Introduction: How to - Secret Compartment Box II

Picture of How to - Secret Compartment Box II

I wanted to see if it was possible to build a box like this, with all its tight clearances, using mostly 2x4 material.

I'm happy to say, while difficult, it can be done. The outside of the box are made from run of the mill 2x4's, the bottom/false bottom are 1/4" baltic birch plywood, the compartment is clear pine and the lock spring is made of brass.


Plans Available Here -

Here is the original build done with hardwood, no instructions.

Step 1: Outside Case Construction

Picture of Outside Case Construction

Liberties can be take with the overall design of the box. The secret compartment and mechanism for releasing it are very versatile.

Step 2: Compartment Construction

Picture of Compartment Construction

There are plenty of ways to put the storage holes in the compartment. I used a CNC Router from

Step 3: Assemble the Box and Fit the Liner

Picture of Assemble the Box and Fit the Liner

The feet and trim are essential to hiding the secret compartment and the compartment is released by manipulating the removeable liner section.

Step 4: Finish the Box

Picture of Finish the Box

Let nothing hold you back but fear and common sense. I distressed this box to hide the fact that it's made from 2x4. I roughed it up with a chisel and horrible sanding techniques, applied a generous coating of Varathane Wood Stain, the colour was Kona, and polished it with some Briwax to give it a shine.

Be sure to watch the video and check out either my website or my YouTube channel for even more Secret Compartment Box builds.


adarsh andreaE (author)2016-06-12


joshpit2003 (author)2016-03-03

Awesome video and product-shots. Got my vote. Thanks for sharing.

adbkwhitley (author)2016-02-18

LOVED the video!! Humorous, educational, clever, entertaining. Two thumbs up just like Siskel and Ebert. You do . . . remember Siskel and Ebert, right? :)

Well done!! Oh and Briwax . . . yeah, great stuff!!

maricolley (author)2016-01-27

whaaat??!! thats awesome! thanks for the tricks that is sublime! and hope you got at least some swag from the verathane people for plugging the idiot proof stain!

dpmakestuff (author)maricolley2016-01-27

Thank You!

spinlawyer (author)2016-01-26

You are an unbelievable craftsman. I couldn't make it if I had 10 years to try!

dpmakestuff (author)spinlawyer2016-01-27

It's time consuming, but not difficult. I say give it a go! Thanks for watching.

DanielR68 (author)2016-01-26


dpmakestuff (author)DanielR682016-01-27


amwill (author)2016-01-23

this si really lovely...well done,,,very well made...

dpmakestuff (author)amwill2016-01-27


elpayo (author)2016-01-17

Amazing !!! Good work

dpmakestuff (author)elpayo2016-01-27

Thanks so much!

slartty (author)2016-01-18

i like it.. nice job

dpmakestuff (author)slartty2016-01-27

Thank You!

deswiger (author)2016-01-19

Nice job

dpmakestuff (author)deswiger2016-01-27


Leems35 (author)2016-01-19

It's awesome man. Whats the website? I'd definitely be interested in ordering one along with some push sticks.

dpmakestuff (author)Leems352016-01-27 I'm working on a couple nice ones right now and they're coming along beautifully. I post pictures of my projects on instagram as I'm building them so if you want a sneek peek, thats your best bet. All links can be found on my website or on my YouTube channel. Thanks!

ewsmith (author)2016-01-26

Great way to up-cycle 2x4s and this is the best instructable I have ever viewed. Clear, Crisp, Interesting and humorous. Fantastic coverage of details and tips also! I didn't check the time before I started watching and I can't believe 12 minutes went buy. You have a gift.

Got my vote!

dpmakestuff (author)ewsmith2016-01-27

I really appreciate that! Thank you for watching and voting!

C Duling (author)2016-01-26

I love this. I might just try it.

dpmakestuff (author)C Duling2016-01-27

Let me know if you do! I love seeing other peoples takes on my projects.

Leems35 (author)2016-01-18

do you sell them?

dpmakestuff (author)Leems352016-01-18

Not the 2x4 version, but the nice ones yes. On my website, out of stock right now. Been too busy trying to win the 2x4 contest to build the nice ones.

acuenat (author)2016-01-18

Woah. What a good job. Gratz. But you need quite a lot of equipment to achieve this instructable :)

dpmakestuff (author)acuenat2016-01-18

Most the equipment I uses was just to dimension the lumber. If you buy your lumber dimensioned, there is no reason you couldn't build this box with a table saw and a router. It might just be more time consuming,

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