Choice of wood for bottom of toolbox

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Forum topic by siavosh posted 01-29-2014 07:02 AM 973 views 0 times favorited 7 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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674 posts in 1291 days

01-29-2014 07:02 AM

I need to find a wood species for the bottom of my mobile toolbox (approx. 11”x30”). I prefer not to use plywood, but want something very durable and light weight since I’ll be carrying it around a lot (car, class, home etc) Any recommendations? Price and workeability with hand and ability to handle some nails/drilling a plus. Thanks.

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7 replies so far

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Rick M.

7699 posts in 1800 days

#1 posted 01-29-2014 08:52 AM

Cherry, ash, red cedar


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1062 posts in 2986 days

#2 posted 01-29-2014 09:14 AM

You could always put some veneer on the ply – all the benefits of ply, without the look of ply?

-- "Do not speak – unless it improves on silence." --- "Following the rules and protecting the regulations is binding oneself without rope."

View crank49's profile


3979 posts in 2391 days

#3 posted 01-29-2014 01:43 PM

Black Gum. Virtually indestructible with its interwoven grain. Will not split.

-- Michael: Hillary has a long list of accomplishments, though most DAs would refer to them as felonies.

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7935 posts in 1871 days

#4 posted 01-29-2014 02:16 PM

Mine, on an ATC, is made of t&g pine, fastened with cut nails. Light weight, durable enough. I’m making a small traveling dutch chest with Chris Schwarz this summer and it will also have a pine bottom. Trick is to have a couple of battens on the bottom, like skids.

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

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3261 posts in 1107 days

#5 posted 01-29-2014 02:45 PM

The bottom in my nearly 100 year old tool box is yellow poplar. Light and has withstood the test of time.

-- Bob, Missoula, MT -- Rocky Mountain Saw Works

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674 posts in 1291 days

#6 posted 01-29-2014 06:13 PM

Thanks for all the suggestions everyone. Will hit the lumberyard this weekend, and hopefully find the right piece.

-- -- Discover the most interesting woodworking blogs from around the world

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878 posts in 2237 days

#7 posted 01-29-2014 08:43 PM

Just about any commercially available species should work for this, I’d think. Harder woods won’t mark up as much but (come on) it’s the bottom of a tool chest. White pine is plenty strong and can be found in plenty of historical examples of tool chests large and small. Just this morning I watched an old Roy Underhill video where he makes his classic tool tote out of yellow pine, which’d be a bit stronger than white pine.

-- Jeremy, in the Acadian forests

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