Small items have a way of getting lost at the bottom of a drawer But these vertical drawers allow you to place everything right up front

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Spoils

I f you're like me, you've got a drawer somewhere in your JL. shop that's full of half-empty boxes of screws and fasteners. And whenever you're looking for a certain size screw or fastener, you have to paw through the drawer to find the box you're looking for. And usually, you wind up dumping out the contents of the entire drawer before you can find what you need.

That's the problem with drawers. They're great for providing a place to put all the clutter that would otherwise end up on your benchtop or the top of your table saw. But keeping items organized inside the drawer is another matter. Things have a way of "hiding" in drawers, usually at the bottom or in the back.

VERTICAL DRAWERS. So whafs the solution? One answer is to turn the drawers on their sides so the contents are more accessible. That's the idea behind this hardware storage system, see photo. The vertical drawers keep everything "up front" where you can see it. And removable shelves and storage bins within the drawers keep items neatly organized.

Turning the drawers on their sides prevents items from disappearing to the "bottom." But it still doesn't make it any easier to reach items at the back. For this, there's a separate solution.

PIVOT PINS. Each one of the seven vertical drawers is fitted with a pair of steel pivot pins. These pins ride in narrow channels in the top and bottom of the case. As the drawer is pulled out, the pins strike the edging strips at the front of the case, preventing the drawer from accidentally being pulled all the way out.

But the pins also allow you to swing the drawer open like a door on hinges, see photo above and top view on opposite page. With the drawer swung around 90° so it faces you, all of the contents are in plain sight, right where you can reach them.

BINS. To help keep the drawers organized, each one is fitted with several adjustable shelves to hold hardware boxes or individual storage bins. The wide drawers will hold commercially available plastic bins. Or you can make your own bins, see page 33.

Construction Details wide _

drawer

OVERALL DIMENSIONS:

17Vi6"H x 293/4"W x 16V4"D

#6x2"

Fh woodscrew

Two sizes of drawers to handle various storage needs

OVERALL DIMENSIONS:

17Vi6"H x 293/4"W x 16V4"D

#6x2"

Fh woodscrew

Handle

Two sizes of drawers to handle various storage needs

File card holder provides space for label

MATERIALS

% ply. - 14V8x 171/i6 % x % - 96 (rough) 3/4 x 1/8 - 8 (rough) 3/4 x 51/2 - 151/2 % x 2"/ie - 151/2

Handle

File card holder provides space for label

CUTTING DIAGRAM

E

E

E

E

E

E

V2" x 6" - 96" Hard Maple (4 Sq. Ft.)

V2" x 6" - 96" Hard Maple (4 Sq. Ft.)

Vi" x 6" -96" Hard Maple (4 Sq. Ft.)

M

L

M

///

%" x 6" - 96" Hard Maple (4 Bd. Ft.)

H

H

H

H

M

M

H

H

H

- H

M

M

M

M

M

M

M

M

M

M

M

, M, -

M

..M,,,

M

(1) Vs" -48" x 48" Hdbd. (1) V4" - 6" x 16" Hdbd.

Note: Additional hardboard needed for shop-made bins

(1) Vs" -48" x 48" Hdbd. (1) V4" - 6" x 16" Hdbd.

Note: Additional hardboard needed for shop-made bins

MATERIALS

Case Sides (2) Front Edging (1) Side Edging (1) Wide Dwr. Ends (6) Narrow Dwr. Ends (8) Wide Dwr. Tops/Btms. (6) 1/2 x 5V2 - 133A Nrrw. Dwr. Tops/Btms. (8) 1/2 x 2% - 13%

% ply. - 14V8x 171/i6 % x % - 96 (rough) 3/4 x 1/8 - 8 (rough) 3/4 x 51/2 - 151/2 % x 2"/ie - 151/2

I Drawer Backs (7) J Guide Strips (7) K Case Back (1) L Wide Shelves (6) M Narrow Shelves (20) N Shelf Lips (33)

SUPPLIES

(12) #6x2" Fh Woodscrews (56) #6 x 11/2" Fh Woodscrews (44) #6 x 3/4" Fh Woodscrews (98) #16 x 5/8" Wire Brads (7) 43A" Handles w/Screws (7) File Card Holders w/Screws (28) #2 x W Rh Brass Woodscrews (1) V'-dia. Steel Rod (12" rough)

k The sides are set back from the top and bottom so the drawers can fully open.

Case

The vertical drawers in this project fit in a case, which is really nothing more than a box made of plywood panels. Dadoes cut in the top and bottom of the case create channels for the drawer pivot pins to ride in.

PANELS. To make the case, start by cutting the case top/bottom (A) and case sides (B) to size, see case exploded view. Note: To allow the drawers to be pulled out and swung open, the top and bottom of the case are slightly wider (deeper) than the sides, see photo in margin at left.

When it comes to making the dadoes in the case top and bottom, there are two things to look for. First, you want all the dadoes to be straight and 90° to the front and back edges of the panel. Second, in order for the drawers to slide smoothly, the dadoes in the top and bottom should line up.

To do this, I found it easiest to cut the dadoes on the table saw, using the rip fence as a stop and a miter gauge with an auxiliary fence to guide the panels through the cut, see Figs. 1 and la. Safety Note: If s okay to use the miter gauge and rip fence together in this case, since you're not cutting all the way through the workpiece.

RABBETS. The back of the case is not added until after the drawers are installed. But a rabbet needs to be cut on the back edge of the case panels to hold the back, see Fig. 2. Additional rabbets on the ends of the case sides hold the top and bottom, see Fig. 3.

The depth of all these rabbets is sized to leave an y8"-thick tongue, see Figs. 2a and 3a. But the widths are sized to match the thickness of the workpieces they will hold (Vs" hard-board for the back and %" plywood for the top and bottom panels). Once these rabbets are made, the case can be glued and screwed together, see case exploded view.

EDGING. To complete the case, two thicknesses of hardwood edging (C, D) are used to cover the exposed edges of the plywood, see exploded view and photo in margin. But the edging on the top and bottom panels serves another purpose as well. It acts as a stop to prevent the drawers from being pulled all the way out of the case.

as stop

CASE-TOP/BOTTOM

as stop

CASE-TOP/BOTTOM

SID VIEW

Auxiliary fence

Rabbet back edges only

NOTE: Width of rabbet matches thickness of plywood

END VIEW

Thickness of plywood

Fh woodscrew

NARROW DRAWER TOP

DRAWER BACK

Dado blade

^^NARROW DRAWER BOTTOM

NARROW DRAWER END

WIDE

Auxiliary fence

Use rip fence as stop

^^ Cut dadoes for shelves in drawer ends

Drawers

The vertical drawers sit in the case like books on a shelf. And like books, each drawer slides in and out of the case. But steel pivot pins mounted in the drawers prevent them from being pulled out all the way. Instead, the drawer pivots open on the pins to make it easier to see whaf s inside.

To accommodate different sizes of storage containers, there are two sizes of drawers, see drawer exploded view. (I made three wide drawers and four narrow ones.) But aside from this difference, the construction is identical for all seven drawers.

Each drawer is nothing more than a solid wood frame with a hardboard back. Rabbets on the drawer ends (E, F) hold the drawer tops/bottoms (G,H), see detail 'b.' Rabbets are also cut along the back edge of each piece to accommodate the case back, see detail 'c.' I used a dado blade and an auxiliary fence to make these rabbets. Shop Note: Since the drawer ends are thicker than the drawer tops and bottoms, youU have to adjust the height of the dado blade when cutting the rabbets for the case back.

SHELF DADOES. A lot of kitchens have drawers with internal dividers (for holding silverware). I wanted to do something similar with these vertical drawers, so I cut a series of dadoes on all the drawer fronts and backs to hold shelves that are added later.

These dadoes are V2" wide and spaced 2" apart. Butyou don't have to lay them out on each piece. Instead,

DRAWER EXPLODED VIEW

WIDE DRAWER TOP

TOP VIEW

Drill 'A'-dia. holefye" ~ deep for _ ^ pivot pin

#6x1 V2" : Fh woodscrew

END V EW

DRAWER

NOTE: Drawer ends are 3A° thick, tops and bottoms are V2 thick y2"

END VIEW

just use the rip fence on your table saw as a stop, see Figs. 4 and 4a. And since the dadoes are laid out in a mirror-image, you can simply flip the workpiece end for end and cut a dado on each end before changing the fence setting for the next pair of dadoes.

Like the case, the drawers are glued and screwed together, see drawer exploded view. Then a small (Vie") chamfer can be routed around the outside edges of each drawer.

BACKS. The drawer backs (I) are made out of Vs" hardboard, cut to size and glued into the rabbets at the back of each drawer. To hold the backs in place while the glue sets up, just drive some brads around the edge of each drawer, see photo below. Shop Note: It might help to drill a small pilot hole for each brad beforehand to prevent splitting the hardboard.

PIVOT PINS. Each drawer is fitted with a pair of steel pins — one in the top and one in the bottom. These pins ride in the dadoes in the case and allow the drawers to pivot open. Although the pins aren't added until later, I found it easiest to drill the holes for them at this point, see detail 'a' above.

After the drawer frames are assembled, the hard-board backs can be glued and nailed in place.

END VIEW

Auxiliary fence

Dado blade

A Nothing Hidden Here. Each drawer pulls out and pivots all the way open so you can see what's inside.

À To make the installation of the drawer guides a lot easier, turn the case upside down and use a framing square to position the drawers.

A Nothing Hidden Here. Each drawer pulls out and pivots all the way open so you can see what's inside.

À To make the installation of the drawer guides a lot easier, turn the case upside down and use a framing square to position the drawers.

Guides & Shelves

The pivot pins slide in the dadoes in the case and allow the drawers to swing open. But to guide the drawers in and out, I installed a guide strip above each drawer.

GUIDE STRIPS. These guide strips (J) are nothing more than strips of Vi" hardboard with a series of countersunk holes drilled in them for mounting screws, see Fig. 6. And to allow the drawers to pivot freely, the front end of each guide strip is rounded.

Before the guides strips and drawers can be installed, there are a couple details to take care of. First, I cut a groove along the top of each drawer for the guide strip, see Fig. 5. Then, the W'-long steel pivot pins can be epoxied into the holes in each drawer, see Fig. 6. (For a tip on cutting the pivot pins, see page 19.)

INSTALLING THE GUIDE STRIPS. The guide strips are just screwed to the top of the case. To make this process easier, I turned the case upside down so I could see what I was doing without having to crouch down. Then I placed the drawers inside the case and used them to help position the guide strips for installation, see photo in margin. (For more on this, see page 19.)

BACK. Now that all the guide strips are installed and the drawers are in place, the back of the case can be added. The case back (K) is just a piece of y8"-thick hardboard, cut to fit in the rabbeted opening and attached with woodscrews, see Fig. 7.

SHELVES. To hold various storage bins and boxes, removable shelves (L,

Centered

END VIEW

Centered

END VIEW

NOTE:

Guide strip should slide smoothly in groove

NOTE:

Round off front end of guide strip

a* TOP VIEW

NOTE:

Guide strip should slide smoothly in groove

NOTE: Drill and countersink pilot holes for #6 Fh a* TOP VIEW

NOTE:

Round off front end of guide strip

NOTE:

Install drawers before attaching the case back

NOTE:

Install drawers before attaching the case back

M) are made to fit in the dadoes in the drawer fronts and backs, see Fig. 8. To prevent storage bins from sliding forward as the drawers are swung open, I added a hardboard shelf lip (N) to the front of each shelf. (The width of this lip will depend upon the storage bins you use.)

After applying finish, the handles and card holders can be added to the drawers, see Fig. 8. Now comes the fun par t—finally organizing and sorting all those half-empty boxes of screws and fasteners. E9

NOTE:

Center handle on front of drawer

NOTE:

' Shelves (L) 1 for wide drawers are 5%" wide

SHELF LIP

screw

Rh brass wood-

2Vi" file card holder screw

NOTE:

Center handle on front of drawer

Rh brass wood-

2Vi" file card holder

NOTE:

' Shelves (L) 1 for wide drawers are 5%" wide

SHELF LIP

Shop-Made Storage Bins own storage bins. This allows me to customize the size of the bins to fit my storage needs.

There are three different sizes of bins for the storage unit Short and long versions of a narrow bin fit in the narrow drawers. And a wider, deeper bin fits in the wide drawers.

The wide drawers of the storage unit are sized to hold commonly available plastic storage bins (see page 35 for sources). These bins are great for large quantities of fasteners. But sometimes 1 need smaller containers for just a few fasteners. Thafs why I like to make my

All the bins are made out of tempered hardboard — Vs" thick for the fronts and backs and Vi" thick for the ends and bottoms. The fronts and backs are glued into grooves cut in the ends. The bottoms are simply cut to fit into the opening and then glued in place.

Narrow Bins

For the narrow drawers of the case, there are two sizes of bins. Both the long and short bins are constructed the same way. The only difference is in the length of the front and back pieces, see exploded view.

Kerfs cut in the end pieces fit over the front and back of each bin. But cutting kerfs on pieces this small can be unsafe. So instead, I ripped a long blank to match the width of the end pieces and cut a pair of shallow kerfs along the length of the blank, see Figs.

1 and la. Then I cut the individual end pieces to length, see Fig. 2.

After gluing the front and back pieces between the ends, a y4" hardboard bottom can be cut to fit in the opening and glued in place. E9

EXPLODED VIEW

Ends and bottoms are W 'A" hardboard.

Fronts and backs are Va" hardboard

Cut kerfs along both edges of blank f^Z

Crosscut end pieces to length (heigh t)—¿^^^Auxii ia ry / fence f.

Front

SHORT BIN

LONG BIN

Front,

Bottom

Wide Bins

The bins for the wide drawers just a little different, see are really just a large version of exploded view below, those used with the narrow The only other difference is drawers. The construction is that the front edge of each bin identical—the dimensions are is beveled to make it easier to get at the contents inside.

To create this bevel, simply cut away the front corner of the bin after it's assembled. I used a band saw to do this, see Fig. 1 below.

The band saw leaves a rough cut so youll need to follow it up with a little sanding to remove any saw marks. E3

Front

Bottom

Cut away Vf; front edge \ of bin and sand smooth

Ends and bottoms are 'A"hardboard. Fronts and backs are Vs" hardboard

Reader's Jig

Mortising p

■ utting a shallow mortise ^^on the edge of a door for butt hinges is tedious work. A router makes the job easier, but most cabinet doors aren't thick enough to provide enough support for the router base. But this simple jig sent in by George Glading of Dover, Delaware solves that problem, see photo.

The jig is made up of just a few pieces of scrap wood, see exploded view. A couple of l"-wide runners straddle the workpiece and provide support for the router base as well as help to prevent the router from tearing out

EXPLODED VIEW

the wood fibers on the sides of the mortise. And a "saddle" screwed to the top of the runners serves as a fence for the router base.

Before using the jig, place it over a scrap piece of wood and clamp the runners in place. Using a router with a V2" straight bit, rout a step at the ends of the runners, see exploded view. The depth of this step should match the depth of the mortises you'll need for your hinges.

To use the jig, place it over the edge of the work-piece so the shoulder of the step lines up with one end

#8 x VA" Fh woodscrew

EXPLODED VIEW

#8 x VA" Fh woodscrew

Scrap board the thickness of doors to be mortised

NOTE: Spacing of runners can be altered to accommodate thicker or thinner workpieces

Scrap board the thickness of doors to be mortised

FEATURE YOUR JIG

If you've built an original woodworking jig and would like to see it featured on this page, send your idea to Woodsmith, Reader's Jig, 2200 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50312.

If we publish your jig, we will send you $100 and a full set of Woodsmith back issues, with binders. Include a sketch (or photo), explain how if s used, and please include a daytime phone number.

of the mortise, see Fig 1. Clamp the runners and rout out the mortise, stopping just short of the layout line on the opposite end.

To rout the opposite shoulder of the mortise, you can either turn the jig around or simply slide it down to the end of the mortise. But if you slide the jig, its shoulder won't line up with the shoulder of the mortise, see Fig. 2.

Instead, position the jig so the shoulder is V2" back from the edge of the mortise to allow for the diameter of the router bit, see Fig. 2a. E9

NOTE: Spacing of runners can be altered to accommodate thicker or thinner workpieces

SECOND: Line ^Ok-^ up step on runner

with layout line

\ v

Remove waste ^

with router, stopping short N. >

of second

\ layout line s

K

\

FIRST: Rout step on ends of runners, see exploded view

\ V \

Reposition jig to rout second shoulder of mortise

Reposition jig to rout second shoulder of mortise

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VI

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The Complete Guide To Wood Finishing

The Complete Guide To Wood Finishing

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