River Rock Box

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Project by KennyBuildit posted 03-08-2013 04:39 AM 2189 views 3 times favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

February is always a crazy month for me since a good number of folks I’m directly related to (both my parents) have birthdays in that month. For Christmas I made Mum her cutting board, which I’m happy to say she uses every day.

Now it’s Dad’s turn.

Being short on ideas, I thumbed through a few of my project-idea binders (more on that later) and found inspiration in a simple wooden box with a river rock inlay.

Back to my binders: I found an ad online for what was described as a “bunch” of old woodworking magazines that “my husband hasn’t read in ages” for free, as long as you box em up, and take em all.

Fast forward to me carrying about 600 lbs of old Fine Woodworking, This Old House, Wood, and Fine Homebuilding magazines from the mid eighties to my poor car, which after filling the backseat with them the wheels of the car rubbed the top of the fender wells. Marvelous. I’ve since taken pages from the magazines that I like and recycled the rest. I know, I’m a horrible person.

Either way, I made the sides last. That’s right, I did this ass-backwards.

The first set of sides I made out of hard maple looked rather nice, look at the last pictures at the inside and bottom and you’ll see how nice a piece of wood Lowes can sell. Either way, I made the walls, the bottom, and then managed to mess the walls up and glued them off-kilter.

Rather than break the walls and fix them, they’re sitting in my designer-kindling box until I get a chance to really work them square.

So, here comes the top. I took a nice piece of poplar and traced out the “river” rocks, some of which came from a nearby river, others from my driveway. Busted out the scroll saw, cut out and then routed the edges.

Ended up gluing everything in place, shout-out to Titebond II, broke out the chisels and made mortises for the hinges for the very first time, and finished everything with two nice coats of tung oil and then two coats of lacquer.

So, Sunday night my Dad unwraps it and for the first time in the twenty-something years I’ve been alive… is speechless.

I think it came out nice, I’m open to suggestions and look forward to everybody’s input. I’m still very much a novice and looking to improve.

All the best,


-- Half-assed and whole-hearted, Kenny

3 comments so far

View Natalie 's profile


367 posts in 2853 days

#1 posted 03-08-2013 04:55 AM

Yes, regarding those magazines you are a horrible person….However, I have every issue of FWW and now that everything is available online, I’m wondering if I will every refer to them again.

Nice idea for the rocks on top of your box.

-- Natalie - My mind is like a bad neighborhood, I don't like to go there alone.

View Fishinbo's profile


11362 posts in 3062 days

#2 posted 03-11-2013 04:09 PM

Looks interesting and well made. Like the rock inlays, added some character to the box. Well done!

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 3753 days

#3 posted 03-11-2013 05:09 PM

That’s a very nice box and I love the way that you handled the rocks.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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