How to make a box without a top using the box generator app

This seems to be a common ask among us X Carvers, so I thought I’d put together a quick tutorial on how to make a tabbed box that has no top.

So, we’ll start with a box, using the box generator app.
I set mine to be a 4x6x2 box, .25" thick with .75" tabs.

On my 500mm machine this box is a little too big for my work area, but that’s ok. If you get an error message, hit “cancel” and the artwork will be imported without scaling.

Once you have your box pieces on your work area, select them all, and change them to “fill.” You’ll need to see precisely where the line edges are and since you’ll be working with a filled rectangle later, it seems to be the easiest way to work with the pieces. If you want to use “inside” or “outside” outlines, be my guest.

The next thing you want to do is create a rectangle that covers the tabs on one of the side pieces, like this:

It’s important that you leave the tabs on the top and bottom of the shape alone.

Once you’re happy with the size of the rectangle, copy/paste it for the other box side.
Then, select both the box side shape and your new rectangle and hit Edit --> Combine

For the remaining sides, you can use the shape’s dimensions and the align tool to make sure the rectangles are perfectly aligned. Once you’ve done that, use the same Edit --> Combine command.

All that’s left is to delete the “top” of the box, reconfigure the shapes for the size of your material, and set them to cut on the lines.

If you want to add dogbones to the corners, or do anything else to the box, now’s the time.

Congrats! Now let’s carve this turkey!


Great tutorial on removing the tabs on one side.
I’m cutting my material on a table to the exact height and only want to cut tabs on 2 ends. I’m trying to make a Beehive Box, which doesn’t have a top or bottom.
I’d like to clamp the material on the top and bottom and not cut my clamps.
Thanks ~Bill