Secret Box Details / "Bad Moon Rising"

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Project by Andy posted 12-19-2009 04:30 PM 18276 views 75 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is a link to my tutorial.

I am posting
more details on the Bad Moon Rising box as requested.
There seems to be a glitch in how I was doing it on that projects, page so I am doing it this way. Please read my tutorial that covers the “Dunes” box, but should help you get answers to your questions on construction, both of these boxes are very similar. Feel free to ask any questions on the specifics of making a box like this. Its a challenge, but with a few tools and careful planning, anyone can do it.

( Type in “art box” to see what others have done so far, and more are on the way. )

Just do yourself a favor and cut out two sets of all the parts and machine them side x side, one in your wood of choice and one in poplar or alder, etc. A model box will help you relax and let you make adjustments as needed. I think you get the idea.

#1 picture= the lid with medallion and tray. The medallion and tray are upside down in this shot.

#2 picture= the lid with the machining done for the handle guide pins,the hole for the two magnets (one pulls the handle in and the other opposes the magnet that will be in the edge of the medallion.When the handle is pulled out a little bit, it brings the guide pins with it, which in turn releases the medallion.The opposing super magnets cause the medallion to pop up just enough so you can get the edge of a finger tip under one of the corners that has been cut away. In the back ground you can see the holes for the two barrel hinges that fit into mating holes in the edge of the backside of the medallion. I did this by fitting the medallion to the recess in the lid and held it in place with double stick tape,stood it on edge against a fence at the drill press and bored holes through both pieces at the same time. I plugged the entry holes in the back edge of the lid with maple plugs I cut.

#3 picture=This was the original medallion, and is a piece of western big leaf maple, a chunk of burl. Though its pretty, I decided on that piece of Myrtle with the knot because I was trying to enter this box in both parts of the contest. ( I was too late by one hour )

#4 picture=Another picture of the lid after milling.

#5 picture= The handle after cutting the rabbits. I often will cit a piece long enough for 2-3 handles because its easier to work with, then I cut them to length after. To line up the guide pin holes in the lid and handle I drilled the ones in the lid first,inserted sharpened brass pins, and after shimming and clamping the handle blank in position, I tapped the pins in and this left the location marks I needed to bore the handle.

#6 picture= a shot of the back showing the hinges in the medallion.

Close up of the handle showing the magnet that keeps it in place and the pins that it not only slides in and out on, but they act as the catch keep the flip up medallion closed. Its not the best method but it works.
This is a full tenon and is more difficult to get the face of the handle to fit against the lid doing it this way. I mostly do a floating tenon now to hold my handles in place. It very easy to cut a flat edge on the lid and handle, then route a 1/4’’ slot in both faces on the router table and insert a tenon of any wood you have.

Tip: I make the tenon a little short in length so I can slide the handle sideways to center it in the lid. I also make it a little narrow so I am sure it will let the handle seat fully. I always dry fit all the parts. They should fit snug without forcing. Before gluing mark center on lid and handle. Once you put glue on the tenon you need to hurry and fit it all in place pretty quickly before the tenon swells and wont let it all draw together fully. This has happened to me and its fixable but not fun.

Please tag your box “art box”, and everyones should show up on the same pages.
It would be great to see everyones in a group.


This shows the recess cut into the top of the lid where the medallion and tray set into. Here you can see the barrel hinges that lift the medallion.

This shows the medallion after the recess for the tray was routed out.


Here I am routing the mortise in the lid to receive the tenon on the handle.

This shows the unfinished right side of the box with a roofing nail hinging the tray. Still a ways to go yet.

-- If I can do it, so can you.

25 comments so far

View Rick's profile


367 posts in 4547 days

#1 posted 12-19-2009 04:35 PM

Thanks Andy. I appreciate it.
I wish we could post more than 6 pictures for each project. I’d like to post pre finished pictures of my pieces too.

I wish I could pick out pieces of wood like I see you do. I have an automatic want to not choose the pieces with defects or anomalies. With an engineering mind I have a hard time not wanting everything to be perfectly clean and straight. I’m trying to pick the pieces with a little more character.
Thanks for the inspiration.

View blockhead's profile


1475 posts in 4645 days

#2 posted 12-19-2009 06:30 PM

Thank you Andy. That sheds a lot of light on the construction. Very fine piece of engineering. Thank you for posting.

-- Brad, Oregon- The things that come to those who wait, may be the things left by those who got there first.

View webwood's profile


626 posts in 4587 days

#3 posted 12-19-2009 06:34 PM

very cool andy – great idea

-- -erik & christy-

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 5211 days

#4 posted 12-19-2009 06:35 PM

DAMN thats cool.

-- Happy woodworking!

View a1Jim's profile


118309 posts in 4914 days

#5 posted 12-19-2009 07:15 PM

Wow Andy you have great talent for design and” how to “details ,a great job.


View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5583 days

#6 posted 12-19-2009 07:23 PM

Too much detail Andy. I need it all on paper with a fit tab A. into tab B. and so on, you know what I mean. If you adopt me I could learn all this first hand. Heck all the kids are gone, it would just be me and the little women. I don’t eat much. Think it over and let me know, just think of the tax breaks.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View woodworm's profile


14477 posts in 4927 days

#7 posted 12-19-2009 07:25 PM

You’re so imaginative – cool idea, great details!

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View majeagle1's profile


1429 posts in 4833 days

#8 posted 12-19-2009 07:29 PM

Superb Andy, thanks so much for taking the time to share the details!!!

-- Gene, Majestic Eagle Woodworks,,

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 4623 days

#9 posted 12-19-2009 07:55 PM

Fantastic Andy. I want to grow up to be just like you.
I’m about to wind up a major project, so maybe I’ll finally have time to try some of your great ideas.



View Karson's profile


35295 posts in 5737 days

#10 posted 12-19-2009 08:09 PM

Andy: Some great construction details. I’m glad that you pointed me to the original box, because somehow I missed it. Great job on your boxes.

-- 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 bigike's profile


4059 posts in 4625 days

#11 posted 12-19-2009 08:17 PM

this box is sweeeeeeet i like the little tray under the medalion thats a neat trick. ;-) Hey Andy, is that a marble top on yaour router or is it just plastic laminate?

-- Ike, Big Daddies Woodshop, http://[email protected]

View mtnwild's profile


4761 posts in 4864 days

#12 posted 12-19-2009 08:41 PM

Some cool designing going on here! Great to watch and learn, thanks….........

-- mtnwild (Jack), It's not what you see, it's how you see it.

View Rj's profile


1047 posts in 4968 days

#13 posted 12-19-2009 10:14 PM

Wow not just a simple box for sure! You really put alot of thought into this .
Great how too blog, Thanks for taking the time and posting it …

Where did you get the hinges?

-- Rj's Woodworks,San Jose & Weed Ca,

View stefang's profile


17040 posts in 4671 days

#14 posted 12-19-2009 10:34 PM

Those details really have the WOW factor Andy. I think it is wonderful that you are willing to share your creative unique ideas with us. Great work. Keep it up!

-- Mike, an American living in Norway.

View Joe Lyddon's profile

Joe Lyddon

10963 posts in 5389 days

#15 posted 12-20-2009 02:49 AM


Thank you very much for the Secret update!

Just for additional information, here is a Link to the main box writeup:

Great job!

-- Have Fun! Joe Lyddon - Alta Loma, CA USA - Home: ... My Small Gallery:

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