box corner joinery
I have a ditty box given to me by my granddad. This chest has finger/box joint joinery for the chest exterior, (all 12 edges of the box eterior are box jointed) as well as the interior tray with dividers. I had an idea to make replicas of my ditty box for my nephews.
So, I started researching ways to make the joints. First place I went to was MLCS, since I saw an article in one of my wood working magazines. From there I saw demos of using table mounted router for making fancy looking joints and three sizes of box joints. Next I discovered INCRA jigs for making box joints as well as dovetail joints. While looking through my woodworking catalogs, I considered Leigh dovetail jigs. Now, a few years later, I still have not decided which joint is better, and have not started the ditty box replicas, for various other reasons.
But I do make boxes. I want to get away from mitered corners, as well as mitered corners with splines. I want to try something else with stronger, nicer appearance joinery. Which brings me to the question: which joint is better for boxes-dovetail or box joints? There are store bought jigs that make just box joints, while others make dovetails as well, and some allow variations in both types of joints. Cost of the jig will always be a concern. I cannot justify buying a particular dovetail jig that costs more than any one of my shop's power tools, for just making gift boxes, but maybe could if I made dovetail drawers as well with the same jig.
I have heard that with modern glues, box joints are just as strong as dovetail joints.