Design for a Tapered Wooden Box with Box Joints

I have search the Internet for a svg file for a tall tapered box. I have even tried to design a file myself but the box joints are always slightly skewed out of place. The measurements are 14 inches tall with the top being 7 ‘’ square and the floor of the box 5" square. Out of all of the designs on the internet I have yet to find one for a tapered box with the joints to hold it together. And none of the box makers I have found include the option for two different widths. Can anyone suggest a way that I could easily line up the joints correctly if the only option is to create the file myself?

This is more topologically complex than you are likely thinking it is, particularly if you want to use material that isn’t ~infinitely thin. Because of the angles, any finger joints will have surfaces meeting at different angles on different planes. Without making angled cuts (which would be difficult to do on your Glowforge), finger joints are not going to mesh neatly. There are going to be gaps (which you can likely fill with glue). Any vector design is going to be very fitted to your material thickness.

Consider starting with a paper model to get a feel for the issues at the ~infinitely thin state. Then move to cardboard.

You might be able to model something workable in a 3D modeling program by lining the sides up and using Boolean operations to cut finger joints. Again, it will need to match up to your specific material thickness pretty well.

An alternative approach might be to build your box in cross section slices (i.e., a stack of squares with each one being slightly smaller than the previous). The sides would be a little stair-stepped but, you could sand them flat.

Like this:

Someone else may have better insight or better suggestions for this.


There are several automated box-making websites.
Maker box

and many more
Once you get the hang of it you will likely do them from scratch.

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Neither of these have options for a box that’s wider at the top than it is at the bottom. I don’t think even Cuttle does! Though I can’t imagine it would be hard for someone who’s skilled in that to create a template eh @tobyschachman? It’s more of a vase style. Here’s a basic look at what the design would look like, but he generated this by hand…

There’s one here you can download that might get you started!


I did this…

I did need to do some filing and left the top for decorative effect but this is an extreme case. If I added a layer of veneer the structure of how it was created would disappear.


It’s hard to tell from the image, but it doesn’t look like the lid is made with finger joints at the seams…just attaching it to the square base. Am I seeing that wrong? And if so, what did you use to generate the lid?

Arithmetic, I made a slide that just fits inside,

I sanded the diagonal so I did not need the teeth.


I made one using Cuttle. I don’t know if the OP needs a top or bottom. Kinda vague on the use case.

I have used it for personal projects. I haven’t had time to clean it up for release.


Thank you. I definitely was in over my head. It did seem to work with my paper model but not using a thicker material.


@deirdrebeth Thanks for the mention!

Cuttle doesn’t have an official template for a tapered box but we’ve helped folks make them using the (pre-released) Finger Joints Kit.

Here’s a video where I walk through building a different tapered box:


And here’s the finger joints kit:


Oh fabulous. I went digging through that but couldn’t figure out on my own how to make it tapered!