Parts Cabinet

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Project by visualj posted 08-08-2017 05:47 PM 2303 views 3 times favorited 2 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Here is my take on a couple of Roy Underhill’s projects. I wanted to make a parts bin similar to the one on his show, and when I saw the article by the Schwartz in Popular Woodworking, it gave me a few more clues.
I had some pine leftover from some project that was wide enough for the initial box. And some leftover car siding from the workshop walls for the back and drawers. So out came the thickness planer and most everything was finished to the correct thickness.

Over the course of the winter, I made the box and drawers. Then it sat for a while. Making 27 of anything can be a bit overwhelming. And I was not sure what I wanted to do for the handles. The ones I likes were $3.00 apiece. Times 27, that is $81.00. More than I spent on the wood by a long shot.

I put some French cleats on it and put it on the wall where it hung, mocking me. Sure, I put some items in the drawers, but I couldn’t fully close them, lest I not get them open again.

For the handles, I came up with the idea a milling them from a 1” X 1” stick of walnut. First, I got it to size. Then I put a 15 degree bevel on one corner. Putting a ½” dado set up on the table saw I ran a ½” x ½” groove in the bottom. Next I got out a ½” cove bit in the router and raised that to the height of the groove, giving a bit more room for my fingers. After all that, I put a little round over on the front lip. Then I cut off a 1 ½” chunk to see how it would work. Ended up not liking the way the back of the handle felt, I took a ¼” off of the bottom in the back. I proceeded to cut 14 handles off the blank that were 1 ¼” wide with a 10 degree bevel. And then I cut 7 that were 1” wide. Then I cut some extras, just in case. I gave them a coat of BLO before I screwed then to the drawers from the back.

One day, I was going through some old magazines, and out pops Roy’s article on his joiner’s tool chest. If you remember the article on his parts bin, it was originally a case for matches. Well, I thought that my parts bin ‘could’ have started out as a tool chest. So I added the skirt, and found some more pine for the ‘lid’.

Once I had the frame for the lid cut and fit, I found I had no more pine large enough for the inner panel. While digging around the stack of lumber, I remembered that I had some willow. Figuring that it would be light enough and large enough if I glued a couple of pieces together, I started digging for that. I found a piece that had a bit of spalting with a cool pattern. Hmm, I need a full ¾”, ahhh, there is the next board from the tree. And there is the matching grain. Perfect.

Before I hung the lid/door, I took the hinges and screws and put them in some muriatic acid to take off the plating, giving them a bit of and older look. I also gave the door panel a couple of coats shellac, and one coat on the rest.
The last thing I need to do is to get some marking on the drawers to label the contents.

2 comments so far

View JADobson's profile


1449 posts in 3573 days

#1 posted 08-08-2017 10:00 PM

Looks really good. I’ve got Schwarz’s article saved so I can build this one soon. You are correct about hardware prices. That $3 really adds up for each drawer.

-- No craft is very far from the line beyond which is magic. -- Lord Dunsany — Instagram @grailwoodworks

View helluvawreck's profile


32122 posts in 4328 days

#2 posted 08-09-2017 12:49 PM

This is a beautiful shop cabinet and is a great addition to your shop.

helluvawreck aka Charles

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

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