Now that the hinge posts are made it is time to get back to the main box. The clamps holding the base on can be removed and now it is time for some serious sanding. No matter how hard I try when cutting the base there is always a bit of overhang, see photo below showing how the base protrudes slightly beyond the main box.
Now is the idea time to square it up and make sure all of the sides are level and smooth. I take most of the protruding material off with my belt sander and then set about it manually. I usually start with a 120 grit, followed by 180, 240 and finally 400. Don't miss any grades out and try where possible to sand in the direction of the grain. Another good thing to do is to use a sanding block, if you haven't got one, just wrap your sand paper around a piece of rectangular wood. I use a cut off from a piece of timber that is used stud work.
Once you have sorted out the sides of the box, do the same with the main box area around the heart. By the time I have finished with the 400 grit the main maple box is as smooth as glass and I know it will look great when the Varnish goes on later.
The next thing to be done is the fitting of the hinge posts to the top edge of the box. This is a bit fiddly and I could do with three hands, but here is how I do it. To get both posts in the same position on each side of the box I use a piece of the wood that the posts were made from to space the post away from the edge. The while holding it, and the hinge post in position I use a 1.5mm drill bit to drill through the post and into the top edge of the box.
When I have drilled one hole, I push in one of the small gold pins that I use for extra security and decoration into it. This helps to hold the hing post in place while the second hole is drilled. After both posts have been drilled I glue them into position, insert and glue the brass pins, wipe off any excess glue and then clamp the posts while the glue dries.
If you want to buy some pins, they can be purchased from Always Hobbies they charge about 80 pence for quite a few pins depending on the size.
For this part of the operation I use quick release clamps because their rubber tips mould themselves better to the odd profile of the hinge posts.
Okay, once the glue is dry the clamps can be removed and the box looks like this.
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