Man Box For Husband

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Project by Scrappys_Squirt posted 05-27-2009 09:43 AM 3624 views 2 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Well its finally done! I finished the “man box” I was making for my hubby. It only took us a month working about 3 hours almost every night somewhere between 80 and 90 working hours total however a lot of that was learning time for me I take longer then I should to get things done since dad “Scrappy” was talking me through everything first before i did it. That aside it all went pretty good even if it took a while because I did almost all the work. there were alot of firsts for both of us during this project like the drawer and rabbits, lock etc ( most of it all was new to me). But anyways enough about that and onto the box.

This was my husbands birthday present (b-day was the 14th so its a bit late but he didn’t complain to badly). I wanted to make him a box that he could put his keys and wallet and whatnot into that also had a drawer for him to put his weapon in at night when he isn’t carrying it and so the adventure began…

The design is 12L X 9W X 6H outside dimensions. it is split in half with the bottom being a drawer with a lock on it ( 2 kids running around), the upper box section has a T shaped divider so it has one big section and 2 smaller sections. I lined the smaller sections as well as the drawer with leather to protect the wood and his gun. The hinges and handles are hand made, and I did a marquetry/inlay in the lid of a horse head in an oval. The boards were all re-sawed to 3/8 inch thick (except the inlay pieces) on the band saw. then cut to size on the table saw. The router was used to cut the rabbits for the corners of the box and drawer, and the dadoes for the center divider between the upper and lower sections, and the drawer bottom as well. I did all of the inlay work with a jigsaw (should have designed something more simple for my first inlay!), then routered the place for it in the top. Then I sanded everything.

The drawer was made separate and then the face board was screwed onto it after the lock was mounted that way the lock can be replaced later if need be. Dad pretty much did the drawer/lock assembly part and handles while I was working on the inlay. I didn’t like the keyhole cover that the lock came with, so dad used a strip of brass and bent an insert for the keyhole instead that I think looks great with the box. We used 1/2 inch aluminum angle stock mounted on the box with countersunk screws to support the drawer and allow it to slide in and out. Here are a couple pics of the mounted lock, keyhole, and drawer slides.




Dad also shaped the hinges after I cut them out with the jigsaw so that they opened and closed properly. Here is a better pic of one of them…


The inlay has to be my favorite part though I love the whole thing especially the hinges and keyhole :) It was complicated but not too bad once I started getting the hang of it each piece fit better then the previous one. We both love horses so I thought it was the perfect thing for him.


Finally the wood I used was as follows:
Tropical Walnut = main body of box
Padauk = hinges, handles, horse body
Wenge = horses mane, eye and nostril
Hickory = oval, star and eye of horse
Old Cedar?? drawers = body of the drawer
Unknown = inside of horses ears
I used vegetable tanned leather for lining the drawers so that it will not damage the gun, it is the same they use to make holsters with, then I just stained it myself to be darker

Everything (except cedar part of drawer) was sealed with 2 coats of wipe on poly, 1200 grit sanding between them, I plan on also waxing it but I don’t have the wax right now.

I just want to thank Dad for teaching me so much, and for letting me take over his little shop with this project for the last month :) thanks again everyone for looking, Please feel free to leave honest opinions and/or critiques, or just let me know what you think of it. I hope I got everything covered if not let me know and I’ll answer any questions anyone has.
Thanks Amanda

-- Amanda

25 comments so far

View TopamaxSurvivor's profile


19849 posts in 4596 days

#1 posted 05-27-2009 10:12 AM

Looks great for a first inlay!! :-)) Nice box.

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

View psquared's profile


46 posts in 4425 days

#2 posted 05-27-2009 12:19 PM

Man, oh man. Beautiful box.

-- When the tide goes out you see who's been skinny dipping.

View degoose's profile


7279 posts in 4274 days

#3 posted 05-27-2009 12:52 PM

Scrappy is sure teaching you the right way to do things..properly and I would have to say safely too.
Fantastic first project!

-- Don't drink and use power tools @

View littlecope's profile


3111 posts in 4422 days

#4 posted 05-27-2009 01:19 PM

Very nice job! Your Husband must love it!

-- Mike in Concord, NH---Unpleasant tasks are simply worthy challenges to improve skills.

View Splinterman's profile


23074 posts in 4281 days

#5 posted 05-27-2009 03:02 PM

Nice job….well done.

View Hrolfr's profile


174 posts in 4586 days

#6 posted 05-27-2009 03:09 PM

Dang I think you need to talk to my wife I want one of these….. very mice job like the design the inlay looks much better then anything I could do. The veg tanned leather looks great… love the look of the antiqued stained leather the grain is really pretty. The wood hinges are nice.

I can’t tell from the pics did you line the top compartments with leather too??? If not that would be my one critique I guess is that leather lined compartments would have been even cooler. But awesome man box.

Man box I have to say that sounds so much better then dresser valet or Man Jewelry box….. less testosterone draining name :D LOL

-- Hrolfr

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4073 posts in 4984 days

#7 posted 05-27-2009 03:09 PM

What husband wouldn’t be happy and proud to receive this. Excellent job!

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over two decades.

View CharlieM1958's profile


16289 posts in 5138 days

#8 posted 05-27-2009 03:19 PM

Great job Amanda. The inlay is really nice!

I have to say though, if you had told me a woman was going to make a “man box”, I would have expected her to put the other end of the horse on it. :-)

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View Dennis Zongker's profile

Dennis Zongker

2836 posts in 4512 days

#9 posted 05-27-2009 03:29 PM

Wow! beautiful. Very lucky husband. Great job Amanda,

-- Dennis Zongker

View patron's profile


13712 posts in 4261 days

#10 posted 05-27-2009 03:34 PM

congratulations !
an all around well thought and executed gift . go ahead feel proud .
allot of firsts in this one .
just goes to show , if you dont know for a fact you cant , then , well , you can !
and , dad , thanks for the help . thats love for you .

-- david - only thru kindness can this world be whole . If we don't succeed we run the risk of failure. Dan Quayle

View a1Jim's profile


118145 posts in 4497 days

#11 posted 05-27-2009 04:52 PM

Hey Amanda
This is one beautiful man box , a beautiful job all the way around great job


View Scrappys_Squirt's profile


43 posts in 4294 days

#12 posted 05-27-2009 06:16 PM

Thanks everyone! He loved it the dark color, the hinges, the horse, everything, put it on his night stand next to the bed. he hasn’t mentioned it being late since he saw it :) Eventually I plan to make a matching one for me using different woods I have Padauk for it but I’m still not sure with the color change it makes what I want to do with it. That stuff turns every tool it touches red like its on fire. The red has spread around the shop like the plague!

Degoose – that’s one reason it took so long is because I had this image in my head of how I wanted it to be and he knew how to make it into a box lol so we spent a lot of time talking about how you do everything the right way, and the safe way. Without him teaching me I wouldn’t have even known where to start.

Hrolfr – the top “box” part is divided into 3 sections 1 half and 2 quarters, the smaller 2 are lined with leather so keys and such wont scratch it but I left the other half wood so he had it too look at. I can always line that side if it seems the box is getting too much wear and tear on it.

-- Amanda

View musician's profile


38 posts in 4275 days

#13 posted 05-27-2009 07:57 PM

Beautiful box! And the love that went into making it shows.

-- Joe,Texas,

View mtkate's profile


2049 posts in 4245 days

#14 posted 05-27-2009 11:07 PM

Georgeous. I would not limit this to a gift for men!!!

Thanks for posting the time it took. It’s a great gauge for others who are also learning. What part of the process did you find took you the longest? For me, it’s always the sanding.

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 4350 days

#15 posted 05-28-2009 01:28 AM

Great storie Squirt!

You did a fantastic job on this box. Got a little impatient once in a while but all in all did great.

And yes everyone, I am VERY, VERY Proud to have her working with me in my shop. Only problem is once she learns how to do more stuff on her own, I won’t be able to get in there myself.:) HAHA

A note to all…...If you have never taught anyone something like this, do so. The feeling you get when THEY accomplish each task and finnish the project is priceless! Just knowing you are passing something on is wonderfull.

When Amanda said That I did very little, she ment it. All I did was the drawer front and handles. She did everything else. I would show her how on a scrap piece and she would do the rest.

Again Great job Amanda.

Scrappy ( dad )

-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

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