I am in the process of building the Keepsake box. I tried Spanish cedar as I had never worked with it. It was a wonderful wood but awfully soft and fragile. When I went to glue up the Paul Sellers Keepsake box, despite my being very very careful, I had three major wood fractures. I was planning to remake it. I am inclined to try cherry as I have worked a fair bit in cherry and know I won’t have the same problems of fragility that I think is related to using Spanish cedar. How does genuine mahogany behave in terms of strength and brittleness relative to cherry? Given I just had a wood unknown to me cause problems, I am disinclined to try a new to me wood but though I would check as I have the perfect piece of mahogany for this. Thanks for the feedback.
To the other question. What happened during glue up? I’m not completely certain. I did several mock dry runs (as much as you can in this design) and even made cauls and was gentle when applying clamp pressure. The top and bottom if anything were a bit too loose in their respective grooves. My best guess is that there was some swelling in the wood with the glue. When I saw it open, I should be able to repair most of the damage. The scars will be there but for my personal use or my 10 year olds use it will be fine.