The Tea Box
I had been made aware that the cardboard boxes of tea in the cabinet were taking up too much space. Since I needed to come up with a solution, I used this as an excuse to pull out the lock-miter router bit that I have not used enough. The tea box became a practice round that turned out decent for being a rush project for the house with a tool I hardly use.
I had some extra Red Oak laying around that I used for the sides and dividers. For the top I opted for some African Mahogany. I dialed in the size of the dividers using my “shooting board” and my hand plane. This achieves a no-glue, super snug fit of the pieces. On the outside edges, I added a chamfered edge to ease the closing with it being a tight fit. The lid makes that nice “whoosh!” sound when you close it, but not too tight where it catches.
I used the lock-miter router bit for the corner joinery which gives a nice strong joint. Another benefit that I enjoy of the lock-miter is how easy glue up is without the sides sliding around on me putting the box out of square. The downside is that it can be finicky to setup at the router table but with a little jig they have for it, setup isn’t too bad.
Being a quick project for our kitchen, I opted for the cheap thin brass hinges on this box that only set me back a few dollars.
I finished the tea box with Arm-R-Seal gloss via wiping it on. This was done prior to having my HVLP sprayer which applies the finish a lot better in my opinion. After a few coats of that, I topped it off with a coat of Wood butter, especially around the lip where it closes.
Freud Lock Miter: Amazon (I have the Infinity Tools branded one but Freud makes high quality tooling and you cant go wrong)
Small Box Hinges: Woodcraft