Okay I have no money but this is what I can and want to do

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jm wrote:

Jim, I think that you're missing the pointthat people are trying to make here. I've never met a woodworker who didn't make presents for friends and family. Comparing the amount of work that it takes to make one, a butcher block is harder than a dovetail box, and much cheaper to buy pre-made. the point being, that butcher blocks take ALOT of work and nobody will see the work, a nicely made box will be turned over and around and examined to a much higher degree. More "WOW" factor. A box is also easier to make with limited tools. Dave in Fairfax
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snipped-for-privacy@fairfax.com wrote:

Second that one. I'm getting into boxmaking, though I'm sort of limited because I don't have any decent way to sharpen anything, and I'm coming up against a brick wall there. I really need to take a timeout and learn how to sharpen things properly, before I ruin more chisels.
Anyway, the point I'm getting at is that I just made a box to contain the contents of the broken plastic thingie that used to hold my tap and die set. The box is nothing spectacular to look at, but it was very rewarding, and fairly simple to make. I've gotten more of a wow out of SWMBO over this stupid little ugly plywood box than anything I've made in the last four years. I'm going to start making them out of good wood, with better looking joinery. Good thing to do with my piddly little shop.
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wrote:

Tell me how you got started. I have never heard of boxmaking.
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jm wrote:

That basically _is_ how I got started. I had never made a complete box before.
It's nothing the slightest bit fancy. I used scrap plywood, which is quite ugly, but functional and free. I made four pieces the height I wanted the box to be, then cut off about a third of the width to make the lid pieces. Cut a couple of pieces to fit the top and bottom, and I had the makings of a box.
I'd like to say I did something fancy in the way of joinery, but the truth is that I marked hole locations and then drilled pilot holes through the pieces with my drill press, then nailed it all together. (Yes, *nails*... I'm so ashamed...) I didn't even use glue. I cut the mortises for the hinges with my table saw, then screwed one of those little flip down catch thingies to the front. I cut a piece of scrap pine and fiddled with it until it was a perfect fit for the inside. I used a Forstner bit to make places to stick my dies, and I drilled appropriately sized holes to fit the taps.
Voila. An ugly but very functional little armored case so I quit losing my taps and dies.
I'm working on a finger joint jig now. I plan to make something out of scrap oak with finger joints and glue instead of screws, which I will actually make in a fashion that permits sanding and finishing. I might make a fancy box to replace my Dremel case, which never wants to stay open, and which is always flipping over and spilling all my stuff all over the place.
Beyond that, maybe a fancy jewelry box for SWMBO or for Mom or something. Limitless possibilities with boxes, and they're cheap because they don't use much in the way of materials. I think these will be good practice for joinery too. I can do dovetails, through tennons, finger joints, pegs, half laps, splined miters... Seems like a good way to learn about joinery, so the next time I try to build myself a set of doors for a hutch, they don't come out looking so awful.
I think it will be more fun than bird houses and shadow boxes. I have too many damn bird houses, and shadow boxes just encourage SWMBO to collect more little piddly crap that has to be dusted. :)
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snip jm wrote:

If you don't have any practice with woodworking and have limited tools, you need to start simple and work up. Do a search on Wood box +plans +free and see where that gets you. Try to make boxes with simple joints and work up to dovetails as your skills progress. When they start looking pretty you'll know that you are ready to start giving them away. You'll also have learned the basic skills necessary to be a better than the average TV woodworker. The good news is that making boxes can all be done with relatively inexpensive hand tools. Practice with inexpensive woods, not pine, poplar would be better and not much more expensive.
I hope that helps, Dave in Fairfax
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Alright, what kind of box should I make. I never thought of making a box before. What would its function be?
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Tue, Sep 2, 2003, 10:09pm (EDT+4) john_20_28 snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (jm) wants to know: Alright, what kind of box should I make. I never thought of making a box before. What would its function be?
Well, the function of most boxes would be to hold something. You can also stand them on end and sit on them. You want someone to tell you what kind of box to make? In that case. http://www.realbeer.com/spencer/beercase.html
JOAT No sense in being pessimistic - it wouldn't work anyway.
Life just ain't life without good music. - JOAT Web Page Update 1 Sep 2003. Some tunes I like. http://community-2.webtv.net/Jakofalltrades/SOMETUNESILIKE /
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snip jm wrote:

There are several types available and a couple of basic methods to use. One way to make boxes is to turn them, if you have a lathe. Since you don't you are restricted to rectangular , or something along that line, boxes. The corners can be joined by dovetails, finger joints, half-laps or but joints. I put them in that order because I see that as the decreasing order of WOW factor when people look at the box. The boxes could be for jewelry or cigars or anything else that you can think of. The reality is that its function of the boxes would be to cause pleasure in the people you preset them to.
Dave in Fairfax
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Actually, I couldn't find more than a few on the Intenet, but Amazon has some books.
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I bought this book (don't know if this link will work here):
Box-Making Basic: Design, Technique, Projects by David M. Freedman
(Amazon.com product link shortened)
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jm wrote:

Go to a bookstore or a library, find the boxmaking books and flip through them for ideas.
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use exotic woods for decorator boxes. Some functions include stationary, jewelry, trinkets, and some are just for collectors. Yes, there are collectors of small wooden boxes. One makes Bible boxes with carved tops. Another makes just cigar boxes of Spanish cedar. Another makes fancy $300 to $1000 boxes for crematory ashes. Some are turned. Some are inlaid. And one of the most promising young cabinetmakers I have known now makes specialized plywood boxes for shipping aviation instruments -- a waste of talent, but very profitable. harrym
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more, as I age.
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One of the nicest pieces I've ever seen (a china cabinet made of Jatoba) was made by a guy who's only power tool was a circular saw. As others have replied, anything is possible. Less powerful tools just require more time and care to produce quality results.
Those saws you looked at will work. If at all possible, set aside another $25 to $50 for a decent blade (the Freud Diablo is about $30 at Home Depot), which will increase the capability of your budget tablesaw.
Plan your work carefully. Pay particular attention to thinking through how you will feed the wood into the blade and support it coming out the other side. It can be done. It can be done by you.
Rich S.
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RM MS wrote:

It's Brit speak. They use it a lot.
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To Goat:
So you repeated it.
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To RM MS
Plonk.

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:) way to go! He made my twit list recently too...
dave
news.verizon.net wrote:

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Dave, sometimes you do show good taste. :)

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