I am going to go through a DIY project – Military Wooden Ammo Box to End Table.
I was lucky to make a great contact that supplied my with a few (ok maybe more than a few) vintage boxes all from a closed museum between Lincoln and Omaha.
My first thought was some of these wooden boxes would make a great table.
So here we go:
Before I could begin a trip to the local car wash was needed. After $1.00 spent, these were clean. I used soap first (these were really yucky) then rinse, making sure not to hold the wand to close to the wood or it will become fuzzy/chewed up by the high pressure.
Loaded up after the wash, I let the boxes dry in the sun for the rest of the day. I babysat them, turning them over, opening lids, in order for them to become completely dry.
While they dried in the pickup. I headed to the EcoStore of Lincoln. Totally cool place to get a variety of building, remodeling, misc supplies. I was hoping for legs and stain. The stain was on the free shelf – SCORE! But the 2×2 for the legs were warped badly – so no good. Ended up Lowes had an 8′ 2×2 for $1.69.
The stain was a Minwax ipswitch pine which was great for this box and legs. I picked a light stain, I did not want to change the color of the box much. I did not sand or prep the box in any other way other than washing.
I applied 1 coat of stain to exterior of box. I did not need to wipe off the stain – that old pine was thirsty and soaked it right up.
Go ahead and let this dry and move on to the legs.
The legs were cut at 14″ each using a saw and miter box. Use any kind of saw you have, just making sure it cuts straight or your legs will be crocked. Repeat 4 times.
I used the miter box for cutting to make sure the legs were straight.
I used a pencil to draw an X on the end of each leg to identify middle and carefully drilled straight down into each leg. This will allow screwing in the legs to be an easier task. Of course a brad nailer would be an excellent choice to attach legs to box – but I do not own one.
I started the screw (which was a 3/8″ x 2″ lag screw) before I stained them to ease in the turning and not getting stain all over me – because I am naturally messy. 2 coats seemed close to matching the color of the much older box, since this wood for the legs was new.
Look like assembly time is here after allowing a couple hours for the stain to dry.
Next I butted up the leg to the corner and traced the outside edge with a pencil, once again making an X so I know where to drill. Once all 4 corners were finished – all that was left was to attach the legs. I used a wrench to snug up the screws and placed a washer on the inside of the box. Not certain if the washer was totally necessary, but seemed like a good idea.
And there it is – I was happy in the end I have a nice, sturdy table, with a hinged lid to stash stuff in. It took me an afternoon to do this – most of the time spent waiting for stain to dry.
That is how I converted that ammo box into the above table.
Wooden ammo boxes can sometimes be found on Craigslist, military surplus stores, garage sales, or flea markets.
We have a few ammo boxes for sale. If you are interested in buying one please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org