Tool Cabinet – Plane Storage

Got some storage going to be able to add to the tool cabinet. I now have plane storage with room to spare.  The plane till and well have been completed with some room to spare in both of them.  

Plane/Tool Well

To me, the plane well is the structure that fits in the bottom portion of the cabinet.  In the plan, it includes 2 small drawers and stores the smaller conventional planes, say up to No. 4 side plane.  

It has 4 places for the block plane sized planes.  I own 2 (low angle block plane from Lee Valley and rabbeting block plane from Lie Nielsen).  See the first picture of these 2 planes installed in there small compartments.  Still 2 more spaces in case I ever expand the collection for these smaller planes.  Missing are the 2 drawers for accessories.  Did not complete them yet, but this does not prevent me to at least install the structure in the cabinet.

Plane well to be fitted in the tool cabinet

Plane well to be fitted in the tool cabinet

Plane well to be fitted in the tool cabinet

Plane well to be fitted in the tool cabinet

The right portion of the well is to store bigger planes, I would say smaller then No. 4 or No 4 1/2 sized planes.  The original plan called for 5 spaces but I ended up with 4 besides the block plane storage.  Should be enough for a while.  Stored in these compartments are my Lie Nielsen No. 4 and Lie Nielsen low angled smoother.  

Plane Well in the cabinet

Plane Well in the cabinet

This is the plane well installed in the cabinet, in the bottom most compartment.  There a space between the top shelve of the Well and the shelf that the plane till sits on.  More space for other tools to be stored.  More on that later.  

Plane Till

The plane till in this design of the cabinet is angled to store other planes and is angled within the tool cabinet.  

Plane till - Angled - Tool Cabinet

Plane till – Angled – Tool Cabinet

Stored in till are my No 5 1/2 Jack plane is the left most plane.  It barely fitted from a length perspective.  Next to it is my low angled jack plane.  Both of these plane are from Lie Nielsen.  

To the right of these planes are my 2 router planes (small from Lie Nielsen and larger from Lee Valley).  I also got the Lie Nielsen small shoulder plane.  All the devisions between the planes are in walnut and have milled more of these for expansions at later dates.  

Plane till installed in the cabinet

Plane till installed in the cabinet

Here is the till installed in the cabinet.  You can see the top doors for more storage on top of the till.  

Next steps will be more storage of tools and hanging the front doors of the cabinet. 

Tool Cabinet – Doors and structure

The main cabinet structure is finally assemble with a back and the front doors are progressing.  


The shell of the cabinet is finally assembled and the back is now in place and screwed to the main structure.  

Interior of tool cabinet with back

Interior of tool cabinet with back

Back of Tool Cabinet

Back of Tool Cabinet

The shelf is in place for the place till and serve as a divider for the lower part of the cabinet.  The Interior shot has the 2 sides for the plane till (not visible too much, but present).  The panel of the plane till can now be placed on the 2 support and rest on the back and shelf.  

The interior organisation can now start to be built according to plan.  Most of the structure will be built as per plan but the tool holding will vary as my tool set differs.  As I build the different components, the organisation is also being taught off and should progress as there is progress and got some time to put on the cabinet.  


There is 2 front doors to the cabinet that also doubles as tool storage.  Again, the exact tool storage strategy is not quite defined yet.  As with the main cabinet, they are still in the planning phase.  

Joinery of Frames of the Tool cabinet door

Joinery of Frames of the Tool cabinet door

Face frame of the Tool cabinet doors

Face frame of the Tool cabinet doors

Face Frame Joinery of tool cabinet doors

Face Frame Joinery of tool cabinet doors

Front Door Frame for Tool Cabinet

Front Door Frame for Tool Cabinet

Pictures above are some of the shots showing the progress.  They are only dry fitted for the time being and the next step is to put some glue to finalise the setup. They are also missing a small hand plane pass to remove the marks for the proper assembly of the parts.  

The face frames are also missing the panels that are not cut yet.  The wood is selected, still in the rough state.  Before the glue up for the face frames and then to the other frame, the panels will be assembled and rabetted to fit into the groove inside the frame.  

Tool Cabinet – Carcase Redo

Tool Cabinet Carcase 

So this is a continuation of the tool cabinet projet where at my first attempt, I did not pay attention enough to the carcase glue-up that I judged that it was too out of square that I devised to redo the whole case and start again

It is now all glued up and square and happy with it.  

Other Components 

The plane till was pretty much already done and constructed so I was able to fit the components into the new case.  Just not finalized the install of the components yet into the case.  

The Doors 

The Tool Cabinet has 2 exterior doors which I started to cut the different components.  The frame of one of the door is dried assembled but not glued up yet.  This is the inside frame of the door that is assembled.  I still need to fit the parts for the outside of the door and eventually assemble it with the inside frame of each door and fit with each of the doors.  

All the parts are accounted for, but some fitting and joinery needs to be done to have some nice doors and to eventually hang them and hang some tools inside them.  


Once again, take your time.  Although I want this cabinet to be done or advance a bit faster then it is right now (current cabinet is a mess), it is worth while.  I consider that shop furniture are great practice pieces and are not exposed to “customer” and it is normally for you.  

I still want shop furniture to look good though.  In my opinion, it does not mean trash but a good way to practice either a new technique or joint.  It might not be perfect, but it is good practice. 

Tool cabinet components

Tool cabinet components

Shop Update – Cutting boards and Tool Cabinet

It was a pretty slow week from a shop time perspective but still had time to accomplish some work and contribute to a cause for kids illness. Some tool cabinet updates and cutting boards information on the way… 

Tool Cabinet

The tool cabinet has progress somewhat and represent my shop time, advancing the dovetails for the sides.  Both sides are cut and trimmed, ready to be transferred to the top and bottom of the cabinet

I also cut the rabbet in the sides, according to plan.  I originally did not cut them with the original build and can’t really remember why I did not cut them, but when I assembled the original carcase, I pretty much found why the rabbet exists…   Solidify the carcase itself when the back is put in place.  It is progressing but not as quickly as I would like.  This one is purely my fault… 

Cutting boards

I made some cutting boards a little while ago and decided to do a page dedicated to these projects as I build them, how I built them and if anyone is interested in the any of them, give me a shout.  Here is the link to see what I’ve done so far. 

I also decided to give out some of my cutting boards to a foundation that some friends are involved in for one of there Kids which suffers from the Rett Syndrom.  You can find more details here on there web site. You can also find more information on there facebook page.  Search for the “Jade la Peanut” keywords and you will find some publication there. 

Web Site

I’ve also spent some time to get the web site/blog site more up to date from a web perspective and getting some content up and running.  Got some ideas from both shop updates and projects that are coming soon.   Should be a pretty busy time. 

Stay Tune

Shop Update – Hosting and projects

Changes in the hosting

This might be boring but I’ve changed my hosting company to support a local business.  I won’t go into the details of the what’s and why other then the fact that I was more or less happy with the provider that I had and was on the looks for changing company and decided to support a local business of the area.  If you are interested and are in the Montreal, Quebec area, give a shout to techno24 for all your needs.  The migration has been painless and could not have been any happier so far.

So most of my time lately has been on the task of moving my stuff over.


I was still able to fit in some projects, mainly some cutting boards for gifts that came by around easter time.  Some request from friends requested some specific dimensions and was pretty easy to get out the shop and customer was pretty happy with the end results.

It is amazing how much oil can bring the grain out.  I had some walnut that had pretty good grain figure and popped up with the oil was put on the cutting board.  I hope that the end customer is happy.

Shop updates

Been having some issues with the jointer.  I believe that I found the fix but will still call Delta for some confirmation on what could be the issue.  Been passing some time around the jointer for it’s tune up and can’t wait to put a Shelix head on this one.  Will be less maintenance then the straight knifes that came with the original head.  Will try to wait to replace the knives.  They are not due yet but If I can tough it until the replacement, that would be great.

Tool Cabinet

Updates on this one has been a bit slow with the above mentioned updated.  Will also  probably redo some of the carcase as I did not pay enough attention to the squareness of the overall case and now pay for it.  Not major expense in wood, but in time it will take up some redo.  But will need to slow down I guess, better joinery and taking time for the glue ups.

Also came up with some ideas for the internal guts of the cabinet to store the tools into the main cabinet and some other ideas for some of the other smaller tools that don’t belong in this main tool cabinet.

More to come.

Tool Cabinet – More Dovetails

I now have the main carcase done and can now have the official measures for the rest of the components of the tool cabinet and one main component that I wanted to address was the 2 main doors.

They are composed of 2 boxes with a frame and panel top that goes on top of the frame.  The joints for the boxe portion are through dovetails at the 4 corners.

Although I like to report on the progress of the build, I want to the the opportunity to discuss other relating topics to the build itself.


Well to cut proper joints, having the cutting portion sharp is pretty much essential and less dangerous.  This means that sharpening needs to become a habit for hand tools that are being used.

I Can only say to make it a habit to sharpen often, really.  To me, it makes it some much more enjoyable to work with sharp tools.  If you even doubt, go and hit whatever the media you use to sharpen and make it convenient to sharpen.

Same goes to the blades for power tools…  Although sharpening might be not convenient, make sure that you have sharp blades and can replace them when possible.

Dovetails Tutorial

I did follow a woodworking class a little while ago at the Rosewood Studio and we did touch cutting dovetail within the hand tool class, it’s always been a little bit of a challenge, for whatever the reason.  This is not the fault of the class that was taken, just not enough time practicing and making the muscle memory….

I lately looked at the online class at Finewoodworking about building the North Bennett street School in Boston and although I am still catching up, cutting the main carcase dovetails were pretty instructive and I believe I might pickup a few tricks. As with many things, stick with a method and keep at it for a while before changing anything.

So the case is progressing, not as fast as I would prefer, but still moving forward and I am woodworking.  And learning to practice and slow down from the fast pace of the other life.


Tool Cabinet – Structure

The tool cabinet structure is now finally built and glued up.  All 4 corners and the shelf that serves as the support for the plane till is all up and assembled.  Like many assemblies, some fun always arise close to the end and this is why dry assemblies are always necessary to find issues before applying the glue.


The structure has a shelf at about 1/3 from the bottom of the cabinet that also serves to support the plane till.  The joint are through tenons and was pretty easy to fit and drive within the sides.

Square through tenons that will hold a shelf for the tool cabinet

Once the mortises were cut, I was able to derive the tenons through the shelf.  Yes yes normally, you would do the other way around.  It did not happen this way for this assembly and it still worked.

For the mortises, they are a little shallower then the thickness of the shelf by a total of 1/8″.  I chose to trim the tenons with a rabbeting block place with an edge guide and made sure that both side received an equal amount of shaving not to take too much from one side of the tenons.  Same amount of shavings were taken on both sides of the shelf so that side to side so that when the case would be assembled, the shelf would be level from side to side.

Piece of Walnut used as a edge stop for a rabbeting plane to trim the tenons

Piece of Walnut used as a edge stop for a rabbeting plane to trim the tenons


After a first dry fit, I found out that the shelf was too long in between the tenons edge and made the side bow and the dovetails would not close together.  So back to measure the side and indeed, a 1/4″ was too much. So no wonder that the case would not come together.

Back to the bench and was able to trim  the extra material and on to another dry fit and this time was perfect.

So came time to glue up and took my time and worked with the PVA open time so the dry fitting got my clamps all ready to the glue up time.  Applied the glue and measured the different dimensions and all was good.  Left it to glue for all night and here it is….

Tool Cabinet on edge

Tool Cabinet on edge

Tool Cabinet on edge

Tool Cabinet on edge

Tool Cabinet on edge

Now on to the other components where the dimensions can be derived from the tool cabinet structure itself.  The dimensions that are stated in the plan are pretty good reference and some parts were cut to rough lengths. Knowingly that they were to be adjusted once the structure was all assembled.

Tool Cabinet – Shelf install and fitting

As the main carcase now fitted, it was time to include work for the shelf that is located in the lower 3rd of the carcase of the tool cabinet.  It serves to stiffen the whole body with the through tenons joinery.

it also serves as the base for the plane til that will hold the various planes that will be in the case at an angle


As mentionned, the joinery between the shelf and the 2 sides are through tenons, protruding about 1/16 outside of the case.

Square through tenons that will hold a shelf for the tool cabinet

Square through tenons that will hold a shelf for the tool cabinet

The above picture shows the through tenons still needing a little bit of love to excavate the hole one on of the sides.  I drilled most of the waste with a hand drill and then chiseled the rest of the waste up to the layout lines.


part of the dimensions were derived from the plan and from the stock itself.  I mentioned in the last post that the shelf had an edge that was bruised somewhat and might have been concerned that it could affect the placement of the tenons on the shelf

Well, taking dimensions form the assembled tool cabinet case and with the layout form the plan, this was not a problem at all and will be able to have a full tenon without changing the original placement of the tenons on the shelf

Rough Layout of Tenons for a shelf

Rough Layout of Tenons for a shelf

The above pictures shows the layout for the 3 tenons.  Because the shelf is thicker then the tenons, I preferred to do the mortises before and fit the tenons accordingly once the mortises were cut and chiseled out form the side walls.

Just need to clean up a bit the shelf from the remaining glue line and fit the thickness of the tenons with what was cut on the sides then break out the hand saw for the other cuts.  Will remove the waste between the tenons with a small saw and sneak up to the line with the chisels from both sides of the board.

Once this is fitted with both sides, the carcase will need a dry fit and could then be glued up.

Tool Cabinet – Carcase Assembly

Carcase Assembly

The past week was concentrated on completing the carcase assembly frame and have the joinery completed and fitted.  It is a cabinet carcase with dovetail at the 4 corners. Last post covered the dovetail cutting process all done by hand and now was time to fit all 4 corners of the main assembly.

Tool Cabinet Carcase dry fitted

Tool Cabinet Carcase dry fitted

Tool Cabinet Carcase

Tool Cabinet Carcase

It has been a while that I cut dovetails and it really showed and fitting them was a pretty experience.  A bit too much gaps to show but  still tight enough for the structural side of things.  It holds pretty as we speak and it is only dry fitted.

I checked for square in all 4 corners and all was good.  Just one corner that I saw some small amount of light, maybe 1/64 to 1/32 which to me, is not worth playing with, fearing to change something and make it worst.  Will adjust the dimensions of the other components if required.


Towards the lower end, there is a shelf that is through tennonned in the carcase assembly which will stiffen the whole assembly.  Although the main wood is cherry, I did not have wide enough boards to cover the shelf in one piece but had a maple board from another project that was a left over and for the most part, was large enough

For the most part, it was a clean board except for one corner that had a broken/damaged edge.  I decided to go ahead with the board as one edge was going to be going towards the back of the cabinet which will be hidden once all assembled.

tool cabinet shelf

tool cabinet shelf

I may need to adjust the placement of the tenons on that edge based on the plans but that should not be an issue.  It’s length was derived based on relative dimensioning of the carcase assembly that is now dry fitted

Next Steps

Next steps is to fit the shelf and the joinery with the through tenons in the carcase. Will then be able to glue up the carcase and start working on the external doors for the dimensions.

Will also be ordering the hinges for the external doors so that when they are completed, I will at least be able to hang them.  I may not be ordering all the hinges that the plan calls for as I have not finalized the tool placement inside the cabinet.  Some internal hinges I might forgo altogether as I might not be going with the storage options as is. Part of the customization of the storage based on the tools that I have.

Tool Cabinet – Tool Cabinet Carcase building

So I started the building process of my new tool cabinet.  First tasks to start looking into was the tool cabinet carcase or frame of the cabinet itself

Outer Shell

The outer shell of the carcase is a dovetailed frame of the four parts and a shelf around 2/3rd of the cabinet to stiffen the case.  The frame is built using Cherry that I was able to resaw to get pretty close to the 7/8 tackiness but not quite the width so I had to glue a small strip to make it large enough.  I wanted to keep the depth of the cabinet and was willing to glue enough to get the this dimension right.

For the shelf, I had a nice wide piece of maple, but with an edge that had seen some damage.  I was able to get most of it removed by trimming it’s.  Because of it’s placement, the not so nice edge will be towards the back of the cabinet and be covered with the plane till, so I don’t feel to guilty about it.

I will just adapt the placement of the joinery as it might change the distance from what the plan calls from.


The joinery between the sides and top/bottom is dovetails so the first order of things was to start cutting dovetails.  To save time, I ganged the 2 sides to cut the tails and to be similar.  I cut the dovetails using my dovetail saw following the layout that was done on both boards.

Dovetail Joinery Multiple boards

Dovetail joinery on multiple boards that are symetric

Once one end was cut, I flipped the 2 boards and tackled the other end.  I then removed the waste between the tails and cleaned with a chisel.  Once all done and was satisfied, I laid out the pins on the bottom and top of the cabinet.

It is now time for fitting the 2 sides and top/bottom together.  One thing to remember, get your tools sharp and I really need to practice sawing straight.  This should cut the amount I need to do with the chisels and should have better joint fitting off the saw kerf.

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