Watchmaker Toolbox




So I am a watchmaker and I have a lot of tools. But as it is not my full time occupation anymore, I only need a few of them and decided to make this box to carry them around.

As I'm a swiss watchmaker, I'm not a native English speaker, so please excuse my mistakes :-)

Step 1: Tools and Material

You will need these tools:

A cutting board or a cutting mat,

A razor knife or a cutter,

A pencil,

A ruler,

A set square,


Possibly a needle and some sewing thread.

And some material:


Leather or artificial leather or imitated leather or leatherette or faux leather or what you want :-),

Foam (not shown on the picture sorry but you can see it clearly on step 8).

Step 2: Find a Box

Size matters, I needed a box big enough to contain my favorite tools but not too big, so that I could carry it around easily.

I reused this one (banana for scale), it used to contain a watch.

Step 3: Design and Drawing

I needed 3 trays and I chose to make them in cardboard and then cover them with artificial leather.

Tools are held in place by a laser-cut foam. I drew the shapes of the foams with Inventor and checked the dimensions out by printing them on paper.

Step 4: Cut Out the Trays...

Dimensions of the trays should be equal to that of the inner dimensions of your box minus the thickness of the artificial leather and cardboard.

Transfer the dimensions on the cardboard and cut it out.

You can also fold the edges.

Step 5: ...and Start to Wrap Up Them

Put your precut cardboard on a piece of artificial leather.

Cut the artificial leather a bit larger than the cardboard and glue it on the cardboard (glue the underneath and outer edges).

You can also put a piece of any soft material between the cardboard and the artificial leather. It will make a shock proof back and it could help to hold your tools in place securely.

Step 6: Corners and Inner Edges

Cut out the corners as neatly as you can and glue the inner edges. Hold the edges firmly until the glue dries up or place them under a heavy book.

Step 7: Sew the Corners

You can skip this step if you have glued the corners together. I prefer to sew them, esthetically nicer.

Step 8: Inside the Trays

Cut the foams with your favorite laser machine and glue them in the trays.

Between the foam and the tray, you can place a piece of artificial leather so as to hide the cardboard.

My glue doesn't stick the foam very well but you can find a stronger one!

Oh and also, you can add a languette* on the second and third trays, it will be easier to take them out of the box!

*now you know a new word in french! it is the small appendix that you can see on the trays of the first picture. By the way, if someone could tell me the right English word, it would be great :-) ( > it's a tab, thanks PhxJim!)

Step 9: Inside the Box

You can also wrap up the inside of the box with artificial leather. Do as you did for the trays, cut-out cardboard, wrap it up and then glue it up inside the box.

Step 10: Voila, C'est Terminé!

Put your tools in the trays and enjoy your new toolbox :-D

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    20 Discussions


    4 years ago on Step 8

    Languette, according to Google translate ( means tongue, tab, or strip.

    In this context, I think tab or perhaps strip would be the proper translation. The primary direct translation of tongue I think would be a bit more archaistic or odd in American English in this context.

    Great box too!


    4 years ago

    I like your work and easy to make it, thanks for sharing!


    4 years ago on Introduction

    Somebody likes Imgur. ;)

    Seriously though Awesome Instructable. I wish I could learn to work on watches.

    1 reply

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction



    When I am retired and I would have a lot of time, I will try to make watches instructables ;-)


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    They are really great and the quality is awesome! In Switzerland, they are sold in watchmaker-tool-shops (sandoz-fils, horotec, etc...), in French > tournevis.


    4 years ago

    What type of foam did you use? In my laser cutting class we were told vehemently to never cut foam due to fire risk. I assume you're using a different type.

    2 replies

    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    So I asked the laser guy and unfortunately he doesn't know what kind of foam it is, it was a sample given by a supplier. But it doesn't burn, so I assume that if you ask some professionals in your region, they could provide you some good foam. I'm sorry that I am not able to give you a better answer.


    Reply 4 years ago on Introduction

    Hi bookmatch, I'm really sorry but I don't know, it was provided by the laser-guy. I will ask him and get back to you if I get an answer!


    4 years ago on Step 8

    Languette = tonguelet (as in language)

    generally refers to a tongue-and groove style joint

    1 reply