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Really Small Boxes

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Project by BburgBoy posted 11-24-2020 05:05 PM 718 views 0 times favorited 6 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Am enjoying working with really small boxes. These two are 6” square made of 1/4” stock. One is ash and mahogany. The other is zebra wood and walnut. Tolerances are incredibly tight…an error of 1/64” is noticeable. I think that’s what makes it so much fun to work on these small projects.

Shout out to Matt Kenney of MEK Woodworks and author of “52 Boxes in 52 Weeks” for the design.

-- Larry, SW Virginia





6 comments so far

View Andre's profile

Andre

4103 posts in 2774 days


#1 posted 11-24-2020 06:28 PM

When you said Really small I pictured 1” or 2 ” :) 6 inches is just small! I am the point that 1/16” is just visible?
Box’s do look great!

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View Ivan's profile

Ivan

16518 posts in 3836 days


#2 posted 11-24-2020 07:28 PM

Small, but so cute!

-- Ivan, Croatia, Wooddicted

View therealSteveN's profile (online now)

therealSteveN

6971 posts in 1542 days


#3 posted 11-24-2020 08:54 PM

Excellent looking boxes, but my mind is jumping with questions about them, and 1/4” solid wood.

How did you join the corners on the boxes? Looks like a miter joint for corners, and a dado for intersections other places. Wondering if end grain and 1/4” will become a problem? Even though they would be small I’d think a key across the corners would be beneficial. But a lot of Matt’s boxes don’t look like they would age well.

Also wondering about the lids, how thick overall? I see a rabbet inside for them to seat on, but so thin above the sides I feel like I am watching the wood cup, and curl.

I do like the inner works, something inside a box just elevates it quite a bit in my eye.

At 3/8” my experience is no worries if you follow the wooden rules. Jump down to 1/4” and even plywood with it’s crossed plies isn’t stable unless it’s entrapped between walls/sides. Much lower and you are at veneer, and it’s fine if you glue it to a substrate, alone and it’s wandering aimlessly, heading toward curl street. I suppose QS and Rift could give you a dodge, but even then some thickness will help.

Not critiquing, just ruminating. I seriously like the boxes, just wondering about the thinner wood, and the joinery used.

-- Think safe, be safe

View BburgBoy's profile

BburgBoy

73 posts in 1471 days


#4 posted 11-25-2020 12:10 AM



Excellent looking boxes, but my mind is jumping with questions about them, and 1/4” solid wood.

How did you join the corners on the boxes? Looks like a miter joint for corners, and a dado for intersections other places. Wondering if end grain and 1/4” will become a problem? Even though they would be small I d think a key across the corners would be beneficial. But a lot of Matt s boxes don t look like they would age well.

Also wondering about the lids, how thick overall? I see a rabbet inside for them to seat on, but so thin above the sides I feel like I am watching the wood cup, and curl.

I do like the inner works, something inside a box just elevates it quite a bit in my eye.

At 3/8” my experience is no worries if you follow the wooden rules. Jump down to 1/4” and even plywood with it s crossed plies isn t stable unless it s entrapped between walls/sides. Much lower and you are at veneer, and it s fine if you glue it to a substrate, alone and it s wandering aimlessly, heading toward curl street. I suppose QS and Rift could give you a dodge, but even then some thickness will help.

Not critiquing, just ruminating. I seriously like the boxes, just wondering about the thinner wood, and the joinery used.

- therealSteveN

All components except the base are 1/4” hardwood. Thin stock is not a problem on such small pieces. The pieces simply aren’t large enough for movement. And in this instance, the dividers add strength as does the base, which is plywood with a 1/8” hardwood veneer. So, all those corners and glue joints add rigidity. As for the bevel joints, ash or zebra wood are quite dense and won’t absorb glue in the end grain like a softer wood.

As for the dadoes, yes, they are quite different. The ‘dado’ is create by a V-groove router bit. Each side of each end of each divider is beveled, creating a 90 end that slots into the V-groove dado. Not my creation, however. I owe it all to the designer, Matt Kenney.. Check out some of his work on Fine Woodworking site. I got the plans for this from a Woodcraft Magazine article – Aug Sept 2019. Or his website mek-woodworks.myshopify.com

-- Larry, SW Virginia

View Eric's profile

Eric

848 posts in 841 days


#5 posted 11-25-2020 02:19 AM

Very nice, and yes small. Did you set the bottom in a grove?

-- Eric, building the dream

View BburgBoy's profile

BburgBoy

73 posts in 1471 days


#6 posted 11-25-2020 04:51 PM



Very nice, and yes small. Did you set the bottom in a grove?

- Eric

The bottom is a laminate of plywood and hardwood (mahogany on one and walnut on the other) and sits in a rabbet….proud by about 1/8”.

-- Larry, SW Virginia

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