Well, That Didn’t Take Long

I hereby surrender to my son’s enthusiasm. I figured we’d wait until later in the year to team-build the Dutch tool chest to hold his kit, but considering I didn’t wait until the dining room table was built to begin my tool chest, I couldn’t exactly tell him no.

Who could look this guy in the eye and tell him not to build something?

Who could look this guy in the eye and tell him not to build something?

We spent Friday evening in the shop, picking out some reclaimed pine for his tool chest, and sawing it to rough length. I step in when he wears himself out, but for the most part I let him run with it.

Measuring and making

Measuring and marking

Saturday morning, he and I were back out in the shop before 7 AM. While he sawed more boards to length, I sharpened the iron on the jack plane I picked up for him last month. He took to planing with the same enthusiasm he showed for sawing.

Go, Speed Racer!

Go, Speed Racer!

After lunch, he was on to other interests, such as playing Minecraft. That gave me time to work on my tool chest. Sunday morning I got my final panel glued up, and then shifted to leveling joints and squaring up end grain.

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Roll Your Own

Working on a large project (like the dining room table I’m currently building) is a great way to shake out new methods of work and new shop arrangements. While my current arrangement is the best I’ve come up with yet, I still have a list of changes I want to make once my current project is complete.

Big on my list are a traditional tool chest, a sharpening bench, and some better organization for my clamps. To go with the tool chest, I want some cotton tool rolls for efficient storage.

Most of that list can wait, but I had to do something about my brad point bits. The block of wood I stored them in was tippy, and they were always in the way.

So Tuesday night, I decided to make a proof-of-concept tool roll for my brad point bits, borrowing my daughter’s sewing machine to do it. (Hey, she borrows my table saw, so it’s only fair, right?) I had some old khaki pants I needed to upcycle, so it seemed like a low-risk proposition.


This turned out to be a great side project, solving a shop problem and providing the sort of immediate gratification to keep me energized for my longer project.


Best yet, it worked out well as a proof-of-concept project. I have plenty of fabric on hand for more tool rolls. With something as utilitarian as this, I can’t see a reason to buy what I could make in a couple of hours.