Jewelry Box for Valentine’s Day

Hi everybody, I'm like McCrory and this is Wood U Make It. Three or four months ago I had a scrap piece of walnut that looks something like this. It had this knot in the side of it and it was cracked so you could see daylight all the way through. I was really tempted to throw it out but out of curiosity I decided to resaw it, slice it down the middle and open it up like a book just to see what it would look like and this is what I got. A pretty impressive piece of wood and I thought it would be ideal for making the top of the jewelry box.

With Valentine's Day right around the corner, I thought jewelry box would be the ultimate gift for my wife this year. I've got some bird's-eye maple and walnut for the top and that's really all I need. I want the walnut top to be the future — the primary feature of the box and accentuated by the bird's-eye maple so I'm going to dimension everything around the top. I'm going to make it 9" wide by 14 1/2" long and that's the golden ratio for a rectangle. It's a ratio of 1.618. I almost cut the wood here at nine inches and then I realized that would be a mistake because to try to joint such a short piece of wood would result in a fair amount of snipe, so I added the length of the box to this piece to measure 23 1/2" or 24" and that will give me a length of wood that's suitable for jointing Jointing doesn't produce very good results with bird's-eye maple because the bird's eye figure tends to chip out on the jointer and with a planer, as well.

So i'm going to joint it to get it flat — to get it straight — then i will resaw it to 3/8" with a little bit of excess so that i can remove it with finishing and the leftover materials that I'll use from the resaw will be used for the interior compartment. Now that the maple is flat on one side I'm just passing through the drum sander before resawing it. Alright, the band saw is all tuned up and it has a new blade, so it's ready for resawing. If you want to see how I tuned up the bandsaw, you can click on the link at the end of this video and that will take you to another video that I prepared to show you how to do that. I'm resawing this into two pieces. The first piece will be a little over a half an inch and that will serve as the side of the box and the other piece that's remaining — a little over a quarter of an inch — will be used for the bottom of the jewelry box trays.

And now we'll set the drum sander to a half an inch and pass the first pieces to clean up all the saw tooth marks. And then I'll run the other pieces through at 3/16". Now i'm using bird's-eye maple for the bottoms of the trays but I've decided to use walnut for the bottom of the box itself to match the top of the box. Now I'm resawing it to be a quarter of an inch thick. I'll have two pieces that I'll glue together in a book matched fashion. Now to glue it up, this is really too thin to clamp, so I'm using some rubber bands and some wood blocks to make sure that the piece remains flat and I'm doing the same thing with a bird's-eye maple for the trays.

And again I'm using strips of wood to make sure wood remains flat, or as flat as possible. to join the sides of the box together I'm going to use a box joint and I'm going to to use the INCRA i-box jig. I'm not going to spend time in this video to show you how I set it up up because that'll take too much time out of this video but if you'd like to learn how to use it or how to set it up, just put a comment below and I'll be happy to make a video about that.

I've already done a test cut using some scrap material just to make sure that the joints are nice and nice and tightly fitting and they look pretty good. So, I'm ready to begin. Now when you're cutting box joints it's important to keep track of the orientation of boards so I'm just marking the tops the top edges and I'm using some tape on the backs of the pieces just to prevent any tear out. I purposely adjusted the jig to cut a pretty tight fit so I'm using a mallet just to hammer everything together and it fits together very nicely — nice clean cuts. Now, with the router I'm cutting a dado. Now, because this is not a miter joint I can't go all the way through so I start on one end — just to prevent the finger of the box joint from tearing out — and then I go back to the other end and rout it from one end to the other and I'm using stop blocks to control where I'm cutting.

I'm standing the inside of the box before the assembled and now I'm applying tape prior to the glue up to make it easier to clean up any squeeze out. Now, the bottom piece is not glued in. That allows for any expansion and contraction of the wood. So it's just sitting — it's a pretty tight fit in the dados — but it's just sitting loose. And then after the glue-up, I proceed pretty quickly to clamp up the box and ensure that everything is square. After the glue has dried I used the belt sander to trim the fingers that are overhanging. Now to give the box a clean and somewhat modern look I'm putting a 45 degree chamfer on the bottom and that way I don't have to put any feet on the box. Then I used a quarter inch roundover bit to round over the corners where the finger joints are.

This helps to soften the look a little bit. I really want to feature the top of the box so I don't want to put any unnecessary framing around it so here I'm cutting the rabbet in the top edge of the sides of the box. My router table is not large enough to put stop blocks in the places where I need them so I've drawn lines on the top of the router table and I'm just eyeballing it — proceeding very carefully. Then I'm chiseling out the corners just to clean them up. Now, I need to hold the top in place and because of wood expansion and contraction I can't glue the top in place.

So, the solution that I've come up with I've come up with is to use rare-earth magnets. These are very small — they're only an eighth of an inch in diameter and a sixteenth of an inch deep and they fit in perfectly I just need to drill holes and then epoxy them in. This is really an inexpensive solution. I purchased 100 of these magnets from Home Depot for about $10.00.

So, I'm inserting about 20 magnets here. That's a $2 solution. I've used a white pencil to mark out where I want to cut the top. I'm using my crosscut sled just to hold the piece by hand to get a nice straight edge and then I can square it up. Now I need to cut the top section of the box to hold the top in place. This will be hinged. The reason then using the band saw instead of a table saw is I want to minimize this visual impact to the box joint and I want to have the grain matching as closely as possible. Now I'm drilling holes for the locations of the corresponding magnets in the top and i had to measure very carefully to make sure that these things are lined up perfectly because they're so small.

I also had to be very careful when inserting the magnets on this side to make sure that the polarity was in the right direction, so I tested each one before inserting because it would be very difficult to replace a magnet after they've been epoxied in. I'm using a knife to very carefully marked the location of the hinges I only have two hinges so I decided to cut the mortises by hand using a chisel. I think that was easier and faster than trying to set up a router to cut these. These hinges come with brass screws and the screws are very soft so I'm using an awl to mark the hole and then drilling it with a 1/16" bit and then i'm using a steel screw to tap the hole so that they're pre-threaded.

This makes the screws go in easier, but even by following those steps it turned out to be not easy to put the screws in. Well, I've got the hinges installed and everything lines up really nicely but I messed up along the way because one of the screws sheared off as I was screwing it in. So, I'm going to show you how it fix that but I won't do that in this video because it's gonna make a video too long I'll create another video and i'll put a link to that at the end. Now i'm cutting the strips that will be used as the sides of the jewelry box trays. You can see the wood is already cupped a little bit, but now that I'm cutting it into smaller strips, it won't be that bad. I'm going to 45 degree miter and then assembling the sides and gluing them to the tray bottoms. This would be too hard to clamp up so I'm just using tape to hold everything in place and that works really well for this type of box After the glue has dried, I'm back at the belt sander to get everything cleaned up.

And then I'm just cutting up the other pieces to be used as the cross pieces in the trays. I'm using a dado blade to cut halfway through the material any place the pieces of we're going to cross. I'm doing a quick test fit and then I'll glue everything in place and i'll just use gravity to hold things in place. I've decided to use walnut splines in the corners. I'm going to put two splines in each corner of the box.

I'll just glue them in place and I'll cut the excess off with a dozuki saw and then clean everything up on the belt sander. I'm gonna put a little finger hold or a lip to make it easy to lift up the top with a finger and so I'm using the router to cut out of a slot for that Then I'll clean it up with a chisel And then I'll glue a little bit of walnut place. Now it's time to sand everything up and get it ready for the finish I'm using a 320 grit sandpaper to have everything nice and smooth. For the finish, I'm starting with a coat of pre-mixed shellac and this unlike most other shellacs that are pre-mixed, relax that are premixed this is is de-waxed so the other finishes can stick to it. Then I'll apply three coats of lacquer lacquer for the final finish I don't have an HVLP sprayer, so I just used a spray lacquer out of a can, but it turned out really well.

The finish is very smooth and very uniform, so it turned out as well as I could have expected. So, here's the final product I think my wife is going to be pretty happy with this. If you like this video please be sure to give me a like and if you haven't already subscribed to my channel I would be really happy if you could be a subscriber as well. I've got lots more content yet to come! Here's the top that's just held in place with a magnet. Pretty simple. So, I gotta ask… Wood YOU Make It?.

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