Introduction: Chiseled Box
How to make a simple wooden box by chiseling, so there's no joints to worry about.
It's pretty dang easy and doesn't take too much time to get done.
What you need:
- A chunk of wood thick enough to be a box
- A chisel
- Something to hit the chisel
- Something to sharpen the chisel
*added some extra info
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Step 1: Boundaries
Hit the chisel straight into the face of the wood to mark the outline of the hole for the box.
Don't do it too hard, or the wood can split and mess everything up. The ends of the boundaries (lines crossing the grain of the wood perpendicular) need to be kinda deeper
Step 2: Chisel It Out
What you do is chisel ALONG the grain, towards the line you cut in. That perpindicular line acts like a stopping point for the chunk you're splitting off, so it only chunks off within the boundary instead of going all the way. Those boundaries are important: without 'em, the wood really likes to split all the way down when chiseled, which won't make a box. The removed chunk will be as wide as the chisel you're using and will stop at that boundary line so you'll get nice square edges.
You might need to keep digging the boundary line deeper as you remove more wood so it don't split the wood and break the wall of your box.
Just remember: when working with wood you don't get to cut however you want, you do what the wood wants. Follow the grain and don't do big risky cuts because the wood might split in a weird crooked way.
Also, keep the chisel sharp. Dull chisels smash and break the grain instead of cutting through it, which give ugly nonsmooth edges. The cross-grain walls of the box might be hard to smoothen up on the inside because of this.
Step 3: Box
Once everything's squared out, you're good to go. You can carve pictures on the sides, sand it up, paint it, dip it in chocolate, or do whatever else you wanna do. Now you have somewhere to store your pennies or pour your cereal.
Step 4: Extra Info...
The first pictured box I just made real quick for an example. Numba Two is my first try at boxing (which proves that you can get pretty good results without experience, because I just bought the chisels and didn't know what was going on). I lernt some good info in between making these:
- Wood Type is important. The first time, I used Mesquite since I just finished cutting a bunch of thick branches. The second box is some random crap from the culled lumber pile at Home Depot. Mesquite and other hardwoods are HARD to chisel and the first one was a pain in the neck, but gets good quality. The second one (softwood) was like cuttin' through butter, but splits a lot so you gotta be careful.
- Cheap Shiny Effect: I had some wood glue handy and used it to paint the box for some reason. When it dries, it gave it a shiny yellowish color (as you can see, the older box has a ton on it)
- Making a Lid: The best way to do this is to have the box and lid made from the same chunk of wood (splot it in half and use each half for box and lid) so they're guaranteed to fit nice. I didn't, because I didn't think of making a lid until later, so I had to trim up another piece until it fit close enough. What you do is the reverse of how you make the box: do a boundary the same size as the box's hole and cut around instead of inside it, so the middle sticks out. This keeps the lid secure on da box.
- Designs: Chisel into the wood slightly slanted one way then the other to get a sorta v-shaped groove. Wide chisels are nice for long, straight lines.
- Cool, Fancy Boxes: For a cool natural look, you can just cut the hole straight into a branch or something and leave the bark. The first box was like that, but I trimmed it down square to make it "boxy". Just got the idea 'cuz my aunt got disappointed when I squared itmup since she thought it'd be a cool branch-box.