Thursday, 8 May 2014

New tool Cabinet

Stage 1 Carcass assemble.  Completed
Stage 2 27/10/2010 MDF drawer  spacer and Metal drawer slides. Completed
Stage 3 1/11/2010 securing framing to carcass. Completed
Stage 4 1/11/2010 adjustable feet.  (to be modified)
Stage 5 7/11/2010 carcass prep , sanding sealer and 1st coat  polish. Completed

Stage 6 Coming Soon. Drawer construction.

I've been planing these tool cabinets now for a long time.

Please bear in mind these cabinets are middle of the road , all ply wood which will be glued and screwed, ain't no posh job like others before me ,These are aimed at what most I hope should be able to cope with skill wise , and cost has been borne in mind as well .

This is the first of two different cabinets, this one is the first ,(the other to follow as and when) This one will house my numerous hand tool I have accumulated throughout my working life.

Size wise most of you will find this one quite large , it has to house all my hand tools not just my joinery tools but also my electrical, plumbing mechanical and decoration + my general building tools .

It will be built as one unit but designed with three differing sections .

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DIMENSIONS D=600mm * W=1200mm * H=err um ? I've forgotten I'll check on that and get back to you all , sorry .


this will be a full width drawer of various depths yet to be decided , some will have sliding drawers/trays internally .


this is to house my many battery drills + chargers.


This is solely for all my Joinery tools which is still expanding hence why I have chosen the size I have to allow for future expansion of tools that I still have planned .

The design is continually being altered as I go along , the upper section depth wise is considerable deeper that most wall hung cabinets , as mine is an all in one floor standing unit this will not cause me any concern weight wise, I still have a few thoughts/concerns about the upper doors design which I'll get solved before much longer . So hear goes .

first photo show template tacked on and router used to cut shape of side panels
cutting out toe space in main base section

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ply shelving cut and sanded up awaiting assembly

cleaned up housing and chopped square at end

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both ends completed awaiting assembly

showing assembled lower half

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again showing assembled upper half

back tacked on and cutting to length

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Assembled and stood up for the first time

just a little clean up in the corner where the router can't go

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OK now you have seen the size of it , that's the basic shell put together , a little clean up in the corners but not a lot, now I have to source some oak timber for a framework to go on the front edge to form the framework on the carcase.

Euro oak purchase from Yandles last week nice timber , moisture meter arrive a few day later from Hong Kong had a few days play with it just to get the hang of things, So this morning decided to start rough cutting frame work to go on the front of cabinet which will be glued with biscuits as well to secure them , First re-planed face side and also one edge as well . Now it was time to use my Axminster SBW 4300 band-saw for the first time , hm (nice like slicing butter, )(love it when a plan starts to come together ) really happy with it . all face frames are now rough cut and stacked with spacer to allow some more moisture reduction .


I'll leave the timber now for a few week, and start the adjustable legs section to go under plinth hc. stay tuned guys loads more to come.

Stage 2 Drawer spacers and metal drawer slides. 27/10/2010

First I cut and prepared  the spacer from 25mm * 75mm MDF  these were simply screwed and glued  using PVA  glue  and 6  by 4.0 * 35mm screws to each Mdf spacer.  I decide to use  600mm black metal drawer runner, primarily  because I already had these, they had been bought several years previously from an auction, cheap from memory just over £5 for the lot, 600mm runners 22 in number,  secondly because  I wanted the drawers to pull out to there full depth, these will support  I believe somewhere in the region of 100 Lbs weight  per runner.

 Photo showing  Mdf  spacers and metal drawer runner  glue and being screwed.

The base unit  to the  tool cabinet will house three drawers
1. 150mm . Hand planes
1. 225mm Sliding tool trays (variouse)
1. 300mm Power tools

Stage 3 1/11/2010 securing framing to carcass

I have fitted a  framework to the plywood edging of the carcass which is glued with biscuits they  were used to give it extra holding capability to allow for the extra depth of  doors still to be made and fitted later, hopefully enough to allow for the weight of the doors and tools to be hung in them.

As can be seen in the last photo in stage 1 the framing was rough cut back late last year,   It shows it stacked with spacers and stored to be able to season and dry a little more over the summer months, when purchased from Yandles the moisture content was  12.5  now a recent reading shows 9.5. First job will be to  re-machine it to finished sizes  and remove any warping, then machine to  finished, framing is
45mm *  20mm European oak , next mark out and cut all biscuit slot  glue each surface   place into position  and cramp  wipe away any surplus pva.

Here  in these photos  it shows  framing  glued  and cramped to right and left side of  the base carcass.

Here these photos show cramps holding edging to upper section on cabinet.

Stage 4  adjustable feet.
These were bought cheaply from e bay, they are adjustable  kitchen cabinet leg made by IKEA all aluminium . I bought four extra long  bolts with furniture  locking nuts  these work as you tighten the bolt down the spikes dig into the wood  and lock the nuts.

I place one nut either side on the plywood and tighten  them first  till both the nuts were embedded into the plywood, with the thread protruding through the bottom of the cabinet  I then hand screw the leg barrel onto the  the  thread till it tightened  securely. Now the legs are secure  thread in from the bottom end of the leg the adjustable foot  and adjust to required height.

Stage 5  sanding sealer and polish.

This has taken some time to  get to this stage, I have applied two coats of Mylands  Sanding sealer rub down between each coat and also today applied the first coat of Mylands pale polish, which I will leave now for a week to harden and rub down later  before I apply the final polish coat later in the construction.

Next to come will be the drawer construction, but before that I need to make some alteration to my table saw to add  cross cutting facilities to assist in the drawer stock preparations, this will be shown in another  thread here on my website.

Here is shown  to the left  old tool box and new tool cabinet with edging all fitted  and  polish still drying  with drawer runner fully extended.

 On the right the upper wall section and middle section to house all the batteries and battery drills etc  yet still to have the  doors made and fitted .

Upper wall section which will probable   house all my chisel etc , that's still to be decided .

Stage 6  Drawer construction .
Right here we are again its been nearly nine months since  I last worked  in the workshop back at the beginning of last October , I haven't been able  to spend   much time in the workshop as it had to take second place in my life, delayed by an operation on my liver cyst which failed  then my wife's breast cancer  scare false alarm  (thank god) and then sadly the death of her mother Lilian  in late may this year and the disposal of her belongings & home, now the pressure is easing off a good time to get back into the workshop and restart this thread so hear  goes.

The drawer are constructed from 18mm Chinese ply, after using it's OK it did the job but it wasn't a good choice of ply the face veneer is far to thin to be able  to work properly. the slightest mistake and your through the face layer . apart from a couple of dummy runs  I did these are the first full set of dovetails I have cut in seventeen years  since leaving the joiners shop.

Shown left  all dovetails cut by hand.   Middle all cut .  Right middle drawer assembled and fitted.

left view into middle drawer.  Middle all fitted. Right  a temporary play moving planes around .

Top drawer will house all my present planes and has to find room for a few infill planes  the first  carcass can be seen in the  above pics, middle drawer to have built in sliding trays to house many of my other tools. Bottom drawer to  accommodate all my power tools.

Tomorrow make a few adjustments to one of the drawer runners one seem s to stick  when not quite  fully open on one end only for some strange reason, Then add an oak strip across centre of top drawer to lift end of planes up off the bottom of drawer at one end. add some temporary handle.  then for the rest of the day play with a design for the saw till, next step will be  (drawer fronts).

Back in the workshop today,  moved the planes around a bit, then  move a bit more  tweaked it here and there to get a little closer added an uplift strip diagonally across base of drawer to raise the front end of the planes  by doing all this it gave me enough room to add my saw till as seen below.

I have one week left  before I take my  wife away  on a long  over due holiday , so  think I'll leave the  Oak machining  for the  drawer fronts till I get back . Stay tuned.

No 2  Drawer Tool  Trays.

Well shame on me it's been  since late October 2010 since I did any work at all on my tool cabinet.

Now after  many of my projects are beginning to get completed after my operation which took nearly a year out of my life and work schedule, Now back working at home slowly  I have managed the refurbishment of two of the four vices  for my work bench the complete refurbishment of a Startrite Mercury bench drill  which has been completed  from a heap of scrap which I  bought from e bay for £50  it was a very successfully rebuild and is now a fully working variable speed  bench drill  for use in the dirty end of my shop  for metal work only.

I also installed a brand new radial pillar drill from axminster only for woodworking  I don't want the the two mixed. plus things like the  assemble of a new Osborne EB3  mitre guide

As can be seen from the  photos above,  I had the three drawers made that was a far as I got. I intend to fit as many tool tray into the bottom two drawers only for now,  at least, till  my  bench is made  which will house  all of my many hand  planes and power tools  then I will add more trays to the top drawer.

Last  week  I paid a visit to Yandles in Somerset and came away with some lovely 12mm and 6mm ply  one full 12mm sheet which they cut in half and one half sheet of 6mm  all fitted nicely into the back of the Zafira.

First I cut and fitted the tools tray runners, followed by the materials for the trays and there  bottoms ply. then thought about the tray joint  construction do I go to all the extra work of cutting dovetails simple answer no. The tool trays in my old tool  box I used a half housing  joint  way back in 1972 there still stuck fast with no problems from any of them over the many years I use those trays,  so  I  am using the same joint again, don't change what works.

The tool tray runners are simple  a strip of 12mm ply  cut 12mm deeper than the depth of the  tray allowing  for a 6mm thickness for the bottoms and a 6mm clearance  at the top.

The top trays slide on  the top edge of the ply runners and the bottom tool tray  slide on a piece of oak  24mm thick both are only screw to the main drawers.

Next came the cutting of sides, ends and bottoms My new Osborne mitre guide is going to worth it's weight in gold, it has proved to be a superb  cross cut  while cutting the shoulder as seen on the left.  as  shown in the middle on the band saw cutting the face of the joint.  On the one tray glued and pined  with my  air gun, bottom as yet not fitted  I need to  clean up all four corner joint first  then it a glue and screw  for the bottoms.

Here as shown below all four tool tray frames sat in the box on there runner awaiting to be completed , but these last few days phew it to hot after 11ish in the morning to stay in the workshop.

Today  28/07/2012

The tools tray are now assembled,  it's a mixture of  the air nailer, pinned glue and screws to all of them.

All the partitions are pinned only no glue or screws, simply  so if at a later you want to change the use of a particular draw the partition can easily  removed. The drawers are now drying  from just applied first coat of  sealer sander, (My-fords). tomorrow final sanding and then apply a coat or two of   light stain. . more to come .

Today  02 /08/2012

All the tool trays for drawer No 2  have now been completed   and polished,   tray no 4 I left blank at at this stage, seeing I still have two more drawers still to fit with various sized tool tray I'm bound to miss something out  so though if I do at  least  I can fall back on this tray.

Now showing  a few of my tools in there new permanent homes , plumbing tray, mechanical tray and electrical tray.  no 4 at the moment is a temporary  home  just for miscellaneous items.

Next week   I 'll make a start on drawer No 3 bottom drawer, tool trays.  stay tuned.

Drawer three.  Ooops  a bit late . 8/5/2014.

Much  the same as above really,  but   I must say this is a temporary  home for what is seen in the sliding trays in this drawer. I have now plans for two more tool boxes as a priority which will form a part of this tool box (stay tuned on that one could be interesting) all this  before the move takes place, as I am  now shutting down theworkshop  I'm busy trying to make ready for our move hopefully by early next spring,  I'm trying  desperately to  crunch down on storage space  move everything from  A- B -C  back and forth  from box to box  till i make space for all my tools  eventually, this drawer will eventually be used for most of my building tools, one of the reason  why i have not put any divisions in these three sliding drawers as yet, once the building tools  are in place if divisions are needed then they will be fitted,  most of the time these tools  will  be in deep storage.

In storage at the moment miscellaneous items   in the base section of the drawer some of the larger items tools like  hand saws, the larger turning chisels to long to go across the drawer extra long tape measures, a file rack holder  spare   electric plugs and some large rasps.  

First layer sliding drawer  some of the smaller files, on the right a ll of my  tenon saws  two Henry Disstons , and two Veritas  Dovetail saws, one more saw not there yet is still away at the saw doctors being re-cut and sharpened. 

Layer three. on the left all my larger files. On the right most of my lathe  turning tools . 

As the other two newly planed  tool boxes come into service the top drawer of this base unit   will become empty of all the planes and used for something else.  Stay tuned.


Mike.C said...

Hi Martin,

How is the cabinet coming along, have you done any more?



Martin said...

Hi Mike Sorry mate no , not enough hrs in the day at the moment, hence why i decided to add on going posts here on my blog so it's easier for me to add bits as i find the time, and not keep losing data.

I hope it will be easier for anyone who is following a thread,which has long time lapses between updates , it's easier to find me and not an individual update on a thread , also when finished it's all here in one thread completed . hc

Mike.C said...

Hi Martin,

Re your threads I agree. But if I may point to one part of your blog that new visitors may have a problem in finding and that's your comment's section.
It maybe just because I am not to familiar with blogs, but if you could make at least the lettering of COMMENTS a bit bigger, or even set up something that clearly points to the section I am sure you will get more visitors leaving messages.

Otherwise you are making an excellent job of updating your blog.



Martin said...

Hi Mike

This is a huge learning curve for me at the moment , I dont think I can increase the size of the word COMMENTS as i have just done, thats is controlled by blogger in there own format , least I dont think I can , but I will take a look to see what can be done if anything. COMMENTS SECTION is always at the foot of each post for anyone who is reading that post to leave a comment if they so wish , BUT I DO AGREE its easily missed due to it's text size. hc

Martin said...

Hi mike

Don't worry about leaving comments please feel free to do so , i agree about your comment in your last email.hc

Anonymous said...

Any more progress? I picked this up from the wood haven forum.


Martin said...

hi MarkR

I have seen you about on the forum, nice to see some interest being shown on the new tool cabinet, yes I have been working on it earlier today just finish preparing two coats on sanding sealer and it first coat of My-lands Special pale polish, look really nice, I'll update the post later today hopefully, feel free to leave your comments on the forum if you wish, maybe other will join in then . hc

DaveL said...


I am intrigued by your use of what I know as TEE NUTS, the things with the prongs on that bite into the wood. Did you fit a pair either side of your ply? I would have thought it very difficult to get the second nut to pull in? Could you explain how you did it?

Martin said...

hi DaveL

No problem, drill the hole through the ply first, drop in bolt with a large washer hand screw ONE tee nut as you call them on the underside of plywood tighten up bolt till the tee nut is pulled into ply, remove bolt screw the other tee nut onto the bolt till enough thread is passed through ply and picks up the thread in the lower tee nut and lightly tap with a punch till the spikes mark the ply remove bolt and hit tee nut with a hammer till the top tee nut is embedded into ply , doing like this lines up the treads both sides of the ply now replace bolt with large washer and tighten.

If you don't want to use two tee nuts don't use the top one just rely on washer.hc

DaveL said...

Ah, I see, fitted with a hammer, that works. I guess the second nut will move a little if the threads are not completely in line.

Martin said...

hi DaveL

It will not only move slightly but it's more important to get them lined up spot on with each other ,if your out of true andyour lucky enough to pick up the bottom thread the leg barrel will be on a slight angle, which you need to at a right angle to the base. hc

DaveL said...

Good to see you getting back to this, looking good. I have a small set of drawers that sit under my bench which hold lots of hand tools, not dovetailed though, I like yours better.

Martin said...

hi Dave Thanks it's been a very difficult year so far, not over yet regards my own liver cyst problem but hey ho I have to press on regardless whilst waiting on NHS, But it's been really nice to get back in there and get stuck in with some passion again instead of just fiddling on bits and pieces whilst waiting on others and running around like a headless chicken. MARTIN