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    Matt McGrane

    For a Christmas gift I made a small box that fits over a box of Kleenex. I’ve made some of these before in my power tool days, but this was from hand tools only. It’s made from oak and I ebonized the project to fit the recipient’s decor. The finish is three coats of BLO, followed (soon) by a couple coats of paste wax.

    I wrote more about it in my blog (see signature line), in case anybody is interested to read more. It a fun and fairly quick project.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/


    That’s really nice, the joints look tight.

    How thick are the boards you used? I have some reclaimed mahogany that I was thinking of making into a box, but I’m not sure how thin to cut them down (they are about 2.5 inches thick right now).



    Richard Guggemos

    Cool, and a nice gift

    Mike I

    Thanks – Very nice joints and interesting to read the blog about the ebonizing process 🙂

    How difficult was it to shape the oval that well? It looks like it might be quite an awkward shape as it’s narrow!

    Matt McGrane

    Thanks all for the comments.

    – the boards were a little over 1/4″ thick, maybe around 9/32″. When sawing the tails and pins I used a 3/4″ backer board to extend the layout lines. That makes it much easier to saw straight to the lines. The thickness you choose for your mahogany box will depend on the size of box and what it might be used for. I wanted mine to be light. The box is something like 9 1/2″ x 4 1/2″ – I forget exactly.

    – Mike, the oval was fairly easy. I used a template for the overall shape, found a bit whose diameter closely approximated the shape of the ends of the oval, drilled them out, then sawed out the waste. After that it was rasps and files to the layout lines, then sanding to smooth it out. The toughest part was the transition between the bored out end holes and the long curve. I made sure to rasp and file from the outside surface to the inside surface just in case there was any tear-out. I rounded over the edges with rasps, files and sandpaper.

    Matt, Northern California - Started a blog in 2016: http://tinyshopww.blogspot.com/


    Looks great. I thought I didn’t like the look of the dovetails until you ebonized the box. That made them much more subtle and gives just the right character to the box. Nicely done.

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