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What Does Your Dream Toolbox Look Like?

by RGtools
posted 04-12-2013 02:35 PM


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View Brandon's profile

Brandon

4145 posts in 1706 days


#1 posted 04-12-2013 03:26 PM

I’m looking forward to this thread, Ryan. I was actually thinking of starting a similar one myself, but didn’t get around to it, so I’m glad you did.

I love the traditional English tool chest and yours (that is yours in the photos, right?) is an excellent example. For my own situation, I’m working on a Dutch style tool chest, as you know, and have only been using it for about a week. So far I really love working from it. Before my tools were typically in another room and were a bit disorganized (like my thoughts). But now, having the tool chest, there’s a nice sense of satisfaction and permanence. Each tool has its spot, which also gives me more motivation for staying organized because when something isn’t put away, then something’s amiss.

I had considered building a wall cabinet since I’ve really liked a lot of the ones that I’ve seen on the site here, but I didn’t have a good, accessible spot on the wall. Here’s a wall cabinet posted here on LJ that I think is really sweet:

[Link]

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#2 posted 04-12-2013 03:56 PM

That’s funny Brandon, your Dutch Chest is what got me thinking about this so I am glad you are the first post. you did an awesome job parsing out the space for your tools by the way.

That is my-currently incomplete-English Chest. I am working on tills now:

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View BigRedKnothead's profile

BigRedKnothead

5852 posts in 737 days


#3 posted 04-12-2013 07:05 PM

I like most everything ol Schwarzy does, but he lost me with the tool chest. I can see why somebody who travels often with their tools, as he does, would want a chest. But i have no desire to cram em all in a chest, then bend over all day accessing them. That beings said, I have no beef with anybody who does like these chests. I like some different things, some of them I can’t tell you why.
Anyway, I’m kicking around a big till/bench combo. I want them all out for easy access. Kind of like this, but nicer looking. I’ve seen some nice setups in books but I can never find links to those pics.

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

View richardwootton's profile

richardwootton

1475 posts in 710 days


#4 posted 04-12-2013 07:41 PM

I haven’t built a tool chest yet, but I’m looking forward to gaining some inspiration from this thread.

-- Richard, Hot Springs, Ar -- Galoot In Training

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#5 posted 04-12-2013 07:49 PM

Something like this Red?

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View BigRedKnothead's profile

BigRedKnothead

5852 posts in 737 days


#6 posted 04-12-2013 08:36 PM

Jeepers, I’ve died went to LN heaven….lol. Man alive. Are those yours RG?

I’m still sorting it out. I’m going to mount it above a joinery bench, so I don’t want it to come off the wall so far. The longer planes may have to go on a shelf in the joinery bench below. But a til above for smaller planes, chisels, rasps etc. Thinking some white oak and walnut like my bench.

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

View JayT's profile

JayT

2636 posts in 966 days


#7 posted 04-12-2013 08:54 PM

I’ll take this one. Who's buying?

-- "My concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God's side, for God is always right." Abraham Lincoln

View Brandon's profile

Brandon

4145 posts in 1706 days


#8 posted 04-12-2013 08:58 PM

JayT, that Walnut wall cabinet is sweet!

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View JayT's profile

JayT

2636 posts in 966 days


#9 posted 04-12-2013 09:02 PM

Yes, Brandon, it is. <sigh> Too bad I will never own anything close to that. What is the dollar equivalent of 10k British Pounds, plus shipping and assorted taxes?

I plan to build a wall cabinet later this year, but it is going to be reclaimed clear pine from our kitchen demo and remodel. My shop is too small for a chest and also because it is small, there is nowhere more than a couple steps from the wall the cabinet will go on.

Here is another of my favorites that has been posted on LJ before

-- "My concern is not whether God is on our side; my greatest concern is to be on God's side, for God is always right." Abraham Lincoln

View Don W's profile

Don W

15584 posts in 1322 days


#10 posted 04-12-2013 09:38 PM

of all the floor chest, I think Brandon W’s is the best I’ve seen. I just can’t seem to figure a way to work a floor model into my style of working. (or playing as my wife calls it)

As for wall mounts, its hard to image a really nice wall cabinet making it to my shop. I change tools to often. I also go through spells were I use certain tools a lot, then they get shoved away for a while.

And luckily, I like it that way.

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

4518 posts in 1135 days


#11 posted 04-13-2013 02:29 AM

My idea was a version of the small Dutch chest on a rolling stand so I’m not stooping over and can easily move it out of the way. A wall cabinet is a swell idea but my walls are pretty crowded already.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#12 posted 04-13-2013 03:07 AM

Red I wish those were mine, but alas they are not. My collection is more of a hodgepodge of good vintage, solid new makes, and the occasional shop made tool. I just remembered the picture from the days that I was trying to figure out what type of storage I wanted.

Open storage is great, and for the money it is hard to beat a 2’x’4 piece of 3/4” plywood. Once you have that up you can start mounting a ton of tools to that in a hurry.

This is how I started:

Being able to see all those tools ready to go is a nice feeling and I have seen several shops where the toolbox is the shop…

Dan's shop comes to mind (sorry for the small picture, I could not get the big shot linked in)

So why did I opt for a tool-chest over this?

I’ll answer that tomorrow after I have dealt with my cat, who has decided to be a raging pain.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Moron's profile

Moron

4725 posts in 2648 days


#13 posted 04-13-2013 03:15 AM

an unabated source of wood

-- "Good artists borrow, great artists steal”…..Picasso

View balidoug's profile

balidoug

363 posts in 1233 days


#14 posted 04-13-2013 11:18 AM

Great forum idea, Ryan. I’ll get back to you in a few months.

-- From such crooked wood as that which man is made of, nothing straight can be fashioned. Immanuel Kant

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#15 posted 04-13-2013 03:25 PM

Moron, you have a gift for double entendre that never ceases to delight.

And yet again I get hauled off the computer before I can answer my self posed question.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View BigRedKnothead's profile

BigRedKnothead

5852 posts in 737 days


#16 posted 04-13-2013 08:56 PM

The toolbox IS the shop….I like that;-)

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

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#17 posted 04-13-2013 09:06 PM

The primary reason for opting for any style of enclosed space for a toolbox, was that I was buying better and better tools, and I wanted a better place to keep them safe. When you think about it a decent set of hand-tools is a considerable investment and leaving them out (at least in my case) leaves them prone to damage and rust.

This picture encapsulates the moment I decided I wanted a BOX of some sort for my tools.

But it was more than that, I wanted to be able to look at a box and say “everything I need to build what I want is in there”. I have more drawn out reasons for opting for the English Chest (though had I had any knowledge of it when I finally made up my mind, the dutch would have been a contender) but really those are practical reasons having to do with usable wall space VS floor space in my shop. The important part, was that at of the end of the day, my tools had a nice home of their own.

I just wish I was done with it.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Woodmaster1's profile

Woodmaster1

541 posts in 1342 days


#18 posted 04-13-2013 09:12 PM

I love the wall cabinets. Someday I will have to build one and get my tools out of tubs.

View TravisH's profile

TravisH

292 posts in 690 days


#19 posted 04-13-2013 09:37 PM

I definitely want to do wall cabinet soon. I have most things hung up on the wall but need something more devoted to planes, chisels, etc..

View Boatman53's profile

Boatman53

848 posts in 951 days


#20 posted 04-13-2013 09:46 PM

Still working on mine, but maybe can add some pictures here next week sometime.
Jim

-- Jim, Long Island, NY Ancorayachtservice.com home of the chain leg vise

View Airframer's profile

Airframer

2758 posts in 708 days


#21 posted 04-13-2013 09:50 PM

This thread cannot exist without a mention of the Studley… Yes.. eventually I would like to design soemthing like this for my tools. Might be a few years from now though lol…

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

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#22 posted 04-13-2013 11:19 PM

Here is mine that I’ve never completely finished. It needs more tool holders and I’m going to rip out the the shelves and put in a vertical till. It has outgown my hand plane collection.


The best part was being able to fire the old peg board. I made that decisoin after a sqare fell off and dented a table I was making.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#23 posted 04-14-2013 02:47 AM

Airframer The lack of Studley inthe original body of the post should be amended. I will correct now.

EDIT: Done. Studley is where he belongs.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#24 posted 04-14-2013 02:54 AM

Mauricio. I love the drawers on your cabinet. The sizing looks perfect for odd things like drill bits and whatnot. You are never quite done with a toolbox until you are done buying tools. For me that is another point for the English chest, the tools are not really pigeonholed anywhere, so it is easy to restructure.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#25 posted 04-14-2013 03:04 AM

Thanks Ryan. And, your right, efficent use of space is much easier in a tool chest.

I prefer wall cabinets to tool chest, mostly it works better for my shop situation, namely that big wall. But you really have to get creative with tool holders and internal doors to make sure your not wasting space. I think that is why the Studley chest seems so complex.

In a chest a lot of stuff can just sit in a box or a shelf which is much easier.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View terryR's profile

terryR

3523 posts in 1063 days


#26 posted 04-14-2013 01:12 PM

Ryan, awesome thread! Toolboxes are soooo important once you get past collecting cheap tools. Your tool chest has inspired me to make one…maybe. Still weighing the pros and cons of wall mounted vs. free standing. At the present, all my shop walls are steel, so a big honkimg free-standing toolchest near the bench is my dream.

Where’s DanK? Didn’t he post a sketchup model of a huge free standing lazy susan tool chest? THAT seems ideal for my shop…5 or 6 sides…tons of shelves and drawers…and it rotates, yeah right! :) But, if you are to dream, you may as well dream BIG…

-- tr ...see one, do one, teach one...

View Airframer's profile

Airframer

2758 posts in 708 days


#27 posted 04-14-2013 02:55 PM

I have been toying with the idea of making a free standing tool box but design it to stand in a similar fashion as a camping chuck box. It just seems like one of those could easily translate into a nice toolbox of some sort.

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

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#28 posted 04-14-2013 03:02 PM

TerryR, dreaming big is important. I think the argument (If you can call it that) between free standing VS wall mounted really does depend on your shop set up. It seems like nobody has both wall space and floor space (kind of odd if you think about that too long).

Airframer Camping Chuck Box? What mystery do you speak of?

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Dan Krager's profile

Dan Krager

1742 posts in 989 days


#29 posted 04-14-2013 03:12 PM

Yes I did post a tool box design in my blog here:
http://lumberjocks.com/DanKrager/blog/34568
I’m still dreaming about it, trying to decide what kind of “door” to put on it that won’t get in the way so much. I came across a “gull wing” door that looks real interesting. Trying to figure out how to work that into the Gerstner style framing.
No lazy susan here, just a cart with four swivel casters. A heavy susan could work though.

DanK

-- Dan Krager, Olney IL http://www.kragerwoodworking.weebly.com

View Airframer's profile

Airframer

2758 posts in 708 days


#30 posted 04-14-2013 03:12 PM

RG It is a portable kitchen in a box that has removable legs that typically store inside the box for ease of travel. I used one a lot when I was in the Boy Scouts a million years ago and it has stuck in my head as a possible tool box for a while now.

Here are a couple examples:

source: Two Patrol Boxes

And a couple LJ projects

Click for details

And

Click for details

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

View CL810's profile (online now)

CL810

2415 posts in 1743 days


#31 posted 04-14-2013 03:39 PM

I could use the thinking of this esteemed group. I’m currently planning to put a full width drawer in the tool chest I’m building. But I’m wondering if a drawer that is 3” high and 28” across is wise. Should I use two drawers instead?

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

View Dan Krager's profile

Dan Krager

1742 posts in 989 days


#32 posted 04-14-2013 03:50 PM

CL810, think of how much weight will be in the drawer, if not at first, then over time. You know how things continually get jammed in there until it barely closes. Unless the bottom of your drawer is 3/4” thick, then definitely two drawers or at least a stiffener rib in the middle. Even then I wouldn’t go less than 1/2” for the bottom. If you were to egg crate it with several ribs to which the bottom can be thoroughly secured (as in glued and screwed), then perhaps thinner might last.
DanK

-- Dan Krager, Olney IL http://www.kragerwoodworking.weebly.com

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#33 posted 04-14-2013 04:42 PM

CL810 I would also think about making the drawer more shallow. One deep drawer somewhere is good, but the rest of your storage should be shallow to discourage stacking tool on top of one another. Perhaps 3 drawers, on deep and two shallow would divide the space nicely.

Would this be accessible on the outside of the chest (presumably on the bottom)?

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View CL810's profile (online now)

CL810

2415 posts in 1743 days


#34 posted 04-14-2013 08:20 PM

Thanks for the comments!

DanK – I want a half inch thick bottom and I came to the same conclusion – that I needed a rib or two but I have never used a rib before and wasn’t sure that would reinforce it enough.

RG – Yes the drawer will be accessible from the outside on the bottom. With a half inch bottom board the effective depth of the drawer will be no more than 2.25”. I struggled with the dimensions for exactly the reasons you state.

I went with this size thinking if I ever need the deeper drawer it will be there vs needing it and it not being available. A pair of drawers above one wide drawer is very appealing…..

I think I better sleep on it some more.

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

View CL810's profile (online now)

CL810

2415 posts in 1743 days


#35 posted 04-14-2013 08:25 PM

Airframer – man oh man that takes me back to my days as a Scoutmaster! Chuck boxes are incredibly utilitarian.

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#36 posted 04-14-2013 09:03 PM

I wanted Tom Fidgen's toolchest for a VERY long time.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Rick M.'s profile

Rick M.

4518 posts in 1135 days


#37 posted 04-15-2013 03:50 AM

I’ve been thinking of either a 2 part door that when closed would be the top and front then fold up completely out of the way; or maybe a tambour door. Both have disadvantages though.

CL810, depends on what you want to put in the drawer. I don’t like them much except for small stuff and then I want the drawer shallow. They tend to collect “miscellaneous” and there is nothing worse than layers of crap piled inside a drawer.

-- http://thewoodknack.blogspot.com/

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#38 posted 04-15-2013 07:24 PM

This is a temporary fix, its not in a box either but with my new LN Saw I ran out of shelf space for my backsaws in my cabinet. I did buy some plywood for a future permanent fix though.

This reminds me, I need to flip the page on my HPOYD calendar.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#39 posted 04-15-2013 07:36 PM

That’s a good temp fix. I want to do something similar next to my bench once my chest is done. Something I can store chisels and various items temporarally while I am working.

How do you like the veritas Carcass saw in comparasin to the LN? I am trying to restore an old simonds now, but I think it might have given up the ghost and theat might work as a good backup plan.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#40 posted 04-15-2013 07:48 PM

I actually haven’t tried the DT saw yet. LOL.

I waited over a month to get it from Highland Woodworking after the LN Hand tool event, I’m trying to finish up a small project now and then I’ll find an excuse to use it. Maybe one of those bench boxes you talked about.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#41 posted 04-15-2013 08:28 PM

Oh I love my Veritas saws by the way, they work great. I personally dont find them ugly and they fit my had well.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View bondogaposis's profile

bondogaposis

2767 posts in 1106 days


#42 posted 04-16-2013 12:14 AM

I would split it, the wider the drawer the greater the tendency to bind in the opening. Ultimately it depends on what you want to put in it.

-- Bondo Gaposis

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#43 posted 04-18-2013 09:56 PM

OK that’s it. I have floundered back and forth since the beginging of my build.

Paint or not to paint? I can’t freaking decide to save my life.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

View theoldfart's profile

theoldfart

4782 posts in 1206 days


#44 posted 04-18-2013 10:03 PM

I thought we agreed no paint! Naked wood forever, ok maybe Danish oil

-- "Aged flatus, I heard that some one has already blown out your mortise." THE Surgeon ……………………………………. Kevin

View Don W's profile

Don W

15584 posts in 1322 days


#45 posted 04-18-2013 10:13 PM

You know how much I hate pant, but I think I’d make an exception. This may need to be painted.

Wait….who typed that?

-- Master hand plane hoarder. - http://timetestedtools.com

View Brandon's profile

Brandon

4145 posts in 1706 days


#46 posted 04-18-2013 10:21 PM

Nothing wrong with painting it, if that’s what you’re going for.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View Mauricio's profile

Mauricio

6904 posts in 1906 days


#47 posted 04-19-2013 12:36 AM

Its painted on the outside and unpainted on the inside, you get the best of both worlds.

-- Mauricio - Woodstock, GA - "Confusion is the Womb of Learning, with utter conviction being it's Tomb" Prof. T.O. Nitsch

View CL810's profile (online now)

CL810

2415 posts in 1743 days


#48 posted 04-19-2013 01:14 AM

It’s started but I”m out of town for a week.

-- "It's amazing how much can go wrong when you think you know what you're doing."

View Brandon's profile

Brandon

4145 posts in 1706 days


#49 posted 04-19-2013 01:30 AM

Nice Cl810. I’m interested in seeing yours come together.

-- "hold fast to that which is good"

View RGtools's profile

RGtools

3314 posts in 1409 days


#50 posted 04-19-2013 02:58 AM

Nice choice on going with dovetails as opposed to nails (though there is something very satisfying about driving a cut nail home….and getting a project done extremely fast).

The thing about the paint is I have decided to paint it and not to paint it about 15 times. On the one hand, the wood itself is so pretty, not that I selected it to be that way, it just turned out that way.

On the other hand, it’s a tool chest and it’s going to be abused to a certain extent, I like the idea of the paint wearing in certain spots. Also, it will help cover some of the things that would bother me if I left them as is in a natural piece. The interior of the chest is pretty flawless, but the trim would need a bit of finessing to be ready for a clear finish.

But the wood is so pretty.

Oh well, at least I have something to do while I make up my mind…again.

-- Make furniture that lasts as long as the tree - Ryan

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