A Hand Tool Cabinet: The Design

Ever since we moved, my hand-tools have been homeless.  Throughout the workshop build, they’ve remained hidden in drawers and boxes.  So, it’s time I give them a home.  It’s time I build a proper hand-tool cabinet.

A few years back, Mike Pekovich built a beautiful hanging tool cabinet for a Fine Woodworking video workshop series.  I fell in love with his design immediately.  Not only did I love the look, but I loved the creative use of space.  The doors are shallow boxes that allow for extra storage.  So, I downloaded the plans and hoped that I could make the design work for me.

Unfortunately, Mike’s design doesn’t fit my space.  An outlet and a few power tools limit the overall size of the cabinet.  Additionally, the stud locations require that the French cleat extends outside of the case(Mike’s is neatly hidden).  That’s okay because, I can use the longer cleat to hang other things.  With that discovery, I set out to modify Mike’s hand-tool cabinet to fit my needs.

The 4-plug outlet limits the space where I will hang the cabinet. The outlet is mounted to a stud just to the left. If I used the two studs to the right and hid the cleat inside the case, I would have to move it too far to the right. I wouldn't be able to open the doors.

My space is shown above.  The 4-plug outlet on the left mounts to a stud on the left side of the box.  To hide the cleat, I would have to move the cabinet so far to the right that I wouldn’t be able to open the doors.  Instead, I plan to hang the cabinet on an external cleat that passes above the electrical box.

The design above, is what I came up with. The case is a few inches narrower and shorter.  The back is one solid piece, and I will attach a French cleat directly to the back.

The next step is to build a mock-up, and make sure that the design works before purchasing lumber.  Fortunately, I think I have just enough 1/2″ plywood left over from previous projects.

Stay tuned.

Check out my next post in this series: The Mockup

 

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