Box Urn from Red Birch with Jatoba Lid

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Project by HappyHowie posted 04-11-2018 04:02 PM 1325 views 3 times favorited 7 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I have attempted to design and build some box urns using figured hardwoods.

I have been amazed with what many members here have done with designing and making boxes. This is one of my first attempts. With some box urns I have added some simple inlays to create interest. Hopefully, from this point my skill set will improve.

With the design I am using here I fasten with wood screws a baltic birch plywood panel within a rabbet I route in the bottom of the walls. I am trying to keep the design simple with straight lines; a simple approach. I fasten the hardwood lids with the use of metal table top fasteners; one end fits into a routed slot in the wall piece and the other end is screwed into the lid to hold it in place. This arrangement allows the hardwood lid to move with changes in seasonal humidity.

If the walls have been milled where they have become a bit too thin to fasten my bottom plates, I then laminate the milled hardwood to a baltic birch plywood panel to give it a bit more “meat” or thickness. It is during this stage that I decide whether I will do any inlay work. All of this is done before any crosscuts and miter cuts are made to cut the box parts.

If an urn is made entirely from hardwoods, I then strengthen my mitered corners with either hardwood splines that are either visible on the corners, or hidden within the corners.

-- --- Happy Howie

7 comments so far

View MilFlyer's profile


946 posts in 2586 days

#1 posted 04-11-2018 04:12 PM

These are always bittersweet projects to look at for me. Love the quality of the work and I’m sure that it will be greatly appreciated by whoever receives this one. Thanks for sharing!

-- VR, Richard "Fear is nothing more than a feeling. You feel hot. You feel hungry. You feel angry. You feel afraid. Fear can never kill you"--Remo Williams

View mcoyfrog's profile


4757 posts in 4509 days

#2 posted 04-11-2018 05:59 PM

clean lines and great choice of woods, great job

-- Wood and Glass they kick (well you know) Have a great day - Dug

View Joe's profile


532 posts in 2001 days

#3 posted 04-11-2018 08:20 PM

Very Good, sharp crisp lines, beautiful finish and inlay work too. You did a terrific job for your first time out. I especially like the plywood liner that holds the bottom in, excellent design. You sure have a nack for box building. Thanks for inspiring

-- CurleyJoe, "You only learn from your mistakes"

View HappyHowie's profile


482 posts in 2860 days

#4 posted 04-12-2018 01:46 AM

When I compare my work to the wonderful creations you all make, I wonder how can I ever get there. Your kind comments give me encouragement to continue. Thank you.

-- --- Happy Howie

View NormG's profile


6508 posts in 3918 days

#5 posted 04-12-2018 02:10 AM

Looks very nice

-- Norman - I never never make a mistake, I just change the design.

View Ivan's profile


16395 posts in 3782 days

#6 posted 04-12-2018 05:39 AM

Nice looking box and wood.

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View Lou319's profile


35 posts in 3933 days

#7 posted 04-12-2018 01:30 PM

I like this design…nice and simple. As mentioned above, the difficulty in making an urn is bittersweet…hard to see your cut lines with tears in your eyes.

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