268 – Scrapwood Jewelry Box

268 – Scrapwood Jewelry Box

Marc – On today’s show, we’re gonna make some small, attractive jewelry boxes using shop cut-offs. (funky instrumental music) Now you’re gonna see me make all three of these boxes today, but there’s actually only two designs. These two are exactly the same, just using different wood species, and then we have the
more basic design here that’s nice and square. Even though it’s simple,
it’s very elegant, has a nice, modern look to it. The inside is flocked, and that helps soften the interior and protect any jewels that you may put in there. And of course, back here, we’ve got these little barrel hinges, and those can be a little
bit tricky to install, you’ll see how we do that later. The other design is, I think a little bit more elegant, little bit more challenging. You’ve got curves here, on the top and on the sides, matching curves. The interior is pretty much the same as the simpler version. And these all come from something that I actually built over 10 years ago. Before starting The Wood Whisperer I spent more than my fair share of time in woodworking forums, and there was one in particular called WWA, where there was a gentleman
named Dave Knipfer who would post the most
amazing jewelry boxes, standing jewelry boxes on legs. And I can never really, at the time, even, wrap my head around
building those, things, but, there was one time he
posted a very simple box that I thought I could accomplish, and that is what this is. It’s a very simple
design, and you could see how if you have a thick piece of wood, you could actually make it from one piece and get both your lid and your bottom, and then you could just
have fun with the sides and make laminations and stuff. This is definitely a design
that is heavily influenced, if not a direct copy of
what he posted back then. We’re talking over 10 years ago. I’ve since lost touch with Dave, I don’t even know what
he’s up to these days, but I cannot take credit for this design, but I think it’s so great,
so simple, and so elegant that I wanted to show it to you. Alright, so, let’s talk a
little bit about the wood, ’cause we’re gonna use some
scrap wood for this project. Like any self-respecting woodworker, I just can’t seem to throw away wood. I’ll give it away sometimes, I’ll put some domestic species in my
smoker, but other than that, it just kind of piles up,
so small projects like this are perfect for all these
little odd-ball pieces. Especially these eight quarter pieces, which kind of, unless
you’re building small legs or something, it’s hard to
find home for this stuff, so small box projects are perfect. Now, if you are making
the flat-top version, you can use a piece of eight quarter, and actually get your bottom and your lid out of the same piece, which gives you great grain continuity. If you’re doing the rounded top, well that top requires a 3/4 inch lid, so you’re probly not gonna get it out of a piece of eight quarter, you might need something a little bit thicker. Or, simply use a piece of
eight quarter for the bottom, and a piece of four
quarter to get your top. The legs, they’re gonna be about 1/2 inch in thickness, so you can get them from any of this stuff. But you know what, mix and match, have fun with it, just utilize this scrap and put it to good use so you can either recuperate some money to
buy more wood (chuckling), I guess, or just make some
friends and family happy with some beautiful boxes. Alright, let me show you how to make ’em. I start by selecting my stock,
and laying out the parts. I use the band saw to rough cut the top and bottom pieces. For the flat box, we can get both the lid and the bottom out of a single piece of eight quarter stock. All of the pieces are then milled flat and square using the jointer and planer. (whirring)
(buzzing) At the table saw, the pieces are all trimmed to final width. And at the chop saw, the parts are trimmed to final length with a stop block. The sides are pretty small, so please, watch your fingers. I actually have my hand
positioned under the clamp so that I physically can’t get any closer to the blade. Back at the work bench,
I use a card scraper to clean up the mill marks, and save myself a boatload
of time and effort by skipping the low-grit sanding. And obviously, I’m showing this to you out of order, since it’s much easier to scrape these pieces before
you cut them to length. And here are the three sets
of blanks, ready to go. Now’s a good time to commit
your lids and bottoms to an orientation that gives the best appearance possible. The ends of the bottoms will receive small 1/4 inch tenons, so I’ll draw that onto the endgrain for reference. Something I like to do
with all of my tenons is scribe the shoulder with cutting gauge. This not only serves as reference, but helps prevent tear-out. Before drawing the mortises on the legs, we should arrange these for
the best grain possible. I think they look best as mirror images, not only on the faces,
but also on the endgrain. I really only need to draw
the mortise on one piece. The rest can receive a simple dummy mark. Let’s make the mortises first. At the router table, I’ll install 1/4 inch spiral bit. For additional support, I’m attaching a piece of scrap to the fence with double stick tape. The fence is set 1/4 inch from the bit. Now I’m going to mark
the left and right edges of the bit on the fence, so I know where to start and stop. I could just do my best
to drop the work piece in the right spot using pencil marks, but I think we’ll get much better results if we set up two stop blocks. The process is simple, but not mindless. Bring the side piece into the fence and the right stop, and slowly lower it on top of the bit. I actually hold my compressed
air nozzle in my hand, so that I can quickly clear
the dust while I’m working. Once I make contact with the other stop, I turn off the router, and wait for the bit to
come to a complete stop. And now for the tenons. The tenons are so small, that I decided just to use my regular blade, the fence, and the miter gauge to make them. With the blade raised to 1/8 of an inch, I cut the bottom shoulders, as well as the fronts and backs of all my bottom pieces. The blade is then raised to just under 5/8 of an inch, as I sneak up on the fit, using the side
mortises for reference. And that’s what we’re looking for. The tenon then gets rounded over to fit the round ended mortises. If the fit is a bit tight, a pass or two with the shoulder plane should remedy the situation. Now that’s a nice-looking joint, you know, the one we can’t see anymore? With the sides clamped to the bottom, now’s a good time to give
our tops a final trim if they need it. Obviously the lid needs
to fit between the legs with a little bit of room to spare. Mine’s a little tight, so I make a quick cut at the miter saw to fix it. And now we can drill
for the barrel hinges. I’ll first mark in 1 1/2 inches from the edges of the lid, and transfer those marks to the bottom piece. At the drill press, I set the fence so that the hole is 1/16 of an inch away from the back edge. The hinges are 5mm, but
the closest bit I have in the shop is 13/64 of an inch, so that’s what I used. The depth of the hole is pretty critical, and I found .28 to .3
inches deep to be ideal. Drill all the bottom
holes at the same setting and then adjust the depth for the lids. Now do a quick hinge test-fit. When the pieces go
together, there should be a hairline gap at the back. Now there’s a good chance the lid doesn’t meet up with the bottom perfectly. So with the hinges still in place, put the assembly in a vice, and grab a hand plane. A few passes should do it. Repeat the process on the other side. Remove the hinges and use the chamfer bit to put in approximate
1/4 inch wide chamfer on the inside faces of
the lid and the box. This will provide the necessary clearance for our hinges, allowing the lid to open to a full 90 degrees. If you’re doing a curved lid, mark a 1/4 inch reference line on the ends and then, use a circle template to draw in the curve. Now carry the 1/4 inch reference line down each side. The concept is simple. Remove stock until you
reach your pencil lines on the sides, and on the ends. You might also notice that I placed the center line in the middle of the top. I’ll make sure that line stays intact until the very end. If you take even passes and
check your lines periodically, the curve will take shape. Repeat the process on the other side. To fine tune the surface,
use a card scraper, or a sanding block. (scraping) And now, for a quick message from the sponsor of this episode, Qalo Rings. Well I’m sure you’ve noticed by now that I’m wearing an awesome,
sparkly, purple ring and there’s a really good reason for that. Qalo is the maker of the ring, and they’re running a charity event and this ring is called the Ava Ring. – Yes. – And this is my daughter, Ava, so we have a little bit
of a connection there. Nicole actually has a ring on today, too. – Yes, I have one too. – Here’s the idea. They are giving 20%, is it? Right, 20% of the proceeds to. – The Jesse Rees Foundation. – And that’s a organization that basically is providing little things
for kids in hospitals, when they really just need that little something to make them smile. – A Year of Hope, they call it. – Yeah, so it’s a great foundation, and in fact we’re gonna be supporting them as well this year with our Woodworkers Fighting Cancer drive. But I want you to go to Qalo’s website, check it out, get one of these rings, or get them for a loved one. They’re absolutely beautiful, it’s a great way to show your support, and to also kick a
little back to a charity. – Yeah, we also have a few of them to give away to our audience. – Oh yeah. – If you head on over to
TheWoodWhisperer.com/QaloRing, there’s just a little widget, we just need your email and your ring size and we have a limited number, but we still have a few of them, so if you’re interested in getting a ring, you can head on over there. – Yeah, pretty awesome. Alright, well, let’s
get back to the action. To make the recesses in
the lids and the bases, we’ll use the Dado stack at the table saw. Start with the fence,
set at 5/16 of an inch away from the blade,
to establish the walls of the box and lid. The curved lids are treated the same way. Now it’s a simple matter
of moving the fence over and making passes until the
stock is completely removed. (buzzing)
(whirring) The bottoms are done in the same way, only the blade is raised a little bit. For all of these cuts,
I’m leaving the blade just a hair lower than the plans call for. The reason is because the Dado stack tends to leave a very uneven surface, so I’ll use a straight
bit at the router table to do the clean up work. Why didn’t I just use the
router in the first place? Because it’s a lot of stress to put on that router
bit, and the table saw is just more efficient at
hogging away a lot of bulk. Just like at the table
saw, we work our way toward the center, by moving the fence after each set of passes. Now just a little bit of sanding inside the box and we
should be good to go. The lid gets the same treatment. With the chamfer bit
back in the router table, we’ll make a very small decorative chamfer at the front, where the
lid and the bottom meet. This is purely aesthetic, but it does a great job of disguising any little hairline gaps that we might have. Now let’s give the base and lid a nice, thorough finish
sanding up to 220 grit. A sanding block works much better than a powered sander on
small pieces like this. Now for the boxed sides. For the flat box, the
sides are simply given tiny chamfers on all edges
and then sanded smooth. For the curved boxes, do
a dry assembly and use a compass or scribe to mark a curve on a side that matches the top curve. Now cut and or sand to the line. A little glue in the
mortises is all it takes. (pleasant instrumental music) Once the glue is dry, it’s
time to apply the finish. I’ll be using Sherwood
Williams Cab Acrylic Lacquer, applied using an HVLP turbine. I spray all of my boxes at the same time, doing my best to get complete coverage. (hissing) After a few hours, I bring the pieces in for a light, 500 grit sanding, to smooth the surface. Now I’ll apply two more coats
without sanding between. After the final coat, I spray pure lacquer thinner on the surface, to help smooth everything out. This is really the secret to getting a nice, smooth finish right off the gun in an imperfect finishing environment. Once the finish is dry, we
can work on the flocking. We’ll need to tape off the areas we don’t want flocking material. To get your flock on, you’ll
need an application tube, flocking fiber, and adhesive. Scoop some of the fiber into the tube, and be sure to do this work inside a cardboard box, because
it can get very messy. Paint the area to be
flocked using adhesive. It spreads like a self-leveling paint, and is pretty forgiving. Just spread a nice, even coat, and be sure to go right up to the tape. Because I’m using black fibers, I’m also using black adhesive. Now we just need to use the tube to apply the fiber. Simply twist as you push
the two halves together. Kind of like using a pepper mill. Fresh pepper? Gratsi. Be generous, and apply enough material to fully cover the
adhesive, and then some. The next day, we can dump out the excess and remove the tape. The adhesive still isn’t
completely set at this point but it’s set enough to finish the box off. If you notice the flocking
wasn’t absolutely perfect, you can easily fine-tune it with some fine grit sand paper. Now, let’s glue in those barrel hinges. I use epoxy for this, and apply it to the
holes using a toothpick. Not too much, just
enough to coat the walls. Insert the longer side of the hinge into the bottom, and press it down until it bottoms out. And be sure to clean up any epoxy that squeezes out. Carefully bring in the lid, and push the hinges into the holes. Give the lid a few test runs and set it aside to dry. It’s not a bad idea to
open and close the lid periodically as the glue sets, just in case some of the glue gets into the moving parts of the hinge. Once again, here’s the original, and you could see how you could really be creative with this if you wanted to, with laminations on the side pieces, using a different species, it’s just a great way to use up scrap wood that you have sitting around the shop and make something really elegant and frankly, if you sell your woodworking, something that’s very sell-able and easy to make. And I really like the
improvements we’ve made. The simple, contemporary design, with the nice square sides. There’s really not much to it, but it has a simple elegance, and of course the curved top versions
are my new favorites. I really think this is an improvement over the old design with
the curved sides as well. This is just a much more elegant approach to a very similar form factor, here. Have fun with it, be creative and if you make some of these boxes, send me a few pictures, so I can put ’em on the website, because I think there’s a lot of cool things you can do with this basic design, just using scrap wood. Thanks for watching. (pleasant instrumental music)


  1. 300 bucks is a chunk of change but to those who think that's to much. Then they must only have a circular saw. Why wast money on a miter saw or a table saw when a skill saw can do all of those tasks. Or buy a drill press when a drill does the same thing or a mortiser when a chisel does the same task.

  2. Hi Marc! Does the chamfer along the hinge edges cut into the hinge holes? Hard for me to tell on the plans. Thanks! Love your stuff, man!

  3. Great work, I just noticed an Ocarina on the background. Wondering if you could make a wooden case for it and also a performance with it if you please.

  4. I must have been gone a while….when did you get all covered in tats? Yuk! Shoulda stayed clean my friend! Keep up the great woodworking though, you're a great teacher!

  5. Fuck me; I do not have any of this machines (or lesser machines). ¿It´s possible do this by hand?. I want to do something with wood (I´ve no experience what so ever), and I thoug this would be an easy one. I guess not. DISCLAIMER: I´m not saying that having these machines It´s the product of the patriarchy, or some envy shit like that. It´s just a fact that I don´t have it).

  6. I just finished a similar box for my granddaughter and wish I had watched this video before I did. it would have saved a few hours of aggravation, but it turned out beautiful anyway. I used 1/4 inch stock so most of this wouldn't have applied unless I laminated all of the pieces which I now wish I had. Oh well..next granddaughter is on the way, but it'll be a few years before she's ready for the bling.

  7. I can't remember if it was mentioned in the video, but I'll put it out here anyway. I think a good tip is also to finish the wood first before applying the flock adhesive. Once tested it on a piece of unfinished simple ply wood which soaked the adhesive right in. Result… a very unevenly flocked test piece.

  8. You mention that after the final coat, you spray pure lacquer thinner on the surface to help smooth everything out. Is that done while the last coat is still wet, or do you wait until it's dry? Thanks!

  9. Great tutorial Mark 🙂 I've started my own version of a jewelry box today – not as slick as yours, but it should do the job I hope! Please can you tell me what the guitar track is playing in the background?

  10. I liked everything about this box except the notch in the middle for opening it. I think I will try to come up with another method. maybe I will just leave it flush and see it that works. it is really a nice box.

  11. is 8 quarter an actual 2 inchs or more like 1.5 inchs like a 2x 4 just wondering , everything i get is dimensional 3/4

  12. Slow to catch up with you, but great ideas for old wood. Only thing I would say is that (apparently) stacked dado blades aren't allowed in the UK and the table saws here (modern ones) are built so as to make it impossible to fit them. What would be the easiest alternative to removing so much wood?

  13. I'm new to woodworking and love your channel… can I ask what kind of belt sander you were using to sand down to the curved line on the box ends(11:29)? The one's I've been looking at seemed far less accurate than yours. Thanks!

  14. So that reddish looking wood at 14:25….what is it? Looks like the grain is defined on deep red colored wood? I'm probably an average wood identifier…what is it?

  15. Kudos for giving the credit where it was due. Has Dave contacted you since posting this video? Also I love your work. Keep it up.

  16. 9:45 you remove that much material and theres no dust coming out of the back of the blade? Dust collection goals

  17. This was interesting. While not jewelry I would like to build a few dice boxes and this gave me a head start. Thanks, now I just need to find a scrap wood pile…

  18. Very nice little project! Will definitely try to make a few myself. BTW: Who's playing those acoustic guitars at the very end? Beautiful music!

  19. I got some 5mm barrel hinges in the post today… they are seriously small…
    Those hinges you have they look waaaaay bigger than 5mm. Maybe it's the camera fooling my eyes but the difference between what I have here for 5mm and what I see in the video is huge.

  20. I am trying to improve my skills so I thought these boxes would be a good learning experience and it has, however the barrel hinges are kicking my butt. Regardless of what I do I have a 1/8 inch gap instead of a hair line crack. Any ideas as to what I am doing wrong. Thanks for this project including the plans.

  21. I love your channel and projects but lean more to channels utilizing hand tools for small projects such as these simple boxes. I know you have the hand tools and skill to use them. I'd love to see more posts that concentrate on using hand tools because, frankly, I don't have the dedicated room or money for large power tools. Thanks for a great channel. – A subscriber.

  22. was walking through my local hardware store and seen a rift sawn planed square 8ft 2×4 of Tasmanian hardwood. guess how much they wanted for it. it was $53 and my jaw just dropped to the floor. can't afford that so guess who's not buying Tasmanian hardwood?

  23. Thanks for the posting. The machineries you've used are expensive. It's a professional setup. The box is easy to make at your level with all the setup you have, not for the average joe.

  24. I flacking think you flacking like to say flacking dont know if thats how flacking is written who gives a flack nice flacking job on those flacking boxes

  25. Got inspired by this video, then I hit drawing board. After I was done I changed everything except its still a box with flocking and I use barrel hinges… lol

  26. If anybody have that many tools to just make a wooden box, he/she never needs a video like this. it simply learned these methods way back during tool acquiring. by the way nice boxes.

  27. Well, Ive ruined 3 of these now trying to install the barrel hinge… Cannot seem to get the depth and distance from the back correct. Any more detailed tips on the hinging? I dont have a facebook or twitter so dont know how to send any pics of the ones Ive made so far. I covered up the failed barrel hinge hole with a normal hinge to get the boxes done, but it just isnt right..

  28. Can someone help me understand what that black powder is or at least the name so I can find the info myself. Thx

  29. New sub here. Quick question from the UK. When you say eight quarter or four quarter, am I right in assuming you mean a board/piece eight/four and a quarter inches wide?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.