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Cedar & Pressure Treated Window Box

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Project by EdsCustomWoodCrafts posted 06-04-2019 08:50 PM 437 views 2 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

With Summer around the corner I decided to make some new window boxes, I am using Cedar wood on the first box and see how I fair with it. To be honest the Cedar wood that I get from the bog box store isn’t usually that great, but I really love the look and smell of the wood. I needed to make a total of 3 boxes with 36” & 24” widths I will be using plastic liners to put the actual plants into so I made my box dimensions according to that.
To be honest I could of made quick work of this project and basically screw 4 boards together and screw in a base and call it a day, but in keeping with my fine woodworking endeavors I chose a more elaborate design.

WINDOW BOX FEATURES

Frame and Panel design

Tongue & Groove Joinery

Top Trim to cover all the exposed joinery edges.

Rail, Stile & Panel construction techniques.

RESEARCH & DESIGN

Although I did quite a lot of research online I could not find exactly what I wanted in 1 project so anytime that happens I design the project on Sketchup and tweak certain things to make it my own. The window boxes do contain certain characteristics of some project that I found online but all in all this is my design. I was originally going to use sliding dovetails as the primary joinery method but after purchasing the cedar I decided against it as the cedar was not exactly 3/4” and I wanted to use a 1/2” dovetail bit. The cedar was 1/8” narrow than 3/4” and it was quite brittle so I decided to go with tongue & groove joinery.
Below you can see my Cover page Images, I did make a very detailed set of plans to help make this project and these are what the window box will look like. This blog details me making the 36” Cedar Window Box. The 24” wide window box will not be made using Cedar, Ill explain later. But both boxes will be made using the same joinery and woodworking techniques.

MATERIALS NEEDED

So like I said I will be making 2 sizes of window box and here is what you need to make either size.

36” WINDOW BOX

12 FEET OF CEDAR
8 FEET OF PRESSURE TREATED LUMBER
TITEBOND III GLUE (or any waterproof glue)
1 5/8” Stainless steel screws

24” WINDOW BOX

16 FEET PRESSURE TREATED WOOD (Didn’t use Cedar)
TITEBOND III GLUE (or any waterproof glue)
1 5/8” Stainless steel screws

Here is the lumber I used on the bigger 36” box

Here is the water resistant glue and stainless steel screws.

FIRST THINGS FIRST : RIPPING & CROSSCUTTING

The way that I designed the window box looks awesome but it has one downside there are so many pieces to rip and crosscut. I even set up my cultist into so many sections I had to number my boards so Icut the correct components of the correct boards, but once I got going I made quick work of this. I think when I was done I had almost 40 parts to the project.

RIPPING

I made sure to keep all my board widths the same and that was a 1-1/2” wide so I followed my cut list ripped all the boards into easier to manage strips. In this image you can see my tablesaw set up to cut 1-1/2” cuts.

Here is the table saw set up to cut 1-1/2” wide strips

CROSSCUTTING

I am lucky enough to have a dedicated miter saw station that really comes in handy when I have a ton of repeat cuts, here you can see my miter saw with a stop block set to the desired length that way I just place my stock against the stop block and cut to hearts content, there were a few different lengths that I needed so I just cut all boards that were the same size and then adjusted the stop block for the next size on the list, this way you can guarantee the pieces are of uniform length.

Here is my miter saw station set up to make a multitude of cuts, I was really glad that I have this tool and station

ALL CEDAR PARTS ARE DIMENSIONED

Here you can see all the cedar parts to their final dimensions and again you can see my cut list plans under some of the parts so as that I know what each part is for. I did still need to work on the pressure treated wood but I decided until the window box frame was finished before I cut that up.

MAKING THE SIDES

The sides are basically frame and panels and as you would expect they have 2 stiles and 2 rails that a have been tenoned and grooves cut on all inside edges so as to receive the solid wood panel that received a rabbet on all four sides so as that to create a tongue that went around all four sides.

SOME ROUTER WORK

Although this is an optional step and could of simply left the side panel all flat and no character to it with a basic frame and panel design and sometimes I quite like that look. This time I decided that I wanted to define edges of the inside panel and make it stand out some more. So I used my router installed with a “V Groove” router bit.

THE PANEL ROUTING
Routing the panel is easy enough as I just need to route the edges of the panel make sure your not routing the tongue as that will be hidden, add the router profile to what is left and will be exposed on the side. I just lowered the bit in the router table and just the right side of the bit is kissing the panel.

THE STILES
These parts are some what more demanding because I don’t want to route the entire edge of the part, I only wanted the parts that came in contact with the panel visually. This is called a stop routing ad there are a ton of articles online on how to complete it the task.

Here is one of the sides all routed and I have to say I love the little detail and panel stands right out.

THE FRONT PANEL

The front panel is basically made the same as the sides except there are a lot more panels but the joinery is still the same, one thing that I needed to remember was to allow room for the panels to expand and contract so I made each groove 1/2” deep and each tongue 3/8” deep that way the panels would float between the top and lower rails.


Here are the results of the front panel , starting to come together now with the front and sides dne all I need is a back and bottom to make.

THE BACK

The back is in no way as elaborate as the front panel because it will not be seen, I used top and bottom rails but I used a solid pressure treated panel with the usual tongue around all four sides to house it in the groove I cut into the rails.

THE BASE SUPPORTS & BOTTOM

The Bottom support is made up of 4 pieces, 2 short sides and 2 long front & back pieces. I also changed up the joinery method and used a bridal joint.


Here is a view of the base supports I just completed the half lap and also drilled out some holes for the dowels to reinforce the joint


Base support all constructed, wasn’t to fussy as to how this looked as it will never be seen, I basically made this so as that the bottom and sit on it and it allows me to add screws to keep it supported on the underside of the window box.

THE BOTTOM PANEL

The bottom couldn’t be any easier to make its basically a board cut to fit inside the walls of the window box, and to allow for water drainage I drilled 3 holes about 1-1/2” in diameter, later I came back and rounded over the holes using my palm router but sorry no picture. The bottoms basically sits on the base frame we made with the bridal joint in Phase 5, its not secured in any way.

GLUE-UP
So the glue was pretty straight forward. A lot of the window box didn’t get any glue as I needed the panels in the front and sides to be floating in the grooves, that way it had the freedom to expand and contract with the seasonal humidity. So the only parts that got glue was the tenons on the ends of the rails all around the box.

PRE-DRILL HOLES
So to secure the base frame to the inside of the window I opted to use exterior grade construction screws going through the outside faces of the window box. So as I often do I counter-sunk screws through pre-drilled holes then came back and added wooden plugs to hide the holes and screw heads. I used the same wood species of wood as the box so as that it would not be that noticeable.

ADDING THE TOP TRIM
There is just something very clean when trim is added to a project so I decided to add trim to the top of the window box and again I used cedar so as to make it blend in with the rest of the box. I mitered the corners at 45° using my chop saw and then used glue and brad nails to secure the 3 pieces to the top of the box. I didn’t use any trim to the back as it would not be visible. I also made some cedar wood putty to cover all the brad nail holes in the trim this is something I do periodically you basically use some very fine sawdust of the species of wood you are using and then add wood glue to the dust which creates a paste then basically apply the putty to the are let dry then sand away the leftovers and it hides everything.


Here is an image of the cedar trim that I was adding and it has just been mitered, I basically glued and brad nailed this into position.


Here is the trim added to the window box

ALL FINISHED

Although this project talks about the cedar window box that I made I also made 2 other smaller boxes but hey were made 100% with pressures treated boards, I had a horrendous time with the cedar as it had a number of issues it was under dimensioned at the big box store and it was extremely brittle so that is why I went with an alternative boards and I have to say they came out just as nice without all the headaches.

Cedar Planter window box mounted on my front porch

Here are the 2 pressure treated boxes I made for the back deck.

If you would like to read a more in-depth project blog please head to my website for a ton more pictures and the like.

Thanks for reading

-- Thanks Ed “A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working. ~Author unknown” . Come check out my website for more about what I make and how at www.edscustomwoodcrafts.com





6 comments so far

View TheSawDustWhisperer's profile

TheSawDustWhisperer

110 posts in 603 days


#1 posted 08-24-2019 09:57 PM

Those are great boxes and you design and choice of wood are wonderful.

How did you place the words over the photos. It looks professional.

-- One of these days I’m going to build a dust collection system. Dusty Lungs

View EdsCustomWoodCrafts's profile

EdsCustomWoodCrafts

931 posts in 1825 days


#2 posted 08-24-2019 10:54 PM



Those are great boxes and you design and choice of wood are wonderful.

How did you place the words over the photos. It looks professional.

- TheSawDustWhisperer


I use Sketchup Pro and that comes with a software called layout that’s what I used to put the words into the photo but I’m sure there are other ways and softwares might work such a MS Paint or an adobe editing sofrwsre

-- Thanks Ed “A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working. ~Author unknown” . Come check out my website for more about what I make and how at www.edscustomwoodcrafts.com

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

6768 posts in 3835 days


#3 posted 08-24-2019 11:03 PM

I must have missed this post. Sorry buddy but I’m very late to see this nice window box you made Nice work!

@ TheSawDustWhisperer, If you are using a Windows computer You can put words on your photo in Windows Paint.
Just right click on your photo and click “open in Paint”
Then you can click the A in the tool bar at the top the paint window. Just drag a box over the part of the photo you wish to lay the words they just type what you wish. If you highlight the words you can resize them see Picture.

.
To resize….

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View EdsCustomWoodCrafts's profile

EdsCustomWoodCrafts

931 posts in 1825 days


#4 posted 08-24-2019 11:11 PM



I must have missed this post. Sorry buddy but I m very late to see this nice window box you made Nice work!

@ TheSawDustWhisperer, If you are using a Windows computer You can put words on your photo in Windows Paint.
Just right click on your photo and click “open in Paint”
Then you can click the A in the tool bar at the top the paint window. Just drag a box over the part of the photo you wish to lay the words they just type what you wish. If you highlight the words you can resize them see Picture.

.
To resize….

- woodshaver Tony C


Your all good buddy to be honest I’ve returned back to full time work and a volunteer treasurer for Norwood Youth Soccer and really have not made anything of note since this I don’t know where the time will come from to get some woodworking in.. but needed a break and will not be doing any volume of projects in the foreseeable future .. maybe quality not qty is my way forward

-- Thanks Ed “A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working. ~Author unknown” . Come check out my website for more about what I make and how at www.edscustomwoodcrafts.com

View  woodshaver Tony C   's profile

woodshaver Tony C

6768 posts in 3835 days


#5 posted 08-24-2019 11:21 PM

Well good luck on your new ventures Ed. I know whatever you are doing you will do it well. I hope you can find some time to get a little woodworking in… I know you will miss playing in the shop! Hope to see you here in the future!

-- St Augustine FL, Experience is the sum of our mistakes!

View EdsCustomWoodCrafts's profile

EdsCustomWoodCrafts

931 posts in 1825 days


#6 posted 08-24-2019 11:39 PM



Well good luck on your new ventures Ed. I know whatever you are doing you will do it well. I hope you can find some time to get a little woodworking in… I know you will miss playing in the shop! Hope to see you here in the future!

- woodshaver Tony C


Thanks so very much Tony for all the support over the years it means a lot .. I’m sure one the dust settle on all the turbulence in my life I’ll find some time to do what I love it might not be 12 projects a year it might only be 1 project every 12 months.. money to save and buy the tools I never had

-- Thanks Ed “A bad day woodworking is better than a good day working. ~Author unknown” . Come check out my website for more about what I make and how at www.edscustomwoodcrafts.com

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