Building a Punch List Carpenters Toolbox

For carpenter Kevin Skurpski, of East Syracuse, New York, the last straw came the day he had to park his truck several blocks away from the job site. This was the day that it took him seven trips from the truck to the site to assemble everything he needed to take care of his general contractor's punch list. Then his cordless drill ran out of juice, and he realized that even after seven trips his charger was still behind the truck's front seat. The time to build a wheeled toolbox that could carry all Skurpski's tools and supplies onto the site in one shot had come.

DESIGN NOTES Skurpski felt strongly about not compromising the size of the box—he couldn't stomach another day like that last one. Sitting down to draw the design, he realized that fortunately he would have little problem getting a large box on wheels up to, and through, the entrance of most of his construction sites. Nearly all were commercial buildings, which by law must provide wheelchair access ramps. However, once inside the

Carpenter Toolbox

Punch-list carpenter Kevin Skurpski built this box so he wouldn't have to make repeated trips back to his van for tools and supplies. The box tilts on end to get through tight spaces. Photo by Photomedia.

building, a box large enough to serve his needs could be troublesome to maneuver into rooms accessed through narrow passageways.

Finding inspiration in a two-wheeled garden cart, Skurpski configured the box as a long (54 in.), low (28 in.) chest narrow enough to fit between most passageway jambs (29 in. in overall width). So that he would be able to maneuver it through restricted places, Skurpski designed the toolbox to tilt up completely on end; he accomplished this by placing the large wheels, and the heaviest tools, at the end opposite the main push handle.

To keep items from shifting during such a radical maneuver, Skurpski designed the interior partitions to run up to the top of the box. Bringing the partitions full height did other good things for the design: It gave support to the lid, allowing it to be made out of thin, lightweight material—'/»-in. mahogany plywood. As a happy side effect, these full-height and width partitions created a honeycomb structure, imparting considerable strength to the case (and allowing it, too, to be made from the '/-«-in. mahogany plywood, thus lowering the overall weight of the box). As Skurpski put it, "The box can support two people plus lunch."

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Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

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