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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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The Dutch Campaign Tool Chest

This week, I built a lower cabinet for my small Dutch tool chest, a project featured in the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine. The unit I just built sits below the tool chest proper and does a few nice things. 1. It gives me extra space for tooling and hardware that I...

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Dutch Tool Chest with a Lower Storage Unit

The Dutch Tool Chest from the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine has proven to be a popular project – I’ve been asked to teach classes on building this chest all over the world this year. In that article, I provide plans for building two versions of the chest. The small chest has...

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Others Building the Dutch Tool Chest

If you are thinking about building the Dutch Tool Chest from the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine, you aren’t alone. I’ve heard from dozens of other woodworkers who see it as a simple, fast and efficient way to store your hand tools (and make them portable). I’ve been using my Dutch chest...

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Getting Too Close to the Studley Tool Chest

Photographer Narayan Nayar shot me a look of disdain – perhaps the first time I’ve ever been on the receiving end of that particular facial contortion. “I just can’t believe you guys are being such babies,” he said. Narayan was right. Don Williams and I were balking at what seemed a simple request: Move...

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Finish for the Inside of a Tool Chest

With the plans for the Dutch Tool Chest in the October 2013 issue of Popular Woodworking Magazine now out, several readers have been asking about how they should finish the inside surfaces of the chest. Here’s the short answer: Don’t. Many of the vintage tool chests that I have encountered have just bare wood...

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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 Traitor’s Tool Chest’ Now Available on DVD

When I first mentioned the topic of my latest DVD, my e-mail inbox filled up with messages such as: “This project is beneath you. Beneath all of us. You traitor.” And that’s the G-rated version. The DVD, “A Traditional Tool Chest in Two Days,” takes a home-center approach to building an 18th-century-style tool chest...

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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...