job-site toolbox

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Project by gusthehonky posted 09-01-2008 08:33 AM 2243 views 1 time favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

A far cry from the finely made tool chests often featured here, this carpenters toolbox is built tough to withstand the abuse caused from daily use on job sites and storage in a work van. 3/4 sides, 1/2 top/bottom, o.d. 25×10x10, salvaged/scrap oak and maple cabinet grade ply.

A request from a GC friend who renovates/restores lower budgeted homes/apts. He is now my largest source for side work repairing/reproducing door, cabinets, trims, and moldings. I have built numerous styles of tool chests for myself, friends and customers over the years, the study of construction and history of these is a source of intrigue/enjoyment for me as a hobby.

Because of the increasing number of jobs he has been giving me, this one was built with better materials and methods than I usually would usually use for a daily job/van box. Rather than construction grade ply, cabinet grade was used. Edges were rabbeted, glued, and screws countersunk and plugged. Because the ply was scrap and salvaged from job work there were some flaws/scratches or dents. Luckily due to its intended use, these are concealed by my attempts at a distressed finish. The interior tills are supported by lengthwise runners, I let the owner pick size and material. This one has a three space tool bin angled and mitered, allowing increasing bin size, and shaped like a T, his initial. The smaller is for fastener/hardware storage. He requested no saw/level/square holders on the inside of the lid, instead preferring it to act a a shelf for tills, allowing full access to lower area. Hopefully this is not too poor an example of woodworking, the pictures were taken with the camera on my laptop, lighting and focal distance resulted with poor quality photos-my apologies.

-- Ciao, gth.

8 comments so far

View Callum Kendall's profile

Callum Kendall

1918 posts in 3730 days

#1 posted 09-01-2008 11:54 AM

Nice tool box!

Thanks for the post


-- For wood working podcasts with a twist check out

View Bigbuck's profile


1347 posts in 3690 days

#2 posted 09-01-2008 05:40 PM

Nice toolbox, that should do the job.

-- Glenn, New Mexico

View woodworm's profile


14468 posts in 3617 days

#3 posted 09-01-2008 06:47 PM

Very nice tool box.
Just as a point of discussion : isn’t it a good idea to put 2 carrying handles at the side of the box rather than one on the box lid?
This way we don’t have to worry to organise the tools evenly according to their weights to avoid uncomfortable carrying.
Thanks for sahring.

-- masrol, kuala lumpur, MY.

View SCOTSMAN's profile


5849 posts in 3612 days

#4 posted 09-01-2008 07:05 PM

Every woodworker needs a tool box if you carry yours around from place to place then you should surely make one (like you did) to be proud of .it let’s customers see right away that you know what your doing.well done Alistair

-- excuse my typing as I have a form of parkinsons disease

View gusthehonky's profile


130 posts in 3769 days

#5 posted 09-01-2008 07:48 PM

Thanks for the kind comments on such a simple project.

Woodworm-yes, handles on the side make perfect sense, if someone wants them I’ll be glad to add them, however for the more basic boxes like the above I try to not encourage them, they are more suited for the nicer chests that usually are for shop use or for storage of specialty tools and are usually only handled only by the owner. The basic ones like above tend to really take a beating, often carried to and from the work area from the van by the lowest ranking helper, often a clean up man. With side handles one is often used rather than both, so after being lumped around the box ends up in total disarray. Sliding tills only will make this worse, often resulting with finer and smaller tools (chisels, nailsets, etc.) in tills mixed up and banging against hammers, flatbars etc. This has just been based on my experience.

-- Ciao, gth.

View trice's profile


34 posts in 3582 days

#6 posted 09-02-2008 12:32 AM

I like it. Looks very handy.

View Dean's profile


44 posts in 3603 days

#7 posted 09-02-2008 06:04 AM

Looks like a practical project. My grandfather introduced me to woodworking, this is something he would have made.
Thanks for sharing!

-- "Skol, Vikings"

View corey cyr's profile

corey cyr

44 posts in 3692 days

#8 posted 09-03-2008 04:26 AM

nice tool-box, i always think its best to make a toolbox out of a decent hardwood. Good job.

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