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Picture of Wooden Espresso Knock Box
Wooden Espresso Knock Box

Turn a utensil container into knock box. Way better than banging your portafilter in the sink, and cheaper than a retail one.
This method can be used with any container with a wall thickness of .5" to .75"
I used my wife's "Giadia Bamboo Utensil Holder" This has a wall thickness of .75"
A big section of pvc pipe works too.
I picked up all the supplies at my local Lowes.

Supplies needed:
-container
-length of .5 inch copper pipe
-Two  .5" cooper pipe caps
-clear tubing (reinforced)
-rubber grommets (i found an assortment pack that had two .5 inch grommets)
-index card (for transferring cut line)

Equipment needed:
-Drill
-1" bit (I used a spade or "paddle" bit) This is based on the outside diameter of the grommets' inner ring...
-clamp (quick clamp or pipe clamp)
-hacksaw (or Dremel)
-coping saw
-crosscut saw (chop saw if you have it)
-safety stuff, glasses gloves and a mouthgaurd
-rounded file
-fine sand paper


Step 1: Measure and Cut

Picture of Measure and Cut
DSC_0016.JPG
For my set up, I needed the knock box to fit in my espresso machine. Specifically, it had to fit in between the portafilter and the drip tray. This saves counter space and can also be used to catch drips. If you have a Gaggia Baby Class, then make your container 4" tall.  
 
rherman19662 months ago

FYI: The tried and tested method used by carpenters for preventing chipping out when drilling is to place a sacrificial piece of wood on the back end. This works by keeping the wood being drilled through from being 'pushed' out into space by the drill bit. Since the knock box here is curved (although this project could easily be done with a square or rectangle), simply take some of the extra material cut from the top in Step 1 and cut it into sections just wide enough so they can be clamped to the inside of the knock box. The radius isn't exactly right of course, but if the scrap isn't too wide and is clamped tight enough, most of the chipping out should still be avoided.

To make cutting the mouth out in Step 3 easier, another carpentry trick is to first saw down several cuts roughly perpendicular to the curve, dividing what will become scrap into several sections. As the curve is then cut, each section falls away, making it much easier to position the coping saw and less likely to leave the line of the curve.

langflood (author)  rherman19662 months ago
Roger that. Although when the wood is curved, the sacrificial wood trick doesn't work regardless of adding extra wood to fit the radius. Keeping in mind clamping too hard would crack open the joints.
If this was a project I wanted to be extra pretty, I would have cut into the wood an 1/8 inch with an exacto knife following the size of the hole I was drilling. That works everytime.
Thanks for the pointers!
dbowe6 months ago

A better method for the knock pipe would be to cut two indentions on the top of the box. That way you can more easily remove the pipe when cleaning. Otherwise, nice project!

Nice project, and great guide. What was the mouthguard for?! Is that for when your wife finds you cutting up her utensil pot?
langflood (author)  manuelle_override2 years ago
That, and trying to make smooth hole with the drill. On my first attempt with a practice piece, the drill grabbed the wood and spun the whole piece around like a wheel of death.