Woodsmith Box Plan - Vol. 29 / No. 174 - Box #2

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Project by Woodhacker posted 05-09-2008 04:32 AM 7828 views 18 times favorited 25 comments Add to Favorites Watch

This is the second in a series of six of this style of box that I’m working on. This box, like the first I posted yesterday is derived from the plan found in Woodsmith Vol. 29 No. 174. This box was a birthday gift for the wife of one of my nephews. Her name is Brandy. I’m trying to make each of these unique and special, so this one has a “B” inlaid into the lid.

The box is basically the same construction I used in the first one I posted (at ). The top, front and back are all curly maple. The sides on this box are Caribbean Rosewood. Until recently, I’d never even heard of this wood but saw it online at and decided to order some. I love this wood. It has a typical rosewood aroma, a very tight close grain and finishes very smooth. Very colorful too.

The inlay in the top is also Caribbean Rosewood. The base is hickory, but it’s covered inside with non-stretchable burgundy felt, since burgandy is her favorite color.

This box is finished with 9 coats of poly/oil blend with a final 1500 grit sanding. This was sufficient to fill all the grain pores…which is something I strive for when trying to create a very smooth finish. It always seems that sanding a recently cured finish softens it somewhat, so after the 1500 grit sanding I let it sit for several days before hand rubbing this one out with behlens buffer’s polish. For me this seems to be a key to getting a glass-smooth finish.

-- Martin, Kansas

25 comments so far

View GaryK's profile


10262 posts in 5069 days

#1 posted 05-09-2008 05:40 AM

Great looking box! I really like those bookmatched ends.

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

View trifern's profile


8135 posts in 4848 days

#2 posted 05-09-2008 06:13 AM

Very nicely designed box and an excellent choice of wood. Thanks for the post.

-- My favorite piece is my last one, my best piece is my next one.

View Douglas Bordner's profile

Douglas Bordner

4073 posts in 5145 days

#3 posted 05-09-2008 07:20 AM

Oddly I am working up a line of M&T boxes myself at the current moment, but they are stinkers compared to the work you have put out in this and the Dragon Box posts. Excellent work here. I think there is not a hint of woodhacking in evidence.

I just noticed that you are from my hometown of Topeka, KS (Topeka High School, class of ‘72). Nice to make your acquaintance.

-- "Bordnerizing" perfectly good lumber for over two decades.

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27249 posts in 4903 days

#4 posted 05-09-2008 11:15 AM


This is a beautiful box. You did a good job on the construction and wood selection. Nice finishing routine, as well. Too often we get to the finishing steps and then try to rush through this part in order to get the project completed.

Nice job and thanks for the post.

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

View Les Hastings's profile

Les Hastings

1306 posts in 4854 days

#5 posted 05-09-2008 12:11 PM

Another excellent box Martin, keep up the great work!

-- Les, Wichita, Ks. (I'd rather be covered in saw dust!)

View dozer15's profile


14 posts in 4803 days

#6 posted 05-09-2008 12:30 PM

Great looking box i really like the design. I might have to find that issue of woodsmith.

-- i cut it twice and it is still to short

View Dick, & Barb Cain's profile

Dick, & Barb Cain

8693 posts in 5380 days

#7 posted 05-09-2008 12:46 PM


I love the grain figure of the two woods.

Great craftsmanship.

-- -** You are never to old to set another goal or to dream a new dream ****************** Dick, & Barb Cain, Hibbing, MN.

View jjohn's profile


390 posts in 4795 days

#8 posted 05-09-2008 01:40 PM

I gotta get some of that rose wood for myself. Beautiful work. Love the finish.

-- JJohn

View TedM's profile


2002 posts in 4814 days

#9 posted 05-09-2008 02:12 PM

Very nice combination of woods. They meld very well. Great job!

-- I'm a wood magician... I can turn fine lumber into firewood before your very eyes! - Please visit and sign up for my project updates!

View Todd A. Clippinger's profile

Todd A. Clippinger

8901 posts in 5180 days

#10 posted 05-09-2008 03:30 PM

Great work!

-- Todd A. Clippinger, Montana,

View jockmike2's profile


10635 posts in 5328 days

#11 posted 05-10-2008 01:10 PM

Beautiful box no matter how you turn it. Nice colors and very nice inlay. I’d say your nephews will be very happy.

-- (You just have to please the man in the Mirror) Mike from Michigan -

View miles125's profile


2180 posts in 5087 days

#12 posted 05-10-2008 01:19 PM

Wonderful box. I love the wood combinations.

-- "The way to make a small fortune in woodworking- start with a large one"

View YorkshireStewart's profile


1130 posts in 4982 days

#13 posted 05-10-2008 09:37 PM

Exquisite box Woodhacker & that Rosewood is a delight! I just wish I was a relative or friend of a Lumberjock with all these gifts being presented!

-- Res severa verum gaudium - True pleasure is a serious business.

View USCJeff's profile


1065 posts in 5149 days

#14 posted 05-13-2008 02:12 AM

Nice work. How did you go about the inlay? Router Template? I like the font you chose for the “B”. I’ve done a couple “letter” inlays in the past that were really tough for me to keep accurate, so I’m interested in your method. All other aspects were great as well. And yeah, I like the rosewood variant as well.

-- Jeff, South Carolina

View Woodhacker's profile


1139 posts in 4804 days

#15 posted 05-14-2008 01:02 AM

LJs, Thanks for the comments and encouragement.

Jeff, I don’t use templates, freehand routing and chisels, knives, and mini-gouges. This is pretty much the same process I go through in each inlay & I have a more detailed description of the process at:

-- Martin, Kansas

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