Shop Project - Make a Magnetic Tray for Drill Bit Storage





Introduction: Shop Project - Make a Magnetic Tray for Drill Bit Storage

All my drill bits were either setting loose or in the containers they came. I decided I didn't want to build a case, but a tray I can move to the bench when I need to use them. Also, I wanted to add magnets to lessen the chance of losing bits when the tray is dropped or jarred.

You need:

  • Some plywood for a base (I used 1/4 inch thick)
  • Rare earth magnets (more is better)
  • Some thin veneer (one piece is better, but you can used strips of edge banding like I did)
  • Drill with a bit the size of the magnets
  • Wood glue
  • Paint
  • Iron (if using iron on veneer)

Step 1: Layout the Size of the Tray

Lay out your bits so you can determine the size of your tray. Note any limiting dimensions your storage space may impose. (The cabinet I use can hold a tray of 11 inches deep.)

Step 2: Cut the Base

I had some 1/4 plywood lying around. You can use whatever is convenient for you.

  • Cut it to size
  • Cut some strips about 3/4 of an inch wide for the dividers.

Step 3: Mark the Dividers

  • Set the bits on the plywood
  • Mark where the dividers will go.

Step 4: Drill Holes for the Magnets

  • Mark where you want the magnets. More coverage is better.
  • Drill holes in the plywood just deep enough for the magnets.
  • Mark the end of each divider line on the sides so you can redraw after adding the veneer.

Step 5: Add the Veneer Over the Magnets

  • A single piece of veneer would be better here, but if you don't have any you can use iron on edge banding.
  • Sand any adhesive residue away.

Step 6: Cut the Angled Divider

  • Redraw the dividers on the veneer
  • Hold the divider that crosses diagonally on the base and mark the angle needed for cutting.
  • Match the angle on the table saw and cut.
  • Cut the straight dividers for the edges.
  • Glue them to the base
  • Cut the diagonal divider to size.
  • Glue it to the base.

Step 7: Add the Dividers

  • For the other vertical dividers, cut one end to the angle for the diagonal divider.
  • Cut the other end at 90 degrees, length to fit.
  • Glue them in place.

Step 8: Paint, If Desired

If desired, paint or clear coat,

Step 9: Finished

I should have used more magnets, but this tray should be OK under normal circumstances. You can never use enough magnets here.



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    I love the simplicity of the diagonal divider, it is so obvious and yet nobody does it. I'm forever finding a tool is too long, or screw bits are rattling around, this should get around that problem nicely, thankyou

    Thanks. I, however, stole the diagonal divider from Steve Ramsey.

    Way better than the one I made. Nice!

    I usually try to again for things that come in their own holders, but that isn't always an option so this is an awesome idea!

    love the design. I don't think mine will hold drill bits but I may end up with a stack of these for different supplies and small works in progress.

    Don't be stingy with the magnets.

    Thanks for the advice.