For Starters, Rough Out Your Bunny On the Bandsaw
1.To make a blank, rip and crosscut a 4×6 piece of 1 3/4-thick stock. (We selected cherry. If you have trouble finding stock this thick, you can laminate thinner stock.) Next, make two copies of the full-sized pattern shown on page 30, and adhere one of these to one face of the blank. (We used 3M Spray Mount, a spray adhesive you can buy at art-supply and crafts stores.) Using your bandsaw and a sharp Vs» blade, follow along the outside pattern line to cut the rabbit to shape, keeping your blade just outside this line.
2.Drill a 3/16 hinge-pin (eye) hole where shown on the pattern. To do this, use a brad-point bit in your drill press, and place a backup board under your stock to prevent tear-out. (Note: For your backup board, be sure to select scrap stock of a hardness similar to that of your workpiece. Also, see Tip no. 1 at right.)
3.Rip a 1/4-thick side (A) from each face of the rabbit cutout using your bandsaw and rip fence. Then, adhere the second copy of the pattern to one face of the center block. Starting at one of the entry-exit kerf lines, bandsaw through the middle of the center cavity where marked on the pattern, and exit at the other kerf line. (Note: It’s critical that you make the entry-exit kerfs where shown on the pattern so that the box will open properly.) Now, bandsaw along the inside pattern line on both pieces as shown below to form the lid (B) and base (C). Machine the Parts, Then Assemble Your Rabbit
1.Sand the inside faces of all four parts smooth. (For the contoured surfaces, we used a diameter drum sander in our drill press.) Next, sand the entry-exit kerfs smooth. (We used our 1 belt sander.) Remove the patterns from parts B and C (but not from A), then sand the edges of the lid (B) slightly so that it will open freely. (We laid a sheet of sandpaper on our bench and hand-sanded, checking frequently for fit.)
2. To make a hinge pin, cut a 2 1/2 length of 3/16 hardwood dowel. (We used birch for contrast.) Place the lid between the two sides (A) with the eye holes aligned, and insert the pin through all three pieces to hold them together. (The pin should be a bit too long.) Now, stand this assembly upside down on your bench, making sure that the lid edges are aligned with the top edges of the sides (with the lid in its closed position).
3. Apply glue to the edges of the base (B) and mating surfaces of the sides. Next, position the base between the sides, and slide it up snug against the edges of the lid. Clamp the assembly, then open the lid a little so that glue squeeze-out won’t lock it in. Wipe away all squeeze-out, then allow the glue to dry. (Note: This will put the base out of alignment with the bottom edges of the sides. See Tip no. 2 above left.)
Fine-Tune the Bunny, Then Finish It with Style
1.To glue in the hinge pin, first back it out on one side until it’s recessed about 1/8 on the other side. Using a straightened paper clip, apply a drop or two of glue to the inside of this “eye socket,” then push the pin back through until it protrudes just slightly. After the glue has dried, trim the pin ends, and sand them flush.
2.With the pattern still in place on one side, sand all edges of the box smooth. (We used our 1 belt sander. For the tight spaces, we wrapped a piece of stiff cardboard with sandpaper.) Next, finish-sand the sides using your palm sander. Now, hand-sand a slight round-over on all exterior edges. (See Tip no. 3 at left.)
3. Apply your choice of finish to all surfaces of the box. (We brushed on a generous coat of Watco Natural Danish Oil Finish, allowing it to penetrate for 30 minutes. We applied a second coat, then rubbed the box with 0000 synthetic steel wool before wiping off the excess with a clean cotton cloth.)
4.Allow the finish to dry overnight. Now, line the base interior with felt. (We cut our felt to width before trial-fitting it along the base contours. We then cut the felt to length and adhered it using double-faced carpet tape.)