How to Build Your Own Miter Box

What You'll Need
Scrape Wood
Measuring tape
Combination Square

A miter box is a tool used for hand sawing to act as a guide to make cuts that are precise. There are slots in the miter box where you will position the saw and the wood being under so that precise angles will be made. This is important to use especially if you are making frames or any other wood projects that would be requiring connecting to wood pieces to form a certain angle.

Most miter boxes are made with hard plastic or even metal but if you have scarp wood lying around you can use this to build your own miter box. Not only will it be cheaper to make using old scarp materials, you can add more angle slits to your own miter box.

Step 1 - Determine the Size of Your Miter Box

Find pieces of scrap wood you could use to build your miter. If you could get 1 inch by 4 inches scarp wood boards, that would be perfect for this project. Measure the wood and mark them so that 3 wood panels will be of the same length.

Step 2 - Saw the Wood

Saw the 3 boards that are the same length. Depending on how much variety you need the longer your miter box should be so that you can create more cutting guides.

Step 3 - Position Your Board

Place on board flat on the ground and then take the other two boards and put in on the long edge of the board. Nail them together or you can use a strong wood adhesive and then nail it together for a stronger support. Looking from one end, it should create a U shape.

Step 4 - Create the Slits

Using a combination square, mark the cuts you will make on the box. You can use all possible angles but make sure to have 90 degrees and 45 degrees because these are the most common angles to be used. Carefully saw the angle marking you have created. Do not saw all the way but just enough to be a guide. After sawing each guide, mark it with a pen so it will be easier for you to find the proper slit to use.

Step 5 - Sand

So there is no splinting causing edges on your homemade miter box, gently sand the edges and corners. Dust off and then you can paint it whatever color you like. Apply wood varnish after so it will blend well with your other tools in your workshop. Re-write the angles beside each slit as soon as the paint and varnish dries.