Box of Chocolates

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Project by Triumph1 posted 01-12-2010 08:15 PM 7212 views 60 times favorited 51 comments Add to Favorites Watch

“Box of Chocolates” was designed to showcase the beautiful raw material Mother Nature graced us with…wood. It took over 400 hours in a six month period to design and build. It is made up of over 450 pieces. It is 21” x 15” x 12”. The main body portion is made out of Quartersawn Spalted Sycamore with African Blackwood splines. The grain of the sycamore wraps around the box. It has been carved to give it the texture of hand dipped chocolate. The main lid portions are Ziricote. It has a floating frame made from Canary wood and the center panel is a book-matched piece of figured Ash. Splines in the lid are made from a stack up of Maple and African Blackwood. Concave cuts in the lid and base represent the over tightening of an imaginary ribbon.

The rear view shows off the wooden hinges. They are constructed of Quartersawn Cocobolo and have 95 degree stops designed into them. The finials and plugs are Gaboon Ebony. The spacer is African Blackwood. The base of “BoC” is constructed of Ziricote. The legs are Shedua and made using a miter fold joint. Making a concave cut into that joint makes for an interesting grain pattern. Paduak dowels are used to further strengthen leg mounting.

The view with the lid open shows the 24 “Chocolates” inside. The “Chocolates” are 2.5” square boxes made from Spalted Maple. The grain runs around and entire box and they are all box jointed. Each lid is made from a different type of wood and contains a unique carving or design. The different lid woods are Wenge, Jatoba, East Indian Rosewood, Cocobolo, Purpleheart, Paduak, Redheart, Bloodwood, Birdseye Maple, Spalted Maple, Curly Maple, African Mahogany, Bolivian Rosewood, American Holly, Bubinga, Honduras Rosewood, Zebrawood, Leopardwood, Osage Orange, Canarywood, Bocote, Chechen, Yellowheart and Claro Walnut. The “Chocolates” are flush to the top of the divider. To remove them you reach under the main box and slide one of three lifting mechanisms towards you. 8 boxes will rise out of the main box per lifting mechanism. The far right boxes are in the up position. There is also more detailed picture of the 24 “Chocolate” tops showing the carvings and different woods. The divider that separates them is made from African Mahogany and was made using sliding dovetail joints…accuracy was key. You can also see the Koa butterflies that have been inserted into the lid.

The straight down overhead view shows the “layers”. “Chocolates” on the left, lifting trays in middle and a view of the lifting dowels on the right. The “Chocolates” sit on trays made from Spalted Maple. The trays are lifted by the lifting dowels. The idea is that when you remove a “Chocolate” you see a tray and not a dowel. The “Chocolates” and trays are lined with a “chocolate” colored fabric.

There is one picture that shows the body of the box removed giving a clear view of the three lifting mechanisms in different states. They are made from Quartersawn Spalted Maple, Cherry and Oak. All dowels had a tenon turned onto the ends to guarantee straightness when mounted. They fit into a blind round mortise. On the left I show the lifting dowel plate removed. The middle shows the mechanism in a lowered position. The far right shows the mechanism in a lifted position. Position stops were designed into the cams so you cannot engage or disengage them too far. They are actuated by sliding a Bolivian Rosewood handle under the box. All the mechanism hardware, except for the handles, was finished with a hand rubbed polyurethane finish for durability.

All the other pieces of the box where sanded to 400 grit and finished with four coats of Danish Oil followed by two buffings with Briwax.

Sorry if I got a bit wordy in this…I still feel like I left something out! I also have a few pictures of it pre-finish if anybody is interested.

-- Jeff , Wisconsin Please...can I stay in the basement a little longer, please!

51 comments so far

View deucefour's profile


285 posts in 4339 days

#1 posted 01-12-2010 08:31 PM

I love the legs, beautiful work

View Kent Shepherd's profile

Kent Shepherd

2718 posts in 4371 days

#2 posted 01-12-2010 08:33 PM

This is incredible!!!!!!

Thank you


View Gary's profile


9419 posts in 4518 days

#3 posted 01-12-2010 08:36 PM

wow….I voted…wow

-- Gary, DeKalb Texas only 4 miles from the mill

View SgtSnafu's profile


960 posts in 4357 days

#4 posted 01-12-2010 08:39 PM

You have allot of time in that one – looks great.

Thanks for sharing

-- Scotty - aka... SgtSnafu - Randleman NC

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5303 days

#5 posted 01-12-2010 09:04 PM

That is truly one incredible box. From the ingenuity of the design to the fantastic construction, it’s a work of art.

My only criticism, if you could call it that, is that the way it is photographed it almost doesn’t look real. I went through to photos before reading the description, and I was convinced this was a Sketchup or some other type of CAD drawing.

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

View CKM's profile


73 posts in 4182 days

#6 posted 01-12-2010 09:05 PM

Not sure what to say about this . . . .WOW!!!!!!

-- CKM - Minnesota



56 posts in 4193 days

#7 posted 01-12-2010 09:17 PM

Wonderful box ,I voted. GREAT JOB

-- A day without sawdust is like a day without sunshine

View Andy's profile


1713 posts in 4993 days

#8 posted 01-12-2010 09:32 PM

Outstanding! What a creative mind you have…and then to actually carry it off so well.
Congratulations on a fine design.

I must say that I was quite surprised to see this. My current box is about done and has similarities to yours, though not as elaborate. I have been working on mine for about 6 weeks and I am busy fitting all the small pieces.
I am not copying your work, but who could blame me if I did. :-)
Hopefully, it will be posted in a week or two.

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

View Triumph1's profile


937 posts in 4164 days

#9 posted 01-12-2010 09:53 PM

Andy…I can’t wait to see it! I saw your boxes when I first joined and was very, very impressed….which would be why I added you to my buddies list right away:-) Your comments, and everybody else’s comments are very humbling…I am glad you like it.

Charlie…I have some “pre-finish” pictures of the box…but I just have them on my local computer so I can’t load them…seems like I have to have a photobucket account or something along those lines to load them in the comments section….I will see what I can do…

-- Jeff , Wisconsin Please...can I stay in the basement a little longer, please!

View Troy's profile


186 posts in 4148 days

#10 posted 01-12-2010 09:59 PM

Wow is right! Stunning work!

-- Troy Bouffard || Master Sergeant, US Army (Retired) ||

View scrounger's profile


115 posts in 4168 days

#11 posted 01-12-2010 10:17 PM

Fantastic box. It almost seems out of line to call it a box, it is truly a work of art. Very nicely done indeed. I intend to vote as well.

-- Dave, Southern IL.,

View verc's profile


22 posts in 4141 days

#12 posted 01-12-2010 11:24 PM

Beautiful box! I especially like the hinges.

-- John, UP of Michigan

View mgb_2x's profile


181 posts in 4154 days

#13 posted 01-12-2010 11:31 PM

Wow, very nice, lots of creativity and excellent execution. You must have lots of patience and dedication. By the way where in Illinois are you located? I am in Peoria.

-- "aim small miss small" m g breedlove

View majeagle1's profile


1429 posts in 4581 days

#14 posted 01-12-2010 11:32 PM

I guess that all tht is left to be said is “WOW” Again…......... there aren’t to many other words that can describe something so absolutely unique, beautiful, gorgeous, a work of art, splendid, ........... well, you get the idea !!!!!!

Just fantastic, I love the do detailed design, the uniqeness, the wonderful selection of woods, the flow of the entire box, the carving, ................... well, again, I guess I kinda like the box !!!!

-- Gene, Majestic Eagle Woodworks,,

View ghazard's profile


382 posts in 4595 days

#15 posted 01-12-2010 11:35 PM

Just incredible! And here I thought it actually WAS chocolate!

I am having trouble visualizing the lifting mechanism, though. How is it actuated?

This is really cool!


-- "Hey, you dang woodchucks! Quit chuckin' my wood!"

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