Visitors to my shop are often interested in a how-to on the three-way miters that I used to make a “simple box” – the edging is walnut, set in 1/4-inch deep rabbets:
The procedure is quite straight forward once you make the first one – it just takes patience, as each piece of edging must be individually fitted to get the perfect-looking corner. It requires precise adjustment of the miter gauge to 45 degrees. The original procedure first appeared in Woodsmith Magazine. The accent edge pieces were 1/4″ square, plus about 0.030″, to ensure they would completely fill the routed rabbets on all edges of the box. After gluing in place, I used a flush cutting router bit, to bring the surfaces of the edging as close to the box surface as possible; the bit I used left the edging about 0.005″ proud, so I used a block plane to make it completely flush – this could also be done with careful sanding.The basic, first cut:
- First is a regular miter, cut at 45°. I found this to be the hardest part of the entire process.
- Rotate the edging piece so the bevel is facing up and cut a second 45° bevel; sneak up on the second miter, checking in between passes. The inside edge should align with the edge between the two bevel lines.
Fitting the accent edging to length:
3. Cut to length, repeating the steps above for the other corner. Sneak up on the final length for each piece. Mark each piece to the corresponding edge, to ensure good fit of all corners.
4. I found I had to sand off a little of the tip left under the corner below the bevels, to ensure best fit.
5. Tape in place to allow cutting adjacent edge pieces to proper length.
6. It is best to apply the edging to all the top and bottom faces, and then to all the corners.
7. Glue in place, and use tape to hold the edging securely until dry.
8. Flush all edge surfaces.
9. Use a roundover router bit to dress up the edges; but I encourage you to try your favorite way!