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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A young couple with a passel of small kids just moved into town after having lost their jobs in the big city. Some friends of theirs helped them find work out here in the boonies.

They literally lost everything so I thought it would be nice for them to have a small starting piece of furniture to start over. This chest design is not high art or a finally crafted piece. Its a piece of furniture you can build in a weekend using dimensional lumber (10 - 6'x6"x1" boards) from any big box store. I have one that is going on 25 years and no issues.

Over the years I have made dozens of these chests for gifts, raffles, and prizes. They are all butt joints and pretty much slapped together. The only tools you must have is a hand saw and the ability to cut straight (plus a screwdriver to install the hinges). Since I can not cut straight with a hand saw I use my backup power tools to actually do the job.

I was going to document the process of slapping this together but forgot to takes pictures after about an hour. You can get into woodworking mode and the rest of the world disappears.

It was nice to be able to do something for these folks.

Dimensions: 29.5 " wide x 19.5 deep x 20.75" tall. material is hd whitewood.
 

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mighty fine...
nice clean lines...
 

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That will make a great seat too and a place to stack things on top. I could think of all sorts of things, Like a wood /kindling box for the fire place, and chest for shoes in the hall for those that remove their shoes in the house,even out on the deck to store BQ tools etc.
Herb
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
Gents, thank you. Really fast and simple project but hopefully the family can use it. If nothing else they can sell it for some cash if needed.
@herb, it is big enough for a coffee table. Not really a good seat due to the construction (glue and butt joints).

The design has several variations and it can be gussied up to make it look fancy.

Edit: This variation could be used for a seat. I normally leave the gap for the lid if I know there are small kids around. If no kids then no gap.
 

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Gents, thank you. Really fast and simple project but hopefully the family can use it. If nothing else they can sell it for some cash if needed.
@herb, it is big enough for a coffee table. Not really a good seat due to the construction (glue and butt joints).

The design has several variations and it can be gussied up to make it look fancy.

Edit: This variation could be used for a seat. I normally leave the gap for the lid if I know there are small kids around. If no kids then no gap.
When I saw the gap I was thinking the same thing.
HErb
 

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Nice project with a great looking finish.
 

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Very nice job Oscar.
I fully understand what you said about getting into a job and forgetting to take pictures. I do it all the time.
My wife has to come get me to eat when I am in the zone. She will stand near the door until I notice her so as not to startle me while running some thing with sharp spinning blades.

But those are some very nice chest Oscar and a very nice gesture on your part.

David
 

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Fun to do stuff for others, isn't it? Really clean lines and the grain really came out with that finish. I also like making it little finger proof, had never thought about that. I guess you could also use a soft closing hinge.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks all.
@David, my wife has not learned that skill yet. I keep telling her that but the kitty picture on the internet is waaayyy more important than the sharpy thing ready to rip my flesh off.

The finish on this piece is just oil based clear poly. It was constructed with big box store cedar boards that I planed. I almost never use stain. I love the look of natural wood.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
For anyone interested in building this or something similar, enclosed is the cut list for the first chest. Chest with the gap at the top.

If you don't want the gap just don't rip the boards to 5 inches and leave them at 5.5 inches. Cut list is based on big box 1x6x6 lumber boards.

Skill level is basic. Also if you don't have a jointer or hand planer just glue the boards and don't worry too much on any small gaps. It will still look good with a slight rustic look.

It doesn't include the cross bracing for the lid but I just use any scraps that work. Also the floor of the chest I use any plywood I have laying about but you can use pretty much anything you want.

To make it fancy you can add some scrolled leg skirting. The design is customizable. You can change dimensions and ornamentation to your desired ends. Fancy or utilitarian. Appliques or cnc carvings.

If building this, elongate all holes to allow for wood movement. I use screws primarily and glue in strategic points. You want to allow for the wood movement if using construction grade lumber since it will move.

For the top, I try to do a breadboard with dowels or biscuits or even pocket screws but you can leave them as single boards across the case. It may twist a bit but just put some weight on it for a few weeks (months) and it will go back to flat after a while.

The rails are slightly longer so they can be cut to fit perfectly to span the stiles. The cut list says to rip to 3 in but use whatever looks good to you. For the chest I went with 3.5 in because I thought it looked better.
 

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