|Project by handy_andy||posted 11-23-2015 08:14 PM||1075 views||0 times favorited||5 comments|
My girlfriend is a mechanical engineer, a largely male field, so made her what I’m calling a “pretty toolbox”. I started with a three drawer jewelry box design and added space along he door for tool pouches.
I managed to get an old oak desk off craigslist for free. It has spent the last couple decades as a workbench in a hardware store and between the loose leg joints, battered top, and duct tapped drawers it’s time as a desk was over. The desk top was 7/8” thick so I was able to plane several large 3/4” and 1/2” boards out of it, which became the frame and doors.
The doors have rabbit joints, with walnut butterflies mostly for decoration. The doors also accept pictures, 4×6 on the front and 5×7 on the side.
The carcass sides are mortised into the base and were supposed to be attached to the back with a sliding dovetail. But the sliding dovetail froze halfway in to the glue up and efforts to force it the rest of the way cracked back, the left side, and tore off one of the dovetails. After a dramatic amount of profanity I managed to add a mess of glue and 1/4” dowels to shore it up enough to keep going.
The lid, which holds an 6×8 photo, is inlaid with her initials in padauk and has butterfly joints that look like butterflies out of purpleheart.
I used two coats of tung oil for color, 2~4 coats of polyurethane for stain resistance, and brown paper / paste wax to rub out the finish.
In a previous project I made custom tool holders out of MDF. The result was heavy and bulky. It also did not lend itself to changing the tool inventory. For this project I sewed tool holders out of grey duck cotton edged in purple gross grain ribbon. The tool pouches are bolted to brass threaded inserts in the doors so that they can be easily changed.
At the last minute I added handles to the needle files. I turned purpleheart handles, threaded a brass pipe fitting on the end, and epoxied the needle files in an 1/8” bore.
The well received final product: