My $25 Dresser Tool Box

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Forum topic by bobasaurus posted 11-13-2010 08:16 AM 6163 views 0 times favorited 17 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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3626 posts in 3857 days

11-13-2010 08:16 AM

I purchased an old dresser for $25 from a garage sale about 6 months ago, and I finally thought of a good use for it… awesome tool storage for the shop/garage :). The finish on the top was peeling and nasty, so I scraped and sanded it off, then stained and finished (minwax stain, then a tung oil / poly mix) it to pseudo-match the rest. The drawers slide on weird rounded-dovetail sections, most of which needed sanding for smooth movement. Now I have a good space for my tools, unlike the plastic rolling drawer pos I had before.

Another shot (notice the chisel box I made, as well :)

Now to make the rest of my “shop” suck a little less. Next step is a proper workbench, I hope.

-- Allen, Colorado (Instagram @bobasaurus_woodworking)

17 replies so far

View KayBee's profile


1083 posts in 3920 days

#1 posted 11-13-2010 08:34 AM

Cleaver idea and cheap too. All that and looks good.

-- Karen - a little bit of stupid goes a long way

View scrappy's profile


3507 posts in 4104 days

#2 posted 11-13-2010 04:39 PM

I got one for $5.00

The only problem with it is, It is the ugliest pink I have ever seen. Good thing it is covered in saw dust. haha

They do make for great storage.

-- Scrap Wood's the best...the projects are smaller, and so is the mess!

View Beeguy's profile


179 posts in 4310 days

#3 posted 11-13-2010 05:05 PM

My shop is filled with old dresser type furniture. I also found a small desk along the roadside, in the middle of nowhere, and use it as the base for my 60+ year old lathe. With the exception of one piece, I would be willing to bet all of these units are older than middle aged me. My miter saw is mounted on a sideboard server, and my main workbench is large credenza. Yes they may have had some value if refinished/repaired, but to me they are worth a lot. I know where they came from and saved them from the trash. I even have an old metal kitchen sink unit (avacodo green). Got rid of the sink and replaced it with a top. My drill press is mounted to one side with drill bit storage just underneath in the silverware tray.

I know I can spend the time and money to build cabinets for the shop, but having these old relics around is kind of neat. Two of the wall cabinets were from my parent’s first kitchen, and were built by my dad. I also have a simple plywood shelf unit that my dad built to store canned goods in their basement. It sits on top of the sink unit and I put pegboard doors on the front. They all have memories. More than once I have actually referenced them for a drawer measurement or size comparison. I do better seeing object rather than just looking at demisions on a drawing.

The only problem is I tend to fill them with stuff I will probably never use. A pack rat’s heaven. I pity whomever has to go through all this after I am gone.

-- Ron, Kutztown, PA "The reward is in the journey."

View Beginningwoodworker's profile


13345 posts in 4346 days

#4 posted 11-13-2010 05:16 PM

Neat idea!

View swirt's profile


4911 posts in 3645 days

#5 posted 11-14-2010 04:11 AM

Clever use of an old dresser.

-- Galootish log blog,

View StumpyNubs's profile


7804 posts in 3474 days

#6 posted 11-23-2010 03:04 PM

Nobody can find a use for something everyone else would throw out like a woodworker! In time you can also modify it one drawer at a time to make it look less like an old dresser and add custom slots and holders for the tools!

-- Subscribe to "Stumpy Nubs Woodworking Journal"- One of the crafts' most unique publications:

View Dennisgrosen's profile


10880 posts in 3789 days

#7 posted 11-23-2010 03:22 PM

and think I passed one there was dubble as big four years ago before I started to
get interressting in woodworking :-( that wuold have been a great thing to have now
cep on hunting nothing is better and cheaper than recycling
take care

View helluvawreck's profile


32086 posts in 3540 days

#8 posted 11-23-2010 03:33 PM

Drawers always work well for storage. Good thinking.

-- helluvawreck aka Charles,

View lilredweldingrod's profile


2496 posts in 3780 days

#9 posted 12-06-2010 06:27 PM

Hey! Where’s the beer frig? Aren’t you getting the cart before the horse? lol Wax the bottom of the drawer slides and they will really glide smoothly. You can’t build that storage for $25.

View SnowyRiver's profile


51459 posts in 4154 days

#10 posted 12-07-2010 05:19 PM

Thats a nice idea. Although, that dresser looks better than the one I have in my bedroom :-)

-- Wayne - Plymouth MN

View CharlieM1958's profile


16285 posts in 4892 days

#11 posted 12-07-2010 05:35 PM

Nice save!

Two of my major pieces of shop furniture are a chest of drawers and a credenza, both of which were plucked from curb after hurricane Katrina. Each had taken just a couple inches of water at the bottom and were fine otherwise.

-- Charlie M. "Woodworking - patience = firewood"

View DeckApe's profile


9 posts in 2628 days

#12 posted 06-16-2013 03:47 PM

I cleaned out a retiring Doctor’s office. I was able to salvage 2 each metal swinging 2 door cabinets from each of 12 exam rooms (24 in total), 3- 4’X8’ patient Steel file shelves, these were all about 18 gauge steel. Plus about 6 small (24”) wood cabinets with Formica tops, and a dozen stainless steel wall hung trash receptacles. All for FREE! I’m still not done setting up the shop…. too many choices to pick from! :)

Keep track of your local businesses, they are glad to have someone come strip out the old stuff when renovating! Do it for the salvage rights, and no pay, you’ll get the job every time. It may cost you a trip to the landfill or dump with the trash but what the heck?

-- You're want to do what with WHAT? Now that is a good idea!

View coachmancuso's profile


259 posts in 2605 days

#13 posted 06-16-2013 06:55 PM

I have a dresser that my scroll saw and band saw sit on. It works good

-- Coach Mancuso

View Rick  Dennington's profile

Rick Dennington

6890 posts in 3868 days

#14 posted 06-16-2013 07:12 PM

Stellar idea…...stellar job…...A good tool chest is a must in a shop….I think you covered all the bases with this one…....Thanks for sharing…........

-- " There's a better way.....find it"...... Thomas Edison.

View bandit571's profile


24997 posts in 3357 days

#15 posted 06-16-2013 08:59 PM

Guess I will have to get busy

And make some shelves, or drawers

as these are getting full

Price? Found it IN the basement, when I moved in…

-- A Planer? I'M the planer, this is what I use

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