How to Build a Band Saw Box

Safety Tips

Safety glasses or goggles should be worn whenever power tools are in use and when chiseling, sanding, scraping or hammering overhead. This is very important for anyone wearing contact lenses.

Wear ear protectors when using noisy power tools. Some tools operate at noise levels that damage hearing.

Be careful of loose hair and clothing so that it does not get caught in tools; roll your sleeves up and remove jewelry.

The proper respirator or face mask should be worn when sanding, sawing or using substances with toxic fumes.

Keep blades sharp. A dull blade requires excessive force and can slip which causes accidents.

Always use the right tool for the job.

Repair or discard tools with cracks in the wooden handles or chips in the metal parts.

Don't drill, shape or saw anything that isn't firmly secured.

Oily rags are spontaneously combustible, so take care when you store and discard them.

Don't abuse your tools.

Keep a First Aid Kit on hand.

Do not work with tools when you are tired. That's when most accidents occur.

Read the owner's manual for all tools and understand their proper usage.

Keep tools out of the reach of small children.

Unplug all power tools when changing settings or parts.


Most Common Mistakes

The single most common mistake in any do it yourself project is the failure to read and follow the manufacturer's instructions for any tool or material being used. Other common mistakes include taking the safety measures that are laid out for a project for granted, and poor project planning. Here is a list of hints to successfully complete this project and to do it safely.

  1. Follow the "Golden Rule" of measuring: "Measure twice, cut once."
  2. Provide yourself plenty of time for each step.
  3. Understand your plan. (if you have questions, review that part of the videotape).
  4. When finishing the wood, keep dust and dirt away from the table.
  5. Follow the application instructions for your choice of finish.
  6. Allow an extra ¼" to " inch when cutting the stock.
  7. Experiment with scrap wood before you work on the real piece. This will help with finishing touches.

Project Introduction


Before you begin your project, you will want to become familiar with the woodworking terms shown below.

Miter Cut - Angle cut across the width or thickness of the board

Rabbet - L-shaped cut

Dado - Channel cut across the board, into which a second piece of wood is fined

Kerf - Width of the blade

Countersink - To set a screw head at or below the surface

Dowel - Wooden pin used to provide strength and alignment

Chamfer - Corner of a board beveled at a 45 degree angle

Laminate - Composed of firmly united layers of wood.


Wood Selection

The two basic categories of wood used most often in wood working projects are hardwood and softwood. Hardwood is more durable and less prone to dents and scratches. It is also more expensive but will finish to a better advantage. Soft woods, like pine, are more prone to dents and scratches and do not have the durability of hardwood. Softwoods are much less expensive and easier to find.

Ask your lumber supplier to show you "Class 1" or "Select Grade" lumber. Make sure it is properly dried, straight, and free of knots and defects. (It may be impossible to be completely free of defects but be sure you understand how to cut around these.)

Ask your lumber supplier for assistance when purchasing your wood. Similar to laying a pattern out on a piece of cloth, often you can cut several different pieces of the same thickness of wood out of a single piece. It is a good idea to add up the total number of board feet, being careful to make sure you group short pieces in a board with long pieces to minimize waste.

This project could be built out of scrap wood already in your workshop. If you choose to use new stock from the lumber yard, both hardwoods and softwood are good choices.

Note: Developing a good relationship with Your lumber suppliers is important. They can help guide you in making material selections as well as making special orders for a type of wood you may desire for a project.

Now that you have reviewed safety hints, learned the mistakes to avoid, reviewed the basic components and gathered your tools and materials for your projects - you are ready to BEGIN!

Steps to Follow:

For this project you can use scrap pieces of wood from other projects or a solid block of wood to create a beautiful box. The steps to follow for this project are:

  1. Laminate the pieces of wood (if not using a solid block).
  2. Cut the block to size.
  3. Make the drawers.
  4. Finish sand the drawers and carcass.

Laminate the Scrap Pieces of Wood

  1. Stack scrap wood of approximate width and length together for a stack that can be cut by your band saw blade.
  2. Use wood glue on the inside pieces of the stack and clamp together and set over night to dry. Alternating the grains is a nice touch depending on the wood scraps that you are using.

Cutting the Sides (A & B)

Using a ¼" width band saw blade cut the block to size. A ¼" blade will be used for all the following cuts because it will provide a tighter fit for the drawers and a neater cut.

Mark the sides of the box - a "V" will do - so that later when you glue the box you know which side belongs where.

Using the band saw cut the sides off being careful to make the cuts straight and accurate for later assembling of the box. The tape makes this cut at ½" into the solid wood.

Making the Drawers

On the center block (C) mark the interior of the box for your drawer. Make the corners rounded so that the band saw will not bind when making the cut.

Cut out the drawer (H) making sure to go slowly and stay on the scrap side of the mark.

Cut off the sides of the drawers (E&F) being careful to mark their proper location for gluing later.

Cut the interior of the drawer out, again being careful to round the turns so that the band saw does not bind.

Sand lightly all the pieces before gluing on the sides.

Glue the sides on the carcass and the drawers. Use clamps to hold tight till the glue dries, over night is suggested.

Finish Sanding the Drawers and Carcass

Using a belt sander finish sand the carcass. This can be used to round the edges as well as smooth the glue joints on the carcass.

The belt sander and fine sand paper can finish the drawer. Make sure that as you sand, check the drawer often for smooth opening and closing.