First keyed miter box

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Project by Jon Spelbring posted 02-21-2008 05:30 PM 3422 views 2 times favorited 18 comments Add to Favorites Watch

I took a basic box making class at my friendly, neighborhood WoodCraft last month. It was spread out over two days, and at the end, I had a reasonably OK box. The top and keys are walnut and the sides are beech (I think). Finish is 2 coats of Watco Danish oil

-- To do is to be

18 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5442 days

#1 posted 02-21-2008 05:33 PM

Looks good. Now you just need to add some hinges.

-- Gary - Never pass up the opportunity to make a mistake look like you planned it that way - Tyler, TX

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27248 posts in 5275 days

#2 posted 02-21-2008 06:10 PM

This is a nice looking box. I wish you had mentioned that you wanted to take a box making class first because I would have warned you that these have been proven to be addictive.

Thanks for the post. It makes me want to get out in the shop and make some sawdust.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Ethan Sincox's profile

Ethan Sincox

767 posts in 5627 days

#3 posted 02-21-2008 07:06 PM

Great first box, Jon! Start making your second one really soon and help to imbed what you learned into your little gray cells!

The base looks to be cherry – that comment is based on the appearance of the heartwood/sapwood in the first picture, the grain pattern, the fact that you were at Woodcraft and I can totally see them pairing walnut with cherry, and the coloring… of course, it is always a little harder to tell when looking at a picture.

-- Ethan,

View Blake's profile


3443 posts in 5328 days

#4 posted 02-21-2008 07:51 PM

Hey, very good! The art of boxmaking is open to endless possibilities. You will have a lot of fun with this. Nice job.

-- Happy woodworking!

View Jon Spelbring's profile

Jon Spelbring

200 posts in 5707 days

#5 posted 02-21-2008 08:28 PM

Thanks for looking, and for the kind words.
According to the instructor, the base was either birch or beech. The photos are a little dark.

The neat part (for me anyway), was that we turned the boxes into trapezoids after the assembly was complete.
The extra face bevels are me trying to cover some nicks in the keys.

I can see that box making is going to be very crack-like. So many things I want to try. Stay tuned!

-- To do is to be

View mjlauro's profile


244 posts in 5214 days

#6 posted 02-21-2008 09:14 PM

Outstanding stuff, I wish it wasn’t so cold today or I’d be making something!(my shop lacks the necessary heat required to make it a comfortable work place) Thanks for sharing it. I like keyed miters, I built a siimple sled once, but wore it out. I will be making a new one.

View davidtheboxmaker's profile


373 posts in 5259 days

#7 posted 02-21-2008 10:02 PM

Like so many things in boxmaking – solving the nicks in the keys resulted in a leally interesting shape!
Nice box.

View Paul D's profile

Paul D

2134 posts in 5202 days

#8 posted 02-21-2008 10:36 PM

Very nice box Jon. I’m messing around with box making myself. I bought Doug Stowe’s book ‘Basic Box Making’ from Taunton and am trying to follow it step by step. More than anything getting a good fitting bottom has given more the most fits. Have fun!

-- Paul D - Lawrenceville, Georgia

View CharlieM1958's profile


16292 posts in 5672 days

#9 posted 02-21-2008 10:47 PM

Nice job, Jon! It is addictive allright. As soon as I’m done with one, I’m thinking about the next one.

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

View Vjer's profile


77 posts in 5212 days

#10 posted 02-22-2008 03:42 AM

Nice first one Jon. I have to echo what others have said. STOP now or enter the vortex of boxmaking at your own risk…LOL

-- My mind is like brilliant flash and then it's gone.

View woodtex's profile


14 posts in 5210 days

#11 posted 02-22-2008 05:18 AM

nice job, jon. as others have said- box making is addictive. i lay in bed at night thinking about what to do next…


View Jon3's profile


497 posts in 5559 days

#12 posted 02-22-2008 07:49 PM

Nice! A box making class at woodcraft was how I got back into woodworking in the first place!

View Billp's profile


804 posts in 5653 days

#13 posted 02-23-2008 05:45 PM

You did a really great job. I think you have a knack for this keep going.

-- Billp

View Bradford's profile


1434 posts in 5276 days

#14 posted 02-24-2008 07:55 AM

Excellent “first box”, Jon. The extra bevel on the corners adds a touch of flair to the whole appearance. The choice of woods is a good match. Don’t stop woodworking. Can’t wait to see what else you build.

-- so much wood, so little time. Bradford. Wood-a-holics unanimous president

View jeanmarc's profile


1899 posts in 5170 days

#15 posted 05-09-2008 04:59 PM

Nice job

-- jeanmarc manosque france

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