Quick and Sturdy Toolbox




Introduction: Quick and Sturdy Toolbox

This is the first full project I give my students after introducing them to the basics of designing and working with wood. They love this thing, it's functional as a toolbox or as an organizer/tote/planter, and it helps them build confidence in their abilities to make even better things. If you pre-cut and drill the holes, it takes less than 10 minutes to assemble. If you just have the "raw" lumber from the big box store, it'll take 20-30 depending on how you cut it.

Step 1: Materials and Sizing

I found cedar for cheap at my local hardware store, but it's not necessary for this project. as long as the dimensions are the same, it will work. A lot of the pieces were from my scrap bins. Just make sure you have the following cuts. I apologize if my terminology is off, this is just the easiest way to explain it to the kids

Cut List

2 Sides 1x6x12

2 Ends 1x6x8

2 Uprights 1x2x12

1 Base 1x6x12

1 round handle ¾” D x 15”




Saw (handsaw works fine, these are all 90 degree cuts)

Drill with 1/16" drill bit

Screwdriver or driver bit for drill

Fasteners, Etc.

20 1.5” Nails (if using cedar, these should be stainless or aluminum)
2 2” Course Thread Screws
Wood Glue

Step 2: Step 2: Make an L

Attach the end to a side using glue and nails. Pre-drill through the side and into the end grain to prevent splitting.

Step 3: Step 3: Make a U

Attach the other side to the assembly you made in Step 2 using glue and nails. As before, pre-drill through the end and into the end grain to prevent splitting

Step 4: Step 4: Attach the Base

Insert the base at the bottom of the assembly using glue and nails. Guess what you need to do with the drill? Hint- it rhymes with "schmree schmrill the schmole"

Step 5: Step 5- Box Complete

Add the other end using glue and nails after pre-drilling. You should now have an open-topped box. If you're just interested in a planter, you're essentially done

Step 6: Step 6: Make a Different L

Attach the handle to one of the uprights using glue and a black screw. Drill through the upright into the end grain of the round handle to .....anyone? Bueller?

Step 7: Step 7: Make Another U

Add the other upright to the new assembly using glue and a black screw after _r_-_ri___ng

Step 8: Step 8: Final Assembly

Attach the U to the box made in steps 1-5 using glue and nails

Step 9: Step 9: Finishing

Sand using 80 grit, then 120 Grit sandpaper. Seal with your favorite topcoat. I recommend whatever's cheap and able to be applied in a ventilated room. If you have no clue, start with this polycrylic. I see a lot of people using it.

Step 10: Step 10: Enjoy the Fruits of Your Labor

...and voila! You're done!This is my first Instructable, so please let me know in the comments what would help, or if you had any success putting one of these together. If you're so inclined, vote for it in the "First Instructable" contest. Regardless, I hope you learned something, and hopefully made something you'll use

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    2 Discussions


    2 years ago

    I made one of these as my first woodworking project, it's a great one to learn on and the toolbox lasted for a long time :)


    Reply 2 years ago

    Awesome to hear! They're really useful, and can be a gateway to woodwork or just making in general. Thanks for commenting