Pallet Toolbox (and Simple Metal Etching)




About: I'm a passionate maker and video creator on YouTube!

My brother and I made a pallet toolbox with some very simple metal etching.

Step 1: Taking Apart the Pallet

We used axe, hammer, garden tools and everything we could find to dissemble the pallet.
It made a lot of mess.

Step 2: Prepping the Parts

Take out all the nails and metal parts in your pallet.
Plane the pieces square (as best as you can) you will be joining later.

Step 3: Bottom of the Box

Cut the pieces to size and glue/clamp the pieces together.
Leave them a little longer than you need and when the glue is dry cut to size.

Step 4: Sides and a Handle

Cut the tall sides from the same bottom part.
Notch out for the handle.
Nail and glue the long sides.

Then cut the handle to length and shape it with spoke shave (or with a knife like we did)

Glue and toenail the handle in place.

Glue and nail the bottom at the end through the sides (plane the bottom to size so it fits snugly between the sides)

Step 5: Burn in Your Name(s)

We used a soldering iron to burn in our names.
You can use any method you feel comfortable with.

Step 6: Metal Etching

Moris (my brother) decided to do some metal etching for the metal piece that will go into the handle.

First apply nail polish (any color) and then scratch it with a toothpick to create what you want to etch.
Mix some vinegar and salt in a cup.

Put the connectors of the charger/9V battery in the following places:

One attach to the metal piece you're etching.
The other one attach to some cotton.

Dip in the cotton into the vinegar-salt mix, turn on the charger and press onto the metal where you want to etch it.

Clean the nail polish with some acetone when done.

It is trial and error, be patient and I urge you to check on YouTube videos on: metal etching, before attempting any.

Step 7: Add the Metal Plate Into the Handle

Use chisels to carve out the hole for the metal plate.
Screw it in place and if necessary clean it with a file.

Step 8: Finish It and Carry Some Tools!

Use your favorite finish and fill it with tools!

We used some chainsaw oil as we had it handy, it was a bit too greasy for the wood in the beginning but when it was absorbed we cleaned off the excess and it was fine.

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Participated in the
Pallet Contest

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Reuse Contest



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    5 Discussions


    3 years ago

    That;s awesome, thanks for sharing... i made this, but a bit different... heres my i'ble: (sorry can't hyperlink...:)

    1 reply

    3 years ago on Introduction

    So cool! I love this old design, thanks for sharing (and great idea with the metal plate)