Screwdrivers for Christmas

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Project by HokieKen posted 01-04-2019 09:33 PM 2343 views 2 times favorited 22 comments Add to Favorites Watch

For Christmas, we draw names with my siblings and their spouses rather than trading gifts all around. This year, I drew my brother so was glad to have to the chance to make him something useful. I was also glad to have the opportunity to make another set of screwdrivers using the Grace USA shanks :-)

I had made 2 sets of these drivers previously. One set for ToddJB in a toolswap and another set for my FIL one Father’s Day. I posted a survey for which handle design and whether solid wood or laminated blanks appealed to more people in the current swap thread. The consensus was the design I used for the swap set and solid wood handles. So away I went!

Handles were turned on 3 axes to obtain the ovular-ish shape that seems more comfortable than a round handle and won’t roll off the bench. The profiles from the front and the side can be seen on the drivers in the 4th project picture. I chose some Walnut I harvested from a neighbor’s yard a couple of years ago and some spalted Maple I got locally in the spring. Walnut for the flat blades and Maple for the Phillips drivers.

I used some Cherry stock to make a box to house the drivers and some curly Maple my buddy GrantA sent me for the lid and bottom of the box. It’s a simple box with box joints on the corners and a sliding lid. I’ve come to the conclusion that hinged boxes aren’t ideal for tools. It seems like the raised lid is always in the way when I’m trying to access what’s inside. So, from now on, any boxes I make for the shop or for tools for other people will likely be like this or a Japanese tool box style like I used for the last swap.

For some reason, I thought the box needed to be much bigger than it did. So, I added a small compartment on the side for screws or a bit driver and bits or whatever he wants. Or, if he wants to use the box for something else entirely, the divider pieces are just wedged in place and can be easily removed. I used Tru-Oil on the Walnut driver handles, a couple coats of BLO and a coat of wipe-on poly on the Maple handles and 3 coats of BLO on the box. The medallion with my maker’s mark was engraved on my small laser on a piece of Cherry and inlaid into the lid.

My Mom will be delivering our Christmas gifts in a couple of weeks when she visits my brother and his family in Ohio. So I don’t know what he thinks yet but I’m sure he’ll like the set. At a minimum, the driver shanks are superbly designed and made so he’s a winner either way ;-)

Comments and questions welcome as always!

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

22 comments so far

View Dave Polaschek's profile (online now)

Dave Polaschek

10492 posts in 2075 days

#1 posted 01-04-2019 09:57 PM

Nicely done, Kenny. I agree that sliding lid boxes are better for tools. Except maybe for cabinets that are meant to hang on the wall. Beautiful result!

-- Dave - Santa Fe

View woodcox's profile


2386 posts in 3504 days

#2 posted 01-04-2019 11:03 PM

Nice work, Kenny. The medallion looks great.

-- "My god has more wood than your god" ... G. Carlin.

View Combo Prof's profile

Combo Prof

4950 posts in 2770 days

#3 posted 01-04-2019 11:06 PM

Good work, Kenny.

-- Don K, (Holland, Michigan)

View rtbrmb's profile


915 posts in 3881 days

#4 posted 01-04-2019 11:14 PM

All of your screwdriver sets turned out awesome-great gifts.

A good inspiration-I have wanted to make a set for quite a while now.

Thanks for posting.

Bill in MI

View jeffswildwood's profile


5159 posts in 3470 days

#5 posted 01-05-2019 12:52 AM

Very nice Ken. Your choice of woods is just right. That spalted maple is so nice to look at. Great design for the handles. I do like the box, but for tools we differ, I like the hinged lids. Great job buddy!

-- We all make mistakes, the trick is to fix it in a way that says "I meant to do that".

View EarlS's profile


5609 posts in 3840 days

#6 posted 01-05-2019 01:07 AM

That maple lid really finishes off the box and screwdrivers. I haven’t tried mixing cherry with maple but this looks good enough I need to try it. Awesome gift that anyone would be happy to receive (at least on LJ).

-- Earl "I'm a pessamist - generally that increases the chance that things will turn out better than expected"

View JayT's profile


6460 posts in 3704 days

#7 posted 01-05-2019 01:17 AM

Clean, classy, stylish.

Hard to believe they were made by someone from Va Tech. :-)

Nice work, Kenny.

-- - In theory, there is no difference between theory and practice. In practice, there is.

View GR8HUNTER's profile


9693 posts in 2205 days

#8 posted 01-05-2019 01:28 AM

classic set of beautiful drivers and that case WOW incredible wish I was your brother getting that set GREAT JOB :<)) GRATZ TOP 3

-- Tony---- Reinholds,Pa.------ REMEMBER TO ALWAYS HAVE FUN :<))

View duckmilk's profile


5203 posts in 2817 days

#9 posted 01-05-2019 01:42 AM

You do good work ol’ boy. Very nice set!

-- "Duck and Bob would be out doin some farming with funny hats on." chrisstef

View JohnMcClure's profile


1501 posts in 2133 days

#10 posted 01-05-2019 01:50 AM

Awesome job!

-- I'd rather be a hammer than a nail

View HokieKen's profile


22003 posts in 2631 days

#11 posted 01-05-2019 03:22 AM

Thanks guys :-)) Screwdrivers are always fun to make.

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

View Andre's profile


5292 posts in 3298 days

#12 posted 01-05-2019 06:10 AM

Real nice but what about the best driver. A Robertson?

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

View Redoak49's profile


5620 posts in 3481 days

#13 posted 01-05-2019 11:41 AM

Great screwdrivers and excellent box. Could you post a picture of the handle end of the screwdrivers to show the shape you turned. I would also like to better understand how you turned on three axis. I do some turning but not familiar with how you did this.

I made a couple of sets of screwdrivers with the Grace shank purchase and they were great. Just wish there was another group buy.

View HokieKen's profile


22003 posts in 2631 days

#14 posted 01-05-2019 06:19 PM

Sorry Redoak, they’re already packaged up and giftwrapped so I can’t get any more pics. If I remember, I’ll see if my brother will send me a couple after he opens it. Look for Youtube vids on eccentric or multi-axis turning. It’s one of those things I have to show, can’t really explain.

Andre, the sets I bought from Grace for gifts were just this 6 piece set. I do have a set of Robertson drivers stashed away for my personal set though ;-)

-- I collect hobbies. There is no sense in limiting yourself (Don W) - - - - - - - - Kenny in SW VA

View Andre's profile


5292 posts in 3298 days

#15 posted 01-05-2019 07:34 PM

Redoak49- I was sent this recently as an explanation of offset turning, my light bulb lite up!

-- Lifting one end of the plank.

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