Hone your hand skills building a box you’ll be proud to cart around.
By Mario Rodriguez
Overall dimensions: 251⁄4"w × 71⁄2"d × 12"h
Many of us remember Dad’s toolbox and how it always seemed to have everything needed to repair a broken chair or hang a screen door. Wanting to build my own all-purpose tool tote, I decided to take Dad’s nailed-together box up a notch to ensure that it will be around for the grandkids. Aside from its obvious utility, this box offers several lowrisk opportunities to practice traditional joinery, including through dovetails and wedged tenons. If you make a mistake when cutting the dovetails, don’t fret. Just use the metal template to retrace your tails on a new piece and try again. If you mess up the pins on the bottom board, cut them off and give it another shot. You can shorten the sides and handle to compensate. I chose mahogany for the body of the box because it’s a friendly and forgiving wood–perfect for hand-cut joinery. As an added bonus, it takes on a beautifully rich, deep color as it ages. For the handle, I chose red oak, not only for strength, but also because if offers a nice contrast.