Tool Tote


Project is a small open tool tote with a dowel handle.


Wood Selection

Milling, Carcase Assembly

Finish Application


A Sketchup model of the basic layout.

Colors shown are used for clarity...wood will actually be different.


Sides will have a through 3/8 x 3/8 groove that will exit between tails.
The ends will have 3/8 x 3/8 inch stopped grooves.
The inside of the box will have the groove that will let in the bottom blank. 

There is a 1/8 inch rabbet around the interior lower edge of the bottom plate.
This is an alternate angular end plate.
This is an alternate curved end plate.

Wood Selection

The wood in this project will be poplar purchased down in Star.

The planks was pulled out of deep storage in shop attic. 

This plank started as 4/4 lumber...we jointed, planed to thickness.

Ripped and chopped to blank size.

The bottom of the tote will be .50 inch Baltic birch ply, and the handle 1" dowel is oak .

Joinery and Assembly

Backside...rebate with skew block plane... ~ 1/32 inch.
Cut the tails with Toshio Odate dovetail saw, ~1/64 plate.
Used the 1:4  Barron guide.
The pin board was placed into the bench vise...height adjusted to plane height.
Tail board was placed atop pin board...the rebate kept it indexed appropriately.
Offset of the saw plate (and the set) was determined using a Tite-Mark
The blade is listed as 1/64 inch or .
015625 inch
As part of the new OCD process, the tail board was offset to the left then the kerfs were marked on the right side of the pins.

When the offset was moved to the right, the kerfs were marked on the left sides of the pins.

We later determined that that a .013 leaf from the Glen-Drake offset gauge worked better for our alignment purposes...
First efforts to scribe the line...we used the Toshio Odate...the saw was placed into the kerf and was used to scribe a line into the end grain of the pin board.
There was an issue that the kerf was not scribed all the way across the board...
We then stumbled onto an improved model...a Chestnut Tools veneer saw that we tried and is now called the Kerf Scribe Tool.
After the kerfs were scribed, the pins were cut with Toshio Odate
Waste was cut out with Knew Concepts coping saw, 12.5 tooth, skip blade.
laying out end plates
cutting at bandsaw
the groove for the 1/2 plywood bottom plate was done at the router table with the undersized plywood router bit (31/64)...the sides were through grooves hidden in dovetails
the end plates needed stopped grooves...
the grooves and dovetails...
after dry fit of dovetails,
we ran the sides and end plates through the drum sander

...the one inch holes for the handle were drilled 3/8 dry fit...ready for glue up
glued and clamped always, you can never have too many clamps
after pulling the clamps, the dovetail ends were made coplanar in a variety of ways...jointer where possible, flush saws, chisels, hand planes and sanding...there were a few gaps between tails and pins that were created early in our OCD training...
these caps were closed off with some glue/sawdust mix plus final closure with oak shaded TimberMate
Finish Application

After final sanding by hand at 220x,
applied my shop mixed wiping varnish

a couple of coats and it looked fine
in use



Return to Shop Index