Wooden DIY Tool Organizer




Introduction: Wooden DIY Tool Organizer

About: Hello! My name is Kirstie and I'm a jewelry designer, a travel addict and a DIY-er. Ever since I was a kid I have always loved making stuff. I got really into wood working in 2010 when I first started making l…

I've been looking for ways to keep all of my tools organized and I think I may have come up with a solution! I made this organizer out of oak and finished it with linseed oil.

What you'll need:

  • Wood (the thickness doesn't matter, we'll get to that later)
  • Band saw or table saw, a chop saw is handy too.
  • Variety of drill bits
  • Sanding tools
  • Linseed Oil

Step 1: Choose Your Wood

First things first, decide what kind of wood you'd like to use. I had been wanting to use a piece of oak that has been in my shop forever but never had a project that was quite right for it, until now!

Step 2: Measure

I made my organizer 12" long. Of course, you can make it however long you need/want it to be.

Step 3: Choppin' Time

I used a chop saw cut my board down to the right length. It didn't cut the whole width so I just flipped the board over and cut from the other side.

Step 4: Split the Board

The board I used was only about 3/4 of an inch thick and if it was gonna hold pencils, I needed it to be thicker. To fix this I split the board in half with a band saw and used the fence to help me get a straight cut.

I should also mention that the board I used was 6" thick, so cutting it in half worked out well. If the wood you're using isn't as wide you could always cut 2 12" long boards and skip this step.

Step 5: Glue the Boards

Next, I glued the boards together. A popsicle stick or a finger works well at spreading around the glue.

Step 6: Clamp It!

Once the glue is spread out, clamp the two boards together. The glue takes a few hours to dry so it's good idea to have another project going while you're making this.

Step 7: Clean Up the Edges

Now it's time to clean up the overhang on the edges. I set up the fence on the band saw and sliced off a thin strip of wood on either side of the board. Then to clean up the ends, I used the chop saw.

A table saw would also be great at straightening up the sides too, I'm just lazy and didn't feel like using it.

Step 8: Sand Down the Edges

I cleaned up the edges a bit by using a rotating sander.

Step 9: Layout the Design

Since I wasn't sure about how I wanted the holes laid out, I drew up a design on my computer first. Then, I lined up the design with the piece of wood and put dots where I wanted to drill the holes.

If you want to use the same layout I did, go ahead! I attached the file. The printer will cut off the edges of the design if you print it on an 8.5 X 11, but it still works pretty good. Note: the holes shown in the design are not the same size holes I actually drilled (this is because I switched things up a bit when I actually started drilling.) So if you're going to use different size bits than I used, you might want to double check and make sure the edges of the holes won't wind up too close together.

The hole sizes are: 5/16", 1 3/8", 5/8", 3/4", 1".

Step 10: Set the Depth on Your Drill Press

I set the depth on my drill press to make sure that all of the holes ended up the same depth. It was really helpful with the smaller holes since they are too hard to eyeball, also it gives it a more professional feel.

Hint: A 5/16 bit makes the perfect size hole for pencils.

These are the size bits I used for my organizer: 5/16", 1 3/8", 5/8", 3/4", and a 1". I put notes on the photo in the next step so you can see what size holes are where.

Step 11: More Sanding

I used the rotating sander again to smooth out the holes.

Step 12: Sand Out the Inside of the Holes

I wanted to clean up the insides of the larger holes so I attached a sanding barrel to my foredom and smoothed it out a bit more.

Step 13: And More Sanding

I used some finer grit sandpaper to smooth things out further.

Hint: rolling the sandpaper into a tube helped to sand out the inside of the hole.

Step 14: Finishing Up!

I used linseed oil for this project because it was convenient and it ended up working pretty well, but use whatever you want!

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    6 years ago

    This could be great for screwdrivers too

    I like an organizer where I can see the tools individually rather than all bunched, so I like this idea. You are making think about my paper crafting tools and how I am always searching under all those scraps for my X-acto knife or my pencil. I might make one of these for each type of craft and trade them out depending on what I am working on. Nice project.


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Thanks! I'm the same as you, I like to store each tool individually. Let me know how it goes if you make one!


    I'd be careful about keeping the hobby knives blade up like that. Perhaps there is a way to store them differently or with the blades covered?

    I like the build idea. Did you consider a design that would mount to the pegboard and allow the same type of storage?


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    For me, I keep the organizer off to the side of my work table so i don't ever have to reach over any of my hobby knives. The knives could always be stored upside down in some of the larger holes. So far, I haven't had any problems with it though. Thanks!


    Reply 8 years ago on Introduction

    Glad to hear it. This project reminds me of a wooden alligator my grandpa made me where it's spine had been drilled to hold tons of crayons. Happy tinkering!