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Workbench Tool Cabinet

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Project by TheDane posted 07-11-2009 04:06 AM 10098 views 47 times favorited 29 comments Add to Favorites Watch

My Douglas Fir Workbench (http://lumberjocks.com/projects/18261) just wasn’t complete without some tool storage space.

The cabinet is 30” W x 19” H x 20” D and is a plywood box with drawers made from ‘select’ lumber from the neighborhood big box store.

This was a pretty low-cost project … the only hardware I had to buy was the wire pulls on the drawers. The drawer slides are 1” x 1/4” grooves in the sides of the drawer boxes. The drawers ride on oak rails attached to the cavity of the case.

The drawer boxes themselves are made with lock rabbit joints and 1/4” hardboard bottoms. I picked up some rubber-ribbed runner material to line the bottom of the drawers … gives the tools some padding, and cuts down on vibration.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"





29 comments so far

View Bob42's profile

Bob42

455 posts in 2543 days


#1 posted 07-11-2009 04:15 AM

Nice project. The best is the lower cost. We often try to make everything out of the exotic woods when the cheaper will do. Keep up the good work.

-- Bob K. East Northport, NY

View JJohnston's profile

JJohnston

1602 posts in 2044 days


#2 posted 07-11-2009 04:30 AM

I’ve never built, or seen how to build, drawer glides like you did (even though they’re common). How do you get them lined up and attached? You can’t have the drawer in place while you do it (or can you?).

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View a1Jim's profile

a1Jim

112936 posts in 2330 days


#3 posted 07-11-2009 04:45 AM

very nice bench with storage good design and weel done

-- http://artisticwoodstudio.com Custom furniture

View GhostOfSidHartman's profile

GhostOfSidHartman

6 posts in 2028 days


#4 posted 07-11-2009 04:49 AM

Love the top! Is is built up from 2x material?

-- The beatings will continue until morale improves.

View cabinetmaster's profile

cabinetmaster

10874 posts in 2311 days


#5 posted 07-11-2009 04:53 AM

Great looking bench and storage unit. I like the mobility also.

-- Jerry--A man can never have enough tools or clamps

View TheDane's profile (online now)

TheDane

3992 posts in 2415 days


#6 posted 07-11-2009 05:16 AM

JJohnston – To get the drawers mounted correctly:

1) Make sure the groove in the drawer box is dead-center. I made the groove 1” wide and 1/4” deep.

2) Make a setup guide (I made mine from hardboard) that is the the width of the distance between the edge of the drawer box and the edge of the groove plus 1/16”. For example, the guide for the 5 shallow drawers is 1 5/16” wide, and the guide for the 5” drawer was 2 1/16” wide.

3) Cut the mounting rails 1” wide and 1/4” thick … male sure they fit in the grooves in the drawer boxes.

4) Pre-drill / counter-sink three holes in the rails, set the rails on the setup guide, and use flathead screws to attach the rails to the sides of the case. I set my guides on the bottom of the drawer opening.

- – - – - – - – - – - – - – - – -

ThreeFingerBrown – The top is 3 1/2” thick Douglas Fir milled from 2×12 kiln-dried stock. Each board is 1 1/4” thick and 3 1/2” wide. There are 18 boards in the top, laminated with Titebond III.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View JJohnston's profile

JJohnston

1602 posts in 2044 days


#7 posted 07-11-2009 05:36 AM

It sounds like the method is based on the height of the drawer being 1/8” less than the height of the drawer opening, am I right?

-- "A man may conduct himself well in both adversity and good fortune, but if you want to test his character, give him power." - Abraham Lincoln

View TheDane's profile (online now)

TheDane

3992 posts in 2415 days


#8 posted 07-11-2009 05:45 AM

JJohnston – Correct

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View davidroberts's profile

davidroberts

1011 posts in 2238 days


#9 posted 07-11-2009 06:21 AM

Hey Mr. Dane: How did you cut and square up the grooves? Router set in a homemade jig? I had planned to put 1/4 inch thick 1 inch wide hardboard runners in dados in a solid divider. The drawer side bottoms will rest and slide along the runners. But I’m liking your idea. Do you like the arrangement and size of the drawers. I’m debating the number and size of the drawers and using that as an excuse not to start :>(

-- God is great, wood is good. Let us thank Him for wood......and old hand tools.

View Scott Bryan's profile

Scott Bryan

27251 posts in 2574 days


#10 posted 07-11-2009 12:46 PM

This is a nice bench and I like the addition of the drawers to it. They provide plenty of storage and help add weight to the bench. This one looks to be rock solid.

-- Challenges are what make life interesting; overcoming them is what makes life meaningful- Joshua Marine

View Splinterman's profile

Splinterman

23057 posts in 2114 days


#11 posted 07-11-2009 12:58 PM

Good looking functional bench…well done Dane.

View TheDane's profile (online now)

TheDane

3992 posts in 2415 days


#12 posted 07-11-2009 01:50 PM

davidroberts – I sort of adapted a technique you see Norm Abram use a lot. I didn’t have a 1” straight router bit, so I used a 3/4” bit and set the fence on my router table so the bit was as close to the center of the workpiece as I could get it. I routed a 3/4” groove, then turned the piece around and routed in the opposite direction. It took a little trial and error with some scraps, but I got a groove that was exactly 1” wide and dead center in the board, which made placing the oak rails a lot easier.

The divider between the two sets of smaller drawers is off-the-shelf 1×3 select pine that is dadoed into the dust frame and cabinet top.

Your drawer design may be stronger than mine. The once concern I have with the way I built these drawers is the fact the hardboard bottoms are sitting in 3/8” grooves that are a 1/4” wide with only 1/4” of material supporting them. Time will tell.

The size of the cabinet itself was dictated by the available opening under the bench and the space I needed to accommodate my air compressor. Another requirement was that at least one drawer be big enough to accommodate my Stanley No 7 and its playmates … that is what the bottom drawer is for. The other drawers were sized to hold my hand saws (dovetail, coping, Japanese, etc.), my chisels and other hand tools, along with the collection of measuring and marking instruments I have.

-- Gerry -- "I don't plan to ever really grow up ... I'm just going to learn how to act in public!"

View marksalot2005's profile

marksalot2005

64 posts in 2034 days


#13 posted 07-11-2009 02:48 PM

Very nice looking project, you should be proud. Atta Boy AAA +++

-- Mark, Katy, Texas, Did they give Noah a hardtime about the wood boat in his driveway

View Occie gilliam's profile

Occie gilliam

505 posts in 2049 days


#14 posted 07-11-2009 03:09 PM

nice job on your bench and storage unit

-- OC down in Costa Rica. come down and see me some time. I'll keep the light on for you too-oc@hotmail.com mail.com

View CharlieM1958's profile

CharlieM1958

15817 posts in 2971 days


#15 posted 07-11-2009 03:33 PM

I really love that this is inexpensive, small, and portable, and yet it still has all the elements you need to get some serious work done.

This is a keeper for my to-do list. Thanks!

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

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