Jewellery Box Trays

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jewellery trays
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Here is an in depth look at how I make jewellery box trays. These trays were made for a set of curved top jewellery boxes veneered all round. I often make the trays out of a different species of wood to the box itself. If there is more than one tray I make them so that they slot on top of each other. The tray images here are oak and beech. They are the same design, lined with black and red velvet.

Click on images to enlarge.

Here are 2 beech trays after completion.
beech trays
router table

A lot of the processes for making the trays are performed on a router table. Mine, like so many in woodworking shops is home made. The machine was a spindle moulder (see glossary) before I removed the shaft and motor and bolted a router upside down on the underside of the bed. It is now an extremely versatile machine.

Here is a jig I have made for making the grooves in the tray pieces. The jig has bearers screwed to it's underside which run in grooves machined in the spindle moulder bed.

router table
You can see the tray part on the jig. A router cutter protrudes where the groove in the mdf jig is. The whole "sledge" is passed over the cutter producing the groove in the work piece. Before I start the grooving process I mitre all 4 sides. The block clamped to the jig insures that all the work pieces have the groove in the same place.
A close up view showing the router cutter and work piece with grooves in it.
router cutter
partition shoulder
After the grooves are machined in the sides I make the internal partitions. This is the end of a partition showing the shoulder made using a normal fence on the router table.
This image shows how the tray parts will fit together.
tray parts
top tray side
A close up view of one side of the top tray. You can see the mitred end, the groove for the partition, the groove for the tray base and a rebate at the bottom.
A close up view of one bottom tray side. Note that the rebate is on the top outer edge.
bottom tray side
top tray side with a partition
This is a top tray side with a partition in position.
This the beginning of the gluing up process.The partitions and base are glued up first.
beggining of the gluing up process
final gluing up process
Then the 4 sides are glued up using a clamp which puts pressure on all 4 mitred corners at the same time.
After the trays are glued up I machine 2 slots on all 4 corners.
walnut splines
I glue walnut splines into the grooves.
I cut the splines off proud of the sides on the bandsaw.
splines flush with sides
Then I use a block plane to pare the splines flush with the sides.
I now start working on strengthening the partition joint with walnut dowels. I make up a jig to position the dowel holes in exactly the right place. I cramp the jig to the tray and drill through metal guides.
jig for walnut dowels
planing  the lift-out partition to the correct height
The top trays are going to have partitions that can be removed if required by the owner to suit their items of jewellery. This is another jig which I am using to plane the lift-out partition to the correct height.
I then plane the partitions to thickness for a snug fit.
planing partitions to thickness
beech trays
The next few images show 2 beech trays on completion. Here with the partitions removed.
Here with the partitions in place.
beech trays
beech trays
Showing the bottom tray split into 3 compartments.

Finally a close up view of the walnut dowels and splines. For an in depth look at how I make the boxes please go to "to make a box (1)"and "to make a box(2)".


beech trays
Boxes for sale up to £250
Boxes for sale £250 to £550
Boxes for sale £550 to £1000
Boxes for sale over £1000
Personal boxes
Workshop news
The work bench
Jewellery trays
To make a box (1)
To make a box (2)
To make a box (3)

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