Back at the end of January (yes, 2008), I said that I wanted to make, and I quote myself, “a simple dovetail box.” I planned to make it for my wife. I don’t think I really expected to finish it by Valentine’s Day, but I did expect that it would be done for her birthday (mid-March). That came and went, leaving me with Mothers Day as my next target date. As I finally figured out how to do the lid, it all started coming together very quickly, and I found myself on Mothers Day Eve with a great chance at being done. So here we go:

First off, the hinges. This was quite tricky. First time with hinges, and you’d think I’d have done some research first, but nope. I carefully pared away the mortise for the hinge until I had each one on top and bottom at about 1/16″ deep. As you can see, I’m working at night with just a desk lamp. The kids’ room is just on the other side of those windows, so I can’t use the big bright lights.

hinges 1

hinges 2

Then it was the moment of truth. Sheesh, it seems like near the end of the project, every single thing is a moment of truth. It’s nervewracking. I did read about how easy it is to mess up brass screws, but I didn’t have any steel ones that size to bore the hole with, so I folded over some duct tape and drove the screw in with the tape protecting the screw. I think it worked!

hinges 3

At last. The final moment of truth. Screwing on the other side of the hinges, and seeing how the lid mates with the box. Actually, I had to do a little bit of tweaking (which does not mean I bent the hinges) to get it to mate well, but it did! It’s not perfect, though; the lid is just a bit too far forward, but the sides are flush. I can live with that.

So here are final pictures of the box as I’ll present it to my wife. After I finish it (oil/varnish/mineral spirits), I’ll post it on my Projects page and I’ll give a rundown on how it went overall, what I learned, etc. In a nutshell, though, I’m happy with it overall although there are many things that went wrong and I had to fix – and the fixes don’t look all that great in my eyes. But more on that later. I’m proud to present this box to my amazing wife for Mothers Day, and I’ll also present to her this series of posts so she can see how it came together. Here’s the box!

done 1

done 2