The Guild has partnered with Bring Me A Book St. Louis to help them reach their goal of bringing hardback quality books to under-resourced children to read aloud at home and school. They provide boxes and books to pre-kindergarten through first grade classrooms.
The organization also provides books for the children to take home and keep. The Guild is building small boxes for the children to store those books in. Building and finishing about thirty boxes at a time allows every child in a classroom to get a box at the same time.
Book box kits are handed out at monthly meetings and on select Saturdays during book box pickup and dropoff.
105 boxes and 525 books delivered to young readers.
“We delivered 105 boxes and 525 books last week to Paul Laurence Dunbar Elementary in East St. Louis.” It looks like it was success. He got two thumbs up.
Steps to making a book box
The following assembly instructions can be downloaded in PDF format for printing or viewed directly on this page:
Kit consists of 5 pieces of plywood. Three pieces of 1/2-inch plywood measuring approximately 12 x 16 inches for the bottom and 2 sides. The bottom piece has a rabbeted edge on its two ends. The two side pieces have a rabbeted edge on their two ends and the bottom edges. There are two pieces of 5/8-inch plywood measuring approximately 12 x 11 inches for the 2 ends.
- Dry fit pieces to determine if any rework needs to be done to achieve a tight fit.
- Sand the edges of the bottom and side pieces with 120/150 grit paper.
- Drill holes for the handles in each of the 5/8-inch end pieces in the areas drawn. Use a 1-inch Forstner or paddle bit. Be sure to use a backer board to avoid excessive breakout on the backside of the hole.
- Remove the material between the two holes with a jigsaw or router. You may need to redraw the lines between the holes you drilled to achieve a symmetrically shaped handle.
- If you use a jigsaw, avoid using a blade with too aggressive of a cut or you will have excessive tear out of the wood and finish.
- Use a ¼-inch round over bit to contour the handle edges. Use 120/150 grit sand paper on the inside of the handles to smooth.
- Start assembly by gluing and nailing the bottom piece to one of the 5/8-inch end boards. Use 3 nails per edge. Nails should not longer than a 1 ½-inch finish nail. Do not use staples as they may cause excessive splintering of the wood and finish.
- Next attach the bottom board to the second end board by gluing and nailing it together.
- Then glue and nail the side pieces to the end pieces. Note: to avoid the possibility of splinters do not attempt to nail into the ½-inch bottom piece. Only glue the ½-inch plywood bottom edges of the two side pieces.
- Clamp the two sides at the bottom edges to the bottom piece. One F clamp in the middle should be sufficient to hold the sides and bottom together while the glue dries.
- Allow the glue to dry per glue manufacturer’s directions.
- Trim the top edges of the box on a table saw to achieve one even surface around the top edges of the box.
- Soften (slight radius) all corners and edges with hand block sander and 120/150 grit sandpaper. Be careful to not scratch the plywood finish. Do not over sand.
Please contact Tom Tierney if you have any questions. Your time to help on the BMABStL book box project will be very much appreciated.