Tool chest ? ....

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Project by fernandoindia posted 04-17-2011 11:56 PM 28849 views 91 times favorited 64 comments Add to Favorites Watch

The chest is made out of cedar, salvaged from an old corner cabinet disassembled 20 years ago when we moved to our current house. Fortunately I kept the lumber in the attic for all this time.

I have been researching for a tool chest since a couple of months ago. (I don´t know why surfing the web is now called research)

I finally decided for a chest similar in size to Gerstner 92XL , but I didn´t like the fact that upper drawers are partially hidden by the front rail of the chest. So I made the upper case copying from DocK16´s blog (Woodsmith 183)

PS: This short video shows the lid and drawer opening

Overall measurement of this tool chest (HxWxD)

Cm 47x60x33 ( 18.5” x 23.5” x 13”)

Top compartment cm 8 x 56 x 26 (3.125” x 22” x 10.25”)


(4) cm 4.9 x 9 x 27 (1.93”x 3.5” x 10.625”)

(6) cm 16.5 x 3 x 27 (6.5” x 1.2” x 10.625”)

(2) cm 16.5 x 3,5 x 27 (6.5” x 1.4” x 10.625”)

(2) cm 56.5 x 4.5 x 27 (22.25” x 1.75”x 10.625”)

(1) cm 56.5 x 6 x 27 (22.25”x 2.375” x 10.625”)

Total 15 drawers

Total empty weight : A lot. This type of tool box should be placed on a roller chest.

I started building this chest by beginning of March this year. So at the end it took me 6 weekends as average. A lot of distractions, besides daily work for a living, business trips, etc. Suddenly I was required to make and finish a couple of presents, such as the last chessboard . I still have one in progress.

Cutting the boards left quite a lot of scrap. Almost all the miter ends.

Meanwhile I saw Woodworker’s Journal video. Couldn´t resist to build my Tambour Box from the corners leftovers. A fun distraction indeed.

One of the toughest parts was planning the measurements, and the cuts. Despite I choose a nice curly cedar for the small drawer fronts. I needed to redo some of them, and lost the nice continous grain pattern. (It could be worse)

For the measurements, I picked up Gertsner measures, and made the carcass. Measures of the drawers were taken from the dry assembled case.

I include a style and rail horizontal drawer separator dadoing the sides of the carcase. I did also make 3 vertical separators for the small drawers.

Trying to get aligned the drawers as much as possible was also a challenge. Got to get things right in four dimensions. Length, width, depth, and grain pattern !! I almost forgot about that. Knowledgeable people only concentrate in grain and design. I need to concentrate in the basics, just to say to protect my fingers. (Still a long way to go)

Drawers are standard tongue and groove jointed, and lined up with green vinyl.

Lid is box jointed in the sides with a mitered inlay in the borders. Piano hinge and neumatic support.

I know, that piston has nothing to do with this stile. But I liked the way it worked. I may change it in the next one.

Hope you enjoy.

-- Back home. Fernando

64 comments so far

View jm82435's profile


1286 posts in 5237 days

#1 posted 04-18-2011 12:07 AM

Nce job. very nice chest.

-- A thing of beauty is a joy forever...

View a1Jim's profile


118334 posts in 5072 days

#2 posted 04-18-2011 12:08 AM

WOW that’s amazing fantastic tool Chest.


View dedalo's profile


173 posts in 4393 days

#3 posted 04-18-2011 12:24 AM

this is VERY GOOD, excellent job!!! I have one of this on my TODO list.

Believe it or not I want to build a version of this for “my son” legos (well, I play the legos too :D).

Does it have any locking device for the drawers? this size is not the carrying type…


View MShort's profile


1798 posts in 4914 days

#4 posted 04-18-2011 12:35 AM

That’s one GREAT looking tool chest.

-- Mike, Missouri --- “A positive life can not happen with a negative mind.” ---

View Woodenwizard's profile


1369 posts in 4538 days

#5 posted 04-18-2011 12:38 AM

Nicely Done! Always wanted to make one. Maybe someday.

-- John, Colorado's (Wooden Wizard)

View Matt 's profile


212 posts in 5245 days

#6 posted 04-18-2011 12:42 AM

Very nice! I got to make one.

-- Hold on! Let me get the board stretcher!

View blackcherry's profile


3351 posts in 5318 days

#7 posted 04-18-2011 01:06 AM

Most folks wouldn’t know how much labor goes into one of these cabinets. The season cedar makes this cabinet very antique looking but beautiful to say the least. Exceptional work on the draws, should functions for generation to come, hope you have a family member inline for this piece. Thanks for showing this wonderful cabinet, I bet it all fill with wonderful hand tool waiting for the next’s assignment…BC

View Chelios's profile


568 posts in 4561 days

#8 posted 04-18-2011 01:08 AM


This tool chest is inspiring. Woderful job!


View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 5168 days

#9 posted 04-18-2011 01:09 AM

Nice looking tool chest.

View JL7's profile


8793 posts in 4460 days

#10 posted 04-18-2011 01:09 AM

Wow Fernando – this is awesome! I can imagine it is alot of work to get all those doors aligned and working right. Like the raised panel in the back.

Now time to load it up with stuff.


-- Jeff .... Minnesota, USA

View tyka's profile


142 posts in 4188 days

#11 posted 04-18-2011 01:19 AM

Very nice tool chest Fernando. It will be nice to have all these drawers for your tools. I especially like the drawer joints and the color mix that makes them stand out. Congrats and tks for sharing.

-- Paul, Plantagenet, Ontario

View lew's profile


13547 posts in 5251 days

#12 posted 04-18-2011 01:30 AM

Gorgeous tool chest, Fernando!

What a wonderful tribute to the salvaged wood.


-- Lew- Time traveler. Purveyor of the Universe's finest custom rolling pins.

View fernandoindia's profile


1081 posts in 4439 days

#13 posted 04-18-2011 01:35 AM

Thank you for your comments. It mean a lot to me.

@JM82435, Your chest is superb. Have you already lined your drawers ?

@Jim, thank you, glad you like it

Dedalo Rodrigo, a Lego like box seems great. The only way to lock the drawers is by closing the lid and the front cover., as in photo # 5.

@ Mike Thank you.

@WoodenWizard & @Matt Thank you both. I´ll tell you: Keep saying I have to do that, at all times, even repeating in the morning before and after breakfast. At some time your wives will beg you to start the building your chest.

-- Back home. Fernando

View Ken90712's profile


18123 posts in 4684 days

#14 posted 04-18-2011 01:42 AM

Well done , a tool box to enjoy for years! Great color and one to be proud of.

-- Ken, "Everyday above ground is a good day!"

View devann's profile


2260 posts in 4188 days

#15 posted 04-18-2011 01:50 AM

A very nice tool chest. Most inspiring, something that stays in the shop and looks good doing it. You should be smiling everytime you open it for years to come.

-- Darrell, making more sawdust than I know what to do with

showing 1 through 15 of 64 comments

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