September 24, 2017

Making Every Inch Count

In my small shop, around 560sqft, every inch of space counts. I have been using the tool chest that Chris Schwartz designed for about 3 years now. It was a 2 day build, quick and dirty. It was only supposed to get me though a couple of months until I could build his anarchist tool chest. Now that I have some time to build a new one, I’m thinking of building something that goes under my bench. It’s space that I don’t use, other than as a dumping ground for stuff.   

I’m working through the design process now, and still have some decisions to make. The cabinet will be roughly 46”W x 21 ½”D x 14 ½ – 20”H. The range in the height depends on how much room I want to give to my hold fasts. The less room I give for the hold fasts, the more I will have to prop up workpieces so the hold fast can lock down, but the more storage I will have in the cabinet.

It will have two large drawers to hold planes and other sundries and a set of pull out trays behind a door. The trays will be to hold chisels, rasps, and bobs & bits that I would like to pull out and have them in a safe place on the bench. I hate having my chisels just laying on the bench. I knocked one off and it took hours to get it back in working order after a chunk was taken out of it from hitting the floor.

The wood will be maple for everything but the drawer fronts and the door panel, which will be walnut. The bench is maple and walnut, so this will go nicely together. The trays may be walnut too but I haven’t decided on that yet. Hardware will be from Horton Brasses this time. They’re a local for me. 

I have the design mostly worked out and am thinking this week will be working in SketchUp to work out all the measurements. I’ll also finish another cabinet that was set aside for a couple of months, that now needs to be finished (sorry, dear). It’s nothing special, just a quick wall hanging cabinet for the kids’ bathroom. If I don’t get it done quickly, she might end up wanting me to redo the whole bathroom. Quick to the shop, Batman!

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