Introduction: Lathe Chisel Rack

Hi everyone! There are lots of designs out there for lathe chisel racks and various types of carts that you can build to hold all of your lathe scrapers and gouges. I made this particular design as easy to build as possible and used only scraps of 3/4" plywood that I had laying around, so I did't have to spend a penny on this project. There will be a PDF cut list and plans available to right below if you would like to make this yourself! Let's get started!

Step 1: Cut the Pieces

I cut all of the pieces out of 3/4" plywood. I made most of my cuts on my table saw but you could definitely use a circular saw, jig saw, or even a handsaw. But, I'm not going to lie a table saw makes it a lot easier. Below there is a PDF format cut list that you can print out. For the sides, I stuck two pieces of plywood together with double sided tape and measured 3" in from the top and 3" in from the bottom for the smaller rack. For the larger rack, I measured 3" in from the top and 4" in from the bottom. Once I made those marks, I just connected the dots to give me a line that I could cut and my bandsaw.

Step 2: Drilling Lots of Holes

Next, I drilled a series of trough holes in the top part of the rack (which at the time was still in one piece) with an 1 1/2" forstner bit with the center of the holes spaced apart by 2". I then proceeded to rip the piece in half at the table saw to give me the top parts of each of the racks with semicircles for the tools to drop into. Then, I took the bases of both of the racks and set the depth of cut on my drill press to about 1/4". If you don't have a drill press with a depth stop, you can just use a drill with blue painters tape wrapped around the drill bit and once you hit the edge of the tape, stop. I spaced these apart to match the holes on the tops.

Step 3: Sanding

It's much easier to sand the parts before assembly, I sanded with 150, 240, and then 240. I wasn't concerned about getting an ultimately smooth finish because I planned on painting this. Always remember to wear a respirator or use some sort of dust collection. I wore a respirator and hooked up my shop vac to my random orbital sander.

Step 4: Assembly

I used a clamp to hold everything together and also used wood glue to give a little extra strength to the joints. I fired in a couple of small brads with my nail gun just to hold it in place and then predrilled and screwed in some 1 1/4" wood screws. I started by just attaching the four sides to each other. Note that the side pieces get glued on in between the top and bottom, not the the top and bottom in between the side pieces. Once I had the basic frame, I screwed and glued in the middle support in between the two sides. That support really stiffens up the rack. I used this same process to assemble my larger rack.

Step 5: Painting

I like painting all of my shop projects bright colors because after a while you kind of get sick of looking at dirty wood toned racks and shelves and the bright colors really add a better atmosphere to the shop. I used a nice shade of blue latex.

Step 6: Mounting to the Wall

I found the studs on the walls and centered the rack on them. Remember to make sure that the rack is level. I pre drilled and fixed it to the wall with several 2" drywall screws, and that's it! I hope this was helpful to you and please comment, follow, rate, etc. Thank you!

Comments

author
eranox (author)2016-01-21

Great project! I'll be making one of these shortly. I'm thinking about sinking some rare earth magnets into the top rack so that the tools stick when I put them away. I'm clumsy, and I could very well see some of my tools making the long trip to the shop floor as I reach for a tool next to them.

author
Summers Woodworking (author)2015-07-29

Thats how I make mine.

author

i've had it for a while now and it seems to be holding up well....I wish that I'd made the angle a little less steep though.

author
foxwoodfarm (author)2015-07-16

Nice project. My only objection is I don't like having the cutting end of my chisels pointing up where I could get cut while reaching for one.

author
HPandLOTR (author)foxwoodfarm2015-07-16

Yea I can see how that might worry you, but rest assured the rack is at maybe 6inches below my shoulder. I don't mean for this to sound like I'm being a jerk but I generally will reach for the handle....not the end of the tool lol :)

Take care,

Peter

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Bio: I love woodworking and making fun stuff on the lathe, I really enjoy making stuff and posting it on this website, and I love the ... More »
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