Sunday, July 8, 2018

updating shop handtool storage

after spending time in curtis buchanan's workshop for a full week and understanding how pleasant work can be when the tools are logically arranged and easy to reach, i set forth to rethink how i store mine.

Here is the plan, a chest of drawers that fits between the metal frame of an upcycled desk that i've had in the shop since the beginning.

Here you see the metal frame'ed desk with an improvised table top on the right. An old, quickly thrown together 3 drawer arrangement on the left used to occupy the space between the desk legs. It has always felt kind of janky.

what makes this desk successful in my shop is the sturdy caster enabled hooves on the base, abling one to tow the table with one hand to wherever it is needed in the shop. work flows much better when the tool you need is within arm's reach as opposed to hanging on the wall around the bench and out of reach.

the construction is mostly CasaDespair pine, and i spend a while picking through the stacks to find some nice enough material that I milled down to 5/8" and then jointed into panels that will divide the chest into 3 equidistant tiers.
I left the stretchers at 3/4" and cut dadoes on the interior walls, while applying dovetails to the outside joints. it feels pretty sturdy even though it's pretty light.
I am trying a drawer construction technique that is new to me. it's simply rabbets that are glued up and then pinned with wooden pegs. For the upper drawers, i milled a 3/4" wide and 1/4" deep groove on the sides with a dado stack. these will ride on rails that i will skrew into the interior sides of the chest. The drawer sides are made of offcuts of ash that my contractor friend let me have from a project. it's very tough wood but it mills nicely.

The bottom drawers will run on metal slides that i had 3 extras from an earlier project. this makes sense because the drawers will hold my heavier bench planes, etc.

I layed out the drawer heights based on my existing tools, and how they group naturally in my workflow. there's also room for more tools, but not much, and i really dont have much need for more tools right now.
I had originally thought to put glue storage in this chest as well, but i opted out since the jugs are too large a format to make space for in this place. best to store this somewhere else.

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