Introduction: Custom Pocket Screwdriver

Picture of Custom Pocket Screwdriver

Never leave home without a knife, a beerbottle opener (could be a knife as well), a firestarter (well, you could use a knife also), a few feet of paracord and a screwdriver (I don't recommend to use a knife instead of that...).

Screwdrivers are great tools, and one day, out of the blue, I decided to customize one as a gift.

Al you need:
- some scrap wood
- an XL screw bit holder
- a lathe (or, in my case, no lathe)
- some glue & wood paste

Step 1: Holesawing

Picture of Holesawing

If you're the lucky owner of a lathe, go to step 3.

If you're like me: try to survive.

Pre-drill a piece of scrap wood in the center - I used olive, again.
Drill another hole beside the center hole, this will be your future bit holder.
Holesaw it from both sides - mounted on a pillar drill it works just fine.
Remove the wood from the zone the holesaw didn't reach.

Step 2: Rawshaping

Picture of Rawshaping

Mount a bandsander upside down & rawshape the wooden tube.

Feel free to design it, as long as the result feels good in your hands.
Right, I chose the oldfashioned way - olivewood talks for it's own.

Step 3: Glueglue

Picture of Glueglue

Put some heavy duty glue in the center hole and insert the XL drill bit holder.

Why not a 'standard'sized bit holder?
Because the 'tail' goes simply not deep enough into the handle - your screwdriver will fall apart with the first hard-headed rusty screw...

Step 4: Fineshaping

Picture of Fineshaping

Protect the bit holder with some tape and fix it in the pillar drill.

Highspeed, some sanding paper, a few minutes avoiding to put the handle on fire (friction fire!) and ready is that handle.

Use wood paste to hide the center hole in the handle, let it hard out and sand again.

Step 5: Finishing

Picture of Finishing

Finish the wood with tung oil: smells great, and the result is just beautiful.

Put a small ball of 'drain sealant' in the bit holder. This stuff won't get hard and will get the screw bit solid enough in place - but not solid enough to get the bit prisoned forever. Just a slight smash upside own in the palm of your hand and free is that srew bit.
A small power magnet would do the job also.

Insert the bits and go out screwing some stuff.

Thanx for whatching!


Dacp283 (author)2015-01-06

pretty good considering the tools you had at your disposal. It hurt to see that beautiful olive getting wood filler. :( was a good grain.

bricobart (author)Dacp2832015-01-06

Thanx, and you're totally right about that filler - next time I'd use a small piece of olive and glue this where it should be. Let's call this 'experience'... ;)

muddog15 (author)2014-03-26

Tongue oil. Finally see an instructable using it. Great stuff. Especially when you use steel wool between coats.

woodNfish (author)2013-09-16

Bricobart, you do have a lathe - just chuck your workpiece into your drill press and spin away! So it's vertical rather than horizontal. build a nice hand rest and use cloth sanding strips instead of rigid cutting tools. You cold build a vertical tool rest and clamp it to your drill press table if you want to use lathe tools. Just use a bit of safety sense and have fun.

klee27x (author)2013-09-13

My pet peeve with my last couple of screwdrivers is runout. I know that hardly matters, but it still bugs me. Finishing the thing on the "redneck lathe" should make your screwdriver pretty straight. Beautiful project, but it hits on another pet peeve of mine. I don't like screwdrivers that take the short bits. The extra reach is all to often negated when the bit holder can't fit in recessed screwholes... :(

Considering the philosophy you shared, I thought you might be interested in this gadget. It uses the aforementioned short bits, but at last you can carry 4 of them. With your knife!

KROKKENOSTER (author)2013-09-12

This looks excellent but I have a HUGE problem WHERE CAN A BODY GET THE THREE WINGED PHILIPS and other uncommon DRIVERS in South Africa?I had to drill out screws in virtually new equipment.(The driver that you show here has FOUR wings)

klee27x (author)KROKKENOSTER2013-09-13

I've had this problem. Take an allen wrench of the appropriate size. Grind away 3 of the corners with a dremel tool, using a cutoff disc. Shape as necessary.

bricobart (author)KROKKENOSTER2013-09-12

Oops, I even didn't know the existance of three-winged screws!

throbscottle (author)2013-09-11

This is gorgeous, I love it. The handle of my old magnetic screwdriver is falling to bits so I will use your method to make a replacement! Thanks!

bricobart (author)throbscottle2013-09-12

Well thank you! And good luck with your new one!

the norm (author)2013-09-10

I can't see how you have your sander clamped to the bench.
I put my sanded into my workmate. The screw clamps hold the front handle and the sander has a tilt forward. I am not sure what the sawdust dropping into the works does to it, but it has lasted several years now.

bricobart (author)the norm2013-09-11

Well I first clamped it to the horizontal power drill clamp you see on one of the pictures, which I clamped to the bench. Yes, I do like clamps a lot!

thirst4know (author)2013-09-10

Cool gift!

bricobart (author)thirst4know2013-09-11


your_dragon113 (author)2013-09-10

I love this! And it's Great that you've shown how to Turn wood without the use of a lathe too....I wouldn't have thought of using a drill like that (sheepish look). I *SO* have to make one of these for my wife! Thank you Very much bricobart! I tip my hat to you!

bricobart (author)your_dragon1132013-09-11

My pleasure! Actually this one's for my wife too because I borrowed her mine - standard market stuff - and I really want it back!

heathbar64 (author)2013-09-10

Very nice.
No one would take your screwdriver by mistake, they would take it on purpose cuz it's so cool.

bricobart (author)heathbar642013-09-11

Thanx mate!

Jeanette56 (author)2013-09-10

Nice post! Who wouldn't want a beautiful wooden screwdriver of their own?

bricobart (author)Jeanette562013-09-11

Thanx! You know, my grandfathers only had wooden screwdrivers. Sometimes it's good to look back...

tootall1121 (author)2013-09-10

Nice, and useful. I suppose one could make the handle any way they wanted it to be. I like a rounded triangular shape, that tapers down at the hand end. (a shape often used by Stanley for their better grade of screwdrivers) this fits the hand nicely, and gives you more leverage for those stubborn screws. Good job, man. Interesting way to make it round without an actual lathe. I used to have a drill powered mini lathe that would make this quick and easy.

bricobart (author)tootall11212013-09-11

Thanx tootall, such mini lathes are great. I put in on my list because it can save a lot of time...

dozer789 (author)2013-09-09

Cool!! Most screwdrivers are too big, so this is just great!! Nice job!!

bricobart (author)dozer7892013-09-10

As you say, this one fits right in your palm!

dozer789 (author)bricobart2013-09-10

Yep! I have a thing that is pretty cool that is from black and decker, and is very small, and can hold 6 bits. I don't remember what it is called though...

grangerknives (author)2013-09-10

Very clever, very creative. Very good job of wood turning without a lathe. I believe I'll give this one a try! Thanks for sharing your idea. Paul

bricobart (author)grangerknives2013-09-10

Thanx mate, don't forget to post a pikkie of yours!

zeemam (author)2013-09-10

Nice job

bricobart (author)zeemam2013-09-10


foobear (author)2013-09-09


bricobart (author)foobear2013-09-10


About This Instructable




Bio: I made a beer mug with only a knife & a hatchet. I think that says a lot about me.
More by bricobart:Briar Smoking PipeBow Stories - My Experiences With Cross Country Ski Bows'Shave Mouse' Aka Revisited Shave Horse
Add instructable to: