These fishing lure shadow boxes are made from a wood known as Lyptus. It is a hybrid of two different eucalyptus trees and is grown on huge plantations in Brazil.
I started with boards that were already dimensioned and flat. They are actually stair treads that were left over from a construction site. I ripped them down to 2″ widths on the table saw then cut them to their rough lengths on the crosscut sled. I determined the lengths of my sides by laying out the lures on the bench and measuring the length and width that the box would need to be, adding about an inch on each side. I then took them over to the miter saw and cut 45 degree angles on each end. It’s extremely important to pay attention during this step, make sure that your angles are going the right way on the board.
Next, I cut a slot in each board for the backing to fit in. The backing I used was 1/4″ plywood. The kerf of my sawblade is only 1/8″ so I had to cut a line, move the fence and cut another. To keep things uniform I cut the first pass on all the boards before I moved the fence for the second cut. Then I cut the backing, sanded the boards and glued everything together. I applied shellac before applying the wool.
Then it was time for the wool, these are old army blankets. First, I taped the sides so I wouldn’t get glue all over them, then I sprayed some adhesive on the backing and the wool. There are a few ways you can go about this, on the big box I just layed the wool down, pressed in into the corners, and then ran a utility knife around the edges. This doesn’t leave the prettiest cut and you can see around the edges that it doesn’t cover 100%. So I cut some 1/4″ by 1/4″ strips, cut miters on the corners, so that they would cover the edges. They also give it a nice look. I applied shellac on these before gluing them in as well.
After the glue dried, I started to lay out the lures. I positioned them where I wanted them then used a marker to mark out the locations of the holes for the wire. Using a 1/16″ drill bit I drilled two holes for each wire. I fed the wires through the metal loops on the lures, then through the box, twisting the wire on the back to lock it in. This took a while…
To keep all of that wire from scratching the walls I put some adhesive backed felt on the back side, then installed a few hangers on the back.
I made these for my father, he absolutely loves them, they even match the color of the trim in his den. That was a total coincidence! But they do look great in there.