Tambour Box

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Tambour Box

Postby snowgrains » Wed Dec 07, 2011 11:52 am

Hello all. I've been using Vectric products for several years now but never posted in the forums.

Figured I'd share the results of using VCarve Pro to create/modify a desktop tambour box. The design comes from an article in the April 2011 issue of Woodworker's Journal and features a desktop organizer with a roll-top (tambour) cover.

I loved the concept, so I used VCarve Pro to create the trickiest pieces (the sides) that have the tracks that the tambour travels along. As I went ahead and finished the box, it struck me that the front half of the tambour presents a nice "canvas" for pocketing a design into.

After a bit of trial and error, I created a design of the logo from the company I work for. It is expanded vertically to account for the kerf of the router bit. The goal was to make a contiguous pocket that color-dyed casting resin could be poured into in order to create the inlay, so to speak. The router bit then cuts out the individual pieces of the first eight tambour slats.

Hopefully, the pictures below explain the concept.

Anyway, just wanted to say hello and thank Vectric for creating such a wonderful product!

Greg St. George
Attachments
P1000469a.JPG
P1000474a.JPG
Tambour Box 1.JPG
Tambour Box 2.JPG
Tambour Box 3.JPG
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby zeeway » Wed Dec 07, 2011 12:38 pm

A very cool box. Good work. Think I will have to try to find that issue.

Angie
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby tmerrill » Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:11 pm

Greg,

Welcome to the forum and what a way to start off. Great job!

I hope to see more of your projects.

Tim
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby dglasco » Wed Dec 07, 2011 1:56 pm

This is what I love about this fourm, an un-ending supply of great ideas and great project!!!

Great Job!

Dave
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby SPalm » Wed Dec 07, 2011 7:44 pm

Downright clever. I would not have thought of doing it that way.
The end result is very nice.

Steve
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby snowgrains » Thu Dec 08, 2011 11:58 am

SPalm wrote:Downright clever. I would not have thought of doing it that way.
The end result is very nice.

Steve


Well, I have to admit that I didn't start out doing it that way. I initially created eight individual slats each with their own pockets for the resin. After struggling to accurately deposit a viscous medium like resin in some of the smaller recesses, I realized that it would be better to join them all up.

After some re-work, boolean operations and node editing, I had an approach that was much easier to pour resin into and which minimized wasted wood.

I also spent a lot of time tweaking the pocketed area for the tambour track. Very slight differences in the curvature had a significant effect on how smoothly it glides.
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby snowgrains » Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:00 pm

In the spirit of the season, if anyone else would like to take a journey down the tambour box path, I'll help them along by donating some CRV files and observations.

First, you'll definitely want to get the April 2011 issue of Woodworker's Journal since it has a lot of essential information about the project including building a jig for making the tambour slats. Link to it is here:

http://www.woodworkersjournal.com/Main/ ... 1_409.aspx

Second, I modified the author's project in several ways:

1. I pocketed the sides of the box to receive the ends of the upper and lower shelves instead of using biscuits. I have a biscuit cutter, but the pockets made a lot more sense to me.

2. I'm using materials I can find at my local home improvement store, not re-sawn 3/8", 5/8", etc. wood. My sides are 3/4" oak, shelves and drawer front are 1/2" (nominal 7/16" or .44) oak, and drawer sides, drawer back and slats are 1/4" oak. Exception is the drawer bottom which is 1/8" MDF (which I just happen to have a large supply of).

3. I don't do dovetails or fancy fence routing, so my drawers are simpler and my drawer pull is metal.

4. Most importantly, I spent a lot of time and effort to conclude that the author's project is slightly flawed.
The flaw in the design (in my opinion) lies in the lower part of the tambour track. That is where the most friction is happening when it slides. It occurs due to the process of making the tambour by gluing cloth to one side of the tightly-packed slats. This imparts a natural "arch" to it once it's constructed and released from the jig.

This is fine when the tambour is up in the curved part of the track, but not so great when it slides into the recess above the lower shelf (which is perfectly straight). Opening the drawer moves the 'arch' of the tambour into the straight part of the track and the process of forcing the arch flat adds a lot of resistance.

My solution is to make the straight part of the track wider than the curved part of the track so that the arched tambour has more room and can slide into it without a fight.

My first attempt at the project - which followed the author's template exactly - resulted in a box that you had to hold down with one hand in order to open or close it with the other. This was unacceptable. I wanted it to glide smoothly enough that you didn't have to hold it down in order to operate the drawer/tambour. After making the adjustments to the track, mine operates smoothly in a one-handed (or is that "off-handed") manner .

Anyway, I had a lot of fun learning VCarve Pro with this project earlier this year. Hope someone else tackles it and has some fun.

Happy Holidays!

Greg St. George
Attachments
Tambour Box - Sides.JPG
Tambour Box - Drawer Front.JPG
Tambour Box - Drawer Sides & Back.JPG
TambourBox.zip
(270.99 KiB) Downloaded 634 times
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby milo30 » Tue Jan 08, 2013 5:28 am

Great box. Rocklers were selling off some old magazines at discounted prices and I had come across this. I've been trying to work a file to get this thing set up to cnc and came across your post. Thanks for sharing. Will make my life much simpler.
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby frank taylor » Sat Dec 01, 2018 2:48 am

IMG_20181121_112721.jpg
IMG_20181121_112702.jpg
IMG_20181121_112641_BURST001_COVER.jpg
IMG_20181121_112620.jpg
thanks to snowgrains for the files tambour box my attempt made from pine stained with red&blue food coloring mixed with rubbing alcohol for my grand daughter added her favorites on the ends mermaid and unicorn
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby Papa_Paul » Sat Dec 01, 2018 9:51 am

Very nice boxes,

I have a question. Is the tambour lid attached to the back of the drawer so that it slides open as the drawer is opened, or are they completely separate? The reason I ask is that I have seen Pask Makes scrap wood challenge create a nice box that the top opens as the drawer is opened and thought that would make a nice CNC project.

Thanks for sharing,
Paul
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby martin54 » Sat Dec 01, 2018 1:57 pm

Papa_Paul wrote:Very nice boxes,

I have a question. Is the tambour lid attached to the back of the drawer so that it slides open as the drawer is opened, or are they completely separate? The reason I ask is that I have seen Pask Makes scrap wood challenge create a nice box that the top opens as the drawer is opened and thought that would make a nice CNC project.

Thanks for sharing,
Paul


I have only seem a couple of examples & they weren't CNC cut. The ones that I have seen were not conected in any way & operated independantly of each other but I can't see any reason why the lid should not be joined & open when the draw was pulled open. Doubt it would be to difficult to figure out although if you wanted it to go from fully open to fully shut as the draw went from fully open to fully shut you would probably have to make some design changes & do a bit of maths :lol: :lol: :lol:

Frank, looks like you did a good job :lol: :lol:
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby meflick » Sat Dec 01, 2018 4:01 pm

Papa_Paul wrote:Very nice boxes,

I have a question. Is the tambour lid attached to the back of the drawer so that it slides open as the drawer is opened, or are they completely separate? The reason I ask is that I have seen Pask Makes scrap wood challenge create a nice box that the top opens as the drawer is opened and thought that would make a nice CNC project.

Thanks for sharing,
Paul


Paul, I have not created the box from the Files so graciously shared above by snowgrains above, but I just looked online at the April 2011 issue of the magazine and downloaded the article and plans. (If you don't have that issue, you would need to subscribe to get access to back issues to do so.) The plans from the article its self was to create a box where the lid rolled back as the drawer was opened. Since I have not created the box myself, or yet had a chance to look at the CRV files snowgrains shared, I do not know whether his file actually does this or not.

Thanks for bumping this up so I could discover the files and plans. They are now on my "to try list" but will probably be after the holidays at some point.
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby frank taylor » Sun Dec 02, 2018 1:32 am

Tambour%20Box%20-%20Drawer%20Sides%20&%20Back.JPG
papa -paul yes the last slat is screwed to the back of the draw and does roll back when you pull the draw out there is a youtube video making a tambour its the only thing I could find to see how it worked the picture shows where the last slat fits
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby Papa_Paul » Sun Dec 02, 2018 10:08 am

Frank,

Thanks very much, looks like a project to do this winter. Might look to see if I can incorporate a way to hold remote controls above and then the little lady has a place for her phone and ipad mini right next to her; also somewhat protected from the Cocker Spaniel puppy:-
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Re: Tambour Box

Postby martin54 » Sun Dec 02, 2018 6:54 pm

Papa_Paul wrote:Frank,

Thanks very much, looks like a project to do this winter. Might look to see if I can incorporate a way to hold remote controls above and then the little lady has a place for her phone and ipad mini right next to her; also somewhat protected from the Cocker Spaniel puppy:-


Haha, when I started reading this I thought you were going to say "might look to see if I can inorporate a way to hold remote controls so I can open it at the push of a button" :lol: :lol:
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