1- to store my pipe and tobacco
2- to have an excuse to dig out the pyrography pen again
3- to enter the 'make a box' contest :)
(so if you enjoyed the instructable, please drop me a vote)
Heres a link to a video of the box, to show you the light sensitive audio module
What i used:
1 length of timber
Wood glue (5 minute bond)
Woodstain (brush and sponge to apply)
Box hardware (hinges, feet, latch)
Black velvet / felt
additional idea meant i had to add: Audio module
Step 1: Acquire Wood
Actual dimensions of the PSE (planed square edge) timber were 93mm x 18mm.
Step 2: Design
The sizes are the way they are so i didnt have to do tonnes of cutting, i just sort of let the thickness and width of the timber govern the size of the box to an extent.
The width of each piece remains the same, so the lengths were as follows
Bottom = 2 pieces at 200mm
Top = 2 pieces at 200mm
Front = 200mm
Back = 200mm
Sides = 2 pieces at 150mm
Note - ignore the picture of the pipe mounted on the box, i since changed my mind and wanted the pipe mounted inside in exchange for pyrography on the lid.
Step 3: Mark and Cut Timber
If the cuts were particularly bad i had some PVA glue and some sawdust i was going to use as a make-shift filler (which could be sanded off and hopefully be hidden with the staining process)
So using just the handsaw i cut the wood to the desired lengths.
Step 4: Joint Top + Bottom
you could do the same job with just the PVA glue or any wood glue if you dont want to buy something you already have.
This stuff expands and foams up huge to fill all joints and get a strong bond, so just use a really thin streak, and wipe off excess as soon as you clamp it tight or you will make yourself more sanding to do.
ahh, time to get the kettle on. This niece of mine doesn't make a good cuppa.
Step 5: Quick Sanding
nothing major as the full thing is getting sanded later on.
Step 6: Glue Front, Back, and Sides
Again there are better ways to get this 100% square (neater cuts wouldnt go a miss but oh well)
Step 7: Wipe Off Excess Glue and Quick Sanding
I also lighly sanded the corners to round them off a touch.
(More sanding to be done later)
Step 8: Glue on the Bottom
Then i put the bottom piece onto it, quickly got it something like square, and then put a small toolbox on top as a weight.
(Time for another brew i think)
once it had dried, again scrape the excess glue off, light sanding on the joints etc..
as you can see in the picture the bottom overhangs on parts and looks like the cuts weren't perfect.. its because they weren't, but this can and will be sorted out when sanding it all down later.
Step 9: Sanding
Starting with 40 grit paper, working up to 120 grit to ensure the box was completely smooth to the touch.
Then i used some 120 grit paper to round off all the edges and corners.
Where i could i sanded in a backward-forward direction following the grain as pine has a tendancy to leave what looks like a fluffy surface if you sand sideways to the grain.
i also used a bit of 240 grit paper on the end grain of the wood as this is particularly rough.
Any overhanging parts of the bottom were also sanded back flush with the rest of the box.
depending on how smooth a finish you want will determine how much sanding to do. But i didn't go mad with it as both me and my niece were getting bored of it by now.
Step 10: Sketch a Design and Start the Pyrography
I am just a rank beginner on the pyrography, and have only used the burning pen a hand full of times so this was the biggest challenge by far.
But, i did the best i could, and im relatively happy with the outcome.
NOTE: There are tonnes of guides about pyrography, and techniques etc.. If your looking at trying some i would recommend looking it up and definitely give it a go.
But as a basic heads up, a cheap starter pyrography pen looks similar to a soldering iron, but has removeable tips.
Having been too impatient to read a guide or a book i just selected the tip that was closer to a pencil tip than the rest and tried it out on an off cut of wood.
For dark outlines move the tip slowly so it can burn deeper, and for light shading i just moved it around fast in a circular motion until the right shade was acquired.
Step 11: Staining
Using a washing up sponge i gave a light coat to the box (besides the lid)
As i had spent the best part of 3 hours wood burning, i wasn't keen on the idea of the stain possibly darkening the wood around it and making the picture vanish.
So i came up with a cunning plan to stain around the picture and have the stain slightly fade towards it.
Again i got lucky and was pleasantly surprised by the outcome.
Step 12: Varnish
Using a brush i applied a thin layer of the varnish to the bottom, sides, and lid of the box.
(i checked the varnish after a couple of hours to lightly brush out any air bubbles or obvious streaks.
the first coat kind of absorbed into the wood and was definitely not enough to be finished so i wiped the box down with some 400 grit sandpaper and absolutely minimal pressure, and applied another layer of the varnish.
once i was happy with the finish i moved on to ther parts of the box and did the same thin coats with a light sanding in between them.
Note - i bought a 10 pack of the cheapest crap brushes for £1 so i didn't have to soak it in anything between coats, i just threw the brushes away when the varnish had dried on them. (not very economical but i didn't want to risk brushing on any thinners with the brush after soaking and ruin the finish)
Step 13: Start Adding Hardware
There is no particular order of sticking the accessories on, i just put them on in the order they got delivered.
Starting with the antique feet (£1.99)
simply using a small (PZ1) screwdriver i fixed these in place using the screws that were provided. (cheap and simple, but made it look better instantly)
Then i installed 3 antique style bronze hinges, again off ebay (around £1.99 for a pack of 20)
I also bought 2 a4 sheets of self adhesive black velvet/felt for 99p to put on the underside of the lid (accidently doubles up as a soft close for the lid) and the base of the box.
Step 14: NEW IDEA!
so i found an awesome little gadget.
a 2 minute light sensitive audio module (presumably meant for making greeting cards)
so i ripped out the black felt from the bottom,
recorded "the highwaymen" on the module, and put it at the bottom of the box (leaving the light sensor sticking out for now)
i then stuck some card to the bottom of the box like a frame so the device didn't get crushed.
Then i cut a piece of card the same size as my felt and stuck the felt onto it (this would then be glued back down covering the audio device :)
(i had to improvise with oil bottles to weight down the card while it stuck in place)
Step 15: Continue Adding Hardware
everything is falling into place now :)
Then i attached a latch to complete the look.
and as far as im concerned that will do me.
(until i come up with another random add on)
Step 16: Finito ;)
easy to build, no expensive tools required.