Cigarette box 2.0

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My old cigarette box has been dropped, dunked and sprayed in salt water, left out in the rain, snow and summer sun. It was used and abused. A well loved piece of functional art that I carried with me literally everywhere I went for the past 18 months. But it is showing it’s age, and has fallen apart and been repaired on several occasions. I decided it’s time to retire the old girl. She will forevermore sit on a shelf in a place of pride and live out her retirement in relative glory.

So for the new box, some valuable lessons were learned from the old and applied here.

1) gorilla glue (polyurethane) is amazing and super durable. The mitres on the old girl held up amazingly.

2) wood movement is a serious issue. These super thin sides (1/8" thick) simply do not provide enough edge surface to hold together. This time, I used single piece panels instead of the glued together panels. So no racing stripes. :-(

3) to make sure the mitres don’t come apart, I added key splines. I think the keys are the key to ultimate durability. Even though I didn’t really have issues with the mitres, this will really protect it against seasonal movement (or the occasional sea spray while fishing).

The old box is in the last picture. She’ll be in use for the next couple of weeks until the finish gasses out completely (I don’t like to smoke Danish oil). I think the new one should be pretty much as durable as can be and maintenance free for a very long time.

Here’s the original box:

Losing fingers since 1969

I missed seeing the first edition of your box ,so I
visited your post on that one also . These are exceptionally
nice boxes , and they look like fun to build .The splines are
cool .

Thanks. This wood is pretty tough stuff too. And gorgeous. It’s very red in the pictures but it will turn chocolatey in time. Really beautiful stuff.

Losing fingers since 1969

Interesting, gives me some ideas! Thanks Brian! Beautiful box!


unique idea

woodworking classes, custom furniture maker


Losing fingers since 1969