138 days

#4 posted 05-29-2015 07:10 AM

Nice work Boxguy! Just in time for summertime, summertime, good ol’ summertime too ;-)) Everyone like to gt a good handle on their six packs. This looks to b e the perfect solution.

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

View Boxguy's profile


2905 posts in 3730 days

#5 posted 05-29-2015 09:29 AM


Doc, always good to hear from you. Not much wabi-sabi here, but it has its own look. Try the video…Ken and I had fun making it.

Jerry, The finish did turn out well. There is a lot of hand sanding that goes into making this project look like a used bar of soap. Good to hear that you have been buying a few tools for your shop. My grandson still remembers his visit to your home. Hope you and L are in good health. Hope your dad is feeling better. Hey, what are you doing up this late?

Jim, always good to hear from the Italian contingent of Lumberland. Six of these large bottles of liquid is a pretty good load. Those suckers get heavy. The wide handle on the six-pack and the saw blade carrier makes it much easier on your hand. You do need to slide a scrap of wood under the plywood to keep it level when you are working the handle on the router.

Toppa, You have been busy contributing to the site lately. I liked your shoe rack. I too am lucky enough to get some “Grampa, I need a”... projects now and then. Grandpa projects are the best.

-- Big Al in IN

View captferd's profile


183 posts in 3856 days

#6 posted 05-29-2015 09:57 AM

Thanks for taking time to share. Always a big fan of your work.

-- CaptFerd

View robscastle's profile


8562 posts in 3666 days

#7 posted 05-29-2015 10:41 AM

Wow ! Big Al thats got to be the most impresssive post I have seen in some time, no excuses for not having something to do there, links to everything.

I am off to check out swapping wood by mail.

-- Regards Rob

View Blackie_'s profile


4883 posts in 3975 days

#8 posted 05-29-2015 12:01 PM

All very nice Alan, you do such great work.

-- Randy - If I'm not on LJ's then I'm making Saw Dust. Please feel free to visit my store location at

View Boxguy's profile


2905 posts in 3730 days

#9 posted 05-29-2015 12:22 PM


Captain Ferd, I liked your furniture, built-ins, and shop jigs. I especially like the clocks you built. Thanks for the kind words. Keep boxing and keep posting.

Robert, thanks. I have been watching your work and am impressed with the wide variety of projects you take on. It is interesting to see you enjoying your shop. I thought the bar project was fun.

Blackie, thanks for the comment, I know you are very busy with your shop expansion. It was nice that you took the time to bring us along on all the work you did. The shop is looking good.

-- Big Al in IN

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4329 days

#10 posted 05-29-2015 12:53 PM

Wow!, Al, that is a real beauty. I can think of all sorts of thinks that beautiful tote could be used for.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View SenecaWoodArt's profile


487 posts in 3082 days

#11 posted 05-29-2015 02:17 PM

Al, great idea and beautiful tote. We share the same taste in summer time drink. Great video. Looking forward to the next one.

-- Bob

View DonSol's profile


249 posts in 2704 days

#12 posted 05-29-2015 04:44 PM

Great idea and the wood and finish are beautiful.

-- Don Solomon, New Castle, IN; Quality is not an act, it is a habit. Aristotle

View Randy_ATX's profile


881 posts in 3904 days

#13 posted 05-29-2015 05:37 PM

Love the title! Added to favorites, nice write-up and work.

-- Randy -- Austin, TX by way of Northwest (Woodville), OH

View Jerry's profile


3577 posts in 3110 days

#14 posted 05-29-2015 06:23 PM

That is really really nice. Beautiful.

-- There are good ships and there are wood ships, the ships that sail the sea, but the best ships are friendships and may they always be.

View bobasaurus's profile


3747 posts in 4646 days

#15 posted 05-29-2015 07:30 PM

I like the design, very clever. Will the changing grain direction on the sides be problematic with wood movement?

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

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