Tool Chest "Old is New," One Year in the Making

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Project by Smitty_Cabinetshop posted 09-30-2013 02:41 AM 6259 views 10 times favorited 63 comments Add to Favorites Watch


Timeframe: Jul 2012 – Sep 2013

Wood Used: Reclaimed White Pine and Walnut, Misc. Other Woods from the Rack

Galoot Index: Maybe a 7 on a 10 point scale? Hard to recall, but it was much handwork but also RAS and tablesaw when I needed either of those.

Cost: $60 for the box, $41 for the four pairs of till pulls

Modifications: Added a tool tote that has a permanent home in the tool chest in 2016.
Click for details


Very long blog story that’s impossible to recap with six pictures and a project post, so if you’re a glutton for punishment, start here. And if there aren’t pictures, it’s a bandwidth limit within Photobucket; pls try again after the 13th of any month, sorry. Anyway, here’s the (very) abridged version…

- Bought a box at auction that I thought could be a toolchest; thought it might have been at one time.
- Totally dis-assembled the chest, repaired the dovetails and re-assembled.
- The bottom of the box was replaced
- Created top and bottom skirts, raised the chest with some framing as shown in Pic #3 above.
- Added wheels.
- Built a raised panel lid out of the old bottom boards
- Outfitted the the box with sliders for three tills, built those and a fourth vertical till based on an old chest diagram
- Added hardware in the form of ring pulls on the ‘three’ and recessed pulls on the saw till
- Stocked the chest with tools that should make it an effective repository and shop accessory.

More pics of the completed chest.

And the vertical saw till pulled out and set into the lid for access to a rip and crosscut saw. Also a small square.

I’ll be working it over re: contents for the next several months I’m sure, but it’s my intent to work out of the chest pretty seriously. That’s it, thanks for looking!

CONTENTS OF CHEST, As of 31 August 2015 (Rvsd 04 Apr 2016)

After some discussion on the RJ’s Tool Chests thread about a toolchest inventory, I decided it would be interesting to document what’s inside this beast. So I spent some time sitting in front of the chest and building a spreadsheet. Fortunately it pastes well into LJs.

So, here’s what’s inside. Feel free to comment at the end of this project post as you see fit, and thanks for looking!


Stanley PowerLock 16’
Stanley 10-079 Utility Knife
Stanley SW No. 4 Trammel Points
Lufkin “Extension Tape-Rule”, No. X686
7” Craftsman Combination Square
Goodell Pratt Birdcage Awl / Tool Handle
8-Pc Cornell Wrench Set, in Tool Roll
Stanley No. 65 Chamfer Shave
Marking Knife
Keen Kutter Alligator Wrench, “40”
Kraeuter 5” Needle Nose Pliers, “1041-5”
Rosewood Saw Wrest
Shapleigh Adjustable Pliers
Stanley 60 1/2 Block Plane
Lufkin 72” Folding Rule, Two Way, No. 966
Stanley No. 36 1/2 12” Two-Fold Rule
Stanley SW No. 63 2’ Four-Fold Rule
Misc. Card of Bits for MF No. 61A, Fuller Push Drill
7 oz Hammer
X – Stanley No. 40 1/4” Chisel
X – Nicholson 8” 4-in-1 Rasp
A – Keen Kutter 8” Half round rasp
8” Rabbet File, 4-sided, w/ Handle
5” Round, Coarse Rasp, w/ Handle
Rosewood Tool Handle
Stanley No. 117 Awl
X – Temp Tool Steel, USA 1” Tang Firmer Chisel
X – Lakeside 1/2” Socket Firmer Chisel
6-Pc Stanley No. 60 Chisels, in Tool Roll
3” Rosewood Gimlet
Parker Cut. Co. / Leopard 3” Blade, Folding Pocket Knife
Melenchalia Square
Fuller Push Drill
Nicholson 10” 4-in-1 Rasp


Stanley #92 Shoulder Plane, in Box
4” Phillips Screwdriver, “Phillips-Lic. 1”
Millers Falls No. 61A Push Drill, w/ LV Hex Adapter
(2) 7” Craftsman 5/32” Drawbore Pins
(3) Footprint Turn Screws
6” Draw Bore Pin / Hook (mystery)
Stanley #51 Spokeshave
P.S. & W. 1/2” Socket Sash Mortising Chisel
(2) Welliver Brass Framing Square Blocks
8” Oak Leaf Sliding Bevel Square
10” Stanley SW Sliding Bevel Square
15” Wrought Iron Panel Marking Gauge
Brass Mallet (LJ Jim Boatwright)
Stanley No. 90 Marking Gauge
Retracting Compass / Keyhole Saw
6” Stanleyu SW No. 39 1/2 Level
Stanley No. 58 6” Compass / Divider
Yankee (North Bros. Stanley) No. 41 Punch Drill w/ Bits
8” Diamond Edge Dividers
6” Miller Tool Dividers
Stanley No. 11 3/4 Punch
HP Tool Punch
8” Stanley SW No.12 Square
“375 New Britain” Offset Screwdriver


Shapleigh Bit Roll, DE
Craftsman “1071” Eggbeater Drill
Matchless No. 130 Pliers
Stanley No. 36G 12-In Level
Chinese Paddel Bits, Various Sizes
6” Stanley Sliding Bevel Square
Stanley #85 1/2 Panel Gauge
Craftsman Chalk Box
Oak Leaf 8” Brace, Rosewood
Dasco 328 Multitool – Nippers, Nail Claw, Screwdriver
Small (6”) Visegrips
4” Putty Knife
Stanley No. 49 Bit Depth Gauge / Stop
4” Brass Plumb Bob w/ String Roll
(2) Chips of Bee’s Wax
6” Fine, Extra Fine Oilstone w/ Wood Base
24” 2-Fold Spring Steel Rule, in Oil Cloth “Jordan Germany”


Stanley No. 50, w/ Box
Stanley SW Type 14 No. 5
Stanley No. 604 Bedrock Smoother
Diamond Edge No. 4 1/2 Smoother
Stanley No. 203 Block Plane
Irwin Mainbor “A” Set, 62T, 20 1/2 Qtrs
Stanley SW Type 14 No. 7
Paddle Bits, in Roll
8” Oil Stone w/ Base and Lid
X – 6” Simonds Rask, w/ Handle
A – Steelcraft Socket Chisels, 4-pack
50’ White Clad Lufkin HW223 Tape Measure
Nicholson 6” Flat Bastard File, w/ Handle
Toolmaker’s Rasp – TFWW
Stanley Gent’s Dovetail Saw, No. 68
(2) 25” Winding Sticks
Cincinnati Saw Co. (Geo. Bishop) Sash Saw, 16”
Cincinnati Saw Co. (Geo. Bishop) Backsaw, 12”
Cincinnati Saw Co. (Geo. Bishop) Backsaw, 10”


Handsaw, Disston D23 26” Rip
Handsaw, Diamond Edge No. DE134 26” Crosscut
Stanley No. 82 1/2 Panel Gauge
Standard T.D. 101 Framing Square
Disston No. 10B Coping Saw
12” Steel Framing Square


Handsaw, Summerfield Tablesaw SN: 0013, Hybid
Hammer, Crafstman
Folding Ruler, 72”, Lufkin Two-Way
Disston 18” Brass Bound No. 65 Level
5” Sanding Block
Bit Index, Craftsman
Screwdriver, Changeable Bit (ALUM)
Gloves, Nitrile
Block Plane, Sargent #118 Type (STEEL)

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

63 comments so far

View Airframer's profile


3043 posts in 1856 days

#1 posted 09-30-2013 02:46 AM

Very nice job as usual!

-- Eric - "I'm getting proficient with these hand jobbers. - BigRedKnothead"

View ShaneA's profile


6889 posts in 2501 days

#2 posted 09-30-2013 02:47 AM

Very nicely done. Can wheels be added? How many lbs would you guess equipped? Do you forsee the height being an issue? Still somewhat inquisitive about the tool chests I suppose.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15094 posts in 2521 days

#3 posted 09-30-2013 02:54 AM

Wheels installed, rolls around very easily.

My son and I lifted it last week, he guesses 100lb but that’s a WAG. Height an issue? I guess not with me, but then I’m in the minority as one that isn’t bothered by reaching down to adjust the pin of my leg vise’s parallel guide.


-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View theoldfart's profile


9409 posts in 2354 days

#4 posted 09-30-2013 02:58 AM

Smitty, you did a miracle. That chest will be in you family for generations and I predict you’ll like working out of it. Taking tools and putting them back become a ritual almost. I have yet to misplace tools since I started with mine. Again kudos my friend.

-- "With every tool obtained, there is another that is needed" DonW ( Kevin )

View WayneC's profile


13751 posts in 4000 days

#5 posted 09-30-2013 03:05 AM

It is a really great journey. I’ve found I like working out of mine as well.

-- We must guard our enthusiasm as we would our life - James Krenov

View Monte Pittman's profile

Monte Pittman

28147 posts in 2241 days

#6 posted 09-30-2013 03:13 AM

Really nice work

-- Mother Nature created it, I just assemble it.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15094 posts in 2521 days

#7 posted 09-30-2013 03:44 AM

The experience of others using chests is encouraging, thanks!

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View Jamie Speirs's profile

Jamie Speirs

4167 posts in 2760 days

#8 posted 09-30-2013 04:34 AM

Great end result enjoyed the process
Worthy of your tools


-- Who is the happiest of men? He who values the merits of others, and in their pleasure takes joy, even as though 'twere his own. --Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

View mafe's profile


11631 posts in 2992 days

#9 posted 09-30-2013 08:14 AM

Congrat on the finishing of this wonderful chest.
Full of life and most of all full of you now.
Ohhh yes and lovely tools. ;-)
May it serve you well for the years to come.
Best thoughts,

-- MAD F, the fanatical rhykenologist and vintage architect. Democraticwoodworking.

View BigRedKnothead's profile


8509 posts in 1885 days

#10 posted 09-30-2013 10:41 AM

More nostalgia. More awesomeness. Good stuff man.

-- "At the end of the day, try and make it beautiful....because the world is full of ugly." Konrad Sauer

View SamuelP's profile


793 posts in 2549 days

#11 posted 09-30-2013 10:46 AM

Glad to see it finished. Great job.

-- -Sam - FL- "A man who carries a cat by the tail learns somthing he can in no other way" -Mark Twain

View Don W's profile

Don W

18604 posts in 2471 days

#12 posted 09-30-2013 11:37 AM

Excellent rehab Smitty. You’ve got a well made vintage tool chest. A great addition to our shop.

-- - Collecting is an investment in the past, and the future.

View waho6o9's profile


8099 posts in 2480 days

#13 posted 09-30-2013 11:46 AM

A job well done Smitty, congrats.

View Smitty_Cabinetshop's profile


15094 posts in 2521 days

#14 posted 09-30-2013 12:11 PM

Thanks, gents. It was a very long journey indeed, glad to see it completed myself! :-) I’m surprised it turned out this nice, actually.

-- Don't anthropomorphize your handplanes. They hate it when you do that. -- OldTools Archive --

View yuridichesky's profile


624 posts in 1867 days

#15 posted 09-30-2013 12:38 PM

Great project, great result. The pull rings are really nice touch at the end. Congrats!

-- Yuri (10x4 -- yeah, that's my tiny shop!)

showing 1 through 15 of 63 comments

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