Tool Chests

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Tool Chests, 1997-2014

I’ve worked out of a traditional floor chest since 1997 when I built my first cover project for Popular Woodworking Magazine. It’s not that I’ve always been monogamous, however. I’ve tried all manner of wall chests, tool racks, rolling cabinets, soft-sided bags and suitcases as ways to contain, protect and limit my tools. But...

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Details on the Dutch Tool Chests

You can now get plans for both Dutch tool chests – both the big one and the little one – in the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine, which recently shipped to subscribers. If you don’t have this issue, check it out in the store here. I’ve been traveling with these chests all...

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The Great Australian Tool Chest Experiment

I’ve been teaching classes on building “The Anarchist’s Tool Chest” for two years now, and with every class I find some way of goosing the students a bit further along. Last year at The Woodwright’s School we actually got two of the 12 students completely over the finish line. This week, I hope to...

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Screw this Anarchist’s Tool Chest Stuff

I’ve now built more than a dozen traditional tool chests entirely by hand. Hand-cut dovetails. Hand-cut mouldings. Hand-cut shiplaps and beads. Hand-cut blah blah blah. These chests take me about 40 to 50 hours of pedal-to-the-metal work to get ready for finish. Today, I built the entire shell and lid of a chest in...

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Some Upcoming Projects with Popular Woodworking

If a workbench or a tool chest is on your list of woodworking projects to build this year, you’ll definitely want to read on about two upcoming DVDs I’m working on with Popular Woodworking Magazine. In just a few weeks, we’re filming a DVD on building a traditional tool chest using a small set...

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Quick Review: Whitechapel Crab Lock

OK, so let’s say you are too cheap to purchase a blacksmith-made lock for your next tool chest or blanket chest. Wait, that wasn’t very kind of me to call you “cheap.” Instead, let’s put it this way: Let’s say your spouse just ran off with the village blacksmith, so you are looking for...

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How to Save Your Tool Chest and Your Tools from Water

While I think a tool chest is the best place to store your tools, the chest can also become a rusty tomb if you aren’t careful. Woodworking shops can be nasty places. I’ve worked in unheated garages, damp basements, former warehouses and sheds with dirt floors. And when I inspect old tool chests, it’s...

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Efficient Backsaw Storage in a Tool Chest

This weekend I finished work on a traveling version of my “Anarchist’s Tool Chest” that will fit in my hatchback and will carry (almost) a full set of tools. The last detail of the entire project was how to store the three backsaws that are essential to almost every kit: the tenon saw, carcase...

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Your Carcase is Not Square. Now What?

When you write for a woodworking magazine, there are several pat phrases that you use all the time. Such as: 1. Joint and plane all your stock flat and square. Cut all the pieces to the sizes shown in the cutting list. 2. Cut the tenons to match your mortises. (Or your mortises to...