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    Cube-Shaped Urn

    When my dog, a Rhodesian Ridgeback named "Elsa," died a few years back at the age of 12, I received her cremains in a non-descript cardboard box. That's where she resided for a great while until I finally found the perfect pieces of scrap hardwood with which to build her a special urn.

    The urn is nothing more than a 6-in. square cube of bubinga. All the joints are simple miters that were then glued together. After I glued up the basic cube, I took it to the router table and cut rabbets along all the edges. Next, I glued in some slightly oversized strips of ebony (what a wonderful wood to work!) and after they dried in place, I used a small block plane to shave them down level with the bubinga cube. A few coats of shellac and clear paste wax and I was all set.

    I'll say this about bubinga - it's tough stuff to work with: funky grain and very dense! The ebony, on the other hand, works beautifully with hand planes and is a real joy to use, if not a wee bit pricey.