Finally got around to finishing my storage box this week. I began by adding a dovetailed skirt around the bottom of the box, which gives extra rigidity and prevents the dovetails from ever coming apart – not that they would to begin with. These truly are the strongest type of joints to use if you want your box to last for a hundred years or more.

There was a small piece that split off when I was crosscutting the ends to length. I decided to just live with it since I had already glued on another four or five bigger splits. This pine was truly awful to work with!

I was very happy with how tight the dovetails came out after planing them flush. No gaps and a nice sharp look.

Moving on to the bottom, I decided to do a ship-lapped joint to allow for the wood to expand and contract with the seasons. This was easily done with my plough plane.

Here you can see how the bottom pieces fit into the recess made by the skirt boards.

I added three cleats to the bottom of the box for extra strength and to protect the box from wear and tear. These are screwed on to allow wood movement.

 

For the handles, I used a chisel to gently recess the bottom inside edge in order to provide a relief for the fingers to grasp onto when transporting the box.

And here is the completed box. I added some cleats underneath the lid in a similar manner as the bottom in order to give the top a perfect fit. You can almost lift up the box by the lid alone.

Here you can see the cleats on the underside of the lid, and how the finished box looks inside. I’m very happy with how this came out and plan to make a bunch more to contain all of my extra things. So much better than plastic!

All that’s left is to put a couple of coats of milk paint on.