From Hand Tote to Rolling Chest

While making the transition from hobbyist woodworker to full-time commercial furniture maker, Eric Smith, of Sacramento, California, set out to create a small, simple, one-hand tote for a selection of hand tools. Two hundred hours later, an impressive case built from Honduras mahogany and trimmed in pao ferro (see the photo above right) emerged from Smith's workshop.

Instead of the simple hand tote, Smith now has a 40-in. high by 30-in. wide by 19-in. deep rolling case that stylishly and securely houses nearly his entire inventory of hand tools. For strength and appearance. Smith made the case sides, top and floor from 1-in. thick stock, joining the corners with finger joints. He chose the dark, tough pao ferro wood for two reasons: to provide a visual accent and to protect the edges of the case. The through finger joints of the drawer faces add visual interest. One interesting feature of the drawers is that their bottoms double as runners—they slide along grooves worked into the sides and partitions (see the drawing at right).

Eric Smith s cart of Honduras mahogany houses most of his hand tools. Photo by Eric Smith.

Integral Drawer Runner and Bottom Panel

Drawer box

Bottom panel is dadoed into drawer face.

(applied to bottom of sides and back

Note: Bottom extends past back of drawer box to act as stop.

Drawer box

(applied to bottom of sides and back

Bottom panel is dadoed into drawer face.

Though the cart spends most of its time in its niche by his workbench, Smith does not regret adding an expensive set of casters to the design. Their presence give Smith the freedom to experiment with the cart's position in various locations throughout the shop. The casters will stay with the case at least until the day Smith discovers his ideal shop layout.

Jim Tolpin's small tool cart rolls on full swivel casters. Photo by Craig Wester.

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Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

Wood Working for Amateur Craftsman

THIS book is one of the series of Handbooks on industrial subjects being published by the Popular Mechanics Company. Like Popular Mechanics Magazine, and like the other books in this series, it is written so you can understand it. The purpose of Popular Mechanics Handbooks is to supply a growing demand for high-class, up-to-date and accurate text-books, suitable for home study as well as for class use, on all mechanical subjects. The textand illustrations, in each instance, have been prepared expressly for this series by well known experts, and revised by the editor of Popular Mechanics.

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