Whats your Thickness?

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Forum topic by Cornductor posted 01-29-2015 04:40 AM 1267 views 0 times favorited 12 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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208 posts in 3000 days

01-29-2015 04:40 AM

So I’m normally not on here much but do like to snoop. Here’s my question.

How thick do have your wood when it comes to making boxes. Do you use 1/4, 3/8, 1/2, or the biggy 3/4? Whats the typical thickness if any?

Whats your thoughts.

-- An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. Benjamin Franklin

12 replies so far

View Dark_Lightning's profile


3415 posts in 3442 days

#1 posted 01-29-2015 05:02 AM

Thick as a brick, sometimes…

Depends on what I’m making. I use 1/8” and 1/4” for small boxes like eyeglass cases, and up to 3/4” wood for bookcases and cabinets.

-- Random Orbital Nailer

View knotheadswoodshed's profile


225 posts in 2506 days

#2 posted 01-29-2015 01:44 PM

I make almost all of my boxes 1/2” as it maintains a good sense of proportion through different sized boxes I make.

for example, a 4” x 6” box that is made with 5/8 material just looks too thick and clunky to my eye.

I guess it depends on what kind of boxes you are making though, I make jewelry and valet boxes so proportion is important from an aesthetics point of view.

-- Randy - "I dont make mistakes, I make design change opportunities"

View Jim Finn's profile

Jim Finn

2692 posts in 3255 days

#3 posted 01-29-2015 02:44 PM

I make small boxes, hundreds of them. I use 3/8” cedar. When I make a small trunk (16”x16”x24”) I use 1/2” cedar.

-- No PHD just a DD214

View HornedWoodwork's profile


222 posts in 1547 days

#4 posted 01-29-2015 03:07 PM

I think of the breadbox adage, smaller than a breadbox I’d shoot for 1/2 or less, I like the way 3/8 looks and it still has a little meat for joinery options. 1/4 starts to get pretty delicate, you’ll need a steady handy and some fine saws to work that small. I use it inside of small boxes more than as the case work.

Bigger than a breadbox you should start at 1/2 and got up to 3/4 or maybe 7/8. I’ve made a few things out of full 1 inch before but it tends to look a little beefy at that end, so I prefer beads or chamfers to reduce that edge look a little.

-- Talent, brilliance, and humility are my virtues.

View wseand's profile


2796 posts in 3375 days

#5 posted 01-29-2015 04:39 PM

I have only made a few and it depended on what type of box I was making. If I was going to attempt carving it was 3/4 any other was 1/2. Hope that helps but I am sure there are some box makers on here that could give you a better answer.

I would figure that in the design phase you would make that choice.

View AlaskaGuy's profile


5199 posts in 2642 days

#6 posted 01-29-2015 07:55 PM

There no pat answer. It depends on many factors. I sure wouldn’t use 1’’ thick on a finger ring box and I wouldn’t use 1/4’’ thick on a big box for a blanket chest.

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!

View JesseTutt's profile


854 posts in 2444 days

#7 posted 01-29-2015 08:04 PM

I use 1/2” for most of my boxes. Cabinets are 3/4”.

-- Jesse, Saint Louis, Missouri

View ShawnSpencer's profile


81 posts in 1875 days

#8 posted 01-29-2015 08:13 PM

3/8” for most keepsake box type items. 1/4” can be good on pretty small stuff. 1/2” can get kinda chunky for most table top type items but, chunky can be a good look for some things. Best to experiment to find what you like.

-- I know you know...

View gfadvm's profile


14940 posts in 3023 days

#9 posted 01-30-2015 12:56 AM

Most of my boxes are 5/8” stock.

-- " I'll try to be nicer, if you'll try to be smarter" gfadvm

View ElChe's profile


630 posts in 1669 days

#10 posted 01-30-2015 01:18 AM

My problem with less than 1/2” thick is finding decent hinges for hinged boxes. Brusso sells some but darned expensive. Other hinges are flimsy.

-- Tom - Measure twice cut once. Then measure again. Curse. Fudge.

View jmartel's profile


8414 posts in 2483 days

#11 posted 01-30-2015 01:21 AM

The boxes I’ve made have been 1/2”, or slightly over for the invisible hinges. Those things suck to install and leave very little wall thickness.

-- The quality of one's woodworking is directly related to the amount of flannel worn.

View Cornductor's profile


208 posts in 3000 days

#12 posted 01-30-2015 02:25 AM

Im partial to 3/8 material and tend to shy away from 1/2. I really appreciate the comments as this is great info.

-- An investment in knowledge pays the best interest. Benjamin Franklin

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