Welcome! Forums General Woodworking Discussions Projects Schwarz Tool Chest

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  • #58772
    Jay
    Participant

    I recently finished (except for some details) my Chris Schwarz style “anarchist’s tool chest”. I used his video tutorial for the quick “2 day” screw joinery method. Although he calls it 2 days it took me significantly longer as he is using power tools and has an assistant, etc.

    I made a video to show a family member the chest and thought I would share it here as well. Sorry for the poor camera work.

    This was a good experience for me after having started on traditional joinery, etc because I was able to compare some things. Ultimately, I find that I don’t really enjoy working with plywood and screws, however I needed to get this chest done before moving and I am happy with the finished result. It’s quite solid and I think it looks pretty good. Most importantly, it’s mine and I can customize it however I like.

    Thanks for looking… please feel free to discuss. 🙂

    #58773
    Jay
    Participant

    The “link” code doesn’t seem to have worked, so here is the url…

    #58774
    Jay
    Participant

    Well, direct linking the url seems to have embedded the video and cropped it poorly. This site must have some problems with this. You should be able to right-click on the video and copy the url then post in a new page. Sorry for the trouble.

    #58781
    Salko Safic
    Participant

    Not bad I bet you enjoyed making it my friend Tony Konovaloff who wrote the book chisel, mallet, plane and saw made one himself many years ago. He’s a hand tool only woodworker where he does everything entirely by hand and he fits 400 tools in his chest. Imagine that owning 400 hand tools and everything fits in a single box!

    Btw why do you call it the CHris Schwarz style he only wrote a book on an already existing chest, he’s not the inventor of this tool chest.

    https://journeymansjournel.wordpress.com
    The Lost Scrolls of HANDWORK
    (Hand tool only woodworking magazine)

    #58782
    Greg Merritt
    Participant

    Well done Jay. It should be a great chest and serve your needs very well. Thanks for posting the video tour.

    http://hillbillydaiku.com

    #58783
    cliff
    Participant

    Looks great Jay. Lots of room, I don’t know if my wallet could afford filling a chest that big! Have you had a chance to work out of it yet?

    #58785
    Jay
    Participant

    Thanks for the comments, guys. Cliff, I still don’t have all my tools in there. I think that video was a couple days ago and I haven’t put any of my planes in there. The bench planes will be in that space in the bottom, and that empty bottom drawer will have my specialty planes, router, rabbet, plough, etc and some other things to put in there and gonna do some stuff on the inside of the chest lid, etc. I know it looks a bit bare at this point.

    Salko, I referred to it as a Schwarz style chest because I read his book recently and it inspired me to make the chest, but you can call it a traditional chest or any other name you like.

    #58787
    sidreilley
    Participant

    Nice job Jay. I got the DVD for this project several months ago but haven’t been able to get it done yet. Nothing seems to go quite as quickly as advertised but I’m glad to see you got yours together. It looked like a quick and practical solution to always looking for one’s tools.

    PS any build tips from your experience would be appreciated.

    #58789
    Salko Safic
    Participant

    So how was the book I know Chris has a wealth of historical information on just about everything to do with woodworking. Building a chest like yours is a convenient and space saving project but I always wondered would it be a pain to constantly reach in and grab the tool you need.

    https://journeymansjournel.wordpress.com
    The Lost Scrolls of HANDWORK
    (Hand tool only woodworking magazine)

    #58790
    cliff
    Participant

    … I still don’t have all my tools in there. I think that video was a couple days ago and I haven’t put any of my planes in there. The bench planes will be in that space in the bottom, and that empty bottom drawer will have my specialty planes, router, rabbet, plough, etc and some other things to put in there and gonna do some stuff on the inside of the chest lid, etc. I know it looks a bit bare at this point.

    You know ,of course, We’re gonna want to see pictures of it full.

    It really does look like a great way to store a ton of hardware in a small space, and it’s absolutely perfect for a move. Keep us posted.

    #58791
    Jay
    Participant

    Sure, Cliff I can definitely post some more pictures as I get things organized. I could easily just throw the planes in the bottom, and I think some people do this, but honestly I have been enjoying tweaking the chest a bit and I was thinking of doing one of those inclined plane racks (like you often see on shelves) down in the bottom… not sure yet. I’m just having fun with it and taking my time.

    Salko, the book was good. I don’t particularly care for Mr. Schwarz’s sense of humor and sometimes even his writing style, but overall I found it inspiring and, as you say, there is a lot of good information about the background of the chest… some about his personal history as a woodworker and his political ideas… and a lot about a list of tools that he recommends as essential, etc.

    Sid, if you have any questions as you go I will be more than happy to try to help. I can say that there are measurements missing from the “extras” on the dvd (cutlist and so on). Mr. Schwarz, during the instructional says to refer to the extras for measurements, but they are sometimes not there. I found that part a bit sloppy, but it wasn’t that hard to just measure everything out as I went. Also, I felt like some of the hardware he suggested was the wrong size, and quickly figured out that I had to double-check everything as I went. Other than that not sure what to say, but let me know if I can help.

    #58792
    Salko Safic
    Participant

    Hmm interesting but am a little stumped as to polotical ideas though what’s he referring too. I haven’t read any of his books though I’m some what curious.
    I too am looking forward in seeing your chest filled with tools.

    https://journeymansjournel.wordpress.com
    The Lost Scrolls of HANDWORK
    (Hand tool only woodworking magazine)

    #58823
    John Moore
    Participant

    Great job! I would love to get all tools in proper storage and not all hanging on the walls of my shop.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Lakeland, Florida USA

    #58837
    sidreilley
    Participant

    Jay, thanks for the offer, I’ll keep that in mind when I start (hopefully in the next month). No politics on the DVD but I agree that there are some loose ends in the DVD like instead of showing how build the tils, he says that “they’re so simple they almost build themselves” and then wastes time dissecting a couple of old tool boxes and discussing how to arrange tools inside using a Dutch style box. I found the cutting diagrams in sketch-up (how to lay it out on 4×8 sheets of ply) but haven’t actually drawn it out on wood yet to see if it’s correct. Still, I think it will be a good fit for my use. The bending over for tools may get to be a pain, but I’m thinking that a tool tray and some bench pegs to hold the tools I’m currently using, may negate the need to go into the box on a given project. Time will tell, but please keep us posted on how yours in working out.

    Cheers

    #58840
    Salko Safic
    Participant

    You will still see cabinet makers that are on the go with tool chests in the back of their trucks the dfference is the contents of the tools they and we use but having a tool chest is more economical in terms of mobility and space savings than a dedicated wall cabinet and drawers like I have. I’m hoping to change all that soon and build multiple tool chests and stack them on top of each other so if ever I have to move there’s no packing up. The only thing I like about the wall cabinet is I made everything within arms reach so there’s no bending as my back is shot it makes it a little more easier but the work load doesn’t.

    https://journeymansjournel.wordpress.com
    The Lost Scrolls of HANDWORK
    (Hand tool only woodworking magazine)

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