Chisel Storage Solution!

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About: I'm a 23 year old Furniture & Product Design graduate.

Through this quick and simple project I will show you how to make a great chisel storage solution. But, first a bit of history behind the project and the problem.

I work in a Design & Technology department at a school, when I started the job I was frustrated at the condition of the chisels. This project arose from a frustration of having to constantly resharpen the chisels and the students not taking care of the tools.

At schools all over England we use Gratnells trays as they are cheap and readily available, in the workshops we use them to store a range of small tools. They are also used to store the students drawings, books and models in the classrooms. For this project I decided to improve the storage of the chisels inside their existing trays.

If you have any questions or comments about this project feel free to leave a comment below.

Step 1: Tools Required:

For this project you will need:

1 x 20mm forstner or paddle bit

1 x drill press or hand drill

1 x saw (I used a bandsaw but a handsaw, table saw, mitre saw or pretty much any saw would work fine)

1 x sliding bevel

1 x ruler

1 x pencil

1 x marking gauge (optional)

2 x clamps (I just used a pair of quick clamps)

Step 2: Materials:

For this project I used an off-cut of 18mm birch plywood (minimum size: 430mm x 19mm x 18mm) and some scrap square section softwood (430mm x 25mm x 25mm).

Step 3: Mark Holes:

Using a marking gauge I marked 10mm from the face edge; this could also be done with a ruler and a pencil.

The holes are marked out on 40mm centres, you could also put them closer together for smaller chisels but I found this spacing worked well for me.

Step 4: Drill

Using a 20mm drill bit drill to the guide line left by the marking gauge, note I use two clamps on the drill press to stop the work piece rotating.

Update: A suggestion by another member 'I find that if you make a series of holes along a straight line, then cut down that line on a table/band saw you'll end up with two halves (minus the width of the blade) and less effort controlling the bit

Step 5: Rip to Width:

For the tool rest I ripped the ply to 19mm.

Step 6: Square Section

By pressing down the front of the chisel you can ascertain the dimensions need for the square section. For me with these Irwin Marples Chisels it was 25mm x 25mm

Step 7: Angles

In order to be used inside the graco trays the tool rest needs to be angled on each edge. The angle is measured on the inside of the tray with a sliding bevel and the transferred over to the work piece.

The angle was then cut on the bandsaw using the protractor, this could easily be done with a handsaw.

Step 8: Final Step

You should now be able to push the tool rest into place, you can then insert the square section under the chisel handle to raise the handles up.

Step 9: Finished

So here it is all done and in under an hour!

Simple, functional and quick.

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    7 Discussions

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    studleylee

    4 weeks ago

    After I stopped crying, I saved pictures of your functional, navigable shop. :-)

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    MichaelP569

    4 weeks ago on Step 9

    Your shop is beautifully organized and puts both my personal and professional shops to shame. At work, I try and catch the dull chisel/ saw blade, plane blade culprits and make them sharpen everything. Usually they get the hint after the second time. Cheers!

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    Justin Sane

    4 weeks ago on Step 4

    Like the suggestion . Makes too much sense.

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    GuyD14

    4 weeks ago

    As the chisel handles were all the same diameter I used a 3 inch lengths of suitable sized plastic waste pipe (the handles just fitted into the pipe) and cut the pipe in half lengthways then glued the outsides of the half pipes onto a strip of board. The cutting edges of the chisels are housed in a length of flat plastic wiring conduit (The type with a clip on top) with slots cut for the correct blade width. After the slots are cut in the conduit base the top can be clipped back on leaving a nice tidy rectangular hole for the chisel blade. The conduit came with a length of double sided sticky tape to hold it down. Six of them fitted neatly into a flat biscuit tin (shortbread cookie tin) and they are the ones that are 'handy to reach'.

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    Denver_80211

    4 weeks ago

    Hi I ran across this and I have a suggestion. You might find it's difficult to drill half a hole in the edge of wood. I find that if you make a series of holes along a straight line, then cut down that line on a table/band saw you'll end up with two halves (minus the width of the blade) and less effort controlling the bit

    1 reply
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    diggoryrushDenver_80211

    Reply 4 weeks ago

    Great suggestion. That's certainly a nice easy way to do it.

    I personally didn't struggle drilling the holes but, I can certainly see how that might be an issue for some people.

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    jessyratfink

    4 weeks ago

    Great solution! Gotta love easy to access tools :D